UPDATED 20:45 EDT / APRIL 19 2023


Distributed database Ditto raises $45M to help apps sync data offline

Distributed database startup DittoLive Inc. said today it has closed on a $45 million early-stage round of funding to help enterprises synchronize application data in situations where there’s no internet connectivity.

The Series A round was led by Acrew Capital and saw participation from the U.S. Innovative Technology Fund and existing investors True Ventures and Amity Ventures.

Ditto, as the startup likes to be called, is solving the challenge around limited connectivity that blights many different kinds of industries. As the company explains, most applications assume that data lives in only one location, usually a cloud database. But in fact, many apps are more complex and store data in multiple locations at once, including devices at the edge and various cloud servers.

If an app is unable to access key data, critical processes can break down until its connection is restored. To solve this, Ditto’s Intelligent Edge Platform uses various techniques to ensure that data can be accessed anytime, from anywhere, 24/7.

Ditto’s distributed database can run “practically anywhere,” the company explains, ensuring data distribution is possible in areas with limited internet connectivity. Ditto’s database runs across edge devices and in the cloud, making it possible to store and synchronize data in a peer-to-peer fashion, across multiple mobile devices.

Developers can use Ditto to enable their applications to access the critical data they need to run, even with poor connectivity. It relies on Bluetooth, local wired networks and peer-to-peer Wi-Fi to automatically find and connect to other devices, so it can always synchronize data. Meanwhile, any local changes to the data will sync offline once Ditto finds another peer device to connect with.

There are several different versions of the Ditto database available, including a tenant in a shared environment, and dedicated environments managed by customers through a cloud account. Developers have a choice between using Ditto’s application programming interfaces or query-based synchronization, or both modes if they wish.

Acrew Capital founding partner Asad Khaliq said he’s backing Ditto because it has already partnered with numerous big organizations and major brands, which have rapidly become reliant on its distributed data platform.

Those organizations include Alaska Airlines Inc., Deutsche Lufthansa AG and Japan Airlines Co., Ltd. It also has a $950 million contract with the U.S. Air Force, and has been deployed in many other industries besides aviation, such as defense, point-of-sale, emergency services, agriculture, industry, warehouses, retail and hospitality.

“Ditto’s long-term vision is to build the world’s next great database,” said co-founder and Chief Executive Adam Fish.

Ditto will have a tough fight on its hands, though. According to Technavio, a subsidiary of Research and Markets, the enterprise file sync and share market is forecast to be worth more than $12 billion by 2026. So Ditto is not the only startup looking for a piece of that pie, facing competition from Whaleform Inc., which enables offline synching of data between multiple software-as-a-service apps, and Grouparoo Inc., recently acquired by Airbyte Inc., which replicates data across cloud-based tools and databases.

Ditto clearly believes it can capture a big part of the market, though, and plans to use the funding from today’s round to expand its software development kit, further commercialize its technology and acquire more customers in new markets such as education and retail.

U.S. Innovative Technology Fund Chairman Thomas Tull said the advances Ditto is making in data management and accessibility will be crucial to many industries in future. “Ditto’s developments have a tremendous number of applications across sectors – from everyday life to business to the Pentagon – that will become essential by the end of the decade,” he said.

Image: Ditto

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