The advent of the digital age has led to a rise in different types of data with every passing day. In fact, it is expected that half of the total data will be on the cloud by 2016. This data is complex and needs to be stored, processed and analyzed for information that can be used by organizations. Cloud computing provides an apt platform for big data analytics in view of the storage and computing requirements of the latter. This makes cloud-based analytics a viable research field. However, several issues need to be addressed and risks need to be mitigated before practical applications of this synergistic model can be popularly used. This paper explores the existing research, challenges, open issues and future research direction for this field of study.