Exalead®, a global provider of search and information access software for the enterprise and the Web, announced today that Natixis Private Equity has selected the Exalead CloudView platform to equip it 300 financial analysts with more intelligent access to the group’s information assets. Natixis Private Equity is the leading provider of private equity services in France for SMEs (businesses valued from €50 to €500 million) and a branch of Natixis, the corporate and investment bank owned by France’s second largest banking group, BCPE. NPE’s 300 employees are organized into 20 teams in 10 countries, and manage a €4billion portfolio of 695 investments.
To make the wisest investment decisions possible, private equity professionals need both a deep understanding of the markets they serve as well as perfect visibility into the companies in which they currently or may potentially invest. Accordingly, in 2007, Natixis Private Equity sought to equip its analysts with more effective access to information within the group’s CRM system (Microsoft Dynamics) and a collection of nearly 15 million documents (2.2 million documents, 1.5 million active e-mails, 10 million archived e-mails, and 120,000 press articles).
After an unsuccessful two-year experience with Autonomy, Natixis Private Equity decided a change of strategy was required, and they turned to Exalead CloudView to meet their information access needs.
"Our first attempt with Autonomy was difficult, but it provided us with valuable insights. From that early experience, we knew we needed a tool that was at once full-featured but also simple and flexible, one that we could easily adapt and evolve as our needs changed. This was exactly the solution we found in Exalead, in addition to a closer, more responsive support team," explains Brice Delons, CIO at Natixis Private Equity.
Natixis Private Equity was able to integrate CloudView into their information systems in just five days, with the out-of-the-box interface delivering an immediately satisfying user experience. CloudView’s dynamic data classification and categorization capabilities hide the complexities of Natixis Private Equity’s heterogeneous information systems, and the platform provides simple tools for adapting the solution to the group’s unique body of knowledge and research habits.
"Our staff now has easy access to reliable and timely information," declares Mr. Delons. "With Exalead CloudView, we are able to provide our employees with unified access to our enterprise data, regardless of the source or format and independent of the original application. More importantly, it permits a cross-referencing and enrichment of information across these heterogeneous applications, helping our analysts to better understand the available information and to make smarter investment decisions as a result," he adds.
A Limited TCO and a Rapid ROI
Natixis Private Equity chose Exalead CloudView after an extensive study of the information access technologies available in the marketplace. "We were impressed with the indexing capacity and performance of CloudView, and we quickly realized that Exalead’s solution – in contrast to the platform we had originally chosen – would allow us to deliver a search service that would bring real value to our end users while enabling us to control our total investment (software, service, hardware and maintenance)," notes Mr. Delons.
"In addition, we were able to integrate the solution into our existing architecture quickly and non-intrusively, while meeting all our security requirements," states Mr. Delons. "The platform offered native connectors for all the information sources we wanted to index, and consumes very lean resources. As a result, we achieved a significant reduction in costs while gaining important functional enhancements for our users - a key accomplishment," adds Mr. Delons.
Going Further with Exalead
Natixis Private Equity now plans to extend the search service to additional data silos, and to explore new navigational and reporting possibilities for their newly unified information assets.
"With Exalead CloudView, the team at Natixis Private Equity is benefitting from a highly innovative service that permits them to at once improve their productivity and to gain a more comprehensive vision of information - a real asset when one is striving to achieve a clear understanding of opportunities and risks against a backdrop of large volumes of data. It’s a solution that perfectly represents the value of search and search based applications: to rapidly make information more accessible, timely, and relevant in order to deliver a significant bottom line benefit to businesses," concludes Alain Cotte, CEO, Exalead.
The leader in France in private equity devoted to SMEs, Natixis Private Equity is also a leading player in Europe and one with a rising profile in the high potential markets of Asia, South America and India. NPE is present in all areas of Private Equity – Venture, Expansion, Transmission and Funds of funds – with 18 teams, 194 professionals, 695 equity investments and more than €4 billion dedicated to the growth of SMEs. NPE has managed to develop unique expertise to support experienced local teams and thus duplicate its business internationally. www.natixis-pe.com
Founded in 2000 by Search engine pioneers, Exalead® is the leading search-based application platform provider to business and government. Exalead's worldwide client base includes leading companies such as PricewaterhouseCooper, ViaMichelin, GEFCO, WorldBank and Sanofi Pasteur, and more than 100 million unique users a month use Exalead's technology for search. Today, Exalead is reshaping the digital content landscape with its platform, Exalead CloudView™, which uses advanced semantic technologies to bring structure, meaning and accessibility to previously unused or under-used data in the new hybrid enterprise and Web information cloud. CloudView collects data from virtually any source, in any format, and transforms it into structured, pervasive, contextualized building blocks of business information that can be directly searched and queried, or used as the foundation for a new breed of lean, innovative information access applications.
Exalead was acquired by Dassault Systèmes in June 2010. Exalead has offices in Paris, San Francisco, Glasgow, London, Amsterdam, Milan and Frankfurt.