The world of Hadoop and beyond

Hortonworks went through an IPO last Friday, December 12, 2014. It’s initial price of $16 soared by 60% immediately after. Today the stock price is $24.70 with a market cap of $1.02B. Another billion dollar club member. They compete with Cloudera and MapR in packaging the open source Hadoop platform for customers. How do they make money when the basic Apache Hadoop is free? – by offering added services like training and consulting. They can also add auxiliary products (not open source) that customers must pay for. The interesting fact is that Hortonworks’s CEO had claimed a $100m revenue this year, but looks like he is way short of that – $33m during first nine months. The future is quite uncertain!

In the mean time, several new start-ups have come up in the Hadoop-sphere:

  • Databrick with venture funding of $47m so far (includes Andreesen Horowitz, Ben Horowitz on board). This is a Berkeley-based company that delivers Spark. Apache Spark is a powerful open source processing engine for Hadoop data built around speed, ease of use, and sophisticated analytics. It was originally developed in 2009 in UC Berkeley’s AMPLab, and open sourced in 2010.
  • Altiscale with $42m venture funding (founder is ex Yahoo CTO Ray Stata, Sequoia Capital investor among others). This company promises to deliver Hadoop in the cloud, so as to relieve customers from all the complexities of Hadoop cluster management which can be highly non-trivial.
  • SpliceMachine with venture funding of $22m (Mohr Davidow, Interwest ventures). They claim to bring an RDBMS face to Hadoop, so that SQL programs may not have to change, clearly targeting against incumbents such as Oracle. Interestingly, Oracle does provide similar function with their universal Oracle API.
  • Metanautix with venture funding from Sequoia and Stanford Endowment fund plus other individuals. The founders are from Google and Facebook and it is an implementation of Google’s Dremel idea. This will completely supplant Hadoop.

So there we go, a line-up of companies besides Cloudera, MapR, and Hortonworks. Out of this chaos many are going to disappear and only a couple will survive, as always. This still addresses the batch-oriented data analytics space, even though Mike Olson of Cloudera thinks Hadoop will replace the OLTP DBMS some day.

The polyglot existence of varieties of data management solutions will stay for some time.

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