Here is an article Microsoft Excel: The king of BI
(artical written in 2005 much before Excel 2007 ) which underlines the importance of MS Excel in Enterprise Analytics .
At the end author give a word of caution .
A final word of caution is that no single BI tool, not even the mighty spreadsheet, is sufficient for a company's BI.
Here is another article on loving and hating Excel
dating 2006 much before release of MS Excel 2007 . This article also stresses the importance of Excel and co-operation with Excel in Enterprise analytics . Here are some important snippets.
Set ground rules about when it's OK to use Excel -- and when it's not. Companies can implement technology tools and frameworks to manage enterprise spreadsheets -- and if business users want to use Excel personally, essentially as scratch paper, they can do that too.
I am planning on leveraging the BI platform to serve data to spreadsheets, but only after pitching the feature rich BI tools to the users first. Better BI reporting (flexibility, reliability, analytics) reduces the reliance on Excel. Failing that, making Excel the front end to BI services provides better quality data and some control over Excel targets.
Both these links emphasis the latest trend of multiplicity of solutions and mandatory excel strategy
for best enterprise solutions for a company . And after release of Excel 2007 and Duet between SAP and Microsoft
it has become more pronounced and evident .