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Today, Rockset announced $40M in Series B funding from Sequoia and Greylock, our two investors who have partnered with us right from the beginning. Additionally, we announced support for fully managed, secure private deployments of Rockset within a customer’s Amazon VPC. These are important milestones for both our company and product, but this announcement is less a celebration of Rockset than a recognition of our hundreds of beloved customers who have launched amazing real-time applications.
Every Company Is a Data Company
Our investors saw the same things we see in our work with application developers. That there is an incredible amount of data in motion today that can be harnessed, in real time, to improve decision making, operational efficiencies and business results. In this day and age, every company is a data company, whether they are an online retailer, a financial services firm or a transportation and logistics provider. Every company is seeking opportunity to leverage real-time data to get ahead.
And we have front-row seats to this age of modern data applications. The developers we work with build amazing apps: real-time supply chain logistics, personalization and recommendation engines, operational analytics for e-commerce, fraud detection, leaderboards, geo tracking, newsfeed analysis for investment insights and more. What all these modern data apps have in common is the requirement for both speed and scale — real-time analytics on large amounts of data.
Solving for Speed and Scale
However, speed and scale have been challenging to achieve using traditional approaches, which are designed for one or the other. Instead of being free to build the apps their businesses require, developers are often held back by the limitations of their data infrastructure.
Building large-scale data applications with traditional OLTP databases or data warehouses left developers with two frustrating choices. By picking speed and building on an OLTP database, you would incur significant operational complexity when it came time to scale your application. By picking scale and building your app on a warehouse, your app would end up unbearably slow and prohibitively expensive.
Traditional OLTP systems have always considered these large-scale data applications an outlier. Guaranteeing transactional semantics takes a tremendous amount of software and hardware resources. Thus all modern distributed OLTP systems (Spanner, Cockroach, etc.) are focused on providing harder guarantees on data durability and data loss protection across multiple geos but not the scale requirements of modern data apps, in terms of writes per second or low-latency analytical queries.
Data warehouses have always been built for storage efficiency and not compute efficiency. Some of the modern cloud data warehouses (Snowflake) do an excellent job in completely decoupling storage and compute, which helps immensely with batch analytics. But the lack of advanced data indexing support in warehouses will make your apps frustratingly slow. And unlike batch analytics that warehouses were designed for, modern data apps don’t have an OFF button. Your compute has to be spun up 24x7, making warehouses a terribly inefficient option on which to build apps.
Four years ago we started Rockset with a singular purpose. To build a delightful, modern cloud database that could power massive-scale data applications without operational overhead. We drew upon our experience and inspiration from backend systems that power products like Facebook News Feed and Google Search and used the same real-time indexing approach, implemented with a cloud-native architecture, to deliver what was sorely needed by developers of data apps — speed and scale, delivered with simplicity.
Every Developer Freed from Data Infrastructure
Rockset is the real-time cloud database built for modern data apps. Using Rockset, developers can build massive-scale data applications in a matter of hours. One of our customers told us that “Rockset took a six-month roadmap item and compressed it into an afternoon.” We want every developer to have a similar experience, freed from the limits of what they thought possible with their data infrastructure.
With this new round of funding, Rockset will further our innovation in real-time analytics and commitment to building a delightful product for all developers. We are hiring across the board, in sales, marketing, product and engineering.
While it’s exciting to imagine all the possibilities the Series B and the VPC deployment model open up for Rockset, it’s even more exciting to see how Rockset is being used by many to build applications that were previously considered way too challenging. We look forward to all the amazing apps you’ll build on Rockset!
Register for an upcoming webinar with Rockset’s founders, Venkat Venkataramani and Dhruba Borthakur, on November 5, 2020
Part of our Rockset team at Tahoe earlier this year
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