Former HP Vertica VP of Communications, Media and Entertainment Derek Schoettle has joined Cloudant as CEO the company announced today. Schoettle is replacing co-founder and CEO Alan Hoffman, who will now be the company’s head of product. Cloudant was founded by three MIT physicists who worked together on the Large Hadron Collider – Adam Kocoloski, Michael Miller and Hoffman. The addition of Schoettle will provide Cloudant with a CEO with more business experience and contacts in the enterprise world.
Cloudant develops a NoSQL database called BigCouch that’s designed for cloud-based big data applications. Cloudant also offers BigCouch hosting and services. The database is based on Apache CouchDB but adds features similar to Amazon Dynamo to improve scalability. BigCouch is open source and Cloudant also contributes to Apache CouchDB. It also offers a service called Cloudant Search which integrates BigCouch and the open source enterprise search system Apache Lucene.
Before coming to Cloudant, Schoettle worked for Vertica, which was acquired by HP this year. Vertica is a columnar database solution designed for handing large volumes of data for data warehousing. Earlier this month HP announced that Vertica is being integrated with Autonomy, the enterprise search platform it acquired last summer.
This backgound in both big data and cloud is a good combination for preparing Schoettle to lead a NoSQL startup like Cloudant, which recently landed Monsanto as a customer. Cloudant needs leadership with strong enterprise experience, and it seems to have found it in Schoettle.