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New Competitive Intelligence Tools Promised from Alliance of Dow Jones Interactive, Fuld & Company, and Iron Horse Multimedia; New Free Web Portal Service Promised for Web Users
by
Posted On May 10, 1999
Dow Jones Interactive Publishing (http://ip.dowjones.com) has formed an alliance with Fuld & Company (http://www.fuld.com), a leading competitive intelligence research and consulting firm, and Iron Horse Multimedia, a Canadian electronic publisher of interactive training software in the field of competitive intelligence. From the alliance with Fuld, DJI plans to produce advanced new competitive intelligence resources, using Iron Horse Multimedia to design the training modules. Dow Jones also plans to introduce a free alternative to its subscription site (http://dowjones.com) sometime this month. Content will include data from the Dow Jones News Wire, headlines from The Wall Street Journal's news ticker, stock prices, business news for 29 business categories, and search engine access to over 2,000 Web links.

By the end of summer or beginning of fall, Dow Jones Interactive Publishing intends to draw upon the alliance with Fuld to introduce new content and interfaces for a dedicated competitive intelligence area of its service. Some of the features promised for the new service will include the following:

  • Training modules created by Iron Horse to provide instruction on the fundamentals of competitive intelligence analysis, including setting up projects, improving research techniques, and conducting global intelligence
  • Regular columns and industry overviews on competitive intelligence by Fuld industry practice managers, prepared exclusively for Dow Jones Interactive
  • Special tips and indexing topics for competitive intelligence to help customers quickly find targeted information, such as competitors' pricing and cost structures

According to Leonard Fuld, founder and president of Fuld & Company, "This new service will help Dow Jones Interactive subscribers better understand their own competition and competitive threats, and can ultimately lead them to market dominance."

Charles Alexander, president of Iron Horse Multimedia, promises that "... our customized training courseware will give Dow Jones Interactive subscribers tools to meet their industry-research goals, whether they are business end users or information professionals."

Fuld indicated that the products being designed would primarily enable managers and other decision makers to use the vast DJI collection effectively as a tool for real-world decisions. It plans to contribute tools to help end users perform "more accurate, pinpoint searching." Though the company will produce content for the new service, it will not form a large part of the effort. The improvements will also play off of specific initiatives to improve DJI's indexing, according to Fuld. (The Web site at Fuld's own company will also show some improvements soon, both with links to material from DJI and with sorted and evaluated discussions of software available for business intelligence.)

Dow Jones Interactive Publishing already claims the largest paid corporate news and information service with over 650,000 computer users, counting both individual and enterprise-wide subscriber communities, plus the largest paid subscription site on the Web, with over 283,000 subscribers to the Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition. Fuld & Company, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has over 40 people on staff providing research and analysis to financial services; utility and energy industries; and manufacturing, high-technology, telecommunications, health-care, and consumer product services. Iron Horse Multimedia, based in Montreal, created the Fuld War Room CI training suite, a multimedia courseware product, in conjunction with Fuld. The company also offers consulting services for CI training for corporate clients that include Web-based training as well as CD-ROM and instructor-led programs.

Free Web Service

Sometime in May, Dow Jones will launch a new free site (http://dowjones.com) focused on businesspeople. The site will carry stock tracking and quote services; headlines from Dow Jones' newswires and from the Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition; a search function to analyze over 2,000 business-related sites; and groupings for some 29 industry-specific areas, including telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, transportation, advertising, the media, and the Net. Premium content offerings, in particular the Publications Library's 5,500-plus titles, will also be available on a pay-per-view basis.

Staffing for the new service encompasses 12 new editorial employees plus shared staff with the WSJIE service. Revenue for the new service will come from banner advertising and page sponsorships, particularly linked to e-commerce businesses. As of late April, Dow Jones had already gathered more than $3 million in sponsorships. Dow Jones' executives see the new site as a device to advertise subscription sales to their paid sites, rather than as a potential cannibalizing threat. They view competition for the new service as the financial sections of Yahoo! or MSNBC, CNNfn, CBS Marketwatch, etc.

Dow Jones now offers the most complete range of payment options for access to its material: subscription by month or by year, free limited access with articles for sale at a fee, flat-fee pricing, and institutional subscriptions. In March the company even instituted a daily rate for access to the Daily Edition of the Interactive Journal (http://wsj.com/dailyedition) in an arrangement with Qpass Content Transaction Network (http://www.qpass.com). The Daily Edition costs $1.95 for 24 hours of access (48 hours through May 31 as an introductory offer).


Barbara Quint was senior editor of Online Searcher, co-editor of The Information Advisor’s Guide to Internet Research, and a columnist for Information Today.


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