Snowflake goes all in on data clean rooms with Samooha acquisition | TechCrunch

Snowflake is buying Samooha, a startup developing a “cross-cloud” data collaboration suite, the companies announced this morning — adding to the list of big tech acquisitions leading up to the holiday season.

With the deal, which is expected to close by the end of the month subject to customary closing conditions, Snowflake gains an established “data clean room” platform that lets businesses securely share, collaborate on and gain insights from their and their partners’ data, regardless of the underlying data stack.

Samooha, meanwhile, gets an undisclosed amount of cash and/or stock in addition to the support of Snowflake’s massive technical and engineering infrastructure. All 19 Samooha employees including CEO Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan and co-founder Abhishek Bhowmick will be joining Snowflake in some capacity.

“This acquisition furthers our mission to mobilize the world’s data by accelerating the built-in capabilities of Snowflake’s platform for our customers,” Snowflake director of product management Carl Perry told TechCrunch via email. “Samooha customers will benefit from the many built-in platform capabilities of Snowflake, as well as the powerful network of Snowflake data cloud. Snowflake customers, meanwhile, will be able to more quickly and easily build, connect and use data clean rooms where their data already lives, directly in Snowflake.”

Los Altos-based Samooha, which Sivaramakrishnan and Bhowmick co-founded in 2022, competes in an increasingly crowded data clean room field. AWS has a data clean room product, as do startups like Herb. But Samooha’s differentiated by its heavy reliance on the Snowflake ecosystem; Snowflake, unsurprisingly, was an early investor.

A native app on Snowflake, Samooha provides a no-code UI customers can use to access and build clean room apps. The company went after verticals it believed might be especially underserved, like healthcare, financial services, advertising, retail and entertainment — and claimed to count several Fortune 500 brands in its customer base. 

Buoyed by that customer acquisition momentum, Samooha raised $12.5 million from investors, including Altimeter Capital,prior to the acquisition — valuing the startup at around $40 million post-money.

“Samooha’s founding hypothesis has been that the newest frontier of data and AI will be built on secure data sharing and collaboration foundations,” Sivaramakrishnan said in an emailed statement. “Samooha joining Snowflake enhances Snowflake’s ability to help enterprises collaborate in a seamless way, with governance, privacy and security of their data at the core. Businesses and enterprises like healthcare providers, financial institutions and large media platforms can now create strong edges of value exchange and connectivity across their respective partner and customer ecosystem.”

Investing in data clean room tech could turn out to be a lucrative decision for Snowflake — which continues to exceed investor expectations, side note — over the long run. According to Gartner, 80% of advertisers spending more than $1 billion a year on media will have used data clean rooms for applications such as analytics, measuring campaign results and easing data integration by the end of the year. Another poll published in early 2023 indicated that 29% of marketers in the U.S. would focus more on data clean rooms this year versus 2022, a prediction that certainly wouldn’t be out of the question given Snowflake’s interest.

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