The weather’s effect on businesses is profound, but often overlooked. Businesses treat every day like it’s the same. Yet, tornado outbreaks, flooding, blizzards and hurricanes have far reaching and major impacts on businesses.

Today, IBM and The Weather Company (the Weather Channel) are teaming up to integrate real-time weather data with analytics and cloud computing to help businesses make better decisions around weather.

You will probably be surprised how much the weather impacts businesses every year. In 2011, the American Meteorological Society estimated the economic impact from weather is half a trillion dollars. And, that’s just in the U.S.

IBM highlights how this partnership will help businesses in their press release.

  • Watson Analytics for Weather: IBM and WSI will enable easy integration of historical and real-time weather data in business operations and decision making with IBM analytics platforms such as Watson Analytics. The companies will jointly develop industry solutions for insurance, energy & utilities, retail and logistics among others.
  • Cloud and Mobile App Developer Tools: Entrepreneurs and software developers will be able to rapidly build mobile and web apps that take advantage of WSI data combined with data from operational systems, connected devices and sensors using advanced analytics through Bluemix, IBM’s cloud application development platform.
  • Business and Operational Weather Expertise: Thousands of consultants from across IBM Global Business Services will be trained to combine WSI data with other sources to more effectively interpret industry pain points, providing clients new insights that solve business problems.

IBM also highlighted how this partnership will help businesses and you in a series of Vine clips.

Insurers pay out more than $1 billion/year in claims for vehicles damaged in hail. IBM mentions how their service could enable insurance providers to let you know if hail is on the way. Plus, it would give you safe locations to put your vehicle. Seems a bit redundant with all the weather apps these days.

A couple more Vines highlight how IBM and TWC could help businesses.

“This deal combines the capabilities of the world’s largest and most advanced commercial weather company with the leader in big data and analytics. Together, we’ll help businesses and governments transform their decisions and operations around weather fluctuation at a scale that hasn’t been possible until now,” said David Kenny, chairman and CEO of The Weather Company. “This is a watershed moment for businesses that have long been impacted by weather but haven’t had the rich data or enhanced decision-making ability to drive positive business outcomes. The combination of our new high-resolution forecasting capabilities with IBM analytics opens up a world of possibilities for the enterprise.”

IBM is serious about the “Internet of Things.” They are investing $3 billion over the next four years into a unit that will develop services similar to the one above to help businesses. There’s a lot of money in enterprise solutions and IBM wants to be top dog in the sector.

What about you? You need an insurance company to tell you it’s about to hal? Or, are the dozens of weather apps good enough for you?

When I’m not playing Rocket League (best game ever), you can find me writing about all things games, space and more. You can reach me at alex@newsledge.com

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