Imagine for a moment that you’re making a credit card transaction. This prompts a lot of questions from the payment processor before it accepts your payment. Where are you? How much are you spending? Are you using a PIN or a signature to validate the transaction? What merchant are you transacting with? How many times have you been to this place before? How do any of the facts from this particular transaction line up with the transactions you’ve made in the past?
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The answers to these questions, among others, indicate whether you are who you say you are. That you are at least probably not engaging in fraud as you spend a little too much on that latte.
These questions are posed in the form of database queries, and the final answer needs to come quickly. That’s the case with credit card transaction processing, real-time advertising auctions, content personalization, curated ecommerce recommendations, and many other situations. For these use cases and others, low latency and high throughput are key characteristics technical teams need to optimize for when choosing a database.
Aerospike is the Silicon Valley-based startup behind Aerospike DB, a hardware-optimized, in-memory NoSQL database solution designed for very large scale and very fast response times. In other words, for use cases where a lot of data questions need to be answered really quickly, Aerospike might be the right solution.
Today, the company announced that it’s raised $32 million in Series D funding led by Triangle Peak Partners. Existing investors NewView Capital Partners, Alsop Louie Partners, and Eastward Capital Partners participated in the round. This deal brings Aerospike’s total venture backing to $78 million, according to the company.
As a condition of the deal, Triangle Peak Partners’ co-founding partner Dain DeGroff and NewView Capital operating partner Tim Connor will join Aerospike’s board of directors. Valuation and other terms of the transaction were not disclosed by the company.
“Data is the new [intellectual property],” said Aerospike CEO John Dillon on a phone call with Crunchbase News. “If you’re able to extract insights from that data, you can make it actionable. When someone shows up, you can decide what the next best thing to do is.” The need for high-speed databases capable of handling low-latency queries into petabyte-scale data was first felt by the online advertising industry over a decade ago, Dillon said, but now there’s demand across multiple sectors ranging from financial services and telephony to media and ecommerce.
According to Dillon, Aerospike excels where other database solutions fall down. Legacy database solutions either can’t scale to meet customer needs, or they cost too much to operate, Dillon said. Aerospike’s commercial product backs the data infrastructure of Verizon Media, furniture and home goods retailer Wayfair’s recommendation engine, as well as other components of services provided by the likes of PayPal, Nielson, AirTel, and Snap. Its open source community version is used by developers around the world for tinkering, research, and commercial projects alike.
The company says it’s been growing its revenue 50 percent year-over-year and has a customer retention rate of over 95 percent.
Aerospike intends to use its fresh funding to expand its geographic footprint, specifically into the Asia-Pacific region. The company has kept a fairly low profile, up to this point, said Dillon. “I don’t know if we’re going to put a billboard up on the 101,” the main arterial highway threading through Silicon Valley, but the company does plan to ramp up its sales and marketing teams with the help of this new financing.
Illustration: Li-Anne Dias