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Alteryx acquisition of Hyper Anna adds AI capabilities

The data management vendor has acquired Hyper Anna, an Australian startup, to add automated augmented intelligence capabilities to its data management and analytics platform.

Alteryx on Oct. 7 unveiled the acquisition of Hyper Anna in a move aimed at adding augmented intelligence capabilities to the vendor's platform.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Alteryx, founded in 1997 and based in Irvine, Calif., is a data management vendor whose platform, Analytics Process Automation, is designed to automate much of the data management and preparation process.

Recently, Alteryx enhanced its partnership with robotic process automation vendor UiPath to add to its automation capabilities, and shortly before that, the vendor's latest platform update included new automated recommendation capabilities.

New capabilities

Hyper Anna, meanwhile, is a cloud-based vendor founded in 2016 and based in Sydney whose platform generates automated AI-driven insights from data.

Those automated AI-driven insights will enable more potential analytics users within organizations, according to Jay Henderson, Alteryx's vice president of product management.

"We were impressed with Hyper Anna's AI-driven automated insights, and the way their interface makes analytics more approachable," he said. "Their solution allows business owners to interact with insights, anomalies and outliers in their data, and to understand drivers and causality of those outliers. This democratizes analytics to hundreds or thousands of people in an organization."

Specifically, Hyper Anna's capabilities will enable Alteryx users to surface hidden signals in their data that would have otherwise gone unnoticed, quickly surface automated insights and add data storytelling capabilities, Henderson continued.

An Alteryx automated workflow.
A screenshot displays a workflow combining Alteryx's Analytic Process Automation platform with robotic process automation capabilities.

"This complements the core capabilities of Alteryx to access, combine and perform analytics and predictions against a wide variety of data in an organization," he said. "That data can then be fed into Hyper Anna to auto-generate and then distribute insights."

Aiming to go end-to-end

While the acquisition of Hyper Anna will add augmented analytics capabilities, it also will help Alteryx as it looks to build an end-to-end analytics stack from ingestion all the way through insight, according to Wayne Eckerson, founder and principal consultant of Eckerson Group.

Like many analytics vendors, they are extending their footprint, adding capabilities on the front-end like visualization and AI-driven insights, back-end -- data connectivity, data pipeline design and automation -- and on the bottom like cloud and hybrid.
Wayne EckersonFounder and principal consultant, Eckerson Group

"Like many analytics vendors, they are extending their footprint, adding capabilities on the front end like visualization and AI-driven insights, back end -- data connectivity, data pipeline design and automation -- and on the bottom like cloud and hybrid," he said. "There is a race to offer a complete end-to-end solution."

It's a race, however, that Alteryx is trailing, according to Eckerson, and the acquisition of Hyper Anna will help the vendor close the gap.

Tableau is now directly competing with Alteryx with Tableau Prep and Microsoft Power BI now includes data modeling, and both analytics giants are offering AI-driven insights, Eckerson noted.

"It looks like a bit of a catch-up move, to me," he said. "Alteryx was always a hybrid play with its support of geospatial analytics and visualization along with data prep capabilities. Alteryx needed to fill this gap in their portfolio to keep up."

Qlik is yet another analytics vendor adding capabilities to put together an end-to-end analytics platform, having added data management, data integration and AI capabilities through acquisitions over the past few years.

Focus on the cloud

While adding AI capabilities, the acquisition of Hyper Anna also adds cloud-native capabilities to the Alteryx platform.

To date, the vendor has only introduced one cloud-native capability -- Alteryx Designer Cloud as part of its May 2021 platform update -- and organizations are increasingly migrating their data and analytics operations to the cloud

In fact, Synergy Research Group reported that enterprises spent about $40 billion more on cloud-native data and analytics capabilities than on-premises capabilities in 2020 after the two were virtually even in 2019 and on-premises spending far outpaced cloud spending before 2019.

As a result, adding more cloud-native capabilities is a priority for Alteryx, according to Henderson.

"We are excited to bring the [Hyper Anna] product and team on board," Henderson said. "Adding their experience and expertise is part of our plan to accelerate our journey to the cloud."

Ongoing trend

Alteryx's acquisition of Hyper Anna is just the latest example of an analytics vendor adding capabilities by gobbling up smaller vendors.

It comes on the same day Logi Analytics acquired Exago through its parent company, and just a week after Tibco purchased Blue Prism through its parent company and Qlik bought Big Squid.

Other significant acquisitions in 2021 include ThoughtSpot's purchases of SeekWell and Diyotta, while late 2020 acquisitions include Tibco's purchase of IBI (formerly Information Builders) and Qlik's acquisition of Blendr.io.

The consolidation trend began in earnest in 2018, and has not slowed since.

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