MicroStrategy Q2 Earnings Report - A perspective

There has been much talk about MicroStrategy's Q2 earning report with its dramatic announcement of 19% year over year decline in product revenue . Prior to this announcement the general perception was that MicroStrategy was showing a nice recovery post V10 release . And apparently making strides within the data exploration space with its Desktop offering combined with its AWS cloud offering for rapid deployment . So this report does come as a surprise. I laid out my perspective about MicroStrategy's pros and cons and why I believe they are still struggling to gain market share in the admittedly overcrowded BI space.


1. Eco system : Unlike Salesforce or Tableau Microstrategy user groups and online eco system ( bloggers , evangelists ) are far and few in-between. Trusted network recommendations play a huge factor in BI tool selection and a dynamic user community makes it easy to have a higher adoption. This area continues to be a huge challenge for MicroStrategy despite attempts like providing free Desktop to increase market visibility . Although free, MicroStartegy Desktop is isolated and users cannot dynamically publish or embed output in websites . Thus, it falls short of the free model offered by other players who allow free public sharing and interactive use . 

2. Marketplace  : Several MicroStrategy partners have created Industry or Technology specific solutions like Visual Crossing - Map Solutions , Third I - Tableau connectors & Ad analytics and ourselves Vitara- Visualizations and Salesforce solutions to name a few . But these are all in SILOs and MicroStrategy does not benefit from the breadth of solutions that are already in place for different industries due to the lack of a centralized marketplace which is categorized, trusted and showcased. Salesforce has this model perfected . Any new or existing Salesforce customer can rest assured that their own technical or industry problem is solved and ready to use without re-inventing the wheel when they go to the Salesforce App Exchange .

3. Implementation Partners : Software growth to large enterprises is inevitably tied to partnerships with big SIs . Deloitte, Accenture , BCG , PWC etc are huge influencers during BI tool selection and adoption. MicroStrategy's stance on its own services business has fluctuated wildly and this low margin businessline is a big distraction for SI partners. Microstrategy can do way better giving away free training and empowering big SIs by embedding technical advisers reaping much larger software sales in return. Selling without big SI support is like swimming in shark infested deep waters without support.


1. Leadership : Michael Saylor has been more focused than ever before and consistently engaging in all aspects of the business. This is a much better alternative than a Board that is not aligned or who might have conflicting motives and cater to short term interests.

2. Technology : MicroStrategy might have gaps in specific areas but as a scale-able , enterprise BI platform it has tremendous advantages . Mobile continues to be a differentiation. While MicroStrategy marketing machine has always struggled with positioning these advantages , the company quietly continues to have customers with extremely large enterprise customer deployments to the scale of several thousands of users. With the current focus in BI space being speed to market rather than decidedly un-sexy discussion around scale and sustainability , MicroStrategy does have to swim upstream . But for any viable and sustainable BI solution in the mid-longer term, MicroStrategy has a lot to offer.

3.Market size : MicroStrategy has approximately 5% market share in the total BI market today that is valued upwards of $10 Billion . BI market is projected to grow 10% YOY. MicroStrategy has room to grow if it makes the right moves and has by no means reached the limit of possibilities. 

I'm optimistic after reading the transcript of the earnings call as MJS has talked about evolving partnership model and investing in marketing. Messaging and getting the right excitement around the product is just as important as keeping the technology fresh and interesting. I'm eagerly waiting to see how the remaining half 2017 will play out for MicroStrategy.

Hema Pratapa

Co-Founder, Vitara

Microcharts for MicroStrategy

Information Dashboard Design: The Effective Visual Communication of Data by Stephen Few is a bible for effective visualization techniques. It discusses the many ways in which we commonly misrepresent information and offers alternative options that are much more effective. Infact Stephen Few devised the Bullet chart as a linear and no frills option to represent performance against target with a rich display of data in a small space . 

Vitara's Microcharts distills these best practices from Stephen Few to be used in MicroStrategy. Like all Vitaracharts, the Microcharts widget is compatible with Report Services (DHTML) and Visual Insights on all supported browsers and mobile devices as well as native MicroStartegy mobile.

Video demo and more details here : https://lnkd.in/fkh3xCv

Webinar : VitaraCharts for MicroStrategy Desktop , Web and Mobile

Vitara is pleased to announce a joint webinar with MicroStrategy on VitaraCharts for Desktop,Web and Mobile. Details below.




Organizations can harness and extend the unique power of MicroStrategy for enterprise analytics by providing end users and developers with VitaraCharts custom visualizations. Join Hema Pratapa, Co-founder of VitaraCharts, as she walks through use cases and presents real-world examples of dashboards built on MicroStrategy using VitaraCharts plug-ins. 

This webcast will cover:

  • How organizations can deploy VitaraCharts library to add 20+ new visualizations to MicroStrategy without any coding or SDK use
  • Exciting interactive features available with the Vitara integration
  • How you can add some serious “it” factor to your dashboards with advanced visualizations like Animated KPIs, Tornado, Trellis, Mekko, and Waffle charts
  • The brand-new, interactive PLAY LIVE visualization gallery



12:00 PM EST





Do you know VitaraCharts works for Report Services Documents too as DHTML widgets?

MicroStrategy Report Services Documents or RSDs as they popularly known continue to be used extensively by customers for picture perfect documents . They also have several features like Panels, Links , View Filters etc that are not available in the Visual Insights (VI) ad-hoc exploration tool for creating dashboards. As a result while VI is popular for data exploration RSDs continue to be the go to option for creating pre-

defined documents , landing pages and other use cases for end user BI delivery for enterprises. 

VitaraCharts - What charts to use when ?

Choosing the right kind of visualization is just as important as the content or the aesthetics of the dashboard. It is very easy to completely lose the point  of your narrative if you end up with a visual that mis-represents your data. Often times while we spend the time on cleaning data or designing the look and feel, not enough rigor is applied to understand visualization options that most optimally showcase the nuggets of data wisdom that analytics uncover. To aid this process we have created a handy guide to navigate the types of visualizations available with VitaraCharts and correlated it to what data can each visualization best represents.

VitaraCharts : Library Of 20+ Custom Visualizations for MicroStrategy Mobile

MicroStrategy Mobile is an extremely popular method to deliver content to executives . Therefore the ability showcase custom visualizations to convey key information effectively becomes very important. VitaraCharts has addressed this issue. The library of 20+ visualizations have been designed and tested for  Visual Insights as well Report Services Documents on both web and mobile . This makes it seamless for users to display information for ad-hoc analysis, web documents or mobile dashboards. 

Vitara invites you to PLAY LIVE!

We are excited to invite you to explore a new world of visualization possibilities with MicroStrategy and VitaraCharts with the release of  PLAY LIVE : VITARACHARTS GALLERY.

You can now explore 20+ stunning new visuals on VitaraCharts Gallery with Play LIVE . So if you want to make your charts animated with the dynamic Play feature, add some serious “IT” factor with Waffle Charts or get into some serious analytics with our expanded Hierarchical Vitara Grid feature and many more then start playing !

[Play Live ] VitaraCharts @ MicroStrategy World 2017

Vitara is happy to announce that we will showcase VitaraCharts live at MicroStrategy's annual user conference in Washington DC from April 18-20th, 2017. 

Visual data discovery has become the hallmark of modern Business Intelligence the age of "autonomous BI creation" and the transition of the business user to the content generator. Vitara has focused on enhancing this end user experience and providing easy to use custom visualizations packaged in a simple plug and play addition to MicroStrategy.

 Although MicroStrategy has opened its API to create custom visualizations by integrating with third party libraries like D3,GoogleCharts etc it still requires the use of specialized coding skills often lacking in business users. Most users also tend to use the open source D3 visualizations for MicroStrategy which are not supported. In addition even for IT users , maintaining custom code becomes expensive and time consuming slowing down upgrades and leading to dissatisfaction. 

To solve this problem VitaraCharts is a fully supported , enterprise grade add-on to MicroStrategy that allows users to add 19+ charts like enhanced grid, calendar , waffle, trellis, animated KPI, table heatmap and many more visuals at the click of a button. Quarterly releases with maintenance makes upgrades seamless. Vitaracharts immediately adds compelling, easy to use visualizations engaging the end customer and increasing end user adoption to the platform.

Do drop by at Booth 311 to interact LIVE with Vitaracharts at MicroStrategy World 2017.

[Waffle Chart] The Secret of Success with VitaraCharts ( D3, HighCharts,GoogleCharts & more)

Andy Kriebel hosts the iconic #MakeoverMondays challenge every week where he re-works a data story to convey the same information more intuitively. Andy has some phenomenal tips on how best to display information without falling into all the usual traps . We decided to play this week and recreate using MicroStrategy's Desktop version instead of Tableau. You can see Andy's original here : http://www.vizwiz.com/2017/03/secret-of-success.html

Beyond D3 Visualizations for MicroStrategy

MicroStrategy already offers an API interface to easily add D3 visualizations to Visual Insights.  Vitara hosted a joint web series in March with MicroStrategy to showcase how easily you can extend the MicroStrategy platform widgets with beyond D3 charts with our 

-Ready to use

-Enterprise Grade

-Fully supported for upgrades

Library of 19+ charts and animated widgets including many exciting options Calendar chart, animated KPI, Trellis chart, Waffle Chart and more .The webcast video can be found on MicroStrategy resources website and it is available via the following link