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“Above the Trend Line” – Your Industry Rumor Central for 7/17/2020

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.

I’ve been taking it pretty easy this summer so far while wearing my “educator” hat. I’m only teaching a single “Introduction to Data Science” class for UCLA Extension and it’s been a blast thus far. My small group of 10 newbie data scientists are hungry for knowledge in support of their attempt to break into the field. I’m making sure they’re ready with a data science toolbox full of code, a real-life project to complete, publish and promote on GitHub, as well as a glimpse of the entire Data Science Process. Summer of Data! But for now, let’s dig into the big data rumor mill … in new funding news we heard … Privacera, the cloud data governance and security leader founded by the creators of Apache Ranger™, announced it has raised $13.5 million in Series A funding to support the increasing demand for automated data security, privacy and governance in the cloud. The funding was led by Accel who invested based on the tremendous trajectory of the Company and its strong customer base. Equally appealing for the venture firm was the fact that data governance, security, and compliance are becoming table stakes as organizations look to migrate enterprise data to the cloud to drive data analytics. Accel joins early investors Cervin Ventures, Point 72, and Alchemist Accelerator … TileDB, Inc. has secured a $15M Series A investment round led by Two Bear Capital, joined by Uncorrelated Ventures and all existing investors: Nexus Venture Partners, Intel Capital, and Big Pi Ventures. The funding will help the company expand go-to-market and product development for its “universal data engine,” a novel database that goes beyond tables to manage any complex data and beyond SQL to analyze the data with any tool, all serverless and at planet scale. Montana philanthropist and Two Bear Capital Managing Partner Mike Goguen will join TileDB’s Board of Directors … MariaDB® Corporation announced a $25 million funding round supporting the company goals to expand the reach and development of its cloud database, MariaDB SkySQL. Led by SmartFin Capital, with participation from existing investors and new investor GP Bullhound, the round brings the total investment in MariaDB to over $125 million … Traceable, the end-to-end application security monitoring platform, launched from stealth with $20M in series A funding from Unusual Ventures and BIG Labs. Jyoti Bansal, the founder and former CEO of AppDynamics, heads the company as CEO and co-founder after selling AppDynamics to Cisco for $3.7 billion. Bansal is joined by Sanjay Nagaraj, former VP Engineering at AppDynamics, as CTO and co-founder. Traceable was spun out of BIG Labs, Bansal’s startup studio.

In M&A news we learned … Syniti, a global data solution provider, announced the acquisition of Virtyx Technologies, Inc., an innovative start-up that provides end-to-end AI-powered automatic monitoring and analytics for data transformation. The asset purchase, which encompasses the acquisition of Virtyx technology and the retention of the key Virtyx Engineering talent, will integrate Virtyx’s industry-leading cloud-native and AI technology with Syniti’s Knowledge Platform — creating a knowledge-driven software suite and enhancing Syniti’s development and Engineering team … Core Scientific, a leading infrastructure and software solutions provider for Artificial Intelligence (AI) and blockchain led by CEO Kevin Turner, the former COO of Microsoft, announced the acquisition of certain assets and technology of Atrio Inc. The addition of Atrio is timely as Core Scientific is focusing on expanding its efforts to help researchers solve molecular genetic codes of viruses like COVID-19 and aid drug discovery efforts. Most recently, Core Scientific partnered with NVIDIA, the inventor of the GPU, as well as NetApp, the leader in cloud data services, to provide free access to AI and data engineering infrastructure for coronavirus-related research. Similarly, this acquisition will bring together both Core Scientific and Atrio’s High Performance Computing (HPC) and AI capabilities to offer researchers and businesses a more seamless experience for their high-end computing needs … Jobvite, a leading end-to-end talent acquisition suite, announced that it has acquired the artificial intelligence (AI) and data science team at Predictive Partner. Morgan Llewellyn, CEO of Predictive Partner, will serve as Jobvite’s Chief Data Scientist and oversee a team leveraging AI through automation, predictive analytics, data science, machine learning, natural language processing, and optical character recognition … ATTOM Data Solutions, curator of the nation’s premier property database, announced it has acquired Home Junction Inc., a real estate data technology company that specializes in building high quality geographic boundary datasets for neighborhoods, school attendance zones, subdivisions and more … IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced it has reached a definitive agreement to acquire Brazilian software provider of robotic process automation (RPA) WDG Soluções Em Sistemas E Automação De Processos LTDA (referred to as “WDG Automation” throughout). The acquisition further advances IBM’s comprehensive AI-infused automation capabilities, spanning business processes to IT operations. Financial terms were not disclosed … NetApp (NASDAQ: NTAP), a leader in cloud data services, announced that it has completed its acquisition of Spot, a leader in compute management and cost optimization in the public clouds … Brillio, a leading digital technology consulting and solutions company, announced the acquisition of Cognetik, a data and insights company with deep expertise in improving digital experiences for its customers. Cognetik enables companies across the globe, including Facebook, Pizza Hut and McDonald’s to build and implement analytics solutions that optimize customer experience to increase loyalty, drive revenue and advance business transformation. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

We also heard of a number of new partnerships, alignments and collaborations … Iguazio, the data science platform for real-time machine learning applications, announced a strategic partnership with SFL Scientific, a leading data science consulting firm. The partnership will enable both companies to extend their offerings to enterprises of all industries looking to apply AI to real life applications, regardless of the size or skill set of their internal teams … Quartic.ai, provider of the award-winning Quartic AI and IoT Platform™ for Smart Industry, announced a partnership with Sparta Systems, Inc., provider of industry-leading Quality Management System (QMS) platforms TrackWise® and TrackWise Digital®, to bring forward next-level AI capabilities for early risk detection during the manufacturing process to reduce product quality impact and enable near-real-time product release … To make it easier to run more targeted and precise marketing campaigns cost-effectively across multiple channels, Narrative, the enterprise data streaming company, announced they are partnering with TransUnion (NYSE:TRU) to enable access to TransUnion’s rich consumer attributes and audiences via Narrative’s data streaming platform … Q-CTRL, a startup that applies the principles of control engineering to accelerate the development of quantum technology, announced a global research and technology development partnership with  Advanced Navigation, a leader in AI-based navigational hardware … Hybrid cloud data warehouse company Yellowbrick Data announced that Sonra has joined the company’s partner program. Both Yellowbrick and Sonra power huge data needs across a variety of enterprise applications. Together, they are making it faster, easier, and cheaper to convert legacy XML and JSON data into modern formats that can be used for data insights critical to business success. As part of their partnership, the companies are working on technical certifications and performance tuning as well as joint go-to-market opportunities. Sonra also offers data architecture consulting and design services, and can help enterprises deploy Yellowbrick quickly and with expertise … SpIntellx, Inc., and CellNetix Pathology & Laboratories have announced that they will collaborate to validate the SpIntellx HistoMapr-Breast™ Platform, which taps the power of explainable artificial intelligence (xAI) for healthcare providers to diagnose and treat breast cancer more efficiently and accurately. The platform is the first in the companies’ larger efforts to harness the power of xAI-assisted lab processes in the development of diagnostics, prognostics, therapeutic strategies, and drug development for tumor and non-tumor diseases. SpIntellx, Inc. is a computational and systems pathology company that harnesses the computational power of unbiased spatial analytics and explainable artificial intelligence (xAI) technologies to offer proprietary software products and services for analyzing pathology tissue sections.  CellNetix Pathology & Laboratories is a rapidly growing pathology laboratory company providing comprehensive subspecialty clinical and anatomic pathology services in the Pacific Northwest … Siren, a leading provider of Investigative Intelligence analytics, today announced a strategic partnership with AIMART, a Brazilian-based consultancy which specializes in providing solutions that tackle complex investigations and detect sophisticated frauds and financial crimes. Under this agreement, Siren joins vendors such as IBM and Q-Credi to form part of a best of breed analytics and data science portfolio for the South American marketplace.

In people movement news we heard … Excelero, a disruptor in software-defined block storage for AI/ML/deep learning and GPU computing, announced that longtime enterprise technology executive and strategist Henri Richard has become a board advisor. As AI/ML/deep learning and HPC deployments drive demand for newer software-defined storage solutions using NVMe Flash, Henri will assist Excelero’s executive team in uncovering opportunities to accelerate growth … Collibra, the Data Intelligence company, announced the appointment of Stuart Wilson to chief revenue officer and Aileen Black to senior vice president of public sector, a newly-created role … Magnitude Software has named Paul Young as the company’s new general manager. Paul will be tasked with leading Magnitude’s Data Integration Business unit that brings together its data connectivity, integration and management solutions under one umbrella.

And finally, in the new customer wins category we learned … Run:AI, a company virtualizing AI infrastructure, announced that it is working with the London Medical Imaging & Artificial Intelligence Centre for Value Based Healthcare as a technology provider to help them better manage their AI resources and provide elastic resource allocation, visibility and control. 
The AI Centre, led by King’s College London and based in St Thomas’ Hospital, uses an enormous trove of de-identified patient data held by the NHS, including medical images and patient clinical pathway data, to train sophisticated AI learning algorithms. These algorithms are used to create new tools for faster diagnosis, personalized therapies, and more effective screening … Ascend.io, the data engineering company, announced that HNI Corporation, a global leader in workplace furnishings and residential building products, has deployed The Ascend Unified Data Engineering Platform for modern data pipelines, enabling faster data analytics to drive strategic business decisions. Ascend enables HNI to intelligently collect and model data from various APIs and sources to directly fuel operational analytics across the business. Completed in just two months, HNI has been able to experience high operational efficiency by replacing manually-intensive processes with fully automated pipelines, resulting in faster data delivery, improved accuracy, and better business insights … SADA, a leading global business and technology consultancy, announced a five year, $50 million deal with MadHive to expand the OTT ad solutions company’s use of Google Cloud technologies to deliver new products and services. MadHive’s end-to-end advertising solution, which leverages cryptography, blockchain and AI to power modern media, was first deployed on Google Cloud Platform (Google Cloud) in 2017 with help from SADA, a Google Cloud Premier Partner. The challenge was to deliver MadHive’s next-generation platform at scale with low latency while supporting a rapid, iterative development cycle, machine learning requirements, and a short go-to-market timeline … Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) announced that Mastertel, one of the largest telecommunications companies in Russia, has selected HPE GreenLake  to modernize its IT infrastructure, optimize financial flows, and achieve the flexibility necessary to service the growth of new customers.

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