Google Enters BI Market With Buyout of Looker

by | Feb 14, 2020 | News

Google completed a $2.6 billion buyout of the big-data analytics firm Looker Data Sciences on Thursday, February 13. With this purchase, Google is planning to compete in the BI market with Microsoft and Tableau.

Although the deal was initially announced last summer, Google had to wait for the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) to clear the acquisition.

“Together, we’re excited to offer customers a comprehensive analytics solution that integrates and visualises insights at every layer of their business…” said Thomas Kurian, chief executive of Google Cloud, following the announcement of the deal.

Looker is business intelligence (BI) software and analytics platform that helps users to explore, analyze and share analytics without having to write complex scripts. The Looker BI tool offers strong visualization abilities, complete with real-time analysis.

Over the years, Looker received generally positive reviews from users. People pointed out its ease of use, ability to customize dashboards and visualizations, and LookML. The latter is a SQL-based modeling language, which allows analysts familiar with SQL to control and manage data. One of its cons has been its relatively high price compared to other competitors.

In the self-service BI market, Looker directly competes with the two giants of the BI world, Microsoft Power BI and Tableau. And now with the purchase of Looker, Google will be hoping to become a stronger player in the BI market.

BI is no longer a separate thing that exists on its own. Over the years, it has become a significant part of the enterprise’s ecosystem, embedded into analytics, cloud services and other software applications.

According to a Forrester analyst, Boris Evelson, the BI technology is getting commoditized. This means smaller independent organizations will find it harder to compete with large enterprises.


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