Biggest Big Data Acquisitions of 2012 (So Far)

Tech companies are riding a wave of big data acquisitions in order to better understand and pinpoint where consumer cash is headed. With the third quarter of 2012 not even halfway through, we’ve seen unprecedented big data purchases already this year.

Log Insight

The buzz for the last week has been about VMware’s latest big data acquisition of Log Insight. This makes them a veritable juggernaut in the field of real-time data analysis, following as it does VMware’s recent purchase of Nicira for $1.2 billion.

In a blog statement by Log Insight’s Spiros Xanthos, he states of the acquisition, “We anticipate that the potential of the Log Insight technology will be maximized through this acquisition. VMware is ideally positioned in the middle of two of the most important shifts in IT in the recent years, virtualization and Cloud Computing.”


IBM, that most familiar name in computing, is making strides in big data these days. In April of this year, IBM acquired enterprise search optimizer Vivisimo. In May they picked up Varicent, a data analytics company that provides comprehensive data throughout finance, sales, human resources and operations. Varicent’s customer base includes Starwood Hotels, Manpower, Hertz and Office Depot. Most recently, in June, IBM finalized their acquisition of Tea Leaf, a leader in customer behavior analysis.


In May, Cisco finalized their acquisition of Truviso. In Cisco’s blog announcement of intent to purchase, Hilton Romanski wrote, “Truviso’s continuous query technology allows companies to get detailed information and visibility of network use and services in real-time, with its analyze-first, store-later capability.”


Jive Software purchased Proximal in April in an effort to analyze social networks. Proximal’s ability to mine the happenings on Twitter and get that information out to potentially interested parties means real-time consumer targeting. It was a comprehensive acquisition that will see the Proximal team moved to Palo Alto and completely folded into Jive’s workings. In his blog post, Brian Roddy explained, “The Proximal technology will be immediately leveraged in multiple areas of the Jive product, including supercharging our recommender, analytics, search and the Jive Social Media Engagement.”

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Social media powerhouse and Wall Street disaster Facebook acquired Instagram for $1 billion in April of this year. What appears to the user as merely a photo sharing service is in fact a potential goldmine for Facebook. Their already overarching ability to track users’ every moves means that a person uploading a photo to Facebook from a mobile device can be tracked, their location pinpointed, and interest-specific ads placed on the margins of their Facebook page.

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