Why Rockset & Why Now
August 5, 2021
“The world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data.”
There are those rare opportunities in your career where you are at the intersection of multiple macro and micro trends. I’m thrilled to join the team at Rockset that is defining the category of Real-Time Analytics.
My Path to Rockset
I've been fortunate to have experienced and embraced hyper-growth companies throughout my career. Early in my journey at Canadian BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion, the firm was featured as the fastest growing company in the world and I was granted the responsibility to build several teams from the ground up. I became enamored by the fast, nimble, and challenging environment of defining an industry. An opportunity at AppDynamics presented itself in 2015, a disruptive and market leading APM solution, and I was given a similar opportunity to build a GTM team. AppD was acquired by Cisco just days before its IPO, which at the time was the biggest M&A multiple in software history. In addition to this historic exit, AppD had a world class sales leadership team that had a maniacal focus on the 3Rs: Recruitment, Retention, Revenue. Most recently at Harness, the industry's first Continuous Delivery-as-a-Service platform, I had a mission to build the fastest growing team at one of the fastest growing enterprise software companies. Timing and talent is a vital element for blitzscaling growth and this assertive approach helped fast track Harness to unicorn status. The next leg in the career marathon has begun at Rockset, which has the opportunity to be the most exhilarating adventure yet.
Three key themes from this experience helped shape my decision to join Rockset: Growth, Leadership and Data. At the same time, there is a single constant that drives any organization forward, its people. The best investment any leader can make is in its people and I've been fortunate to work with countless top performers. The most rewarding part of working with great people is promoting them, which I have had the pleasure of doing over 100 times! This has led to a passion for developing, pushing and motivating individuals to help them meet and exceed their personal, professional and financial goals. This trend of development will not only continue, but accelerate at Rockset.
The future of data is in the cloud and Rockset has developed a platform that maximizes serverless search and analytics that transforms how developers build data-driven applications. Essentially, real-time data as an API or, as we say at Rockset, run the fastest queries with the freshest data. The company is uniquely positioned at the epicenter of 3 massive transformations: Cloud, Big Data and Batch Data to Real-Time Data. These are generational paradigm shifts that Rockset is dynamically positioned to solve.
This is important because the speed of innovation is accelerating and making decisions on stale and dated data is costly and inefficient. Conversely, having the opportunity to make decisions with fresh and real time data is a competitive advantage. The rise of data applications is exploding and the evolution from batch to real time is inevitable. Rockset is uniquely situated to expedite this trend.
The company is backed by Greylock & Sequoia, two of the most prolific and successful venture capital firms in history. Both VCs are united in their messaging that the engineering team at Rockset is an embarrassment of riches. This dream engineering team, led by CEO Venkat Venkataramani, CTO Dhruba Borthakur and founding engineer Tudor Bosman, has decades of experience building databases at Oracle, founded the Hadoop Filesystem project at Yahoo, implemented the Gmail backend at Google, and built the online data and search infrastructure at Facebook. This team's performance is further enhanced by Shruti Bhat, a world class product & marketing leader. In isolation, just one of these achievements would be impressive. Having a team that has developed multiple game-changing innovations is special and inspiring.
The product's early success is just the tip of the iceberg. Rockset has already amassed over 100 paying customers that is fueled by an instant time to value complemented by an eye-popping Net Retention Rate. This underscores the simplicity of the product and the massive problem that it is solving in an addressable market of over $80 Billion. This momentum validates our cheeky statement that friends don’t let friends build apps on data warehouses.
The foundation has been laid on the product side to be category defining and could not be more thrilled to be given the opportunity to build a go-to-market machine that will fundamentally change the way organizations solve data complexity, with simplicity. If data is the new oil then Rockset is the modern data refinery. The world is moving to real time and this is something that every enterprise needs!