One of the recurring themes in the area of enterprise IT these days is consolidation, and today we’re getting another dose of it in the area of enterprise data management. Informatica — which provides a set of tools to enterprises to analyze, manage and share data across their organizations — is acquiring Privitar, a startup out of the U.K. that focuses on building and providing data access controls. The acquisition will sit within Informatica’s larger data stack, which it sells as the “intelligent data management cloud.”
Terms of the deal are not being disclosed. Privitar notably had raised over $150 million in funding since first being founded back in 2014, from investors that included Accel and Warburg Pincus as well as strategics like Salesforce, HSBC and Citigroup. Its last valuation was over $400 million.
But that was all the way back in 2020, at the peak of the last tech fundraising and valuation cycle, when Privitar had last raised outside funding, an $80 million Series C led by Warburg Pincus.
Valuations have seen a lot of downward pressure in the current market, and companies have found it a lot more challenging to close rounds even at less attractive terms. Add that to another surprise — we are not seeing the expected surge of M&A that many thought there would be this year (to make up for the lack of funding) — the story right now seems to be: a lot less competition for deals, and a buyer’s market.
Consolidation has been playing out across the board in enterprise IT. At one end, customers are looking to reduce the number of suppliers bring down costs and make things more efficient; at the other, smaller tech companies, running out of funding and finding it hard to raise more in the current climate, are getting snapped up by bigger players looking to present a one-stop-shop to customers. This acquisition sits squarely in both of these trends.
Privitar got its start focusing on privacy in big data analytics: providing tools for “engineering” privacy, in the words of its co-founder and CEO Jason du Preez, so that when “non-anonymized” data was used, controls were put in place to flag and protect sensitive or obvious identifiers. Over time, to bring on more customers and revenue, the company widened out that remit to provide data management access to all an organization’s data.
But while there has been a lot of talk about a migration to the cloud and digital transformation, in particular in the last few years, movement in this space has been very slow and so, as macroeconomic forces have put pressure on all businesses, they are looking for more cost-effective ways of getting up to speed with their data and IT strategies.
Informatica’s EVP and chief product officer Jitesh Ghai said that the enterprises today that work with companies like Informatica and Privitar are streamlining a lot of how they purchase IT like data management tools.
“There is more fragmentation than ever before across warehouses, lakes, clouds and on premise,” he said. “The last thing [our customers] want amidst all that is for their data management to also need to be stitched together.”
Privitar itself had been making acquisitions to tap into the consolidation trend, and Ghai said he believes there is more of that to come for Informatica.
“In general there has been an immense amount of investment and innovation in data and analytics,” he said. “We are always on the hunt for compelling technology and best of breed solutions.”