Alpine Data Labs, developer of Alpine Miner, a solution for big data predictive analytics, has received $7.5 million in Series A funding. In addition, after 15 months of product development, the company also announced its 10th production customer and its formal launch in the U.S. market.
According to Anderson Wong, Alpine Labs CEO and co-founder, organizations cannot extract all the possible value from their data because it is growing faster than they can analyze it, they don't have enough resources with analytics expertise, and the tools they're using are too complex to get to the answers they need quickly.
Alpine Labs was spun off from Greenplum in 2010, and development has been in Beijing until now, says Wong. The company is moving its headquarters, sales and marketing and R&D back to the U.S. so it can be close to Silicon Valley, and close to the needs and development of this market segment, he explains.
Wong says Alpine sees a market opportunity because storage costs have enabled the collection and storage of massive data sets, but these are not as useful as they could be because there is not a cost-effective way to apply predictive analytics. Alpine Miner's major value proposition, Wong says, is to enable companies to "tear down the wall" between analytics and data and push all the analytic functions into the database so that no matter how big the data size, all the data collected can be used as an asset. In addition, he says, other important elements of the Alpine approach are that it gives predictive analytics power directly to business users, and does not require them to read or write code, and also focuses on enterprise adoption by taking a process-centric approach. By operating in the database, Alpine Miner also avoids security risks that come with moving sample data sets around an organization, emphasizes Wong.
Investors include Sierra Ventures, a private venture capital firm managing nine partnerships with over $1.5 billion of committed capital; Mission Ventures, a venture capital firm with over 60 years' experience investing in early stage IT companies; and Sumitomo Corporation Equity Asia, the Asian arm of Sumitomo Corporation's Strategic Venture Investment. The funding will be used to help Alpine Data Labs increase staff in China and the United States and accelerate product development and sales.
Wong co-founded the company in 2010 after serving as general manager at Greenplum responsible for that company's entry into China. He also served in a variety of management positions at IBM and Sun. Yi-Ling Chen, Alpine's CTO and co-founder, has more than 20 years' experience in IT and consulting, including serving as technical director of support and service for Greenplum in China. Alpine Data Labs' board of directors and advisors include Tim Guleri, managing director of Sierra Ventures; Leo Spiegel, managing partner at Mission Ventures; and Scott Yara, vice president of products in EMC's Data Computing Division and co-founder of Greenplum.
Currently, Alpine Miner supports the Greenplum and Oracle databases. It is now at release 1.3.2, and a free trial pack is available for download from the Alpine Data Labs website.