How Cloudant Became an Accidental Enterprise Success

Cloudant logo At the end of the year, we highlighted Cloudant as one of our top underdog startups. It may be an underdog thanks to the rapid growth of MongoDB, but the company reached profitability quickly and according to Cloudant Senior Developer & Architect Sam Bisbee, enterprises are knocking down the companies door.

In an interview on theCube, Bisbee explains Cloudant’s rapid rise and what enterprises see in BigCouch, the CouchDB fork that’s about to be merged back into the main Apache CouchDB project.


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Bisbee touts CouchDB’s incremental MapReduce as its primary advantage for enterprises. Bisbee says that with many other data store, including MongoDB, Apache Hadoop and relational databases updating indexes can take a long time – sometimes as much as three days. He says that thanks to CouchDB’s incremental MapReduce model, the indexes only have to be created once and can then be updated in seconds. That’s a big advantage for companies building business intelligence applications.

Cloudant didn’t start out targeting the enterprise. “We’re not out there wining and dining CTOs,” Bisbee says. Cloudant focuses its marketing efforts on developers and small tech companies, with the goal of being the data later for Web applications. But as enterprises have gotten wind of what CouchDB can do, Cloudant has managed to rack up customers like Monsanto.

Things are goign well for Cloudant, but it now has some new competition. Cloudant’s BigCouch adds concepts from Amazon.com’s Dynamo paper. As we reported, Amazon Web Services is now selling a hosted service based on Dynamo called DynamoDB. Bisbee says Cloudant welcomes the competition and, predictably, sees it as validation of the market.

The growth of MongoDB and the entry of DynamoDB on the market are real challenges for Cloudant, but with its solid revenue and the fact that it’s attracting large enterprises already bode well for this underdog’s future.

About Klint Finley

Klint Finley is a Senior Writer at SiliconAngle. His specialties include IT services, enterprise technology and software development. Prior to SiliconAngle he was a writer for ReadWriteWeb. He's also a former IT practicioner, and has written about technology for over a decade. He can be contacted at angle@klintfinley.com.