Consulting Firm Prophet Acquires Altimeter Group

Altimeter Group, which is known for its research in areas like social media, the Internet of Things and data privacy, has been acquired by Prophet.

Altimeter was founded in 2008 by CEO Charlene Li (pictured above), previously an analyst at Forrester. (She recruited some other big names from Forrester to join her, though they’ve since departed.) Prophet, meanwhile, is a consulting firm focused on marketing, design and brand strategy.

“With the rapid changes in digital technology, data, and customer behavior today, clients often face a complex array of potential threats and opportunities around their customer experience, their innovation pipeline, their sales strategies and their brands,” said Prophet CEO Michael Dunn. “By bringing Altimeter and its team of outstanding analysts onboard, we can help our clients get better prepared to navigate what comes next in terms of digital disruption by collaborating with some of the leading thinkers in this space.”

The companies say that all of Altimeter’s current analysts, including Li, Brian Solis and Susan Etlinger, will be joining Prophet and will continue to work under the Altimeter name. They’ll now be based out of Prophet’s headquarters in San Francisco.

The financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Asked how this will affect Altimeter’s current customers, Li said, “Nothing changes.”

She told me there are two big factors that made the acquisition appealing to her.

“First, Prophet understands the value of research and will invest in Altimeter’s research operations to support our research agenda and to help amplify our work,” Li said. “But more importantly, I believe that research improves when you can apply it to real client problems. Consulting deepens our understanding of client pain points that results in better, more meaningful research.”

The other reason? She pointed to Prophet’s “great culture and leadership.”