Mine Your Own Business With Bime Business Intelligence

Mine Your Own Business With Bime Business IntelligenceWhat is the name of your business and URL?

The name of the web application we created is Bime (Business Intelligence Made Easy!) and the URL to our website is http://bimeanalytics.com. The name of our company is We Are Cloud.

A brief synopsis of the website / application:

Bime is an easy yet powerful Business Intelligence (BI) web app that helps you mine your own business. It delivers simple-to-use yet powerful BI, analytics, data visualization and dashboarding in a software-as-a-service application, making data analysis fast, easy and low-cost.

Why did you start this company?

We started because business intelligence was mostly just too hard: too hard to use, too hard to manage, too hard to buy and too hard to get right. The company was founded in Montpellier, France in July 2009 by Nicolas Raspal and Rachel Delacour, although Bime has been in development since 2007. Rachel and Nicolas saw the real need for easy-to-use yet powerful BI tools and recognized that the emergence of cloud computing and rich internet application technologies would allow new innovation in these areas.

Was your company started on a shoestring budget or funded?

For a year we were running on a shoestring budget. Then we won the French Ministry of Research competition and everything kicked off. At about the same time we started to involve private investors too.

Who is your competition, and what do you do better?

Our closest competitors are GoodData, Tableau Software, Qliktech and Birst.

One of our core differentiators was launched at the DEMO event in September, V3.0 of Bime with QueryBlender. The QueryBlender is an easy way to mix data from different data sources in Bime without having to move your data around. Integrating data from multiple sources at the moment is pretty hard. We decided to change this. With the QueryBlender you can now mix data without moving your data around with ETL, or federating everything in a data warehouse. You simply query your different systems in the pivot table and join everything on the fly. We think this is going to be a huge advantage for anyone who analyzes data – one of the major challenges facing analysts in their day-to-day jobs is the integration of data from differing sources. Now Bime can save all that time and effort spent cross-referencing data from multiple sources. QueryBlender lets users mix and match virtually any information, from legacy spreadsheets and large relational databases to live data streaming in from Google Analytics, Google Apps, salesforce.com or Amazon Web Services.

Many current solutions in the market offer either connections to online or on-premise – but not both. With the volume of data being produced today it’s imperative to be able to analyze all types of data together – something that Bime offers over some other solutions. Because our product is a SaaS, Bime is scalable and affordable. Simplicity of use is another area where we excel – Bime is designed with the business user in mind, so no prior IT expertise is required unlike traditional BI solutions. Training is minimal and low-cost. Bime has no installation or set-up cost, there is no download required, and it provides unique sharing capabilities. We also pride ourselves on being the “sexiest” software in the market; we’ve hidden all the complexity of BI behind a light user interface.

Why would a small business, entrepreneur, freelancer, etc use your product?

Being a native SaaS application, Bime is perfect for small businesses and individuals. BI products have traditionally required huge upfront costs, had long lead times and demanded technical expertise to use. SaaS allows powerful functionality without the need for any of these, making it a highly profitable investment for SMBs. With traditional BI, having enough data to justify the BI spend is certainly a problem. The huge upfront costs and time investment often cannot be justified by the need for a couple of key decision makers to analyze a small number of records. SaaS BI gets rid of this problem by providing a fully functional BI suite available for just one person. SaaS applications can be rapidly scaled up or down as your business needs change. This isn’t to say that large enterprises cannot benefit from SaaS BI too. Within departments or teams, larger organizations are deploying SaaS BI more and more as they realize its potential.

How could you effectively use these tools?

Bime helps our target markets facilitate their planning process, and therefore puts them and their organizations in the best possible position for deciding what to do next. Not only does it help organizations make more rational and targeted decisions, but will also keep them one vital step ahead of their competitors in the market.

How does it do this? For example, analyzing sales data might show hidden links within your customer base and thus reveal how to better retain old customers and attract new ones. Mixing this with your financial data might then show that one group of customers cost a lot more than another, despite equal revenues, allowing you to further refine your targeting. More than increasing profits, well informed strategic decisions make the difference between the growth and collapse of a company, and Bime gives this opportunity to the organizations that use it. This is particularly important in a recession when organizations need to minimize outgoings and risk. It also enables them to plan savings in an informed and effective way. The ability to drill down into data provides visibility for the organization, which in turn leads to better ROI and improved targeting. In addition, it helps all information be standardized company-wide, so all employees are on the same page and working collectively towards the same goals. Equally important is the fact that Bime has enabled organizations to present and share their data to the world in a secure way through interactive visualizations and dashboards. Our target markets need tools like Bime to bring visibility into the organization and help link different aspects together. Without Bime, organizations run the risk of overlooking vital information fundamental to their survival in today’s difficult economy.

A short bio of your company

We Are Cloud is the creator of Bime, a pioneer solution of cloud BI, born in and built for the cloud. Bime delivers simple-to-use yet powerful BI, analytics, data visualization and dashboarding in a SaaS application, making data analysis fast, easy and low-cost. We Are Cloud was founded in 2009 in Montpellier, an academic R&D hotbed in the South of France. The company has received several rounds of angel funding. We Are Cloud has been recognized as a trailblazer in the cloud BI field, most recently as “Best European Start Up of the Year” at ICT Spring 2011 in Luxembourg and “Best Cloud Application” by the Cloud Computing World Series Awards in London.

Do you offer free online or offline tools?

When you start using Bime you start on a free 10 day trial of the Premium version of the app. After this period, you can choose to upgrade to any of our paid plans depending on your needs: Workgroup, Enterprise or Premium. There is no long-term engagement required – payment is per month, per user and you can stop at any time. If you don’t upgrade you will be downgraded to the free version which has limited features.

Are there different pricing levels?

Yes – you can use Bime starting at a mere $60 a month. The Premium plan is priced at $240/month and gives you the full range of features.

Do you have a blog that keeps users updated?

Yes – check it out at http://bimeanalytics.com/category/blog/. We blog about several topics, including: BI, analytics, SaaS, Cloud, web analytics and general start-up topics.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or ? Provide exact URL of each

Facebook:http://www.facebook.com/bime.business.intelligence
Twitter:http://twitter.com/wearecloud
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/company/we-are-cloud/bime-saas-business-intelligence-solution-102509/product
Google Apps Marketplace:
https://www.google.com/enterprise/marketplace/viewListing?productListingId=3657+8625466588813751063&pli=1

YouTube – Do you have a YouTube video URL that you can share with us, and allow us to publish with your story?

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9auQ9MHx57k&feature=player_profilepage

How long have you been in business?

Since July 2009 (just over 2 years).

Number of current users? Estimated yearly growth?

We currently have over 100 paying companies. Bime is positioned on high-growth/high-potential markets: SaaS BI and data visualization/publishing. Regarding just the SaaS BI market, analysts have estimated that globally it should represent $1.5 billion in 2011. We don’t disclose our sales figures, but it is clear that Bime has strong potential for a very strong future in the SaaS BI market. Our primary ambition is to be pervasive and essential for more and more teams/departments within companies, and to be an alternative to traditional vendors who have not managed to migrate to a pure SaaS model because of their inheritance.

How do you see your company in the next 2-5 years (more products or services?)

We want to change the Data World.
Our vision for the future is to provide a universal user interface to do quantitative analysis of any type of data. This includes pivot tables and dashboards full of unique features – from high-level control of advanced data visualizations to an action-packed calculation engine – and all this running in a web browser on top of any data source. In short, we want Bime to become the leading Business Intelligence front-end for the cloud era.

For now we are focusing on Bime the web app, but our roadmap is full of cool things – look out for BimeMobile which will be available in the coming months.

How many employees do you currently have working with you and/or freelance contractors?

We have around 12 people working with us at our French HQ right now. In addition, we have a strong international partner network (we have partners in 25 countries) and an international board of investors.

What other web based products would you recommend to entrepreneurs, business owners, or freelancers?

We’d recommend Google Analytics to help track web analytics activity. Other products we use within the company are Google Apps, salesforce.com, Basecamp, GoToMeeting, CampaignMonitor, Skype and Lighthouse bug tracker.

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