In this industry analysis article, we will take a look at the 15 most valuable data companies in the world. You can skip our detailed analysis of these companies, and go directly to the 5 Most Valuable Data Companies in the World.
The rapid advance of modern-day computing has created industries that many would have thought impossible just two decades back. The advent of Google’s search engine and the rise of social media giants such as Facebook has created unprecedented levels of user information, or data, which in itself has become a valuable resource. From anything such as buying habits or political preferences, there is a market of corporations willing to pay top dollar for access in order to use the data for purposes such as targeted advertisements or a better understanding of a subset of people.
Data Market: Industry Analysis
This market collectively referred to as the big data market, is not limited to individuals’ political or purchase preferences. It also covers policymaking, national security, advanced healthcare research, and education, with users using advanced tools to generate insights and reach conclusions from large data sets.
The importance of the big data market is underscored by the fact that numerous market research firms have optimistic projections for their compound annual growth rate (CAGR). For instance, MarketsandMarkets reports that the big data market is set to grow from $138.9 billion in 2020 to $229.4 billion by the end of 2025, with a CAGR of 10.6%. The primary drivers of this growth, according to the research firm, will be a greater proliferation of the Internet of Things (IoT) devices, increased reliance by corporations to use their own data for operational insights, and greater government investment in the sector.
Verified Market Research is even more optimistic for the market, as its 2018 report lists down a CAGR for 17.8% for the market, implying a total value of $139 billion by 2026. Even though Verified Market Research’s CAGR is higher, the fact that the big data market has already surpassed what it was supposed to be worth in 2026 speaks volumes about its rising nature.
Fortune Business Insights mirrors Verified Market Research as it predicts a slightly higher CAGR of 14% for the market, predicting that from its value of $41 billion in 2019, it will grow to $116 billion by 2027.
This growth is evident when we take a look at forecasted internet usage for the next two years. According to Cisco Systems, Inc’s Annual Internet Report updated last year, the total number of internet users globally should sit at 5.3 billion by the end of 2023, exhibiting a CAGR of 6%. Mirroring MarketsandMarkets’ prediction that the growth in the big data market will be driven in part by IoT devices, Cisco also reports that machine-to-machine (M2M) connections will be the fastest-growing devices by 2023, by exhibiting a CAGR of 19%.
Finally, a sense of the growth expected in the segment can be gathered by analyzing the revenue growth of Intel Corporation. The company is one of two that can sell data center processors designed using the x86 microarchitecture, and its revenues for the segment mirror enterprise interest in big data crunching.
Intel’s Data Center Group earned $4.3 billion in revenue by the end of its fiscal year 2015, and by the end of the previous fiscal year, these revenues had grown to $26.1 billion to mark for a staggering 507% growth.
In order to determine which data center companies in the world are the most valuable, we will use the simple metric of a company’s market capitalization.
Most Valuable Data Companies in the World
15. Cloudera, Inc. (NYSE: CLDR)
Cloudera, Inc. (NYSE: CLDR) is a software provider which provides its own suite of products which can be used on popular platforms such as AWS and Azure. Its Cloudera Data Platform was the first enterprise data cloud to be introduced in the market and its platforms provide customers with services such as data storage and machine learning to drive conclusions.
As of the end of the second quarter, 34 hedge funds in Insider Monkey’s database of 873 funds held stakes in CLDR, compared to 30 funds in the 1st quarter of 2021. Icahn Capital LP is the biggest stakeholder in the company, with 52.3 million shares, worth $829.9 million.
“Cloudera, in the IT sector, provides software to manage and analyze data. The traditionally on-premise data lake company with a blue chip client base has recently added cloud capabilities, which should stem client churn, increase workloads at existing customers, and add new clients, with the potential to reaccelerate revenue growth from the high single digits to 15%-20%.”
14. Alteryx, Inc. (NYSE: AYX)
Alteryx, Inc. (NYSE: AYX) is one of the oldest data management firms out there, with its predecessor, SRC, LLC being founded 24 years ago. In its current form, the company provides six products as part of its analytics platform. These products allow its customers to simplify their data to make it accessible and understandable for the layman unfamiliar with complex information technology (IT) terminology.
According to our database, the number of AYX’s long hedge funds positions decreased at the end of the second quarter of 2021. There were 33 hedge funds that hold a position in Alteryx compared to 35 funds in the first quarter. The biggest stakeholder of the company is Bares Capital Management, with 4.4 million shares, worth $377.3 million.
13. New Relic, Inc. (NYSE: NEWR)
New Relic, Inc. (NYSE: NEWR) offers a software as a service (SaaS) platform that allows web and application owners to track their products. Its services allow customers cheaper alternatives to well-established market players and the company has partnerships with AWS, Azure, IBM, and other big providers.
12. Workiva Inc. (NYSE: WK)
Workiva Inc. (NYSE: WK) is a software as a service (SaaS) firm which is focused on providing platforms geared toward the financial and accounting sector. Its customers use Workiva Inc. (NYSE: WK)’s software to collect initial reports and documents and streamline and process them into final forms which can be easily understood and accessed by multiple users. It’s also known for pioneering electronic corporate filings to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) using the extensible business reporting language (XBRL) format.
In the Q2 2021 investor letter of Artisan Partners, the fund mentioned Workiva Inc. (NYSE: WK). Here is what the fund said:
“Workiva is a global provider of cloud-based financial reporting and compliance solutions. Compiling data from disparate and unconnected systems across various departments within an organization for reporting and compliance purposes is an incredibly manual process. An evolving regulatory landscape over the past decade has not only made this increasingly burdensome, but has also required further management oversight. Workiva’s solutions aggregate this data and enable companies to have more efficiency in and greater visibility into regulatory reporting processes. In addition to this strong value proposition, we believe organizations are also on the cusp of shifting their software spend from front-office to backoffice departments, particularly in the CFO office where the shift to remote work during the pandemic highlighted the need to bring these workflows up to date. We also believe the company’s expanded product capabilities—which now go beyond its core SEC reporting capabilities—will lead to more use cases for new and existing customers, providing Workiva with a plethora of new growth opportunities in the periods ahead.”
11. Elastic N.V. (NYSE: ESTC)
Elastic N.V. (NYSE: ESTC) is a unique big data analytics firms in the sense that it has developed and operates its own search engine dubbed as Elasticsearch. This engine is part of the company’s Elastic Stack, which allows its customers to store their data and use its tools, like Elasticsearch, to search it for specific queries. In addition to Elasticsearch, the Elastic Stack also features software dubbed Kibana, Beats and Logstash. Just as search allows Elastic N.V. (NYSE: ESTC)’s customers to search datasets, software like Kibana allow them to visualize their data to reach conclusions and drive insights.
“Our top five holdings represent more than half of our total long exposure and therefore five greatly influence overall returns. Elastic Software (ESTC) – Management continues to innovate and execute, rolling out new products and converting existing users from free to paid versions. They made adjustments to their licensing agreements, making it more difficult for Amazon to rip them off, and provided forward guidance that convinced investors that the growth train will continue to run for at least a few more years.”
10. Splunk Inc. (NASDAQ: SPLK)
Splunk Inc. (NASDAQ: SPLK) is another company that sells software enabling its users to handle large datasets for generating insights. Headquartered in San Francisco, California, the company’s tools allow its customers to generate insights from their datasets by sorting out the relevant data and presenting it in a user friendly manner. Its software also work with the Hadoop repositories and other products allow customers to work with machine-generated data.
ClearBridge Investments, in its Q1 2021 investor letter, mentioned Splunk Inc. (NASDAQ: SPLK). Here is what the fund said:
“In addition to the new issue market, we have been tactically adding growth exposure. To make room for these new names with more attractive outlooks related to the reopening, we sold out of companies where the thesis is not playing out at the pace we expected including Splunk.”
9. MongoDB, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDB)
MongoDB, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDB) is a software as a service (SaaS) provide headquartered in New York City. Its primary product is the MongoDB database which stores data and allows the company’s customers to perform a variety of tasks. These tasks include advanced queuing orders, code execution, data aggregation, and file processing. Additionally, its services also allow sorting data files and search for specific file types based on user intent.
8. Palantir Technologies Inc. (NYSE: PLTR)
Palantir Technologies Inc. (NYSE: PLTR) is one of the few companies which exclusively focus on big data analytics. Its primary customer base is the United States government, with federal agencies such as the Department of Defense (DoD) and intelligence agencies using its products for threat assessments and other uses.
The company sells its platforms under creative names such as Palantir Foundry, Palantir Gotham and Palantir Apollo. Gotham and Foundry are Palantir Technologies Inc. (NYSE: PLTR)’s primary software as a service (SaaS) platforms, which allow its customers to analyze real-time data and sift it for useful insights, with the capabilities being critical for national security users such as the DoD and the National Security Agency (NSA).
In the Q2 2021 investor letter of Guardian Fund, the fund mentioned Palantir Technologies Inc. (NYSE: PLTR). Here is what the fund said:
“The success of the private sector to innovate in order to help people through the lockdowns and to produce vaccines at record speed at scale has been impressive. The fact that almost every public institution was struggling to be effective no matter how hard some of the people worked, shows the fundamental need of the public sector to become data-driven and invest in data infrastructure.
Government institutions have to partner with enterprises such as Palantir to become digital native. The public sector will always struggle to attract the most talented engineers as compensations cannot be justified with tax money and therefore this must be a partnership with specialized private enterprises. This is a great opportunity for Palantir especially as it has already shown to be capable of working with demanding and complex public institutions entrusting it to work on the most critical and sensitive matters…” (Click here to see the full text)
7. International Business Machines Corporation (NYSE: IBM)
International Business Machines Corporation (NYSE: IBM) is one of the biggest and oldest computing companies in the world. After it was founded in 1911, the company has undergone several transformations, and in its current state, it sells hardware and software products focused primarily on enterprise customers.
The company’s structured query line (SQL) engines form the backbone of its big data offerings. The Apache Hadoop software offered under the SQL framework targets big data processing and allows International Business Machines Corporation (NYSE: IBM)’s customers to choose the scale and scope of the data sets that they wish to process and analyze. Customers can also install it on their cloud servers, and the company has big-ticket names under its portfolio.
Additionally, the company has also expanded its big data offerings by including the IBM Cloud Pak in its product portfolio. Cloud Pak is a set of analytical tools which also utilize artificial intelligence to enable customers to create their own set of tools for big data analysis.
6. SAP SE (NYSE: SAP)
SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) is one of the most well-known enterprise software providers in the world. Its enterprise software is nearly ubiquitous in today’s corporate world, and the company also has a strong presence in the big data market since it is complementary to its enterprise resource planning (ERP) software.
SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) offers its SAP Business Technology Platform which enables its customers to combine their enterprise software with data analytics. This platform allows the customers to sift through large datasets to isolate data that serves their needs. The functionality of understanding and using data is offered under the Database and Data Management category of the SAP Business Technology Platform and the company also offers application development, data analytics, and artificial intelligence solutions within the platform.
In the Q2 2021 investor letter of Polen Capital, the fund mentioned SAP SE (NYSE: SAP). Here is what the fund said:
“During the second quarter, the leading absolute contributors to performance (includes) SAP. German enterprise software company SAP was a leading contributor to Portfolio returns in the quarter. Over the last six months, SAP rolled out a new simplified commercial offering aimed at making it easier for their customers to transition their core enterprise resource planning software to the cloud. “Rise with SAP” will encourage customers to consider moving certain workloads to new cloudenabled software. In many cases, SAP customers standardized business processes on SAP software over decades. Contemplating and enacting transformational change is a huge undertaking for these customers. Historically, transitioning to the cloud involves many third-party helpers, so having a single, trusted partner to lead the conversation, design the road map, and own the execution is helpful. Further, as customers shift to the cloud, more peripheral workloads can be handled by SAP, thereby potentially increasing the scale of its relationship with certain customers. Not all legacy customers will adopt SAP’s cloud software, but there could be meaningful performance benefits (quicker innovation, more agility, and mobility, etc.) and cost savings for those that do.
In addition, new customers are coming aboard the SAP cloud platform, which we view as a testament to its leading capabilities. This initiative could drive cloud software revenue growth greater than 20% in the coming years, some of which will cannibalize existing onpremise software sales. That said, the potential net result is attractive and durable growth. We think SAP is capable of doubledigit earnings growth over the coming five-year period.”
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