San Francisco - Twitter is buying longtime partner Gnip, seeking to offer more insight into trends, breaking news and other data from the tweets generated by the 241 million users of the microblogging service.

Gnip, based in Boulder, Colorado, will continue to offer services to existing customers, Twitter said in a blog post today.

Terms of the acquisition weren’t disclosed.

While Twitter will get a bigger share of the profit from reselling analytical data, the deal also gives it more control over strategic information gleaned from the information flowing through its network.

The deal follows Apple’s purchase of data-analytics firm Topsy Labs, which is used by companies to compile consumer sentiment on Twitter, be it responses to TV shows or politics.

Topsy and Gnip are among the few partners that have real-time access to the public messages that roll across Twitter, called the firehose.

“These public Tweets can reveal a wide variety of insights -- so much so that academic institutions, journalists, marketers, brands, politicians and developers regularly use aggregated Twitter data to spot trends, analyse sentiment, find breaking news, connect with customers and much more,” Twitter said in the blog post.

Gnip, founded in 2008, was Twitter’s first data partner and also provides data to the US Library of Congress.

The company has provided more than 2.3 trillion tweets to customers in 42 countries for various industries, including marketing, finance, professional services and public relations.


Faster, Deeper


“Combining forces with Twitter allows us to go much faster and much deeper,” Gnip said in a statement.

Companies with access to Twitter’s firehose of data are able to sift through the tweets being generated by Twitter’s users, spotting trends and reselling the information to other developers.

Apple paid more than $200 million for Topsy, people with knowledge of the deal said at the time.

Twitter also paid $36 million to acquire 900 patents from International Business Machines, according to a filing last month. - Bloomberg News