Colleague and market research expert Harry Henry is filling a hole in the company research market with his Global 5000 database of the 5000 largest global companies, including both public and private businesses. This is already an important resource for marketers who need to understand global market opportunities more than they ever have before – and that most likely means you, since most of our readers are from mid-to-large size companies who either are or should be growing their international business.
While we focus on the information technology strategies for reaching and engaging with customers and colleagues everywhere, you still need to decide which markets and regions, which industries, and which leading companies to target for growth. Harry has generously agreed to provide regular posts providing insights from his database to help inform those decisions.
Read Harry’s first post China Eyes Canadian Energy Resources. You can follow Harry’s posts on this blog at http://bluebillinc.com/author/hhenry/. Or you can reach him directly.
One of the interesting news announcements this week, was about CNOOC of China buying Nexen of Canada – an energy exploration company. CNOOC is a $38 billion company and Nexen reported revenues of $6.3 billion in 2011.
For any company looking at global markets, there are some interesting developments wrapped up in this announcement.
This is a major step for a Chinese company, a major step in the energy industry and a major step for Canada. Consider a few facts compiled from our Global 5000 database.
- Canada’s energy assets are substantial. Looking at Global 5000 companies in Canada, right behind Financial Services, Oil & Gas and Mining are the next 2 largest industries representing 27% of the largest companies in Canada. So, as the world thirst for natural resources and energy continues to climb … Canada will get more attention.
- Looking at growth rates over the past few years, China has grown faster than the rest of the market. So has the Oil & Gas industry as well as the Mining industry. The total Global 5000 grew 11.4% in 2010 and 12% in 2011. China based Global 5000 companies grew 33.5% and 30% in 2011. Oil & Gas firms reported growth of 22% and 24% for those same years while mining companies grew even more at 40% in 2010 and 30% this past year. So, this deal hits right at the heart of a number of growth segments.
- This is a second big deal by a Chinese company in the North American market — see our article earlier this year on the Chinese bank ICBC entering the US market via an acquisition.
The bottom line here is that China’s economy is huge, its growth — even at lower rates — is still a huge differential and it has a continually increasing need for energy resources. Canadian companies have those resources so we can expect more deals and activity.
For more information about The Global 5000 and companies like these that are included, visit the database page.
Last night I somehow stumbled on a link to the March 19, 1998 issue of David Weinberger’s JOHO (Journal of the Hyperlinked Organization), where David posits The Death of Documents and the End of Doneness - because of the Web of course - and I disagree that documents are dead. David and I are old friends and I am sure we each had more to say to each other on this topic, but I can’t remember if he ever accepted my corrections to his obviously misguided position, whether he just decided to spare me the embarrassment of pointing out gaping inconsistencies in my argument and gloat privately, or whether we figured out a weaselly way to agree. I have a vague memory of the latter – perhaps in an AIIM publication?
In any case, I was gratified to find that I still agree with my 1998-self, and will check with David to see whether he is the same self he was. You can reach your own conclusions and also have a fun read (if you don’t know him, David is very funny) at http://www.hyperorg.com/backissues/joho-march19-98.html.
See David’s response at http://www.hyperorg.com/blogger/2012/05/22/documents-dead-or-grizzled-survivors/
Aha! We now agree and in a non-squirrely way. You didn’t have to say you were wrong, now I am going to have to admit the same when it’s my turn. :( …Besides, you were only a little wrong…
W3C launched the new Linked Data Platform (LDP) Working Group to promote the use of linked data on the Web. Per its charter, the group will explain how to use a core set of services and technologies to build powerful applications capable of integrating public data, secured enterprise data, and personal data. The platform will be based on proven Web technologies including HTTP for transport, and RDF and other Semantic Web standards for data integration and reuse. The group will produce supporting materials, such as a description of uses cases, a list of requirements, and a test suite and/or validation tools to help ensure interoperability and correct implementation.
A rarity these days – an announcement that used ‘data’ instead of ‘big data’! And the co-chairs are even from IBM and EMC.
It dates me, as well as search technology, to acknowledge that an article in Information Week by Ken North containing Medlars and Twitter in the title would be meaningful. Discussing search requires context, especially when trying to convince IT folks that special expertise is required to do search really well in the enterprise, and it is not something acquired in computer science courses.
Evolution of search systems from the print indexes of the early 1900s such as Index Medicus (National Library of Medicine’s index to medical literature) and Chemical Abstracts to the advent of the online Medical Literature Analysis and Retrieval System (Medlars) in the 1960s was slow. However, the phases of search technology evolution since the launch of Medlars has hardly been warp speed. This article is highly recommended because it gives historical context to automated search while defining application and technology changes over the past 50 years. The comparison between Medlars and Twitter, as search platforms is fascinating, something that would never have occurred to me to explore.
A key point of the article is the difference between a system of search designed for archival content with deeply hierarchical categorization for a specialized corpus versus a system of highly transient, terse and topically generalized content. Last month I commented on the need to have search present in your normal work applications and this article underscores an enormous range of purpose for search. Information of a short temporal nature and scholarly research each have a place in the enterprise but it would be a stretch to think of searching for both types via a single search interface. Wanting to know what a colleague is observing or learning at a conference is very different than researching the effects of a uranium exposure on the human anatomy.
What have not changed much in the world of applied search technology are the reasons we need to find information and how it becomes accessible. The type of search done in Twitter or on LinkedIn today is for information that we used to pick up from a colleague (in person or on the phone) or in industry daily or weekly news publications. That’s how we found the name of an expert, learned the latest technologies being rolled out at a conference or got breaking news on a new space material being tested. What has changed is the method of retrieval but not by a lot, and the relative efficiency may not be that great. Today, we depend on a lot of pre-processing of information by our friends and professional colleagues to park information where we can pick it up on the spur of the moment – easy for us but someone still spends the time to put it out there where we can grab it.
On the other end of the spectrum is that rich research content that still needs to be codified and revealed to search engines with appropriate terminology so we can pursue in-depth searching to get precisely relevant and comprehensive results. Technology tools are much better at assisting us with content enhancement to get us the right and complete results, but humans still write the rules of indexing and curate the vocabularies needed for classification.
Fifty years is a long time and we are still trying to improve enterprise search. It only takes more human work to make it work better.
The mobile platform landscape has changed dramatically in the last few months. So much so that organizations who even recently reached decisions on a mobile development strategy should re-visit their decisions. I’m not talking about HTML5 vs app development issues – though those decisions are just as important and directly related because of continued innovation in device and operating system capabilities combined with the need to protect content development and management investments – but about which platforms will be viable, or meet your level of risk tolerance.
What has changed? To over simplify: Apple’s dominance continues to increase and is unassailable in tablets; RIM is not a contender; Microsoft is looking like an up-and-comer; and most surprising to many, Android is looking iffy and is a flop in tablets with the exception of the very Amazon-ized version in the Kindle Fire. These are pretty general statements, but if you are in charge of your company’s mobile development strategy considering their impact is a good place to start a check-up for a possible course correction.
Another place to start is to read the excellent post by Tim Bajarin Why Google Will Use Motorola To Become Vertically Integrated. I won’t summarize because the entire post and the comments are really a must-read.
The recent announcement of SAS Visual Analytics highlights four important characteristics of big data that are key to the ability of marketing organizations to use big analytic data effectively:
- Visualization is a challenge for big data analysis and we’ll continue to see new approaches to presenting and interacting with it. Better visualization tools are necessary not just because those who aren’t data scientists need to understand and work with the data, but because the increased efficiency and time-to-reaction to the data is critical in many cases – especially for marketers who need to react with lightening speed to current user experiences.
- In case it isn’t obvious, visualization tools need to work where marketers can access them on web and mobile platforms.
- In-memory data processing is necessary to support the required speed of analysis. This is still rare.
- Big data is not only about unstructured data. Relational data and database tools are still important for incorporating structured data.
SAS is far from the only company driving new big data analytic technology, but they are the biggest and seem determined to stay on the front edge.