Elastic acquires search startup Swiftype


Swiftype isn’t just a startup that we write about — we also use the technology to provide site search on TechCrunch itself. Now it’s being acquired by Elastic, the company behind the open source technology Elasticsearch.

It turns out the two companies are already connected, because Swiftype uses Elasticsearch for indexing and storing its search content. In fact, Swiftype CTO Quin Hoxie recalled first hearing about Elastic’s CEO Shay Banon (pictured above) as “this mythical developer who’d written more software than I’d thought was humanly possible.”

Both Hoxie and Banon suggested that the acquisition doesn’t represent a big change in direction for Swiftype. Hoxie described the decision as “continuing down” the existing path while teaming up with a larger organization that has “very, very quickly not just built great technology, but also a very, very successful business.”

To be clear, there will be some changes at Swiftype. For one thing, the company will start offering an introductory price of $79 a month. For another, the combined engineering teams will work to incorporate more features from Elastic’s Elastic Stack and X-Pack into Swiftype’s Enterprise Search (which allows businesses to search across services like Dropbox and the G Suite).

Banon, meanwhile, noted that Elastic previously acquired Opbeat, and his approach is to allow acquired teams to run in largely self-sufficient fashion: “I’m not going to get in your way. Go make it happen.”

In this case, Banon said he’s become convinced that Elastic needed to provide more “end-to-end user experiences,” and when it comes to site search, Swiftype has “created what I would say is the best user experience out there.”

He added that it’s nice to be “closing the circle,” since Elastic’s technology was initially developed for site and application search, before expanding to other use cases like logging and analytics.

The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Swiftype had previously raised more than $22 million from Y Combinator, New Enterprise Associates and others, and its customers include AT&T, Dr. Pepper and Hubspot.

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