Databricks, a big data analytics platform built by a team that grew out of the Apache Spark project, today announced that it has raised a $140 million Series D round led by Andreessen Horowitz, with participation from New Enterprise Associates and Battery Ventures. This brings Databricks’ total funding raised to date to $247 million, which includes a $60 million round the company announced only last December.
Databricks co-founder and CEO Ali Ghodsi tells me that he didn’t have to raise at this time but that the team saw a big opportunity for its service and wanted to be able to capitalize on it.
Indeed, the company says that it will use the funding to invest in its product, which aims to bring data science to more users inside virtually any businesses, and to accelerate its growth strategy. This includes a focus on some of the core industries like healthcare, financial services, government and media and entertainment that it has already found a foothold in over the last few years. The company also plans to grow its engineering and customer success teams.
“AI has enormous promise but also a 1% problem,” Ghodsi noted in today’s announcement.”Less than 10 companies in the world are achieving the full potential of AI and the rest are really struggling. Databricks’ mission is to simplify AI and bring it to the other 99% of enterprise organizations. This funding will enable us to expand our offering and bring it to many more markets, enabling more businesses to reap the benefits of Big Data and AI.”
Like so many other companies, Databricks is selling its services under the Artificial Intelligence umbrella, though for the most part, it uses advanced analytics and machine learning to help businesses make more accurate predictions. Current Databricks customers include the likes of Salesforce.com, Viacom, Shell, HP and Hotels.com.
The market for enterprise analytics is obviously pretty crowded, with a number of vendors ranging from Cloudera to IBM vying for a similar group of large enterprise customers. Databricks clearly hopes that this new investment will give it the resources to stay ahead of the curve and win new customers.