SAS helps Canadian SMBs gain competitive edge through Info-Tech Research Group

Business analytics resource centre to enhance Canada's small, mid-sized businesses

TORONTO, June 5, 2012 /CNW/ - As mountains of customer data and increasing competition continue to overwhelm many small and medium businesses (SMBs), SAS and Info-Tech Research Group have combined efforts to provide companies with information and resources to help them become more competitive. The two companies are creating an extensive wealth of information and tools about business analytics, now available on Info-Tech Research Group's Canada's Smartest IT site.

"Survival in the SMB world demands a high level of responsiveness to rapid changes in customer behavior and larger market dynamics, but developing effective and timely responses requires better visibility into both the current and future state of the business and market," said James Alexander, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Info-Tech Research Group. "An increasing number of SMBs are looking to leverage business intelligence (BI) tools to deliver this insight, without compromising their agility or their budget. When making the transition to a data driven business model, SMBs need a toolset that can be deployed quickly with a low total cost of ownership and this project with SAS helps equip businesses to make the right decisions about their BI needs."

Smartest IT was created by the Info-Tech Research Group, an IT market research company.

After two wildly successful years, the 2012 Smartest IT ( campaign is once again designed to engage and educate IT professionals on the smart use of technology. The Smartest IT website provides community members access to over 200 pieces of original research content (whitepapers, tools, case-studies andvideos) from Info-Tech Research Group. This research is specifically designed to help IT departments become smarter and greener in their use of technology and is focused on six key topics: business analytics, cloud, collaboration, green IT, managed risk, and infrastructure.

While many small and medium businesses believe advanced analytics tools are only available to large corporations, in recent years, SMBs have increasingly turned to SAS to become more competitive. Since 2011, over 75 per cent of new SAS Canada commercial accounts have been small and midsized enterprises and today more than 35 per cent of SAS Canada's total customer base are SMBs, demonstrating that businesses of all sizes recognize the value of technology from SAS, the leader in business analytics.

"Small and midsize businesses have requirements for deep customer insights, cost controls, and complex business processes much like their larger competitors, said Gary Saarenvirta, CEO of Makeplain, a SAS channel partner. "SAS Business Analytics provides companies with a flexible and powerful toolset that allows them to level the playing field."

The SAS Business Analytics Framework is a powerful blend of information management, analytics, reporting and an ever-expanding portfolio of industry and line-of-business solutions. SAS Solutions for Small and Midsize Businesses provide the same analytical sophistication that large corporations use .

Organizations can start with their immediate business issues, and then extend their use of SAS Business Analytics over time to achieve continuous performance improvements. Once a company has decided to improve its competitiveness, SAS Business Analytics provide a fast path to achieving value.

SAS Business Analytics enable SMBs to:

  • Reduce the time to decision by providing better, faster insights required to support decision-making.
  • Integrate and manage data from across the organization.
  • Equip employees of all skill levels with advanced analysis and reporting tools.
  • Explore data for hidden relationships, emerging trends and anomalies via robust visualization.
  • Share results via easy-to-understand graphics, charts and maps.
  • Personalize information views through configurable dashboards and portals.
  • Scale solutions to fit their budget.

SMEs discuss how SAS has helped them succeed:

Group Medical Services (GMS), experts in health and travel insurance, has been providing coverage to Canadians for over 60 years. Stewart Reinfelds, the company's Manager of Business Analytics and Reporting said, "SAS is helping us save time and reduce risk with deeper financial and customer insights"

"Because we're dealing with large data sets we rely on SAS for data manipulation as well as analytics for our trial analysis," said Murray Duggan, a scientist with Fast Genetics. Fast Genetics is a leader in the pig genetics business.

About SAS

SAS is the leader in business analytics software and services, and the largest independent vendor in the business intelligence market. Through innovative solutions, SAS helps customers at more than 55,000 sites improve performance and deliver value by making better decisions faster. Since 1976 SAS has been giving customers around the world THE POWER TO KNOW®.

The Canadian subsidiary of SAS has been in operation since 1988. Headquartered in Toronto, SAS employs 240 people across the country at its Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa, Quebec City and Montréal offices.

Copyright © 2012 SAS Institute Inc. All Rights Reserved.

About Info-Tech Research Group

With a paid membership of over 25,000 members worldwide, Info-Tech Research Group ( is the global leader in providing tactical, practical Information Technology research and analysis. Info-Tech Research Group has a fourteen-year history of delivering quality research and is North America's fastest growing full-service IT analyst firm.

SAS and all other SAS Institute Inc. product or service names are registered trademarks or trademarks of SAS Institute Inc. in the USA and other countries. ® indicates USA registration. Other brand and product names are trademarks of their respective companies.  Copyright © 2012 SAS Institute Inc. All rights reserved.


For further information:

Editorial Contact:
Julie Smithers 
(647) 260-2683
Visit the SAS Press Center

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