Former SAS Institute regional president joins Cognos

Thomas retires after 23 years

Former Asia Pacific vice president for the SAS Institute, Phillip Beniac, has taken on the role of regional head of business intelligience vendor Cognos.

Beniac has been appointed Asia Pacific president for Cognos, which is currently in the process of acquiring Applix in a US$339 deal that will see the BI vendor expanding its reach into the financial services performance market.

Applix specializes in business analytics and will particularly bring into the Cognos fold a technology called TM1, a 64-bit, in-memory multidimensional online analytical processing (OLAP) server. It is a competitive move against the Oracle-Hyperion deal, according to Timothy Hickernell, senior research analyst at Info-Tech Group.

Beniac first joined the SAS' sales organisation in 1990 and held a variety of senior, global sales and business development positions during his tenure.

Beniac will report to Cognos chief operating officer, Les Rechan, and will be responsible for spearheading Asia-Pacific sales and solutions initiatives to ensure customer success and drive continued performance management leadership in the market.

He replaces outgoing president Jack Thomas, who is retiring after 23 years with Cognos.

The Applix acquisition will also add some 3000 customers to Cognos' existing customers, including about 3500 users of Cognos' financial performance management software and over 20,000 using other products from the software vendor, according to Cognos CEO Rob Ashe.

One local Cognos customer is Australian welfare agency Centrelink which has just upgraded to Cognos 8.

- with Mari-Len De Guzman

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