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Risk Management

09:27 AM
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Societe Generale to Use MicroStrategy BI

In the wake of the Kerviel fraud, is there any better candidate for improved reporting tools? This is said to be one of the largest business intelligence deployments in France with more than 20,000 users.

As pre-trial details emerge about how Jerome Kerviel placed more than 1,000 fake trades at Societe Generale and the firm conducted 75 internal audits before discovering his illicit activities in January 2008, SocGen is about to implement a large-scale business intelligence system that should help the firm become more aware of what its employees are doing.

A PricewaterhouseCoopers report recently found that Kerviel's bosses overlooked unusually high levels of cash flow, accounting anomalies, high brokerage expenses, Kerviel's failure to take a vacation and a huge jump in his earnings in 2007, when he reported gains of 25 million euros stemming from proprietary trading; the auditing firm could only account for three million worth of gains.

In 2008, Societe Generale initiated a review of its decision support systems, including sales, financial, marketing, and risk analysis, and decided to replace its existing reporting tools with a new BI platform, MicroStrategy 9. The BI platform will be used to provide consistent business data and a common view for all users.

Societe Generale conducted a proof-of-concept" evaluation, which allowed it to assess numerous BI solutions over a seven-month period. "The different activities that were involved in our POC approach included functional workshops and report and dashboard prototypes," explained Jean-Louis Tribut, manager of the decision support division of Societe Generale's IS department. "MicroStrategy provided a solution that addressed our functional, technical, and global cost requirements," he added.

The first BI applications were delivered to users in June 2009, and Societe Generale expects that 20,000 employees will benefit from the MicroStrategy platform, making this one of the largest BI projects in France. Societe Generale uses the BI platform to access diverse data sources for enterprise reporting, detailed analytics, dashboards, and ad hoc queries.

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