Contribution made by Josh Forrest
Essbase is widely considered to be the industry leading OLAP (On-Line Analytical Processing) server. Built on a real-time analytic infrastructure, Essbase provides BI and EPM users the ability to quickly dissect and analyze data through an intuitive interface. Essbase end-users have multiple options for interacting with data including Microsoft Excel, Hyperion Financial Reporting and Hyperion Web Analysis. By bringing Essbase together with other Oracle applications, users will find broad support for demanding business requirements. Breaking down large datasets, working with best-case/worst-case scenarios, forecasting multi-line expenses, and reporting variance analysis is now at your fingertips. Essbase ultimately allows end-users to interact and analyze real-time data through an integrated, rapid-response, and secure environment.
Arbor Software Corporation, an OLAP software company that designed and marketed multidimensional database software for planning and analysis, developed Essbase (Extended Spreadsheet Database), first branded “Arbor Essbase” in 1992. This multidimensional database product was originally developed to address the scalability problems associated with spreadsheets like Microsoft Excel and Lotus 1-2-3.
In 1998, Hyperion Software Corporation, a company with packaged analytic applications specializing in financials, and Arbor, merged to become Hyperion Solutions Corporation. Their first assignment after the merger was obvious, integrating Essbase with Hyperion Pillar, Hyperion Enterprise, and Hyperion Reporting.
After the merger, Essbase became the backbone to a full suite of applications for planning & budgeting, financial consolidations, scorecards, reporting, and more. Hyperion Solutions become a leader in the world of performance management software with Essbase leading the way.
In 2007, Oracle purchased Hyperion Solutions. At the time of the acquisition, Hyperion applications were being used by approximately 12,000 companies, including 91 of the Fortune 100. The acquisition made Oracle a leader in the EPM (Enterprise Performance Management) market and strengthened the Oracle offerings.
Strengths / Benefits
- A rewarding user experience - Essbase delivers sub-second query response time so users can quickly analyze the metrics that influence business performance leading to informed decisions. Business and Financial analysts benefit from the relationship Essbase has with Microsoft products such as Excel, Word, and PowerPoint.
- Highly advanced calculation engine - At its core, Essbase is the most advanced, calculation engine on the market. It ships with over 350 pre-built, out-of-the-box functions accelerating the development of complex business models.
- Easy to use analytic environment - Essbase allows line-of-business users to lead design and development. Essbase utilizes a graphical interface making it easy for users to build applications, dimensions, hierarchies, and members.
- Work with large datasets - Essbase allows for interaction with large and complex datasets. Users will benefit from the ability to view summarized or detailed information quickly via spreadsheet programs, such as Microsoft Excel.
- Multiple data source integration - Essbase makes is possible to reach data in multiple source systems including legacy reporting systems, Online Transaction Processing (OLTP) systems, relational data warehouses, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems and Spreadsheets.
- Backbone of Hyperion – As previously mentioned, Essbase operates as the backbone to multiple applications in the Oracle Hyperion suite, including the powerful Hyperion Planning application. Essbase helps turn data into actionable information, delivering results through multiple portals including Hyperion Planning, Hyperion Financial Reporting, Web Analysis and Excel.