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Analysis: Qlik acquires to Enhance Data Integration Capabilities

Key Stakeholders: Chief Information Officers, Chief Technical Offiers, Chief Data Officers, Data Management Managers, Analytics Managers, Enterprise Information Managers

Why It Matters: SaaS and public cloud data sources are both rapidly proliferating and playing a bigger role in enterprise analytics. It is no longer enough to build a Single Source of Truth without being able to share and integrate data across all relevant sources.

Key Takeaway: This is an evolutionary time for analytics solutions as AI, process automation, public cloud, & SaaS proliferation are quickly changing the demands for analytics. This iPaaS (Integration Platform as a Service) acquisition shows how Qlik is augmenting its core capabilities to keep up with quickly-changing market demands.

About the Acquisition

On October 22, 2020, Qlik acquired, an integration Platform as a Service that supports data integration across over 500 Software as a Service applications and clud data sources. This research note analyzes why Qlik acquired, what this means for current and potential clients of both companies, and key recommendations for data and analytics professionals to consider based on this acquisition. was founded in 2017 in Belgium by tech entrepreneur Niko Nelissen, who had previous experience in building out marketing automation, event ticketing, data hosting, and data center operations businesses. In short, his background enveloped all aspects of providing data as a service both as backend data infrastructure as well as front-end data used for sales and marketing technologies.

This background led to the creation of, which quickly arose as a tool to support data automation and workflows across data, alerts, caches, applications, and databases. This capability has proven especially valuable at a time when application proliferation has occured and the “trusted business platform” has been replaced by a federation of Best-in-Breed applications that need to be connected together from data, process, and synchronization perspectives.

Based on this need, Qlik’s acquisition of makes sense as a functional addition that both strengthens Qlik’s sales and marketing support and allows Qlik to play a greater role in delivering what they call “Active Intelligence.”

This acquisition also is accretive to Qlik’s prior acquisitions made since it became a Thoma Bravo portfolio company in 2016:

July 2018: Qlik acquires Podium Data to gain a Big Data-fluent data catalog and governance capability.

March 2019: Qlik acquires Attunity to support cloud data synchronization and to validate the advice I had provided at Attunity’s 2013 Analyst Day on the future valuation of Attunity.

January 2020: Qlik acquires RoxAI to support real-time alerts associated with data and analytic changes.

August 2020: Qlik acquires Knarr Analytics assets to strengthen its supply chain analytics capabilities and to bring in key talent.

This acquisition also comes as Qlik is in the process of retiring a prior acquisition, Qlik DataMarket. This 2014 acquisition was originally intended to help clients to combine internal business data with external geographic, financial, or political data. But as access to public external data has become easier to support and business clients have found the challenge of simply managing internal data across a wide variety of private sources to become a bigger challenge, Qlik has made a similar shift through this acquisition.

What to Expect from this Acquisition

Qlik customers with significant SaaS portfolios should be excited to see this acquisition, as it now allows Qlik to develop native analytic products across a variety of marketing, sales, productivity, machine learning, and public cloud platforms. Qlik states that it will start launching products based on the acquisition in 2021. Amalgam Insights expects that the combination of iPaaS, data governance, and analytics will allow Qlik to create secure amalgams of data and process automation.

This step of integrating SaaS and cloud data to analytics is necessary for Qlik to deliver on the promise of the “data-driven enterprise” that we have all heard so much about over the past several years. To get beyond the hype, data must be contextualized, analyzed, and used both to accelerate basic rules-based actions and to support decisions based on more complex scenarios, politics, and strategies. Qlik’s acquisition of is an important step forward in addition to the Podium Data and Attunity acquisitions in allowing Qlik to support a multi-app, multi-cloud, and multi-data environment where there is no longer the “single source of truth.”

For customers, expect Qlik to continue development on Blendr as a standalone product. It is in Qlik’s best interest to continue the development of Blendr’s iPaaS, as this is a competitive space. competes favorably with the likes of Dell Boomi, Jitterbit, MuleSoft, SnapLogic, Workato, and Zapier. Qlik will be pressured to maintain functionality on par or ahead of its competitors. However, similar to prior acquisitions, expect Blendr to see a name change and an expanded focus on supporting the Qlik portfolio of products. Over time, it would not be surprising to see this “Qlik iPaaS” being more integrated with the Qlik Data Catalyst catalog product and the replication and ingestion components of the Qlik Data Integration platform.


For Qlik customers, this is a good time to start putting pressure on your sales and account team on the types of products you would like to see from a combination of iPaaS integration, governed data, and analytics. Why build it yourself when you can make Qlik do a fair bit of the heavy lifting?

In addition, Qlik customers may want to share their current SaaS portfolios with their account teams to drive the development of the iPaaS. The challenge with managing SaaS-based data is not in connecting one app to one data source: APIs make this task fairly straightforward. The real challenge is that the average enterprise uses over 1,000 discrete apps and data-driven services based on data provided by security vendors such as Symantec and NetSkope, which leads to a near-infinite number of potential connections. Companies must get a “starter kit” of connectors to handle the Pareto 20% of issues that represent 80% of their day-to-day work.

For customers, expect to be introduced to the Qlik portfolio of products. For those who have not looked at Qlik in a few years and think of it mainly as the QlikView visual discovery solution, take a look at Qlik’s portfolio across data management, data lake and warehouse management, data replication, and the Qlik Sense data engine which includes more modern geospatial, search, and natural language analytic capabilities. Since Thoma Bravo’s acquisition of Qlik in 2016, Qlik has expanded its portfolio to support data management challenges.


Overall, Amalgam Insights is bullish on this latest acquisition, as it both fills a gap in Qlik’s existing portfolio of data and analytics capabilities and brings in a technology that is still relatively new and flexible for Qlik to integrate into its quickly growing portfolio. With this acquisition, Qlik gets one step closer to becoming an enterprise data solution.

From a market perspective, it is hard not to compare the moves Qlik makes to the moves made by fellow private equity-owned data companies TIBCO (purchased by Vista Equity in September 2014) and Informatica (purchased by Permeira and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in August 2015). Qlik’s focus on expanding data discovery and access across frequently used business data has been fairly consistent across its acquisitions. As these companies race towards the financial timelines and outcomes required by private equity, Amalgam Insights believes that Qlik is well on path to creating a whole that is more than the sum of its parts.

If you have any additional questions about this acquisition, the current state of the business analytics market, or how to work with Amalgam Insights, please contact us at to set up a consultation.

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Analysis: CoreView Raises $10 Million Series B Round for SaaS Management

Key Stakeholders: CIO, CTO, CFO, Software Asset Managers, IT Asset Managers, IT Procurement Managers, Technology Expense Managers, Sales Operations Managers, Marketing Operations Managers.

Why It Matters: The investment in CoreView comes at a time when SaaS proliferation and management are becoming a core IT problem. CoreView’s leadership position in managing Microsoft 365 and enterprise SaaS portfolios makes it a vendor to consider to solve the SaaS mess.

Top Takeaway: Enterprises and IT suppliers managing large SaaS portfolios either from a financial or operational perspective must find a solution to manage the hundreds or thousands of SaaS apps and services under management or risk both security breaches and financial bloat with millions of dollars at stake.

About the Acquisition

On October 5th, 2020, CoreView raised a $10 million Series B round which was led by Insight Partners. CoreView provides a Software as a Service management platform to secure and optimize Microsoft 365 and additional applications as an augmentation of the Microsoft M365 Admin Center.

CoreView was founded in 2014 in Milan, Italy by a team with experience as Microsoft system integrators to provide governance for Office 365 deployments. In October 2019, CoreView augmented its solution with the acquisition of Alpin, a SaaS management solution used to monitor SaaS activity and manage costs.

With this funding, CoreView is expected to increase both its direct clientele as well as its global reseller and service provider base. Having grown almost three-fold over the past year, CoreView is acquiring this funding at a time when SaaS management is becoming an increasingly important part of IT management.

From Amalgam Insights’ perspective, this funding is interesting for two reasons: the quality of the investor and the growing challenge of managing SaaS.

First, this round was led by Insight Partners, which has a strong history of investing in fast-growing DevOps and data companies in line with CoreView’s enterprise software management needs, including Ambassador, Carbon Relay, JFrog, Resolve, Dremio, and OneTrust. Because this investor has been deeply involved with investments in the future of software development and management, Amalgam Insights believes that Insight Partners provides value to CoreView as an investor.

Second, this funding is coming at a time when SaaS proliferation has become an increasingly challenging problem. This funding indicates where the next wave of growth is going to occur in IT management. After a decade of stating that “There’s an app for that, companies must now face the challenge of standardizing and optimizing their app environments. Security vendors such as Symantec and NetSkope have published estimates that the average enterprise uses between 900 and 1200 discrete apps and services on a regular basis, which creates a logistical nightmare.

A decade ago, I wrote on the challenges of Bring Your Own Device and the issues of expense and inventory management for these $500 devices. But with the emergence of Bring Your Own App, multiplied by the sheer proliferation of productivity, sales and marketing, and other line-of-business applications, SaaS management was already coming of age as its own complicated challenge for IT as SaaS was growing 20-25% per year as a market. With the challenges of COVID-19, SaaS has only become more important for keeping remote and work-from-home employees connected to key tools and data.


Based on this funding round, Amalgam Insights makes one key recommendation for IT departments: get control of your SaaS portfolio, which is likely scattered across line-of-business admins, expense reports, and the half of SaaS associated with enterprise software that is currently in IT. Even if the app administration remains in the hands of the line-of-business teams, IT needs to be aware of the data governance, data integration and duplication, and zero-trust based management of least-privilege access across apps. IT still has a job in the SaaS era as SaaS continues to grow from its current size of a quarter of all software in 2020 to Amalgam Insights’ projection in 2025 that the SaaS market will triple to approximately $300 billion and become half of the enterprise software market.

An additional recommendation for all IT agents, resellers, and service providers is to gain a SaaS management capability as soon as possible. At this point, this means looking at two areas: SaaS Operations Management focused on the governance and configuration of SaaS and SaaS Expense Management focused on the inventory and cost optimization of SaaS. There is some overlap between the two as well as some areas of specialization. From Amalgam Insights’ perspective, CoreView is recommended as both an Operations Management and an Expense Management solution with a specialization in supporting Microsoft 365.

If you have any questions about this research note or on the SaaS Management market, please contact Amalgam Insights at to set up time to speak with our analysts.

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Is Apple Losing Its Consumer Marketing Touch?

CNBC’s Jessica Bursztynsky just wrote a nice piece,” Apple fails to market the iPhone 12 Pro to the average consumer

My take on the article: One of Apple’s traditional strengths has been translating technical capabilities into household tasks. This strength is what allowed the iPhone to take off in the first place when the initial iPhone hardware was inferior to its competitors. As an example, when the iPhone first came out, 3G networks had already been in the United States for five years, yet Apple started with a 2G phone.

The odd part is that the technical capabilities of the iPhone 12 do translate to a more personal phone: take the outdoors home with you, augment your world, get a smarter phone. 5 nm chips are much smarter than any other iPhone ever. But Apple didn’t find a way to bring the story together for the iPhone 12 despite having a more vivid, smarter, faster, and more networked phone. From a technical perspective, the iPhone 12 is a big upgrade, almost a generational improvement.

But Apple fell for the hype of its partners with 5G and 5nm rather than the personal, high-end, affordable luxury game changer branding that has made Apple a juggernaut. If there is anything that Apple should know by know, it is that all of these technical numbers are practically meaningless to its core audience. Although I’ve joked in the past that technology doesn’t seem to exist before Apple acknowledge that it exists, I don’t actually think that works for 5G, as both the infrastructure and use cases for 5G at the consumer level have not been fully figured out yet.

Just as Bose customers couldn’t have cared less about the audiophile’s perspective of Bose products, Apple customers couldn’t care less about the computing specs compared to the simple question of “Does it work?”

Some basic apps or features on the iPhone 12 taking advantage of the enhanced photos, LIDAR, and 5nm based processing in the background would have been great. If Apple can’t figure out how 40%+ faster helps you, how can anyone else?

It’s also interesting that there was little in the new phone regarding security or working from home. I guess Apple figured it has nailed Work and School from Home despite all the challenges that still exist. But for anybody who has either been moved to a work from home situation or has had the interminable experience of helping your kid with a remote schooling environment, you know there is a lot of work left. Some sort of example of how to make the iPhone a work hub would have been really interesting.

To me, the iPhone 12 launch felt like an old Nokia Symbian phone launch that always focused on specs and hardware superiority. Even BlackBerry, back in the day, had more appeal to the feel and UX of its devices. Ask Nokia how that technical superiority sale turned out in the late 2000s. 

I’m not saying Apple will disappear tomorrow. But the iPhone 12 launch looked like that of a mature technology waiting to be disrupted rather than a technology designed to further enhance your life. This is an interesting time to watch the evolution of the smartphone industry, as augmented reality devices are not ready for the mainstream yet, Huawei is dealing with geopolitical challenges, Samsung continues to produce a variety of smart devices, and Google has revived the Pixel brand with an impressive set of recent device models.

My recommendation: the iPhone 12 is an interesting set of functionalities that still lacks the infrastructure and apps to fully take advantage of what it does. I think this will be a great device to purchase around the same time that a COVID vaccine becomes generally available, probably around Summer of next year. Until then, if you want to get used to the photo and LIDAR capabilities of the phone or are in a city with good 5G coverage, the iPhone 12 is a good starting point.

For more context on 5G, please read our strategic guide on 5G or contact us at to set up a strategic consulting session.

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Amazon Web Services Launches AWS Cost Anomaly Detection, in Beta

If you’re moving into cloud, Amazon launched a service on September 25th called AWS Cost Anomaly Detection within AWS Cost Management to find surges in spend. Part of the product is a machine learning algorithm that tracks your spend to ensure that spend peaks aren’t just part of a cyclical spend change and to detect anomalies. One of the interesting aspects of this product to me is the flexibility of monitoring spend based on service, account, category, or tag.

AWS Monitor Types for Cost Anomaly Detection

The tagging capability is the most interesting one to me, as tags are how cloud costs are effectively cross-charged to projects, cost centers, geographies, and the other financial categories that are most relevant from an IT expense and financial management perspective. Although the other spend monitoring categories are interesting from a practitioner level and obviously should be used to optimize spend, they will likely be less useful to share with your colleagues.

I’m especially interested in seeing more detail about how machine learning ends up tracking AWS service spend over time to correct its recommendations. One of the interesting aspects of this service is that you actually do not choose your parameters for which anomalies get tracked, as the algorithmic approach picks up every spike. Rather, the service focuses on when it should alert you to changes and anomalies based on the size of the spike. And then you can choose to be alerted in near-real time, daily, or weekly basis.

Given that it’s currently a beta product, I’m betting that the alerts and recommendations aren’t quite fully baked at this point. But even so, this optimization moves cloud towards the state of in-billing period monitoring and optimization that we’re used to doing in wireless and wired spend. Take a look and see how Cost Anomaly Detection starts to shape and optimize your AWS services’ spend.

Of course, this is an AWS-specific service, so there are still opportunities both for other cloud providers to provide similar services as well as for the leading third-party cloud service management providers such as Apptio Cloudability, Cloudcheckr, CloudHealth by VMware, Calero-MDSL, Flexera, Snow Software, Tangoe, and Upland Software to also develop similar capabilities for multi-cloud.

For now, Amalgam Insights recommends taking a look at the documentation and learning how the service works. We are starting to transform IT cost management from a practice of manually tracking cost data on our own to depending on algorithms and machine logic to do the hard number-crunching and swivel-chair work for use. Even if you’re not going back to school to learn the linear algebra, calculus, and neural net designs needed to do data science on your own, you need to have an idea of what can and can’t be done through algorithmic means.

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Motus Acquires Vision Wireless to Bolster Enterprise Mobility Support

On September 30th, 2020, workforce expense vendor Motus announced the acquisition of Vision Wireless, a wireless expense management company based in Augusta, Georgia in the United States. This purchase demonstrates Motus’ continued focus in enterprise mobility to add to its September 2019 purchase of Wireless Analytics.

Vision Wireless was founded in 2003 with a focus on wireless expense management and managed mobility services provided to Fortune 1000 and mid-sized enterprises. In recent years, Vision Wireless has taken a greater role in providing thought leadership to the industry at large, including its recent sponsorship of Amalgam Insights’ Technology Expense Management Expo.

Over the past decade, I’ve typically recommended Vision Wireless as an appropriate vendor for North American-based organizations over $1 billion in revenue. Vision Wireless is known for its strong managed service capabilities with white-glove service and a software solution that supports integration with a variety of accounts payable, general ledger, procurement, IT service management, human resources, and mobile device management solutions. Vision Wireless was also working on increasing its automation, self-service, and integration capabilities.

With the acquisition by Motus, Amalgam Insights expects that Vision Wireless’ platform development will accelerate to support Motus’ ambitions of becoming a full-service remote worker solution. Over the past year, Motus has brought its Fixed and Variable Rate methodology to mobile devices to help companies support Total Cost of Ownership and expense analysis across both business and personal (Bring Your Own Device) use cases.

What’s Next?

Vision Wireless customers should expect to see no significant changes in their support in the immediate future. Motus acquired Vision Wireless in no small part to acquire the quality and depth of service that Vision Wireless has provided to its clients for years. At the same time, Vision Wireless customers should also be aware that Motus also has a fleet management solution for organizations that conduct business activities with personal vehicles. For companies seeking to improve their remote worker expense management, this Motus solution may be an opportunity to help support both current working conditions as well as a post-COVID future that maintains a significant remote worker population.

Motus customers gain a high-quality mobility support and managed services team with experience supporting clients such as Aramark, ServiceMaster, and CVS Health. This acquisition will ease Motus’ ability to support integration with a variety of software solutions and platforms, such as ServiceNow, SAP Ariba, Coupa, and leading ERP solutions.

Amalgam Insights is also interested to see how this acquisition affects the market for remaining high-quality managed mobility services and wireless expense solutions that we track such as Advantix, GoExceed, ICOMM, Intratem, mindWireless, Mobichord, MobilSense, Mobile Solutions, Valicom, and vMox.

In the long term, as cars become increasingly connected, the Internet of Things become ubiquitous, and the need for remote mobility support only becomes greater over time, Amalgam Insights believes that Vision Wireless’ long-time expertise in supporting enterprise mobility support will prove to be a strong asset for Motus. Amalgam Insights also believes that this is not the end of Motus’ acquisition streak, as a Thoma Bravo portfolio company. For Motus to fully unleash its potential as a remote worker reimbursement vendor, Amalgam Insights believes that there is still room for Motus to expand into cloud management, security, home office expenses, and other business categories that are split between corporate and personal responsibilities.

Overall, Amalgam Insights believes that this acquisition represents a strong commitment by Motus to continue expanding its support of enterprise mobility, an acquisition of a strong enterprise client case, and an opportunity to use Vision Wireless’ managed services foundation and platform to help expand its remote work support. This acquisition is indicative of what should be happening in the wireless and telecom expense market: accretive acquisition to support a bigger picture, such as the future of remote work management, the future of IT management, and the future of employee management. Expect more acquisitions like this in the near future.