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July 23: From BI to AI (Cube Dev, Dremio, Google Cloud, Julia Computing, Lucata, Palantir, Redpoint, Sisense, Vertica, Zoom)

If you would like your announcement to be included in these data platform-focused roundups, please email lynne@amalgaminsights.com.

Product Launches and Updates

Dremio Launches SQL Lakehouse Service to Accelerate BI and Analytics

On July 21, at Subservice Live, Dremio debuted Dremio Cloud, a cloud-native SQL-based data “lakehouse” service. The service marries various aspects of data lakes and data warehouses into a SQL lakehouse, enabling high-performance SQL workloads in the cloud and expediting the process of getting started. Dremio Cloud is now available in the AWS Marketplace.

Google Cloud Announces Healthcare Data Engine to Enable Interoperability in Healthcare

On July 22, Google Cloud announced Healthcare Data Engine, now in private preview. Healthcare Data Engine integrates healthcare and life sciences data from multiple sources such as medical records, claims, clinical trials, and research data, enabling a more longitudinal view of patient health along with advanced analytics and AI in a secure environment. With the introduction of Amazon HealthLake last week, it’s clear that expanding healthcare and life sciences analytics capabilities continue to be a top priority among data services providers.

Palantir Introduces Foundry for Builders

Dipping a toenail into the waters outside their usual large established organization customer base, Palantir announced the launch of Foundry for Builders, providing access to the Palantir Foundry platform for startups under a fully-managed subscription model. Foundry for Builders is starting off with limited availability; the initial group of startups provided access are all connected to Palantir alumni, with the hope of expanding to other early-stage “hypergrowth” companies down the road.

Redpoint Global Announces In Situ

On July 20, Redpoint announced In Situ, a service that provides data quality and identity resolution. In Situ uses Redpoint’s data management technology to supply identity resolution and data integration services in real time within an organization’s virtual private cloud, without needing to transfer said private data across the internet.

Sisense Announces Sisense Extense Framework

On July 21, Sisense debuted the Sisense Extense Framework, a way to deliver interactive analytics experiences within popular business applications. Initially supported apps include Slack, Salesforce, Google Sheets, Google Slides, and Google Chrome, now available on the Sisense Marketplace. The Sisense Extense Framework will be released more broadly later this year to partners looking to build similar “infusion” apps.

Vertica Announces Vertica 11

On June 20, at Vertica Unify 2021, Vertica announced the Vertica 11 Analytics Platform. Key improvements include broader deployment support, strengthened security, increased analytical performance, and enhanced machine learning capabilities.

Funding

Cube Dev Raises $15.5 Million to Help Companies Build Applications with Cloud Data Warehouses

On July 19, Cube Dev announced that they had raised $15.5M in Series A funding. Decibel led this round, with participation from Bain Capital Ventures, Betaworks and Eniac Ventures. The funding will be used to scale go-to-market activities and accelerate R+D on its first commercial product. Cube Dev also brought aboard Jonathan E. Cowperthwait of npm as Head of Marketing and Jordan Philips of Dashbase as Head of Revenue Operations to support their commercial expansion.

Julia Computing Raises $24M in Series A, Former Snowflake CEO Bob Muglia Joins Board

Julia Computing announced the completion of a $24M Series A funding round on July 19. Dorilton Ventures led the round, with participation from Menlo Ventures, General Catalyst, and HighSage Ventures. Julia Computing will use the funding to further develop JuliaHub, its secure, high-performance cloud platform for scientific and technical modeling, and to grow the Julia ecosystem overall. Bob Muglia, the former CEO of Snowflake, joined the Julia Computing board on the same day.

Lucata Raises $11.9 Million in Series B Funding to Introduce Next-Generation Computing Platform

Lucata, a platform to scale and accelerate graph analytics, AI, and machine learning capabilities, announced July 19 that it had raised $11.9M in Series B funding. Notre Dame, Middleburg Capital Development, Blu Ventures Inc., Hunt Holdings, Maulick Capital, and Varian Capital all participated in the round. The funding will fuel an “aggressive” go-to-market strategy.

Acquisitions

Zoom to Acquire Five9

On July 18, Zoom announced that it had entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Five9, a cloud contact center service provider, for $14.7B in stock. In welcoming Five9 to the Zoom platform, Zoom expects to build a better “customer engagement platform,” complementary with its Zoom Phone offering. Later in the week, Zoom also announced the launch of Zoom Apps and Zoom Events, further enhancing the collaboration capabilities of the primary Zoom video communications suite.

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July 16: From BI to AI (AWS, CognitiveScale, GoodData, Hazelcast, Informatica, StrongBox Data Solutions, Vertica)

If you would like your announcement to be included in Amalgam Insights’ weekly data and analytics roundups, please email lynne@amalgaminsights.com.

Product Launches and Enhancements

Informatica Announces Unified Data Governance and Catalog As-a-Service in the Cloud

On July 13, Informatica announced the launch of its Cloud Data Governance and Catalog solution as a key part of its Intelligent Data Management Cloud. As part of Informatica’s continuing expansion to the cloud, Informatica customers will now be able to do data cataloging, quality, data and machine learning model governance through the same “pane of glass.” Amalgam Insights has a forthcoming post on Informatica’s integration of data governance and machine learning model governance.

AWS Announces General Availability of Amazon HealthLake

On July 15, Amazon debuted Amazon HealthLake, a data lake for healthcare and life sciences data that falls under HIPAA requirements. HealthLake uses machine learning to extract and appropriately transform unstructured health data to prepare it for use in analytics and AI models. The service is generally available now.

CognitiveScale Announces Launch Of Cortex Fabric Version 6

On July 15, CognitiveScale announced the release of Cortex Fabric Version 6, a low-code AI app development platform. Cortex 6 lets “citizen developers” build AI-based apps with their “Campaigns” visual framework, focusing on business optimization and process automation use cases.

GoodData and Vertica Partner to Accelerate Cloud-Native Self-Service Analytics Adoption in the Enterprise

GoodData and Vertica announced a strategic partnership on July 15. GoodData.CN, GoodData’s cloud native analytics services, will connect to Vertica’s data warehouse to allow non-technical users to perform self-service analytics.

Hazelcast Unveils Real-Time Intelligent Applications Platform

On July 14, Hazelcast announced the Hazelcast platform, which will allow users to merge streaming data with data at rest. Because Hazelcast can handle realtime event streams as well as access to data lakes and data warehouses, it can act as a single point of access for all types of data. Hazelcast is currently in beta; general availability is expected in August 2021. In addition, certain features of Hazelcast will also be available through the Hazelcast Platform for IBM Cloud Paks.

StrongBox Data Solutions Announces StrongLink 3.2

StrongBox Data Solutions announced the availability of StrongLink 3.2, a data management platform. StrongLink automates policy enforcement across a wide variety of data sources and storage types, aiming to eliminate data silos while providing replication to protect said data’s existence. StrongLink 3.2 is available immediately.

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July 9: From BI to AI (AnyVision, Google Cloud, IBM, Immuta, Obviously AI, Opaque)

If you would like your announcement to be included in Amalgam Insights’ weekly data and analytics roundups, please email lynne@amalgaminsights.com.

Funding

AnyVision Raises $235M from SoftBank Vision Fund 2 and Eldridge

AnyVision, a facial recognition AI company, has closed a $235M series C funding round led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2 and Eldridge. Amit Lubovsky, director of SoftBank Investment Advisors, will join the board as part of the transaction. Funding will be directed towards further development of AnyVision’s Access Point AI software, as well as further innovation of its SDKs for edge computing functionality. AnyVision’s funding announcement comes at an interesting time for facial recognition startups; concerns around data privacy are subjecting companies creating and using facial recognition to growing scrutiny.

Obviously AI Increases Seed Round Funding to $4.7M

Obviously AI, a no-code AutoML startup, has raised an additional $1.1M from the University of Tokyo Edge Capital Partners, as well as Trail Mix Ventures and B-Capital. The funding will go towards extending Obviously AI to serve more use cases, as well as expanding Obviously AI’s presence in Asian markets. The concept of no-code AI model building is the unicorn everyone dipping into data science is seeking, but Obviously AI is currently limited to supervised learning use cases, and broadening their scope to cover unsupervised learning is the next … obvious step.

Opaque Raises $9.5 Million Seed to Unlock Encrypted Data with Machine Learning

Opaque, a secure data analytics platform, announced July 7 that it had raised a seed round of $9.5M led by Intel Capital. Race Capital, The House Fund, and FactoryHQ also participated in this round. Opaque lets companies analyze encrypted cloud-based data without exposing the data to the cloud provider. Funding will go towards Opaque’s open source contributions to the data security community.

Product Launches and Updates

Immuta Becomes First Data Access Control Solution for Snowflake Partner Connect

On July 7, Immuta, a cloud data control access provider, announced its availability in the Snowflake Partner Connect portal. Snowflake users will now be able to use Immuta to configure automated data access control around their data. The Immuta Snowflake integration launches as an Immuta instance preconfigured with a Snowflake user’s connection credentials, minimizing setup complexity and time needed.

Hiring and Departing

Google announces Adaire Fox-Martin as its new EMEA Cloud president

Google Cloud has appointed Adaire Fox-Martin as its new EMEA Cloud president. Fox-Martin moves over from a 14-year tenure at SAP, most recently as an Executive Board Member leading Global Customer Success. Prior to that, Fox-Martin spent nearly two decades at Oracle.

IBM’s Jim Whitehurst Says He’s Leaving to Find a New Chance to Run Something

Over the holiday weekend, IBM announced that Jim Whitehurst would be stepping down as president, though he would remain in an advisory role for the time being. In an interview this week with Barrons, Whitehurst acknowledged that his reasoning is that he wants to be a CEO again, and with the appointment of Arvind Krishna to that spot at IBM, his own chances of holding that position were unlikely. Whitehurst had come over to IBM with the Red Hat acquisition, having held the CEO position there since 2007.

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July 2: From BI to AI (Anaconda, Facebook, JetBrains, Tableau, TIBCO)

In anticipation of the long holiday weekend for Americans and Canadians, news was fairly light in the data world this week; most announcements were around updates and enhancements to existing products.

If you would like your announcement to be included in Amalgam Insights’ weekly data and analytics roundups, please email lynne@amalgaminsights.com.

Product Launches and Updates

Tableau Extends Augmented Analytics in Tableau 2021.2

On June 29, Tableau announced the release of Tableau 2021.2, with new and enhanced augmented analytics capabilities. “Ask Data,” a capability that allows users to ask business questions of their data using natural language, and “Explain Data,” a function that provides explanations of data points, both have new interfaces that enhance users’ understanding of their data. Other new features in Tableau 2021.2 include the ability to save clean data from Tableau Prep into Google BigQuery, and to implement machine learning models from Amazon SageMaker within Tableau dashboards.

TIBCO Spotfire 11.4 LTS Release

TIBCO announced the release of Spotfire 11.4 LTS on June 30. Key features in this release include the ability for nontechnical users to embed advanced analytics functions into Spotfire apps, and over a dozen new custom visualizations and apps available as “Spotfire Mods” on the TIBCO Exchange.

Anaconda Collaborates with Intel to Improve Speed and Scale for Machine Learning Workflows

Anaconda announced enhancements to its ongoing partnership with Intel, including better access to libraries and packages optimized for Intel hardware to enhance the performance of machine learning models. Of note, the Intel Extension for Scikit-learn is now available in Anaconda’s package repository; Anaconda says models built using the extension run 27-36x faster than models based on the baseline Scikit-learn.

JetBrains: Announcing Datalore Enterprise

On June 29, JetBrains announced the availability of Datalore Enterprise, an on-premises collaborative version of their single-user cloud-based data science platform. Datalore Enterprise will provide JetBrains collaboration tools atop Jupyter Notebooks, along with existing features of Datalore such as PyCharm coding assistance tools.

Facebook AI Announces Habitat 2.0, plus Introducing the Habitat-Matterport 3D research data set

Finally, Facebook AI announced the latest version of their Habitat platform (Habitat 2.0), a simulation platform that lets AI researchers teach machines to navigate and interact with both virtual and physical 3D environments. Improvements include ReplicaCAD, an extension of Facebook’s Replica data set, built to support movement and object manipulation as a digital twin, In collaboration with Matterport, Facebook AI also published HM3D, an open-source licensed data set consisting of over 1,000 indoor 3D scans. (This last year, prospective property buyers couldn’t go to open houses, but they could at least investigate a given property’s digital twin, and Matterport supplied a number of these virtual house tours for property listings.) Future AI-enhanced assistants and robots will need to interact with complex 3D environments; advancing “embodied” AI will be a top priority in order to build such assistants. Suggested scenarios include asking one’s AI-enhanced glasses where your housekeys were last observed, or asking a robot to check your desk for your laptop and if it’s there, to bring it to you.

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June 25: From BI to AI (including Apache Kafka, Confluent, Dataiku, Datarobot, Domino Data Lab, Firebolt, Incorta, Palantir, Primer, Rasgo, Splunk)

If you would like your announcement to be included in Amalgam Insights’ weekly data and analytics roundups, please email lynne@amalgaminsights.com.

Product Launches and Updates

Domino 4.4 Now Available

On Tuesday, June 21, Domino Data Lab announced the availability of Domino 4.4. New capabilities include Durable Workspaces, allowing data scientists to operate with multiple environments open at once; CodeSync, enhancing Domino’s existing reproducibility capabilities with native integration with common Git repositories; and the abilities to encrypt data in transit and mount NFS volumes directly to Domino. Domino 4.4 is available for existing customers immediately.

Dataiku Launches in AWS Marketplace

On June 21, Dataiku announced its availability in the AWS Marketplace. AWS customers can now use Dataiku’s visual interface to orchestrate their data pipelines and machine learning models applied to their cloud data, and Dataiku projects based on AWS-hosted data can also incorporate AWS Machine Learning Services such as computer vision or text analytics.

Palantir, DataRobot Partner to Bring Speed and Agility to Demand Forecasting Models

DataRobot and Palantir announced a new partnership on Thursday, June 24, around solving demand forecasting problems for retailers. The new Demand Forecasting framework links Palantir Foundry with DataRobot’s Model Development and Model Deployment capabilities. Prepped data is piped directly from Foundry into DataRobot where forecasting models are trained, then brought back into Foundry for operationalization.

Splunk Launches New Security Cloud

On June 22, Splunk debuted the Splunk Security Cloud, a SecOps platform with integrated security analytics and threat intelligence and an open ecosystem to correlate data across all security tools. Splunk also announced a $1B investment from Silver Lake; the funding will go towards further growth of Splunk and its ongoing cloud transformation, as well as managing a newly authorized share repurchase program.

Funding

Firebolt Ignites Growth with a $127M Series B Funding Round

Firebolt, a cloud data warehouse company, raised $127M in Series B funding this week, following up on a $37M Series A round from December 2020. All investors from the A round participated, including Angular Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, TLV Partners, and Zeev Ventures, with new investors Dawn Capital and K5 Global joining the B round. Firebolt will use the funding to expand its product, engineering, and go-to-market teams.

Incorta Raises $120M in Series D Funding

Wednesday, June 23, Incorta announced a $120M Series D funding round led by Prysm Capital. Other participants included GV, Kleiner Perkins, M12, Sorenson Capital, Telstra Ventures, Wipro Ventures, and new investor National Grid Ventures. This round of funding will go towards expanding Incorta’s go-to-market operations and meeting demand for Incorta’s data analytics platform.

Primer Raises $110M Series C

Primer, a natural language processing company, raised $110M in a Series C funding round, announced on Tuesday, June 24. Lee Fixel’s Addition led the round, with participation from existing investors Amplify Partners, Avalon Ventures, Bloomberg Beta, DCVC, Lux Capital, and Section 32, as well as new investors Crumpton Ventures, J2 Ventures, Sands Capital, and Steadfast. Primer also announced two partnerships: one with Microsoft to make Primer available within Azure, as well as a partnership with Palantir to make Primer available within the Palantir platform.

Rasgo Raises $20M Series A

Rasgo, a feature store, announced that it had raised an additional $20M in funding as a Series A round. Insight Partners led the round, with participation by existing investor Unusual Ventures. Rasgo will use the funds to expand its team with a focus on engineering talent, accelerate product development, and build its go-to-market.

Confluent IPO

Confluent, a data streaming platform, had its IPO June 24, raising $828M. Even with an initial offering price of $36/share, above its intended range of $29-$33/share, shares of Confluent closed up at over $45/share by the end of the first day of trading to reach a valuation of over $11 billion, indicating the continued importance of streaming analytics in supporting two key challenges: real-time context and real-time response.

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June 18: From BI to AI (Altair SmartWorks, Crate.io, Dataiku, Dataiku Online, Datarobot, Neo4j, SAS, Transform)

If you would like your announcement to be included in Amalgam Insights’ weekly data and analytics roundups, please email lynne@amalgaminsights.com.

Funding

Neo4j Announces $325 Million Series F Investment, the Largest in Database History

On June 17, Neo4J announced a $325M Series F funding round. Eurazeo led the round, with participation from existing investors Creandum, Greenbridge Partners, and One Peak, as well as new participants DCTP, GV, and Lightrock. Neo4J plans to use this money along three key vectors: buffing up their multi-cloud service offerings, growing capabilities to support enhanced machine learning models in graph-based data science, and expanding their market reach. Amalgam Insights’ Hyoun Park assesses the Neo4J funding more thoroughly, and highlights the importance of graph databases as the next step in enterprise analytics, and the key role they will have in supporting the next generation of machine learning models.

Introducing Transform: a ‘metrics store’ to make data accessible

Transform, a centralized metrics store, has come out of stealth, announcing $24.5M in funding across two rounds. Index Ventures and Redpoint Ventures led the round, with participation from Fathom Capital and Work Life Ventures. Transform is looking to double their headcount with this funding. General availability of Transform is projected for Fall 2021.

Crate.io Secures $10 Million in Funding

Crate.io, the developers of the CrateDB database platform, raised $10M in additional funding, bringing their total funding up to $31M. Draper Esprit and Vito Ventures participated in this round. The funding will be used to expand sales, grow functionality and add more partner integrations, and promote the open source developer community around CrateDB.

Product Launches and Updates

Cloud-native Altair® SmartWorks™ Empowers Enterprises to Make Data-driven Decisions

On June 14, Altair debuted Altair SmartWorks, a cloud-native analytics platform. SmartWorks integrates the data prep capabilities of Altair Monarch and their machine learning and predictive analytics solution Knowledge Studio under one roof, providing access to analytics, machine learning, and IoT no matter one’s comfort level with coding. SmartWorks is available now via Altair Units, their subscription-based licensing model.

Dataiku Announces Fully Managed, Online Analytics Offering

On June 14, Dataiku launched Dataiku Online, providing cloud-based access to their machine learning platform for smaller organizations without the extensive IT departments of their larger counterparts. In particular, seed-stage companies and other young startups are eligible for highly discounted pricing. A 14-day free trial is available now. Via Dataiku Online, customers can access data storage tools from Google BigQuery, Amazon Redshift, and Snowflake, and Snowflake customers can likewise access Dataiku Online through the Snowflake Marketplace.

DataRobot 7.1 Introduces Enhancements to Take AI Projects to the Next Level

On June 15, DataRobot announced its 7.1 platform release. Key new features include MLOps Management Agents, which manage remote machine learning models’ lifecycles; the no-code AI App Builder to turn deployed models into AI-based apps without needing customers to write code; and the feature discovery integration with Snowflake, announced last week at Snowflake Summit. The 7.1 release is available now.

Hiring

SAS Names Jenn Chase as Chief Marketing Officer, Executive Vice President

SAS promoted Jenn Chase, Senior Vice President and Head of Marketing, to the Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President position. Chase’s 20-year career with SAS includes time in both R+D and marketing. As SVP, Chase initiated the relaunch of the SAS brand earlier this year, and led the pandemic-induced online pivot for the two most recent SAS Global Forums.

DataRobot Expands C-Suite with New CPO, CTO, and CMO

DataRobot grew its C-Suite this week, pulling in Elise Leung Cole from Cisco to serve as the new Chief People Officer, and promoting Michael Schmidt and Nick King from within as the new CTO and CMO respectively. Cole previously was the VP & Deputy General Counsel at Cisco, leading the team supporting sales and marketing, and creating compliance, training, and career developments within the organization. Prior to her time at Cisco, Cole served as General Counsel at AppDynamics.

Schmidt came to DataRobot as the founder of Nutonian, which DataRobot acquired in 2017. He helped develop DataRobot’s Automated Time Series product, and led the partnership with the US government to assure speedy and equitable COVID-19 vaccine trials. King joined DataRobot in April as the SVP of Marketing. Prior to that, King held executive positions at Cisco, VMWare, Google, and Microsoft. The expanded CMO role puts King in charge of global marketing and brand strategy.