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US giant snaps up Sydney tech player Hyper Anna


Ms Nguyen would not disclose the value of the deal, or her holding in the company, save to say it was “typical of any other founder for any other start-up of this age”.

As well as Westpac and IAG, Hyper Anna counts Microsoft, Deloitte and NBN among its customers.

Takeover spree

The deal is the latest in a spate of US takeovers of Aussie tech companies, headlined by Square’s $39 billion acquisition of Afterpay in August. In September, Microsoft bought Brisbane-based video editing start-up Clipchamp, and in June, online training start-up A Cloud Guru was acquired by PluralSight for $2 billion.

Alteryx, which has more than 7000 customers, helps users to “clean” and analyse data, and counts CommSec and Downer as customers in Australia.

As well as the company founders, a number of Australian and international investors will exit via the company’s sale. In 2017, Hyper Anna raised $16 million from Sequoia China, with Westpac’s Reinventure fund and Sydney-based AirTree Ventures doubling up on their earlier seed investments.

At the time of its capital raising, Hyper Anna had described plans to expand broadly into Singapore, Hong Kong and mainland China, with additional US aspirations.

“A lot has changed in our understanding of the problem since then,” Ms Nguyen said.

“Mostly we discovered business people were not always the best at asking questions to get answers from the data they had.”

The start-up subsequently built its technology’s capacity to make it prompt key questions for users, helping to pull meaningful insights out of the organisation’s data set.

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Hyper Anna was founded in 2015 by Ms Nguyen, and chief technology officer Sam Zheng, who left in 2018 to start a new company called Curious Thing, which uses AI algorithms to help companies recruit staff.



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