The Gartner Cool Vendors process happens at the beginning of each year and terminates in the April timeframe with the publication of our annual list of relatively un-known but interesting IT vendors.
In early January, we launched the internal nominations process for identifying Cool Vendors candidates. After a month of interaction, we finally reviewed and selected from a list of over 400 vendors. Unfortunately, many Vendors want to know how they can apply for Cool Vendors’ selection. The answer is that they cannot apply directly. Instead, analysts within the Gartner community are the only ones who can nominate a vendor for selection. In addition, we get asked frequently why large vendor with nice products (e.g. IBM, Apple, or Google) are not listed. The answer is simply that we are trying to highlight little-known vendors who are relatively small (1-100 million in annual revenues is ideal even though we allow exceptions).
The next stage is to move from selection to writing of the notes. This will happen during February and March, culminating with the publishing of the pieces in April. This year, we will do a look back to previous Cool Vendors selection in a retrospective piece. We will examine some key statistics about Cool Vendors as a whole over the years since 2004.
With almost 1500 Cool Vendors listed since 2004 the Cool Vendors process has benefitted many companies by allowing them to be seen by vendors looking for acquisition targets, investors seeking a new investment opportunity, and enterprise customers trying to find vendors to work with. Cool Vendors is a great resource for mining innovation.
So, keep an eye out as Cool Vendors reports begin to hit the street over the next few months.