Startup Trends: 4 strategic acquisitions of Q1 2024

Not all private companies looking for an exit strategy decide to launch an IPO.

In the first quarter, four U.S. startups – Einblick, Delphix, Udacity, and Jackpocket – agreed to be acquired by larger private or publicly-traded companies.

Einblick, an AI data platform developer

At the end of January, Databricks, the highly-valued privately-held data analytics company, announced on its website that it had purchased Cambridge, Mass.-based Einblick for an undisclosed sum.

“The Einblick team has spent the last four years building an AI-native collaboration platform that helps users solve data problems with just one sentence,” Databricks said in its statement. “We are excited for the Einblick journey to continue at Databricks!”

For Databricks, whose last-known valuation was listed on Forge Global at $43 billion based on a September 2023 funding round, the purchase of Einblick marks its fourth acquisition in the last 12 months as it seeks to become a “one-stop shop” for all corporate data storage and management needs, according to VentureBeat, a trade publication. For Einblick, which was founded in 2019, its takeover provides a payout for investors and the ability to continue developing its niche offerings for a well-capitalized parent.

Databrick’s Forge Price™ was at $64.23 as of April 10, 2024 which implied a valuation of $37.6 billion.

Delphix, an enterprise data management firm

In mid-February, Delphix, a provider of test data management software, signed an agreement to be taken over by privately-held Perforce Software. Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

In remarks accompanying the press release announcing the merger, Jedidiah Yueh, CEO of Delphix, said that “as part of Perforce, we will be positioned to continue innovating and help more customers realize the strategic power of our data platform.” Perforce says that Delphix’s acquisition “adds critical data management capabilities” to Perforce’s wide-ranging portfolio of enterprise software.

Delphix, which was founded in 2008, was listed on Forge Global as being valued at $995 million, based on the company’s most recent funding round in November 2015.

Udacity, a digital learning platform

Udacity, known for its online courses with a clear focus on trendy technology topics such as AI and data management, agreed in early March to be purchased by global consulting firm Accenture (NYSE:CAN). Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

According to a press release announcing the merger, Udacity’s 230-person workforce will be joining a new unit of Accenture called LearnVantage. The unit will provide Accenture’s clients “with comprehensive technology learning and training services that will help them re-skill and upskill their people in technology, data and AI to reinvent their organizations and achieve greater business value.”

Udacity’s last-known valuation was $1.08 billion according to Forge Global, based on its latest funding round in November 2015.

Jackpocket, an app to play state lotteries

Over the past decade, Jackpocket’s app has emerged as a leading way for people dreaming of a lottery win across the U.S. to make online purchases of state-lottery tickets.

In mid-February, DraftKings (NASDAQ: DKNG), the creator of one of America’s leading sports betting apps, agreed to purchase Jackpocket for approximately $750 million in a deal that Jackpocket hopes will take its business to the next level. In a press release announcing the merger, Peter Sullivan, Jackpot’s CEO, said that his company was attracted to DraftKings’ broad footprint, which he said presents an opportunity to “meaningfully expand the digital lottery vertical.”

Jackpocket’s last known valuation, according to Forge Global was $780 million from its latest November 2022 funding round.

About the Author

John Kimelman is a veteran journalist who has worked at Barron’s and CNBC covering such topics as investing and commercial banking. Mr. Kimelman has received compensation from Forge Global, Inc. for authoring this article. Read more from John.

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