About 30 per cent of businesses are expected to monetise their information assets by 2016 due to involvement of high costs in storing and managing data, IT research firm Gartner said today.
"The financial demands of storing and managing big data will lead 30 per cent of businesses to directly or indirectly monetise their information assets by trading, bartering or outright selling them by 2016," Gartner said.
It added many enterprises are starting to appreciate the real market value that their harvested information assets have within their own industries or beyond.
However, the lack of expertise in handling big data and developing information products will create an opportunity for the growth of specialist intermediaries, acting as information brokers or resellers.
"The need to justify the expense of accumulating and managing huge volumes of data has led many organisations to consider monetising or productising their information assets," Gartner Research Vice President Doug Laney said.
"Consumers and businesses must recognise that their personal usage, location, profile and activity data has a tangible market value. They should guard it and ensure that when they do share it they receive ample services, products or cash for it," Laney added.
"For example, several retailers are already generating millions of dollars per year in incremental revenue by placing online their point-of-sale and other data for business partners to subscribe to, according to Gartner.
Other individuals have launched ventures packaging and reselling publicly available data, or using it to launch new information-based products -- such as in the insurance and financial markets, Laney added.
Laney, however, said businesses monetising information assets need to be sensitive to the "reputational" risk of public backlash against such practices, that may in turn lead to a tighter regulatory environment.