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YouGov acquires social analytics company Portent.IO

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YouGov, the international data and analytics group, has acquired ‘social analytics’ startup Portent.IO, a company that it had previously invested in. Terms of the deal remain undisclosed, although I understand the acquisition includes Portent.IO‘s technology, clients and its team, including its data scientists.

“We’re all staying on and the entire team including myself have 3-year lock-ins,” Portent.IO co-founder and CEO Hamish Brocklebank tells me. “We are also going to be rebranded as ‘YouGov Signal’ and the existing team will continue to run the business — I’ll be MD & founder of YouGov Signal, for example — but with the added operational, administrative and technical support of the broader YouGov family”.

As well as YouGov providing financially backing for Portent.IO, the two firms had also been working together, with Portent.IO utilising YouGov data within its solution, which mainly focussed on the film and television industry. This includes using YouGov’s panel to survey consumers and using YouGov Profiles data to help media teams plan their marketing campaigns by “mining” audiences around movies, programmes, and actors.

Portent.IO’s customer base includes Paramount, Sony, Lionsgate, the BBC, along with other major film studios and a number of TV networks.

“Without trying to be too buzzwordy, we’re a data science-focused social listening and digital media analytics platform,” says Brocklebank. “In short, we track social, news, product reviews and digital data around movies, TV shows, sports teams and now brands across the web and across 40 countries. This data includes text analysis data, view counts of videos, comments, likes, retweets and more”.

Meanwhile, the acquisition is said to enable YouGov to increase the scope of its offering and provide clients with better social monitoring and data science analytics tools. And although Portent.IO’s tech is currently focussed on the entertainment industry, YouGov plans to extend its application across other sectors.

“The platform plugs into YouGov’s wider product suite – complementing its current services, including data products, data services, and custom research – to provide a 360 degree view of marketing campaigns,” says the two companies in a statement.

“Our data science team and advance machine learning NLP tools will be assisting with YouGov’s ongoing data science efforts and a lot of our text classification tools can be applied to their broader market research efforts,” adds Brocklebank. “Our expertise in the film and TV space will [also] help YouGov expand further into that market”.

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