There’s a New Informatica in Town That Wants to Unleash the Power of Your Data

B. Shimmin

B. Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

  • At its annual user conference, Informatica quietly introduced an entirely new brand identity, which is designed to free the company from its ETL roots and target enterprise cloud data management.
  • To reach this goal, however, the company intends to do far more than merely switch up its logo and mission statement.

It is not uncommon for a technology vendor to make a break with the past by rolling out a new brand identity. Such efforts typically involve an extravagant launch party, an extensive marketing campaign, and of course, an extremely expensive logo retrofit. On average, these rebrands aren’t a good thing, at least not initially, since they’re often undertaken in response to an existing or anticipated threat. The idea is to create some cognitive dissonance among existing and potential customers, severing existing perceptions and creating new associations that are in tune with current (and hopefully future) market ideals.

When I arrived at Informatica World this week, I was therefore prepared for some dissonance, or at least for flowing champagne, falling balloons, skywriting (maybe even skydiving), and abundant tchotchkes, each emblazoned with the company’s new logo. That didn’t happen. What I found instead was a revamped PowerPoint template, new business cards, and business as usual. When I asked company CEO Anil Chakravarthy if I’d accidentally missed the launch party, he told me that they were techie company, just like their customers, and neither cared too much for marketing bravado.

Instead, Anil and other Informatica executives simply put up the new logo, explaining – when asked – why the company chose to make this change. The idea behind the new orange and blue origami logo is to push the company beyond its roots as an ETL vendor (initially integrating Salesforce.com with SAP), to become an enterprise cloud data management vendor. More specifically, Informatica wants to support digital transformation by ‘unleashing the power of data’ via the construction of a comprehensive, trusted, versatile, and intelligent data platform.

That platform right now is comprised of a collection of best-of-breed data management solutions, including of course data and cloud integration, but also master data management, data quality, data security, and big data enablement. Historically, each of these products were best in class, but they were also predominantly premises-based and seen by many as a bit hard to consume, owing to their perpetual licensing model, antiquated user experience, and complexity – an irony given Informatica’s self-proclaimed (but not official) moniker as being the ‘Switzerland of data.’

With this rebrand, however, the company intends to turn all of those drawbacks upside down, not just by exploring the design limits of the Roboto font and a few color-wheel tweaks. There are a few other objectives at play, including:

  • Flexible Consumption and Sales Models: Customers will be able to pay for what they use (the utility model) freely across cloud or premises; also, sales will be incentivized to sell cloud and premises equally.
  • Completely Cross-Cloud: Informatica will not just integrate, but also run on multiple public cloud platforms (Amazon, Microsoft, Salesforce.com, Google, etc.).
  • Composable Services: All of Informatica’s products will be containerized for consumption by customers and partners as services.
  • AI-Informed Everything: AI practices such as machine learning (ML) will inform various aspects of all Informatica products.
  • Consistent UI: All products will adopt and adhere to a unified user experience.

Interestingly, the company isn’t due to begin working toward these goals until after the launch of its new branding. Though not yet complete, the re-invention of Informatica has been underway for some time, already changing how it does business. Many products are already fully containerized, able to support multiple deployment options, and available for purchase as a service. Perhaps that explains Anil’s decision not to make a big fuss over its new logo. Why celebrate work already done? Now, if only they could get someone to update their Wikipedia entry to showcase the new logo.

About Brad Shimmin
As Principal Analyst for Collaboration and Conferencing at Current Analysis, Brad analyzes the rapidly expanding use of collaboration software and services as a means of improving business agility, fostering employee optimization and driving business opportunities.

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