Big Data Future Spurs Acquisitions

In October 2011, Oracle announced its acquisition of Endeca Technologies, an enterprise search and data management company providing enterprises with non-structured data management, e-commerce and business intelligence technology.

In November 2011, IBM announced its acquisition of Platform Computing, an HPC software company with excellent performance in cloud computing and big data.

In February 2012, Groupon acquired Adku, a startup that uses big data to personalize online shopping experience for people visiting e-commerce sites like eBay and Amazon.

In March 2012, EMC announced its acquisition of Pivotal Labs, a private agile software developer and tool provider headquartered in San Francisco.

In the past two years, international IT giants, including IBM, Oracle, EMC and SAP, have been engaged in an upsurge of acquisition in the big data market, spending more than $1.5 billion in acquiring related data management and analysis companies. Big data becomes a new hot term after “cloud computing” in the IT and financial sectors.

The upsurge of big data results from the integrated development of the new-generation information technology, and the processing and analysis of big data in turn becomes a key support for the said integrated development.

The Internet of Things (IoT), mobile Internet, digital home and social network services are the applications of the new-generation information technology. Big data is continuously increasing together with these applications, whereas cloud computing provides the storage and computing platform for massive and diversified big data. It is estimated that the global data storage volume was 1.8ZB in 2011, and it will hit 2.7ZB in 2012 and exceed 8ZB in 2015. The growth rate of structured data is around 32%, and that of non-structured data 63%.

In the retail sector, analysis on big data enables retailers to master the real-time market trends and promptly take corresponding measures. Walmart has started analyzing the massive sales data of all its chain stores in combination with weather data, economics and demography, so as to select proper products for each chain store and determine the timing of discounts.

In the Internet sector, analysis on big data helps manufacturers develop more precise and effective marketing strategies. Facebook and eBay are analyzing and exploring massive data from social networks and online transaction data, with an aim of providing personalized advertising services.

In the utility sector, big data have begun to play a significant role. Many European cities guide drivers to select the best routes by analyzing real-time traffic flow data, thereby improving traffic conditions. The United Nations also launched “Global Pulse”, a program aiming to accelerate global economic development with big data.

The enormous commercial value of and market demand for big data are driving transformation of the information industry. New big data-oriented products, technologies, services and models are constantly emerging.

On one hand, the challenges such as effective storage, fast read-write and real-time analysis will have significant impacts on the chip and storage industry as well as incubate the integrated data storage & processing server and memory computing markets.

On the other hand, the enormous value of big data will lead to urgent needs for fast data processing and analysis as well as give rise to the unprecedented prosperity of data exploration and business intelligence markets.