Belgian data intelligence firm Collibra acquires OwlDQ

3 Feb 2021


The acquisition is the company’s latest move for growth after it was valued at $2.3bn in a funding round last year.

Belgian data intelligence company Collibra has acquired OwlDQ, a US start-up specialising in predictive data quality software.

OwlDQ’s machine learning tech is used to detect anomalies and errors in data sets and clean these data sets up for better analytics and for complying with data regulations. According to Collibra, organisations often lack a clear strategy for managing data quality.

The Maryland start-up will be integrated into a new division of Collibra called Collibra Data Quality. No financial terms for the deal were disclosed.

OwlDQ was founded in 2017 and has raised $2.5m in Series A funding. Its founder and CEO, Kirk Haslbeck, was previously a big data and software architect at Morgan Stanley and will now take on the position of vice-president of engineering at Collibra.

“We’ve developed some of the most advanced machine learning to address comprehensive data quality challenges, such as profiling, rules, data reconciliation and discovering hidden data relationships,” Haslbeck said.

“With OwlDQ’s predictive data quality, companies can reduce complex and error-prone manual rule writing, streamline their data and analytics processes and expedite trusted business outcomes.”

Collibra, which was founded in Belgium and is now based in New York, raised a $112.5m Series F round last year that valued the company at $2.3bn. Index Ventures and Battery Ventures are among its backers.

“Data quality is integral to data intelligence, and poor data quality is a key reason why organisations don’t trust their data,” Jim Cushman, chief product office at Collibra, said.

“Together, Collibra and OwlDQ will provide organisations with a single, cloud-based system of engagement to unify data governance, data privacy, data catalog, data lineage and now continuous data quality so teams can more easily and confidently get to trusted business insights and become data informed,” he said.

Stewart Bond, research director at market intelligence researchers IDC, said the acquisition “further reinforces how critical data quality is in data intelligence”.

The deal marks Collibra’s second acquisition to date, after it bought SQLdep in 2019.

Jonathan Keane is a freelance business and technology journalist based in Dublin