Blogs

This Past Year and the One Ahead of Us

Former CEO

Our annual reports were mailed out last week. Writing the letter for  the report gave me a good opportunity to reflect on this past year and  the one ahead of us.

Fiscal year 2010 was a defining  moment for Netezza. Against a challenging economic backdrop, we  successfully launched the Netezza®  TwinFin™ appliance – our most significant product line introduction  to date. We dramatically extended our price/performance and simplicity  advantage, reminding the industry of the impact we’ve had in our brief  history. We developed significant new distribution channels, including  NEC in the fast-growing Asian markets, and we held our largest user  conference ever. Unlike many companies in our space, we continued to  invest in our products and our people to strongly position Netezza for  the anticipated economic recovery. We ended the fiscal year better  positioned than ever and while we remain cautious about the economy, we  can’t help but be excited by the opportunities that lie ahead.

Our  transition away from our proprietary hardware platform to the TwinFin  platform – a daunting prospect for any appliance vendor – occurred  seamlessly and with no negative disruption to our business. Today, there  are many deployments of the TwinFin system being used by our customers  for production purposes in each of our vertical and geographic markets,  and we are seeing an encouragingly strong demand for this newest version  of our data warehouse appliance. Our new platform allows us to quickly  come to market with new products that broaden our market reach – a fact  proven by the launch of our Skimmer™ platform, hot on the heels of the TwinFin appliance introduction. More  recently, we announced the TwinFin  i-Class™ appliance – a revolutionary step in data warehousing that  supports BI and analytics in a single platform and helps organizations  reduce costs, simplify analytics and make better decisions.

Undaunted  by the recession, we took our annual user conference (Enzee Universe)  on the road. Over 1,500 people – the vast majority of whom are either  customers or prospects, and three times the number attending our  previous user conference – saw us demonstrate the TwinFin system and  outline our new N-Sight vision. N-Sight explains how we will broaden our  product portfolio, extend analytics, embrace business applications and  do so through a high-performance, cost-effective, easy to manage and  unified enterprise-wide platform.

Fiscal year 2010  produced major advancements in our channel operations, which we believe  will show results in coming fiscal periods. An  agreement with NEC puts Netezza’s streaming architecture and  analytical database software inside NEC hardware, giving us a dramatic  increase in our coverage in North Asia and a significant foothold in the  China market. We also delivered a Retail  Analytic Appliance™ that combines the TwinFin appliance and a  merchandising optimization solution, extending our value proposition  beyond IT and into the retail business buyers.

As I  look forward to fiscal year 2011, I cannot help but be excited by the  opportunity that is unfolding before us. A significant technological  transformation is taking place that is enabled by high-performance  analytics. Data-driven intelligent enterprises are becoming increasingly  interconnected with their customers through local data collection  devices, such as smart meters. Consumers are revealing buying intentions  in digital conversations on the social web and are in turn  interconnected through digital devices. New business models – such as  remote patient monitoring – are being built on top of these technology  evolutions. A new “intelligent economy” is emerging. The organizations  that rise to the top of this new food chain will be those that can farm  the wealth of data being generated; can extrapolate profitable actions  from this analysis; and can do so in a time frame that leapfrogs their  competition. We uniquely provide the underpinnings of technology that  will enable this massive shift to create game-changing value for our  industry, customers and partners.