May
14
2019
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Sisense acquires Periscope Data to build integrated data science and analytics solution

Sisense announced today that it has acquired Periscope Data to create what it is calling a complete data science and analytics platform for customers. The companies did not disclose the purchase price.

The two companies’ CEOs met about 18 months ago at a conference, and running similar kinds of companies, hit it off. They began talking and, after a time, realized it might make sense to combine the two startups because each one was attacking the data problem from a different angle.

Sisense, which has raised $174 million, tends to serve business intelligence requirements either for internal use or externally with customers. Periscope, which has raised more than $34 million, looks at the data science end of the business.

Both CEOs say they could have eventually built these capabilities into their respective platforms, but after meeting they decided to bring the two companies together instead, and they made a deal.

Harry Glasser from Periscope Data and Amir Orad of Sisense.

Harry Glaser from Periscope Data and Amir Orad of Sisense

“I realized over the last 18 months [as we spoke] that we’re actually building leadership positions into two unique areas of the market that will slowly become one as industries and technologies evolve,” Sisense CEO Amir Orad told TechCrunch.

Periscope CEO Harry Glaser says that as his company built a company around advanced analytics and predictive modeling, he saw a growing opportunity around operationalizing these insights across an organization, something he could do much more quickly in combination with Sisense.

“[We have been] pulled into this broader business intelligence conversation, and it has put us in a place where as we do this merger, we are able to instantly leapfrog the three years it would have taken us to deliver that to our customers, and deliver operationalized insights on integration day on day one,” Glaser explained.

The two executives say this is part of a larger trend about companies becoming more data-driven, a phrase that seems trite by now, but as a recent Harvard Business School study found, it’s still a big challenge for companies to achieve.

Orad says that you can debate the pace of change, but that overall, companies are going to operate better when they use data to drive decisions. “I think it’s an interesting intellectual debate, but the direction is one direction. People who deploy this technology will provide better care, better service, hire better, promote employees and grow them better, have better marketing, better sales and be more cost effective,” he said.

Orad and Glaser recognize that many acquisitions don’t succeed, but they believe they are bringing together two like-minded companies that will have a combined ARR of $100 million and 700 employees.

“That’s the icing on the cake, knowing that the cultures are so compatible, knowing that they work so well together, but it starts from a conviction that this advanced analytics can be operationalized throughout enterprises and [with] their customers. This is going to drive transformation inside our customers that’s really great for them and turns them into data-driven companies,” Glaser said.

Sep
12
2018
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Sisense hauls in $80M investment as data analytics business matures

Sisense, a company that helps customers understand and visualize their data across multiple sources, announced an $80 million Series E investment today led by Insight Venture Partners. They also announced that Zack Urlocker, former COO at Duo Security and Zendesk, has joined the organization’s board of directors.

The company has attracted a prestigious list of past investors, who also participated in the round, including Battery Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, DFJ Venture Capital, Genesis Partners and Opus Capital. Today’s investment brings the total raised to close to $200 million.

CEO Amir Orad says investors like their mission of simplifying complex data with analytics and business intelligence and delivering it in whatever way makes sense. That could be on screens throughout the company, desktop or smartphone, or via Amazon Alexa. “We found a way to make accessing data extremely simple, mashing it together in a logical way and embedding it in every logical place,” he explained.

It appears to be resonating. The company has over 1000 customers including Expedia, Oppenheimer and Phillips to name but a few. Orad says they are actually the analytics engine behind Nasdaq Corporate Solutions, which is the the main investor relations system used by CFOs.

He was not in the mood to discuss the company’s valuation, an exercise he called “an ego boost he doesn’t relate to.” He says that he would prefer to be measured by how efficiently he uses the money investors give him or by customer satisfaction scores. Nor would he deal with IPO speculation. All he would say on that front was, “When you focus on the value you bring, positive things happen.”

In spite of that, he was clearly excited about having Urlocker join the board. He says the two spent six months getting to know each other and he sees a guy who has brought several companies to successful exit joining his team, and perhaps someone who can help him bring his company across the finish line, however that ultimately happens. Just last month, Cisco bought Urlocker’s former company, Duo Security for $2.35 billion.

For now Sisense, which launched in 2010, has another $80 million in the bank. They plan to add to the nearly 500 employees already in place in offices in New York, Tel Aviv, Kiev, Tokyo and Arizona. In particular, they plan to grow their international presence more aggressively, especially adding employees to help with customer success and field engineering. Orad also said that he was also open to acquiring companies should the right opportunity come along, saying “Because of talent, technology and presence, it’s something you have to be on lookout for.”

When a company reaches Series E and a couple of hundred million raised, it’s often a point where an exit could be coming sooner than later. By adding an experienced executive like Urlocker, it just emphasizes that possibility, but for now the company appears to be growing and thriving, and taking the view that whatever will be, will be.

Apr
12
2017
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Sisense Pulse uses machine learning to trigger data anomaly alerts

Electrocardiogram (ECG) trace. An ECG measures the electrical activity of the heart. Sisense introduced a new tool today called Pulse, which uses machine learning to trigger an alert when it detects results outside of normal parameters for a particular metric. A user can set a Pulse alert to monitor a metric or KPI such as sales activity or win rate. The machine learning component watches the chosen metric and learns over time what’s normal. When it detects an… Read More

Feb
27
2017
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Workfit raises $5.5 million seed round to be your AI meeting assistant

Businessman leaning on conference room table and talking to co-workers at business meeting Conversational AI is pushing deeper into enterprise with Workfit, a new startup promising to make conference call follow-ups and mid-meeting CRM updates as easy as playing a song or checking the weather on Google Home or Amazon Echo. Battery Ventures, Greycroft Partners, Salesforce Ventures and a number of angels joined together to finance a $5.5 million seed investment in the… Read More

Nov
15
2016
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Sisense announces bots for Slack, Skype, Facebook Messenger and Telegram

Facebook Sisense bot Sisense, a company which helps customers link multiple data sources and summarize them in a single dashboard view, has not shied away from experimenting with new ways of interacting with the data inside its business intelligence product. Earlier this year, it announced integration with the Amazon Echo, enabling users to simply ask Alexa for certain data. Today, the company announced new… Read More

Jul
12
2016
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Sisense-Amazon Echo integration lets you ask Alexa questions about your business data

25 Amazon Echo Sisense, a company which helps customers link multiple data sources and summarize them in a single dashboard view, has been working on ways to understand the data outside of the context of a computer. Today, the company announced an initiative called Business Intelligence Virtually Everywhere. That could involve asking questions to a voice-driven system like the Amazon Echo or… Read More

Jun
12
2014
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SiSense Raises $30M More To Bring Big Data Analytics To Businesspeople

5068845349_4bb9f8fec9_b SiSense, a business intelligence startup that is among those making big data analytics accessible to ordinary business users (and not just data scientists) is today announcing more funding: a $30 million Series C round led by DFJ Growth — the VC’s arm dedicated to later-stage investments that recently announced a new fund we understand to be totalling over $500 million (in May,… Read More

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