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June 7, 2017

Alteryx Buys Yhat, Rolls ‘Connect’ Platform

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Alteryx Inc. has acquired a data science startup as it continues to flesh out its self-service data tool offerings that also include a new data exploration platform aimed at uncovering “siloed” enterprise data.

Alteryx (NYSE: AYX) said Tuesday (June 6) it has acquired Brooklyn-based Yhat, developer of a machine-learning deployment platform that among other things is being used as part of a new health prediction tool.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Alteryx CEO Dean Stoecker said the deal for Yhat would help make modeling tools more accessible to speed deployment of advanced models. These self-service tools are aimed at data scientists who often must rely on open-source programming languages to build predictive and machine learning models. Those models must then be deployed into different technology frameworks, a step Alteryx cites as a bottleneck in deploying models.

“The Yhat platform helps reduce the roadblock between data scientists and development teams by accelerating the model making and model deployment processes,” Alteryx noted in a statement.

The startup touts its approach as requiring fewer development resources to get analytic models out the door faster.

Last November, Yhat announced that Lumiata had adopted its machine-learning deployment platform called ScienceOps as part of the analytics vendor’s AI-powered health prediction tool. Lumiata, San Mateo, Calif., is among the growing number of predictive analytics developers targeting medical AI applications to manage risk and prioritize healthcare resources.

The Yhat deployment platform focuses on a recurring problem for data scientists: open source statistical tools are often incompatible with frameworks and languages used to build applications. Yhat claims its ScienceOps platform allows data scientists to leverage algorithms written in R or Python directly within mobile or web applications.

The startup’s software platform deploys predictive algorithms as REST APIs while eliminating the engineering tasks associated with production environments such as testing, scaling and security, the startup said.

Those and other capabilities will be folded into the growing suite of Alteryx self-service data analytics tools that now includes a new “exploration” platform aimed at boosting collaboration. Alteryx said its “Connect” platform released this week seeks to pull together partitioned data sets, visualizations, reports and workflows often scattered across enterprises.

The self-service analytics platform extends the company’s data preparation offerings, and is intended to help automate data cataloging and preparation tasks so that data scientists can “capture the tribal knowledge about data that is spread across an organization…” the company noted.

Alteryx said its data exploration platform would be available as an add-on to its server product. The new platform, expected to be available in fall 2017, stems from the company’s acquisition earlier this year of Semanta, a meta data management and governance startup.

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