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Connecting Data is a Team Sport

Blog: The Tibco Blog

Reading Time: 3 minutes

I recently teamed up with Austrian customer Raiffeisen Bank, Dutch partner Connected Data Group, and German partner QuinScape to deliver a webinar entitled “Next-Generation Data Virtualization Has Arrived.” Combining our experiences and insights, we delivered an accessible roadmap of how TIBCO Data Virtualization can help enterprises connect their data to drive greater business value.

After the webinar, I spoke with Connected Data Group co-founder Erik Fransen, whom I first met at a data virtualization event in 2015. We talked about Erik’s latest insights on the European data and analytics market as well as his fast-growing business. Connected Data Group helps clients become more data-driven and was co-founded with Antoine Stelma. The pair realized early on that they would have to transition their clients from traditional warehousing and replication-based data architectures to more modern and agile solutions. Below, I share some highlights from our conversation.

What is driving the European data and analytics market today?

“Our clients understand that data is core to their business success. Data helps them innovate faster, operate more efficiently, and provide more valuable customer experiences. Their challenge is unlocking that data, connecting it via more modern adaptable data architecture, making it more consistent and consumable, and doing all of this in an agile, cost-effective way. 

That’s where the Connected Data group comes in. We connect data with people and people with data. And together with our network of partners, we help our clients maximize the business value of their data.”

How do you connect people and data to realize data’s business value?

“We start by helping our clients identify their biggest data-driven business opportunities. With these objectives in mind, we then analyze their data management architecture and propose ways to modernize it. 

This typically means new investments in TIBCO offerings such as TIBCO Data Virtualization and TIBCO EBX.  TIBCO Data Virtualization makes their data architecture more flexible and responsive.  TIBCO EBX helps organize their most important data assets, for example, their customer and product data.  And when used together in their data architecture, they make our clients’ data available to the business in a simple, quick, consistent, and predictable way.

We also help our clients skill up their people to maximize the business value and gain insight from their modernized data architecture. e deliver an excellent training program that helps educate business and IT leaders, analysts, data scientists, data engineers, data modelers, and others.”

Tell me more about your network of partners? 

“We are business value-driven, data management, and data analytics specialists with deep experience in business requirements, data modeling, data warehouse development, and automation, data architecture, analytics, and data science. But we alone cannot cover the entire data and analytics spectrum, nor the entire European market.  

So we team with other specialist consultancies such as KVL and Systemation in The Netherlands, QuinScape and Statsoft Europe in Germany, Apgar Consulting in France, and Yael Group in Israel.  And of course, we work with a selected set of technology providers including TIBCO. Our Connected Data Academy provides a broad range of Data & Analytics education programs focused on concept and skill development, IT tool training, and made-to-measure in-company programs. We partner with major training institutes in the Netherlands and we have a deep partnership with Genesee Academy in the USA focused on Data Vault Modeling Certifications worldwide.”

So the “Group” term in your Connected Data Group brand is intentional.

“Yes absolutely. Our clients’ data opportunities and challenges are massive. But when we connect our clients, our team, and our partner network, there is no challenge we cannot successfully address. Plus teaming with great people is a lot more fun and satisfying way to do business.”

Speaking of partners, can you tell us about your relationship with TIBCO?

“Our relationship began in 2014 driven by our client’s need for data virtualization. We expanded our partnership in 2018 when TIBCO added TIBCO EBX. We recently added the newest offering in TIBCO’s Unify data management portfolio, TIBCO Cloud Metadata, which provides a one-stop-shop for metadata management, data governance, and data catalog. We love the fact TIBCO now provides our clients with the complete, next-generation data management solution they require. 

Once we put their consistent, complete, connected data architecture in place, we then help our clients gain insight from that data using additional solutions such as TIBCO Spotfire, TIBCO Streaming, and TIBCO Data Science.”

Can you give us a couple of examples of customers who have benefited from your TIBCO partnership and what kind of impact our partnership is delivering? 

“We have teamed with TIBCO at over a dozen of Europe’s biggest healthcare, automotive, financial services, and retail companies. European candy maker Cloetta is one example.  Raiffeisen Bank who spoke at the webinar is another. The impacts are significant, including top-line growth, lower costs, better compliance, and more.”

Erik, I enjoyed our conversation, and thank you for helping communicate why connecting data is a team sport. If someone would like to connect with you directly, how would one do that? 

“I would enjoy speaking with your blog readers about their data-driven business opportunities, challenges, and how Connected Data Group and our partner network might help. Just reach out via LinkedIn. I look forward to the conversations.”

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