The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Oracle agrees to buy Arlington energy data firm Opower for $532 million

Arlington-based energy analytics company Opower said Monday that it has struck a $532 million deal to sell itself to computing behemoth Oracle. The deal, slated to close later this year, valued Opower's shares at a 30 percent premium on Friday's close.

“Big day today at the O: POW!!!!!!!” chief executive Daniel Yates tweeted hours after the deal was announced.

Opower sells data services that track energy-use trends across tens of millions of homes. More than 100 utilities including PG&E and Exelon use the service to help meet state-by-state energy efficiency standards.

Last year, Opower reported an operating loss of just under $45 million with annual revenue of $145.7 million. The company was founded in 2007 and went public in 2014.

In recent years, Opower has stepped beyond its core analytical business to find new ways of helping utilities engage with customers, such as notifying them by text message when their energy use trends are spiking or otherwise out of whack.

“While energy efficiency has historically been the primary driver of new client acquisition, this year was the first time we saw customer care fuel a significant number of deals,” Yates said in a recent call with investors.

The company also has been making inroads internationally. In 2013, it announced a business partnership with Tokyo Electric Power, the Japanese public utility at the center of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant failure following a tsunami in 2011. In a recent call with investors, Opower's chief financial officer, Thomas Kramer, said 10 percent of the company's 2015 revenue comes from international business.

For Oracle, the buyout is part of an aggressive move to acquire cloud-based data companies changing the way numerous entrenched industries operate.

“The move to the cloud is a generational shift in technology that is the biggest and most important opportunity in our company’s history,” Oracle chief executive Safra A. Catz said in a recent call with investors.

On Thursday, the software giant announced a $663 million buyout of Textura, which sells software for construction management. In January, Oracle announced plans to buy web ana­lytics firm AddThis and, a month later, said it is buying cloud analytics firm Ravello Systems.

Cloud-computing services netted Oracle $735 million in the most recent quarter, a 40 percent jump from a year ago.

The news comes a week after Washington-area news site ­ARLnow reported that Opower has let go about 7.5 percent of its global workforce, citing confirmation from a company spokesman.

The joint announcement to sell the company contained no information about succession plans or whether further layoffs would follow. An Oracle representative declined to comment, and an ­Opower representative did not respond to requests for comment.