Image via TechnoBuffalo

Google's Acquisitions

Bebop, an early stage startup in stealth mode, is the newest entry in Google's acquisition portfolio. The company will now likely contribute to Google Cloud. Keeping track of all Google's acquisitions is hard, and there are many sources attempting to do so. We started combining them and crunching some data, for a visual presentation of 197 Google acquisitions (and counting).

Note: Data updated on November 24th, 2015

Number of Acquisitions per Year

Refers only to acquisitions with known source and reported in this database

Some Notes on Methodology

This doesn't claim to be a list of all Google's acquisitions, but we did try to be as complete as possible. The main problem is that there is no full list of all of Google's acquisitions. During our research, we had stumbled upon many sites compiling such lists, but we always found some acquisitions missing. So we decided to make our own.

Should you spot anything that's missing from our list, drop us a line! We'd be happy to include it here and update the findings accordingly.

Main Sources

  • Wikipedia List of Mergers and Acquisitions (which we also used to determine the nationality of a company's founders)
  • CrunchBase (which, unless otherwise specified, we also used to retrieve detailed data on each company, like year of founding, description and location. Check each company's dedicated Silk datacard to see specific pages used)
  • A History of Google Acquisitions and Where They Are Today 
  • Google SEC filings for amount spent in acquisitions (2005 - 2015) . We looked at the last quarterly form10-Q report of each year. (Valid for January-September of each year)

We used Wikipedia's list, Google's Crunchabase Profile, CB Insights and the List of Google acquisitions by Infocaptor as a starting point to fill in information as to where the acquisitions ended up once in Google. We re-organized some of this into better categories. And we used news sources to fill in this gap for acquisitions not in Wikipedia's list. (Sources are referenced in each acquisition datacard).

Note that, to generalize, we usually refer to "acquired companies" in the article, although in same cases the acquisitions actually involved a product. Also, we've included also acquisitions that were then brought back (like Frommer's and Daily Deal).

Google just reported the lowest spending for acquisitions in the last 15 years

According to what reported in its latest 10-Q filing (Oct. 29, 2015), Google spent $244,000,000 in acquisitions between January and September 2015. That's the third lowest value in the last 10 years, and the lowest ever since 2009. In comparison, in those same last months of last year, Googled had invested more than 4.5 billions in acquisitions!

How much did Google spend in acquisitions?

Source: SEC filings. Click on each year to find a link to the specific SEC filing the data came from for that year.

The 17 companies Google acquired in 2015: from an Oculus Rift app to time management solutions

We have found 13 Google acquisitions in 2015, so far. This is about 1.3 per month, a lower rate than 2014, which ended with 34 deals.

Google's 188 Acquisitions and What They Became Part of

Reset the "Year" filter to load all 188 acquisitions

Most of reported Google's acquisitions fueled Android and Google X

Of the 197 acquisitions we collected, Android and Google X where the main Google subdivisions/services to benefit from the new resources.

Despite the relatively low user engagement in comparison to other social networks, Google+ comes third (together with Google Ads) for number of acquisitions. Surpassing, in this regard, more successful services like Google Maps and YouTube.

Where Did Most Acquisitions End Up Once in Google

When Did Google X Acquisitions Take Place

The numbers on Google X are quite interesting, especially if we consider that all the 20 related acquisitions occurred just between 2013 and 2014. Google X, started in 2010, is behind Google's self-driving cars. Many of its acquisitions are for deep learning and especially robotics.

Google's Acquisitions Now Part of Google X, Sorted by Date of Deal Announcement

Change the filter from Google X to other Google subdivision / services to explore the related acquisitions

Almost $19 Billion in just three deals: The most expensive Google acquisitions

At the moment, an estimate of the acquisition price paid by Google is available for only 53 of the 188 deals. Motorola Mobility ($12.5 billion), Nest Labs ($3.2 billion) and DoubleClick ($3.1 billion) appear as the most expensive acquisitions.

Price of Google's Acquisition Deals

Six Companies Google acquired on the same year when they were founded

Google acquires mostly young companies: Half of them had been around for three years or less. In six cases, Google actually made the bet to acquire a company that hadn't yet been around for a full year.

Six Companies Google acquired on the same year when they were founded

While less than 10% of Google's acquisitions had 10+ year, there are some exceptional cases to the company's tendency to buy younger ones. For example, the record goes to Zagat, which it Zagat in 2011. Or 32 years after the company's founding.

Years Between Founding-Acquisition of Acquired Companies

Note: Motorola Mobility was acquired in 2012, one year after Motorola's split into Motorola Mobility and Motorola Soultions. For this, the official age of Motorola Mobility at time of the acquisitions was only 1 year. Motorola was actually much older, founded in 1928

UK, Israel and Germany had most Google acquired companies outside North America

Most of the companies acquired were US companies. Not really surprising, given the size of the country and the presence of  Google's HQ.

Overall, about 26% of companies acquired were Non-US ones. It seems that some Google subdivisions/services are more likely than other to benefit from foreign talent. For example 10 of 12 You Tube acquisitions were US companies, while Google Maps' 11 acquisitions are divided between 5 US companies and 6 Non-US ones.

Number of Acquired Companies grouped by Nationality

Some years were more "foreign-friendly" than others. Half of the 8 companies acquired in 2005 were not US ones.

Google Acquisitions: US Companies vs. Non-US Companies

(For proper interpretations of the percentages, consider the total number of acquisitions in each year)

Of the 52 Non-US acquisitions, more than half were for businesses of Canada, UK, Israel and Germany.

Number of Acquisitions by Country of Founder

Toronto, London, Oxford, Tel Aviv and Waterloo (Canada): The biggest hubs for Google acquisitions

Google acquisitions seem to target mainly North American and European companies. There has yet to be an African company acquired by Google and the only South American one so far is Akwan Information Technologies, now part of Google Brazil.

Acquired Company Mapped by City

Note: city data is missing for 5 companies: Bebop, Frommer's, bruNETallPAY and TNC

London, Oxford and Tel Aviv are the cities home to the HQ of 3 or more companies acquired, making them the top Google acquisitions hubs outside North America .

Top 5 Non-US Locations for Number of  Google Acquisitions

Note: city data is missing for 5 companies: BebopFrommer's, bruNETallPAY and TNC

All Acquisition Datacards

Made with Silk

Silk is a place to explore the world through data. Silk displays data as beautiful interactive charts, maps and web pages. Create your own free Silk now.