Search Engines that were Acquired, 2016-2018

I compiled a list of some search acquisitions in the past few years.


  • Google buys Undecidable Lab –creates tools that can help turn an online search into an actual purchase.
  • eBay buys Corrigon — searching and identifying specific objects within an image and matching that with other images or links to products.
  • Ctrip buys Skyscanner – flight search engine.


  • Amazon buys Graphiq – pulls masses of data from the Web when it’s queried to produce answers in graph form and other visualizations. To help Alexa.
  • Pinterest buys Jelly – tried to reimagine search as a social question-and-answer network.
  • Apple buys Pop Up Archive – podcast search.
  • Chan Zuckerberg buys Meta. – AI technology that indexes, searches and provides full-text access to eighteen thousand journals and literature sources.
  • Snapchat buys Vurb – create decks or collections of places to go and things to do and share these decks with friends from a list of contacts on other social media sites
  • Baidu buys Raven Tech – voice recognition and search assistant.
  • EdCast buys Sociative – highly focused content discovery technology, using topical influencers, personalization and machine learning
  • Spotify buys Niland – music search and discovery engine
  • Google buys Tenor – Gif search and sharing.
  • Elastic buys Swiftype – site search engine.
  • Facebook buys Ozlo – conversational AI.
  • Appen buys Leapforce – human judgments and labelling.
  • Lucidworks buys Twigkit –  user experiences for enterprise-grade search and big data applications.
  • Elastic buys Prelert – embeds machine learning capabilities into the Elastic Stack for real-time behavioral analytics
  • Elastic buys Opbeat – application-level monitoring experience, focusing on the JavaScript ecosystem.


  • Samsung buys Kngine – AI search engine startup, dedicated to the idea of making an AI which learns and evolves just like a human does. Improving the next version of its virtual assistant – Bixby.
  • Trivago buys TripHappy – artificial intelligence to highlight relevant location and neighborhood information during the hotel search and discovery process.
  • Liquidity Services buys Machinio – 8heavy equipment vertical search engine
  • Google buys Where is My Train – Tracking 14,000 trains across different India on daily basis.
  • Knotel buys 42Floors – search engine for commercial real estate. 
  • Servicenow buys Friendly Data – natural language query (NLQ) technology enables enterprise customers to build search tools that allow users to ask technical questions even if they don’t know the right jargon.

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