[Linux-aus] Fwd: A Closer Look At Gartner (informationweek)

Arjen Lentz arjen at mysql.com
Mon Nov 10 08:43:01 UTC 2003


Editor's Note: A Closer Look At Gartner
Nov. 3, 2003

By Stephanie Stahl

Due diligence, company viability, scrutiny--how many times have you heard
those words over the past few years of economic turmoil? As budgets
tightened, companies of all sizes upped their efforts to make sure the
companies they bought products or services from were financially sound,
trustworthy, and in for the long haul.

It's not unreasonable to apply a similar level of scrutiny to the analyst
firms you turn to for market research and advice. It's been a few years
since we studied the analyst community in depth, but our research has shown
that InformationWeek readers spend tens of thousands of dollars on such
services, with the lion's share going to Gartner.

Recent news of a debt-conversion transaction whereby Silver Lake Partners, a
private equity-investment firm, gained 49.4 million shares of Gartner stock,
38% of outstanding shares, prompted us to take a closer look at the company.
On p. 22, senior editor at large John Foley explains who's behind Silver
Lake (some names you'll recognize: Dell, Ellison, Gates), how much influence
these investors have (Gartner execs insist they have none), and what some
customers who invest in Gartner's services have to say about it.

Let me be clear. We aren't suggesting that Gartner is doing anything
unscrupulous. In fact, our staff occasionally calls on Gartner analysts for
input on the stories printed in this magazine. But for companies that spend
significant amounts of money on consulting services, we think it's important
to know who's behind them. Strange thing is, Gartner's CEO claims not to
know who the investors in Silver Lake are and says he's never asked. Now,
call me silly, but if you were CEO of a company that had 38% of its stock
controlled by an investment firm, wouldn't you want to know?

Related story:

Arjen Lentz, Technical Writer, Trainer
Brisbane, QLD Australia
MySQL AB, www.mysql.com

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