Last month, Inc. declared the New York-based music analytics startup Next Big Sound a company to watch, naming its three co-founders to our "30 Under 30" list

Pandora CEO Tim Westergren evidently agreed with that assessment. The pioneering streaming-music company has acquired Next Big Sound for undisclosed terms.

"Our mission's always been to transform the music industry through data," CEO Alex White told me Tuesday morning, hours after announcing the deal. "We really feel like there's no better way to accomplish that than to join with Pandora. The way they talk about their mission, the people we've met, the plans they have, their belief in the infinite power of music aligns completely with our own."

Next Big Sound trawls oceans of data, from iTunes sales to Twitter mentions, to help record labels and advertisers understand why and how songs are getting traction and to predict and cultivate future hits. The crossover with Pandora, which analyzes listening patterns to help music fans find new songs and artists they'll love, is pretty straightforward. White says the plan is to keep running Next Big Sound the way it's been running, only at a bigger scale. "Business-as-usual is kind of the operating motto here," he says.

One thing that could change is the data Next Big Sound's algorithm uses to understand which songs are trending on streaming services. Previously, it had access to data from Spotify but not from Pandora. The acquisition obviously means Next Big Sound will be able to drink from the Pandora firehose. Whether Spotify wants to hand over its data to a competitor is doubtful. White says he's hopeful the relationship will continue, but not concerned either way. He notes that the company got its start analyzing MySpace music plays, so they're used to tweaking their model. "The only constant has been change," he says.