Hitwise Acquired by Experian

experian logohitwise logoHitwise, the company that performs analysis of log files from 25 million worldwide ISP accounts to provide relative market share graphs for web properties, has been acquired by Experian for $240 million [via Dave McClure and Marketing Pilgrim.]

There are a couple of interesting points to note:

  1. Analytics are a key part of “harnessing collective intelligence.” Whether it’s data from your own web site, acquired with tools like Omniture or Google Analytics or overall market rankings from companies like Comscore, Hitwise, or Alexa, it’s become increasingly important to measure and act upon data.
  2. That being said, merely providing analysis is much less “web 2.0” than actually providing direct linkages between the data and resulting actions via a set of “sensors” and “actuators” that give your site a simulacrum of living, real-time responsiveness to its visitors. (That’s why I’d guess that a company like Omniture would be valued much more highly even than Hitwise.)
  3. Look at Experian’s description of their business: “At the heart of Experian are comprehensive databases of information, which are supported by proprietary analytical tools for interpreting this data. We help organisations make critical decisions in a timely and consistent manner. We also help consumers to make more informed financial and purchasing decisions.” From credit scoring to helping manage advertising buys… Data is the Intel Inside anyone?
  4. We can expect to see more consolidation of internet data providers by existing data businesses. This will expose just how many (and how big) those existing data businesses are — and just how much more powerful new, automated data collection over the internet will make these businesses.