UPDATED 09:02 EDT / JANUARY 06 2021

BIG DATA

Unicorn sighting: Data analytics startup Dremio raises $135M in new funding

Self-service data analytics startup Dremio Corp. said today it has closed on a $135 million late-stage round of funding that values it at more than $1 billion.

Sapphire Ventures led the Series D round, which brings Dremio’s total funding raised to $250 million. Existing investors Insight Partners, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Norwest Venture Partners, Redpoint Ventures and Cisco Investments also participated in the round.

Dremio’ software is based on the open-source Apache Arrow software framework for developing data analytics applications that process columnar data. It’s used by companies to connect with or replace cloud data warehouses and is compatible with a variety of popular business intelligence front ends. The software enables users to access information stored in data lakes directly without having to load extracts into intermediary data stores, a task that’s considered a major chore by data scientists.

Dremio also integrates with popular business intelligence tools such as Microsoft Corp.’s Power BI and Tableau Software Inc.’s Tableau visualization software, making it possible for them to be launched via a live connection from its platform.

Dremio Chief Executive Billy Bosworth described the process of copying, moving and synchronizing data as a “challenging story” that many enterprises struggle with, and said Dremio’s software “fundamentally simplifies” this.

Anders Ranum, managing director at Sapphire Ventures, said he was backing Dremio because enterprises that use cloud storage such as Amazon Web Services Inc.’s S3 service want to analyze that data where it’s located. “Dremio is well on its way to becoming a category-defining company by reimagining the cloud data lake and eliminating the need for data warehouses,” he said.

Dremio, which previously raised $70 million in a Series C round of funding in March, said it has achieved “breakout velocity” in the past year, doubling its revenue, its customer count and the number of employees on its books.

Holger Mueller, an analyst with Constellation Research Inc., told SiliconANGLE that a virtual war has broken out in cloud computing between those who argue that data needs to be physically moved from where it’s stored into a big data lake where it can be analyzed, and those who say it’s better to analyze it where it lives to provide faster insights.

“Dremio is pushing the idea of leaving data in place a little further out, but the future will tell if there is a winner in this war,” Mueller said. “The outcome may well be the co-existence of both approaches, and if so, that will also benefit Dremio.”

Dremio said it plans to use the funding to expand its engineering centers of excellence in additional countries around the world and grow its customer-facing organization. It also plans to contribute to more open-source initiatives and invest in educating what it calls a “growing community” of data lake practitioners.

Image: Xresch/Pixabay

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