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“Above the Trend Line” – Your Industry Rumor Central for 7/2/2020

Above the Trend Line: your industry rumor central is a recurring feature of insideBIGDATA. In this column, we present a variety of short time-critical news items grouped by category such as M&A activity, people movements, funding news, industry partnerships, customer wins, rumors and general scuttlebutt floating around the big data, data science and machine learning industries including behind-the-scenes anecdotes and curious buzz. Our intent is to provide you a one-stop source of late-breaking news to help you keep abreast of this fast-paced ecosystem. We’re working hard on your behalf with our extensive vendor network to give you all the latest happenings. Heard of something yourself? Tell us! Just e-mail me at: daniel@insidebigdata.com. Be sure to Tweet Above the Trend Line articles using the hashtag: #abovethetrendline.

My new Spark+AI Summit gym bottle!

Whew! It’s beem a complete whirlwind lately what with all of the “virtual” annual conferences happening. Last week I had 7 to attend! Exhausting. My favorite event in this recent batch was the the Spark+AI Summit 2020 organized by Databricks. I learned a lot with plenty of very relevant sessions. Plus, their “swag box” was filled with some very cool stuff including the water bottle shown in the inset image (I took it to the gym today!). I used to be limited in the number of conferences I could attend in-person, but no more with everything happening virtually. Bring on the technology! For now, let’s take a look at some new funding news … Upsolver, which provides software that eliminates the high engineering overhead of operating cloud data lakes, raised $13 million in Series A financing. Vertex Ventures US led the round with participation from new investor Wing Venture Capital (Wing) and existing investor Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP) … Spiketrap, an AI-powered consumer intelligence platform, announced that it has closed a $3M seed round led by Susa Ventures with participation from 645 Ventures, Pathbreaker Ventures, Oceans Ventures, WndrCo, SV Angel, Anorak Ventures, Harry Stebbings of 20VC, as well as strategic angels … Fivetran, a leading provider of automated data integration, announced it has raised $100 million in Series C financing, led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and General Catalyst, with participation from existing investors CEAS Investments and Matrix Partners. Fivetran will use the funding to accelerate global expansion, drive adoption in the enterprise market, and continue building out the depth and breadth of its data connectors. Total fundraising now stands at $163 million with a current valuation of $1.2 billion … SQream, provider of a data analytics acceleration platform that enables enterprises to gain insights from their massive data stores, announced that it has raised $39.4 million in Series B+ funding. The round was led by Mangrove Capital Partners and Schusterman Family Investments, who joined existing investors, including Hanaco Venture Capital, Sistema.vc, World Trade Center Ventures, Blumberg Capital, Silvertech Ventures and Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA). The proceeds of the investment will be used to recruit top talent to accelerate advancements in the Company’s technology and cloud innovation, and customer delivery platforms to better serve worldwide demand … Streamlit, the creators of the powerful app framework for machine learning and data science, announced that it has secured $21 million in Series A funding.  The investment was co-led by Gradient Ventures and GGV Capital, with additional participation from Bloomberg Beta, Elad Gil, Daniel Gross and others. The capital investment will accelerate the development of Streamlit’s software which has been used to build over 200,000 applications at some of the world’s biggest companies since being open-sourced just eight months ago … Tecton.ai emerged from stealth and formally launched with its data platform for machine learning. Tecton enables data scientists to turn raw data into production-ready features, the predictive signals that feed machine learning models. Tecton is in private beta with paying customers, including a Fortune 50 company. Tecton.ai also announced $25 million in seed and Series A funding co-led by Andreessen Horowitz and Sequoia. Both Martin Casado, general partner at Andreessen Horowitz, and Matt Miller, partner at Sequoia, have joined the board … Create & Learn, the company that teaches computer science in small online groups, announced raising its seed round of funding to hire more instructors and take on more students and expand across the US and, eventually, worldwide. Built from the ground up on small group, project based online learning, Create & Learn has a 2.5 year head-start with its innovative approach to teaching online in the COVID-19 era.  Led by one of the founding members of the Google Cloud Platform, computer science Ph.d and Stanford MBA, Jessie Jiang was first inspired to develop Create & Learn’s curriculum by teaching computer science to her six-year-old daughter and seeing the enormous gaps between innovation in the real world and what was being taught in K-12 computer science.    

  

In the people movement category we heard … MemSQL, The Database of Now™ for operational analytics and cloud-native applications, has named Jordan Tigani as chief product officer. Tigani was formerly the director of product management for Google BigQuery. Tigani assumes oversight of MemSQL’s engineering and product teams, with the goal of scaling these operations and expanding on the success of MemSQL’s cloud products … Stradigi AI, a leading North American Artificial Intelligence software company, announced the appointment of Chris Hegarty to the role of Vice President, Business Development. Hegarty brings over 35 years of leadership and experience in enterprise technology sales to Stradigi AI. He will be responsible for leading Stradigi AI’s U.S.-based sales team and will oversee the development and execution of the company’s market growth initiatives around its state-of-the-art machine learning Kepler platform … Qumulo, a leading provider of cloud file data services, announced the appointment of Adriana Gil Miner as chief marketing officer (CMO). In this role, Gil Miner will be responsible for leading Qumulo’s global marketing and brand strategy as the company helps customers innovate faster and leverage the power of cloud data services. Gil Miner brings more than 20 years of experience as a results-driven marketing executive, elevating brands and introducing new products and services in high growth markets. Most recently, she was Senior Vice President of Brand, Communications and Events at Tableau Software … Tamr, Inc., a leader in cloud native machine learning-based data mastering, announced the appointment of Anthony Deighton as Chief Product Officer (CPO). Deighton, who most recently served as Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Celonis, spent 13+ years as Senior Vice President (SVP) of Products at Qlik, building the company and product from a small Swedish startup to a global leading analytics platform. At Tamr, he will lead the product and solutions strategy to extend Tamr’s innovation agenda in machine learning, cloud services, and analytic applications … WekaIO™ (Weka), a leader in high-performance, scalable file storage for data-intensive applications, announced the appointment of Ken Grohe as President and Chief Revenue Officer (CRO). Ken will lead the company’s global go-to-market organization and report to CEO and Co-Founder Liran Zvibel. Grohe comes to Weka from Samsung’s Stellus Technologies, a leading data systems company that addresses the way companies capture, store, access, and process the unstructured data, where he served as CRO and drove the company’s overall go-to-market strategy. A highly seasoned veteran of the industry, Grohe previously served as President of SignNow, SVP and GM of Barracuda Networks, and CRO of Virident, a Western Digital Company. Grohe also had an impressive 25-year career at Dell EMC, finishing as VP and GM with a focus on the global flash business … Pythian Services Inc. (“Pythian”), a leading cloud, data, and analytics services company, announced the appointment of Keith Angell as its Chief Executive Officer, as well as a reorganization of the executive team, as it positions for accelerated growth. The growth is being driven by several market factors, as well as Pythian’s recent acquisition of Agosto, LLC (“Agosto”), a Google Cloud Premier Partner and leading cloud services and development company. Pythian is owned by Mill Point Capital, a leading mid-market private equity firm … SnapLogic, provider of the Intelligent Integration Platform, announced the appointment of George Mogannam as Chief Revenue Officer (CRO). Mogannam will lead SnapLogic’s global field organization, overseeing sales, sales engineering, professional services, customer success, and partnerships, as the company ramps for its next phase of growth. He brings 25 years of experience helping high-growth SaaS companies scale revenues and accelerate growth. Mogannam joins SnapLogic’s executive leadership team and will report to CEO Gaurav Dhillon … Sisense, a leading analytics platform for builders, announced it has appointed Ashley Kramer (formerly of Alteryx) as Chief Product and Marketing Officer. Ashley, along with Shelly Landsmann (formerly of Microsoft), Vice President of International Sales and Global Alliances, and Sarah Ward (formerly of MongoDB), General Counsel, are all industry heavyweights in their respective fields and the newest members of Sisense’s leadership team. With the addition of Ashley, Sisense’s core executive operating team now comprises 50% women — including Chief Customer Officer, Chief People Officer, and Chief Product and Marketing Officer.

We also learned of a number of new partnerships, alignments and collaborations … dotData, a leader in full-cycle data science automation and operationalization for the enterprise, announced that it has partnered with Teradata, a leading cloud data & analytics company. The integration leverages the robust enterprise data management and analytic capabilities of Teradata’s Vantage platform and dotData’s autoML 2.0 platform to create a powerful end-to-end data science solution, from data collection and preparation through feature engineering to machine learning operationalization. The collaboration will streamline and simplify the movement of data between Teradata and dotData to help the companies’ joint customers derive more value from their AI and machine learning initiatives … The new partnership between QuerySurge, the smart automated data testing solution, and CData Software, the leading provider of data access and connectivity solutions, enables customers to connect to and validate data from 200+ data technologies. QuerySurge automates the data validation and testing of big data, data warehouses, business intelligence reports and enterprise applications with full DevOps functionality for continuous testing.  This is critical, since poor data quality costs organizations an average of $14.2 million annually, per a Gartner study … DataRobot, a leader in enterprise AI, unveiled an expanded partnership with Snowflake, the cloud data platform, which includes an integration with Snowflake Partner Connect. Building on DataRobot’s existing integration with Snowflake, the new inclusion in Partner Connect will accelerate time-to-value for joint customers. DataRobot also announced it achieved Elite status as part of the new Snowflake Partner Network … Alation Inc., a leader in enterprise data catalogs, announced its partnership with Databricks, the Data and AI company, to accelerate data science-led innovations and foster a data culture. The new integration provides data teams with a platform to identify and govern cloud data lakes; discover and leverage the best data for data science and analytics; and collaborate on data to deliver high quality predictive models and business insights.

 

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