AYX and Palantir

I have been considering my outsized stake in AYX in light of some the short term COVID headwinds but the price action continues to go up so I haven’t reduced just yet.

I’ve been thinking about their reported lack of competition when I received the headline about the much anticipated IPO of Palantir. AYX appear to have a lot of similar offering but as a private company it is difficult to know their business model and how much they compete against one another. I don’t know if this is an issue of data scientists (Palantir) vs. data citizens (AYX) but it does appear to be competition.

Palantir has an existing, presumably successful business model. See products such as their Gotham line (https://www.palantir.com/palantir-gotham/modules/).

My initial take was to see this as another potential headwind for AYX but we have to assume they already compete and AYX numbers remain strong. I do wonder how Palantir IPO may lift all data analytic boats, challenge the AYX license model or offer a new SAAS model that impacts revenue or the lovely GM we have at AYX.

Either way - hoping to spur insight and discussion



I’ve been thinking about their reported lack of competition when I received the headline about the much anticipated IPO of Palantir. AYX appear to have a lot of similar offering but as a private company it is difficult to know their business model and how much they compete against one another.

There is definitely some overlap between Palantir and Alteryx. Both companies sell products that allow customers to build complex data analysis and data visualization solutions. At the risk of oversimplifying, Alteryx Designer lets non-programmers build workflows that can import and transform data from a wide variety of sources and massage the data to extract business insights. Palantir Gotham / Foundry is similar, but emphasizes mapping and linking the data into a domain business model so that trained users can discover insights from the relationships between different data sources.

Both products can import data from a wide variety of data sources, mostly structured (think spreadsheets, databases and data files) but they both have some capability to parse unstructured sources as well.

Both products can perform data visualization (seeing data organized and displayed in different graphical formats) – Alteryx uses a component called Alteryx Visualytics and Palantir incorporates features from Silk, a visualization tool they acquired a few years ago.

Those on this board are familiar with Alteryx’s business model: a self-serve data preparation and analytics platform directed at line-of-business employees rather than IT professionals. In contrast, at a high level, I’d describe Palantir as a combination tool / consulting company that focuses on building large, complex data analysis platforms for government and large financial customers. However, this contrast is pre-IPO; if you read the various articles and info on the Palantir website, I think Palantir’s goal is to eventually be more like Alteryx in terms of ease-of-use and ability for relatively untrained users to build their own models. That’s just my opinion, however. Palantir sees itself as significantly superior to other data analysis products, particularly in their ability to extract data into business models and summarize / visualize those models.

Will Palantir emerge as a direct competitor to Alteryx? I think the answer is yes, but at the same time I don’t think Alteryx will lose much business from the competition. Rather, the emergence of Palantir as a public company will broaden and deepen the market for both company’s tools and services. The potential TAM is huge, and I think customers will fit the specific offerings of one company or the other. Palantir will add validation and create even more momentum in this rapidly emerging space, which will benefit both companies.

Palantir’s IPO filing doesn’t contain any significant details about the IPO, so we don’t know the exact date or likely price, or which market it will call home. However, there are reports that say the company is planning to go public this fall. We don’t know what the total offering size will be, but Palantir was valued at $20 billion in 2015 by private investors.

Here’s my summary-in-a-nutshell of the key differentiators between the Alteryx and Palantir product capabilities:

Alteryx advantages:

  • Better built-in tools for data source connectivity and ETL (Extraction, Translation and Loading)
  • Easier Graphical interace
  • Better access to support
  • Easier to build, deploy and administer
  • Less training required

Palantir advantages:

  • Creates models based on domain concepts, then links multiple data sources
  • More powerful data visualization of linked domain objects extracted from the data
  • Pre-packaged industry solutions for government and financial enterprises

Gartner has a useful comparison with more details at: https://www.gartner.com/reviews/market/analytics-business-in…

Anyway, just my two cents worth based on my personal experience with both companies and their products.


I was doing a search to see if I could dig up anything from this board on Palantir and I found this thread on Alteryx vs Palantir. Now that Palantir is public, we know a little more about their company. Palantir stock has taken off into the stratosphere in the last week or so, and I thought it might be revisiting considering the disparity between Alteryx’s current valuation and Palantir’s valuation. Maybe there is opportunity right now in Alteryx.

I’ve been trying to get my head around Palantir and the thing I can’t really tease out is how much of their business is SaaS and how much is consulting. Should they be considered as SaaS with a high CAC? Or are they a new breed of software based consulting firm?

Interestingly, Alteryx is quite cozy with consulting firms, specifically PWC. The Alteryx/PWC patnership seems like a similar structure to what Snowflake is doing internally.

The question still is, what is the overlap? Does Palantir make Alteryx obsolete, or is Alteryx a potential competitor? Or might there be a symbiosis between the two?

I’m tempted to add to Alteryx at these levels, especially after Bert’s latest writeup. Any thoughts?


Err sorry for not proofreading. When I wrote snowflake I meant palantir.

Well I have kept my Alteryx and fully expect it to bounce back in line with Bert’s expectations.

I also have a small but fast growing stake in Palantir (now 3) that is up 205% in a few weeks. The risk in Palantir is lack of visibility to the commercial side of their business and their massive exposure to Govt and Intelligence and Defence industries.

I also have a tiny 0.5% stake in Snowflake, the risk their is that all of their future growth is baked into their insane valuation and some.

Out of all of them Snowflake is probably the one I am most likely to exit first.