Business Intelligence is a highly mature market that’s been altered once before, but new-comer Zoomdata wants to disrupt the space one more time –and they got $17M in Series B funding today to continue their quest.
The round is led by by Accel Partners with help from NEA, Columbus Nova Technology Partners, Razor’s Edge Ventures and B7. It follows their Series A round of $4.1M in July 2013 and brings the total funds raised to $22.2M to date.
Justin Langseth, founder and CEO of Zoomdata says his BI competitors such as Tableau and Qlik were born in the world of SQL and data warehouses. He believes today’s data analytics need a more modern approach. His company was built to process today’s platforms like Hadoop, Spark and NoSQL and he says unlike his competitors, they were built from the ground up to do it.
Even as the competition catches up with these modern requirements, Langseth suggests they are bolting them onto the old platform and he believes (as you would imagine) that Zoomdata’s native approach is superior. One neat feature in Zoomdata is the ability to stream it like a video and move back and forth in time as though you were scrubbing a video, and this is a powerful feature when working with data as you can watch how your graphs transform over time.
Being able to view data in real time and historically can create some interesting data visualization scenarios. Just last week, NPR reported on PlaceIQ, a company that uses location to help companies understand consumer behavior down to a very minute place level. This company is using Zoomdata to create visualizations of data streaming from mobile phones to see how the data looks even while they’re collecting it.
As with many data analysis tools coming out these days, Langseth says his company’s tools are designed to help the less technical end user understand the data they are seeing. While he says the older generations of tools did this too, he says today’s more modern platforms like Hadoop, Solr and ElasticSearch have actually made it a challenge again for the less technical audience to get at the data they need –and he believes his company’s tools put these newer platforms in reach of a less technical user again too.
There is still the hard work of ETL (extract, transform and load) and machine learning that remain the domain of geekier tools, but once these tools have done that work, that’s where Zoomdata comes in to help visualize it.
The two-year-old Reston, VA.-based company has 50 employees and just 20 customers so far, but Langseth says one is for over $10M and the others are at least six figures, showing the market has great potential and he says that’s what the funders are betting on–that this market will continue to develop and grow.
He says partnerships with companies like Cloudera and Databricks should also help build their market.
Twenty good customers is a start, but they will have to use the money to build out the sales team and build from that point. Langseth says they’ve already hired 28 new people this year, more than doubling the size of the company. They plan to hire a new chief marketing officer and a team of 10 sales people and build their market from there.