Most of you know that I have been involved in covering the data warehousing market since the early '90s. I've watched as companies realized the benefits they could obtain by implementing a data warehouse. I've seen the price tag for data warehousing drop to a level that makes it a technology that isn't just for the "big guys," and I've witnessed how business intelligence, analytics, cloud computing, virtualization and the deluge of data impact all organizations today. The technology changes have been phenomenal, far surpassing what anyone dreamed of in the early days of data warehousing.
That's why I'm excited about the recent news that EMC will acquire Greenplum. Greenplum was developed for sophisticated, high-performance data analytics. According to the press release announcing the acquisition, "Greenplum is capable of delivering 10 to 100 times the performance of traditional database software at a dramatically lower cost." Greenplum uses a "shared-nothing" massively parallel processing (MPP) architecture, using virtualized x86 architecture. This is particularly important for data warehousing today because of the ever-growing volumes of data that require sophisticated analysis.
We are now seeing the consolidation within the data warehouse and appliance market accelerating. First SAP acquired Sybase IQ and now the big news this week that EMC is acquiring Greenplum. This is great news for both EMC and Greenplum. EMC continues to make acquisitions for processing large amounts of data as we see data volumes increasing exponentially. This also adds to their software portfolio, which has much higher margins than the hardware and storage markets.
For Greenplum, it gives them the capital to expand and access to the largest customers in the world. Greenplum currently has 138 customers and this should help them grow by at least a factor of 3 in the years ahead. EMC has worked with many of the appliance vendors in the space, I believe that they chose Greenplum's "Chorus Technology" for many of the following reasons:
- Greenplum has played a major role within the implementation of private clouds for large customers, which provides for greater virtualization and a better way to manage storage.
- MPP architecture which is critical for scalability.
- This combination will provide an "open alternative" to customers who do not want to be locked into a specific stack provided by a single vendor like Oracle, etc. By going with EMC, Greenplum, VM Ware and Cisco, they can get the best of all worlds.
- Gartner had positioned Greenplum as a breakaway visionary compared to other appliance vendors.
- EMC has been working with Greenplum at many customer sites as direct attached storage and now they will be able to use SAN to reprovision storage "on the fly."
In my opinion, this is a great move for EMC and I am always a fan of "strategic acquisitions" as the benefits far outweigh the cost. This is also going to add more pressure to the other data warehousing appliance vendors like Netezza and ParAccel who are going to find it more difficult to remain as separate entities.
According to Ben Werther, Director of Product Management at Greenplum, "The combination of Greenplum technology and EMC's virtualized private cloud infrastructure is a great match. Together we'll provide technology and tools to help customers extract value from their rapidly growing volumes of data and be ready for whatever 'big data' challenges lay ahead."
This news makes the data warehousing, analytics and BI even more exciting for us to watch and, of course, for you to use!