SiSense, a business intelligence startup that is among those making big data analytics accessible to ordinary business users (and not just data scientists) is today announcing more funding: a $30 million Series C round led by DFJ Growth — the VC’s arm dedicated to later-stage investments that recently announced a new fund we understand to be totalling over $500 million (in May, its size was ‘only’ $470 million).
Others backing the startup include existing investors Battery Ventures, Genesis Partners and Opus Capital. SiSense, which was founded in 2004, has only recently been stepping up its game in terms of outside investment. It last raised $10 million a year ago and including the round being announced today has now raised $44 million.
The company, whose CEO Amit Bendov had said it is eyeing up an IPO eventually, is not yet profitable, but it is growing fast. It expects to sales to triple this year over last and to reach profitability by 2015. The funding will be used to help drive more business for SiSense in the U.S. Founded in Tel Aviv, SiSense already has an office in New York and makes some 70% of its sales in the U.S. It plans to open an office in Silicon Valley by early next year.
The product that SiSense has developed is distinctive on two levels: the first in terms of who it is targeting and the second in terms of how it’s delivering its services.
On the customer front — the company is part of what is a growing cadre of enterprise startups that are trying to take some of the more interesting innovations in data management and make them more usable by the average business user. Typically, big data analytics have been built by engineers, for engineers, but what we are seeing now is essentially consumerization at play, with applications being created on top of the big data stack for ordinary people to be able to interrogate the data more directly themselves. Others in this space include Looker, Origami Logic and Tableau Software, which went public this year.
SiSense’s customers today include eBay, ESPN and the drinks company Carlsberg among others.
Under the hood, what SiSense is doing differently is that it is changing the architecture behind how a user can process big data requests. Typically, a lot of cloud based data analytics solutions have been based around an in-memory solution. In contrast, SiSense transfers some of that into in-chip processing, in a service that it calls “In-Chip Elasticube” processing. That gives users the ability to process terabytes of data from machines with less memory at hand — something that comes in handy in the new generation of computing where people are using devices like tablets and smartphones and pared-down computers to do their work.
That then gets filtered down to dashboards that business analysts and others who are not necessarily trained in data science or engineering can comprehend:
It’s that combination of the two that is what’s helping SiSense grow — and attract investment to grow faster.
“Customers rave about SiSense and its ability to easily integrate multiple data sources, scale far beyond competitive solutions, and be adopted directly by business users with little to no support needed from IT specialists,” Randy Glein, DFJ Growth MD, said in a statement. Glein is joining the company’s board as part of this financing round.