In the growing world of Hadoop--the open source big data technology that can store, process and analyze large sets of data across clusters of computers--much of the conversation (and media coverage) has revolved around companies Cloudera and Hortonworks.
Now another player is positioning itself to challenge them. MapR Technologies announced this morning it has raised $110 million in an equity and debt financing round led by Google Capital. Qualcommon Ventures and existing investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, Mayfield Fund, NEA and Redpoint Ventures also participated in the equity round. Silicon Valley Bank is providing $30 million in debt financing.
Hadoop is one of the more popular spots within Big Data for investors to plant their money because its framework, which is hosted by the non-profit Apache Foundation, is considered one of the most effective tools for taking mountains of Big Data and converting them into compact files that existing applications can digest. Hadoop, named after the creator's son's toy elephant, is being used by the telecommunications, manufacturing, retail and healthcare industries--to name a few.
With Hadoop, data that was once too expensive to store can be made available for analysis at one-tenth to one-fiftieth the cost on a per terabyte basis, according to MapR. The idea behind Hadoop is to help companies struggling with big data to simplify the process so they can more easily find insights in all that data and, ultimately, use it to improve their business.
For example, MapR's distribution for Hadoop allows Beats Music to analyze a high volume of data from its users and then make music recommendations personalized to them. HP uses MapR as a massive storage platform to integrate and analyze data from multiple sources.
In terms of capital investment, MapR still trails Hortonworks and Cloudera, which have raised a total of $225 million and $300 million, respectively. However, the company does have a strong base of high-profile customers, including Cisco, Samsung, Beats Music, comScore, Ancestry.com and HP.