"I've never been opposed to the idea of looking at players in the industry. We've looked, to be quite honest," Jeff Raikes, president of Microsoft's business division, said in an interview. "We just thought organic development would get us to the real solution faster."
SAP said on Tuesday it would buy privately held OutlookSoft Corp., a company that helps chief financial officers budget and forecast. A source familiar with the acquisition said SAP paid about $500 million.
In March, Oracle said it would pay $3.3 billion to buy Hyperion Solutions Corp, which competes with Business Objects <BOBJ.O><BOBJ.PA> and Cognos <CSN.TO> in the market for software that helps companies sift through data to detect trends and other information.
"The cost of our solutions will be a quarter of the traditional solutions," said Raikes, who delivered a speech at the company's first business intelligence conference. "The economics are going to get transformed."