DataFox Oracle Integration

DataFox Logo

Since being acquired by Oracle last fall, DataFox has grown its company coverage by nearly 30% and is now being integrated into Oracle platforms including Oracle ERP, Oracle CX Cloud, and Oracle Marketing Cloud (Eloqua).  

The CX Cloud provides Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and Total Addressable Market (TAM) modeling based on DataFox firmographics and signals spanning 3.5 million companies.  DataFox is adding 7,000 companies each day.

“We see B2B sales shifting from a field-first model to what we call a digital selling model.  By that we mean that increasingly organizations are moving to inside sales teams that are aided by digital selling tools like Eloqua or like Slack,” says Des Cahill, head CX evangelist at Oracle.  “We believe that a combination of data enrichment from DataFox and then AI and ML systems to guide employees is the future of sales.”

Eloqua integration with the Oracle Data Cloud and DataFox provides marketing with improved intent and account behavior insights.

The ERP integration supports supplier risk assessment with supplier scoring, risk signals, and categorization.

“As more organizations apply machine learning to core business processes, the quality of data being fed to algorithms is the single-most important factor that determines the value of AI results,” said VP of Product Management for Adaptive Intelligence Bastiaan Janmaat.  “We built our smart data platform for the AI era and will continue to extend the capabilities beyond sales and marketing to include company-level data for use cases in finance, HR and supply chain.”

DataFox Account Scoring
DataFox Account Scoring

DataFox began as a dataset for investment banking, but “we just found a huge gaping hole, in terms of the quality of B2B datasets that were available in the market,” said Janmaat.  

Whereas 15 years ago it was difficult to find company information, there are now filings, press releases, corporate websites, tweets, blogs, and other content which make it difficult to collect and assess company intelligence.

“There’s gold to be mined, but it’s a small percentage of what’s out there in the public domain.  And that is a perfect problem to apply artificial intelligence to.”


Former DataFox CEO Bastiaan Janmaat (Oracle VP of Product for Adaptive Intelligence)

“Stagnant data sitting unchanged in sales and marketing systems and low-quality public data sources threaten ROI and reduce the effectiveness of AI deployments,” said Clive Swan, SVP of Applications Development.  “DataFox is a key element in Oracle’s AI strategy and will help customers gain more value from the AI embedded in Oracle Cloud Applications.  We plan to include more integrations across the entire suite of cloud applications to further enhance AI capabilities across finance, human resources and supply chain.”

DataFox is now available as an Oracle data cleansing and enrichment service, but will support three additional functions by mid-year:

  • Similar company identification based on the ICP
  • Account prioritization
  • Providing “embedded dynamic signals” (talking points) to sales reps

Additional Eloqua enhancements are planned.

DataFox is also touting its dynamic territory planning service which was launched prior to the acquisition.  Territory planning combines DataFox intelligence with internal company data such as win rates to dynamically assign and maintain balanced territories.

“What’s most interesting though, is that when Oracle DataFox detects a new account, that for whatever reason newly satisfies certain criteria and to make it a great target, it will dynamically enter that territory,” said Janmaat.  “Either sales ops or the account executive gets pinged for that opportunity.  So instead of a once a year exercise, it dynamically updates territories.  They’ve seen tremendous results in terms of conversion rates and in deal size.

Oracle Acquires DataFox

Oracle recently acquired DataFox, providing them with access to 2.8 million company profiles, including funding and M&A data.  DataFox “gives customers real-time insight to know when a business exhibits noteworthy behaviors.”

“The combination of Oracle and DataFox will enhance Oracle Cloud Applications with an extensive set of trusted company-level data and signals, enabling customers to reach even better decisions and business outcomes,” wrote Oracle’s EVP of Applications Development Steve Miranda to customers and partners.

Oracle provides the following deal shorthand:

Oracle Cloud Applications + DataFox = Even Smarter Decisions

DataFox is growing its database at 1.2 million companies annually.  The database will deliver real-time insights into its cloud-based ERP, CX, HCM and SCM platforms.

DataFox Data Engine Overview (Oracle Presentation, October 23, 2018)
DataFox Data Engine Overview (Oracle Presentation, October 23, 2018)

In a bit of extreme puffery, Oracle described DataFox as the “the most current, precise and expansive set of company-level information and insightful data.”  Bureau van Dijk and Dun & Bradstreet have 50X the active company coverage including detailed global linkage, risk models, and multi-year financial data.  Bureau van Dijk also offers the Zephyr database, an M&A and funding dataset with over twenty years of closed, pending, and rumored deals.  Where DataFox may have an advantage is in their focus on mid-size and emerging companies which have been recently funded, but this is a small subset of the company universe.

DataFox will continue to sell and support its products.  However, the DataFox roadmap and product line are fluid:

“Oracle is currently reviewing the existing DataFox product roadmap and will be providing guidance to customers in accordance with Oracle’s standard product communication policies. Any resulting features and timing of release of such features as determined by Oracle’s review of DataFox’s product roadmap are at the sole discretion of Oracle. All product roadmap information, whether communicated by DataFox or by Oracle, does not represent a commitment to deliver any material, code, or functionality, and should not be relied upon in making purchasing decisions. It is intended for information purposes only, and may not be incorporated into any contract.”

Along with AI insights, Oracle called out the needs for quality data to back data maintenance, artificial intelligence, and business signals.

Customer Data Challenges (Oracle Presentation, October 23, 2018)
Customer Data Challenges (Oracle Presentation, October 23, 2018)

DataFox has over 275 customers including Goldman Sachs, Bain & Company, Outreach, Live Ramp, and Twilio.

DataFox raised $19 million in funding.  Terms of the deal were not disclosed.  In January 2017, DataFox was valued at $33 million by Pitchbook.

Oracle should study Salesforce’s acquisition of Jigsaw (later renamed Data.com) as a cautionary tale.  Software companies struggle in selling data files as company and contact data decays rapidly and it is difficult to push data quality above 90% absent large editorial investments.  Furthermore, Jigsaw never represented more than 1% of Salesforce revenue so quickly fell off of the company’s internal radar.  The firm is now looking to decommission Data.com and asking its AppExchange partners to fill the sales intelligence and data hygiene gap left in its absence.  Coincidentally, DataFox is one of Salesforce’s Lightning Data partners.

On the positive side, LinkedIn hit $1.3 billion last quarter and has thrived under Microsoft’s ownership.  However, LinkedIn was a much more mature company at acquisition than DataFox with multiple revenue streams and a unique user generated content model.  Microsoft has provided LinkedIn with development capital and allowed it to maintain its independence.  It has also looked to leverage LinkedIn and Microsoft strengths when building sales and marketing products, instead of simply copying other vendors.  For example, Sales Navigator continues to respect the privacy of its members while using aggregated data to provide hiring and employment insights that other companies cannot deliver.  Navigator has also added strong messaging tools (chat, InMail, and PointDrive) which work around its lack of company emails.  Other innovations include SNAP workflow connectors, its new Pipeline CRM updating tool, and Buyer’s Circle for identifying the buying committee at large firms.