Today SAS has more than 11,000 employees and operates in 100 countries on projects that range from assessing risk for banks to catching tax cheats for governments to planning routes for airlines. In this WSJ.com interview
"Mr. Goodnight: We do a lot of work in risk management for banks. We make sure their risk computations are up-to-date and [help them] with their anti-money laundering.
"We see a lot of growth from the pharmaceutical sector. SAS has a tool to analyze clinical trials and effectiveness of a particular drug. We're seeing more pharmaceutical drug trials move to Asia, especially in India.
"Essentially, anybody who's got data. And lots of it. But of course, there are things like social-media analysis that don't require your data. We can tell you what people think of you or your brand without any data from you. We can search out every blog, every tweet that's been done about you for the last 30 days or whatever time frame, and we can tell you how people are thinking of your brand. We call it sentiment analysis. We're having a hard time keeping up with customer demand on that product."