Research Acquisitions

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Research Acquisitions

Over the last five years, the identified firms and/or their parent companies acquired nine research organizations: Avox, VentureSource, Insitum, SeriusDecisions, Kensho, Panjiva, SNL Financial, L2 and Machina Research.




CB Insights



Boston Consulting Group

  • The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has closed two deals during the past five years, both of which were design and innovation firms: AllofUs (October 2019) and MAYA Design (July 2017).

Bain & Company

Ernest & Young



  • Accenture completed its acquisition of Insitum in September 2019 for an undisclosed sum.
  • Prior to its acquisition, Insitum functioned as a strategic research and service design company, with particular expertise in the area of innovation.
  • According to The Drum, Accenture completed the deal in an effort to have a greater presence in South America as well as to compliment the offerings of its Fjord agency.
  • Additionally, Accenture stated in a press release that Insitum will be leveraged to "bolster" Accenture Interactive’s ability to "design, build and run experiences that transform businesses and improve people’s lives."

International Data Group

  • International Data Group has acquired one company in the last five years, with its deal for Triblio (June 2020), an account-based marketing platform.
  • Although International Data Group was acquired by IDG Capital in January 2017, International Data Group is serving as a portfolio company for the investment firm, and IDG Capital's other technology sector acquisitions are therefore less relevant for this purpose of this analysis.


Forrester Research



451 Research


  • 451 Research has completed no acquisitions during the past five years.
  • Notably, the company's purchase of technology research firm Yankee Group occurred in January 2013.
  • Since then, 451 Research was acquired by S&P Global (December 2019), which has closed three deals over the last five years: Kensho (March 2018), Panjiva (February 2018) and SNL Financial (September 2015).
  • Notably, all three of these acquisitions have strong offerings in the area of research.


  • S&P Global completed its acquisition of Kensho in April 2018 for $550 million.
  • At the time, Kensho was a "leading edge provider" of analytics, artificial intelligence, machine learning and data visualization systems in support of the research and insight needs of global banks, investment institutions and security organizations.
  • According to the S&P Global press release at the time of deal announcement, the company acquired Kensho for the following reasons: "Kensho will strengthen S&P Global's emerging technology capabilities, enhance its ability to deliver essential, actionable insights that will transform the user experience for its clients, and accelerate efforts to improve efficiency and effectiveness of its core internal operations."
  • TechCrunch adds that S&P Global intends to "mostly leave it alone" and allow Kensho to "do what it’s been doing" as an independent brand.
  • As such, S&P Global will primarily leverage Kensho's capabilities as an investment and growth opportunity, wherein S&P Global will provide Kensho with the resources that are not available through conventional funding outlets.
  • Meanwhile, coverage of the Kensho acquisition was provided by Forbes, TechCrunch and Global Corporate Venturing, among other publications.


SNL Financial

  • S&P Global closed its deal for SNL Financial in September 2015 for a price of $2.3 billion.
  • At the time of its acquisition, SNL Financial collected and shared corporate, financial, market and M&A data.
  • Although the reasons behind the transaction were not detailed by S&P Global, later moves by the company indicated that the SNL Financial acquisition was a "strategic move" that helped to complement existing business lines.
  • In particular, in February 2016, SNL Financial was merged with S&P Capital IQ under the rebranded name S&P Global Market Intelligence.
  • Meanwhile, news of the deal was covered by media outlets such as Fixextra, The Daily Progress and Mergr.


  • As highlighted within the Strategy document, Gartner acquired two research organizations during the past five years: L2 and Machina Research.


Machina Research

  • As noted within the Strategy document, Machina Research is the "world's leading provider" of strategic advice in the areas of M2M, IoT and Big Data.
  • The company's acquisition by Gartner was completed in November 2016 for $4.5 million.
  • According to a Machina Research press release announcing deal closure, Gartner acquired its business as part of a "strategy of investing further" in IoT market analysis.

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