I’m very excited to announce that Ahana, the Presto company, has raised a jumbo $20M Series A round from lead investor Third Point Ventures. Our SaaS managed service for open source Presto enables data platform teams to easily and cost effectively deliver powerful SQL processing on all their data. This is our vision of Open Data Lake Analytics and it’s what Facebook, Uber, Twitter, and others in the Presto Foundation have been running at scale.
It’s been only 15 months since the founding of Ahana and I’m extremely proud of what the team has achieved to date. We came out of stealth last year with seed investments totalling $4.8M from GV (Google Ventures), Lux Capital, and Leslie Ventures, who all also participated in this oversubscribed A round. Initially we focused on the Presto community, providing support, open source contributions, and tutorials to help people get started easily with Presto. Subsequently, we announced the first managed service for Presto at PrestoCon in September and GA’d two months later at AWS Re:Invent in December with early customer acclaim.
I am also excited to have Rob Schwartz, Managing Partner of Third Point Ventures join our board and to partner with Third Point that has tremendous public market investing expertise, relationships, and research capabilities. Third Point has over $25B under management and Rob drives their early stage, growth, and cross-over investments in their emerging technology arm, Third Point Ventures. I value his hands-on experience with young companies, helping them deliver on their vision. For example, he is an active investor in Yellowbrick in the data space. Rob and Third Point had four key reasons to invest in Ahana…the team, the project, the market, and the product-market fit as evidenced by customer traction. Let me touch on these four areas:
- THE TEAM: This is my 6th startup tour of duty and I’ll be the first to attest that startups require an incredible amount of energy. That energy comes from the synchronized rowing of the oars to propel the ship, no matter the size (or startup stage of company growth). I’m most proud of our extraordinary team; all their hands on deck that have pulled together so far. The Ahana team includes experts in a range of industry-leading databases: Teradata, IBM DB2, Vertica, Aster Data, and the recently IPO’d Couchbase. In addition to experts in open source & Presto hailing from Facebook, Uber, Walmart and Alibaba.
- THE OPEN SOURCE PRESTO PROJECT: Since we started Ahana last year, the momentum we’ve seen in the Presto community has been phenomenal. We helped the Presto Foundation lead two massively successful PrestoCon’s and numerous meetups across the world, whose membership have crossed over 1000 members. The Docker Sandbox Container for Presto hosted by Ahana has had over 250K pulls just in the last 6 months, and 10 companies are now part of the growing Presto Foundation consortium. We’re both thankful to all those in the community who have helped make Presto what it is and humbled to be a part of its success. We pledge to continue open source code contributions for the benefit of the Presto community for many years to come.
- THE MARKET: This $20MM series A raise enables us to further our vision of providing the most flexible and performant Open Data Lake Analytics with Presto. Open Data Lake Analytics is quickly becoming the next big emerging stack, led by hyperscaler bellwether companies like Facebook and Uber. While the data warehouse has been the workhorse of analytics, it’s also very expensive. To address that, more data is moving into cloud data lakes like AWS S3 because they are so inexpensive and ubiquitous. So we’re seeing the data warehouse getting deconstructed in the cloud with the commodified data lake coupled with open source Presto. This stack enables SQL analytics directly on the data lake, making it the most cost effective, open, and flexible solution.
- PRODUCT-MARKET FIT: Ahana is at the intersection of some rapidly growing trends right now – Open Source, Cloud Analytics, and the Data Lake. And our customer base is proof of that. Having only GA’d this past December, the adoption we’ve seen has been incredible. Companies like Cartona, an eCommerce company out of Egypt, and Carbon, a fast growing ad tech company, are using Ahana and telling the world about their use cases. Securonix, the Gartner magic quadrant leader in the security SIEM space, is a huge proponent of Presto and Ahana and recently joined us at the AWS Startup Showcase. Our customers are building out reporting and dashboarding, customer-facing analytics, data transformation use cases, and much more with Ahana Cloud for Presto. We can’t wait to see what they do next.
Lastly, I’ll mention that this raise enables us to accelerate growth in three main areas:
- Technical innovation of the Presto project, by scaling our product and engineering teams. Btw, we’re an all remote company.
- Adoption via more evangelism for the Presto open source project. We will continue working closely with the community and other Presto Foundation members like Facebook, Uber, and Intel.
- Growing our Marketing and Sales organizations, continuing our focus on customer adoption.
To sum it up, I’d like to share what Rob Schwartz, Managing Partner of Third Point Ventures says about us:
“We’re excited to join the exceptional team at Ahana and assist them in their evolution from rapid, early adoption to substantial market prominence. As we witness the evolution of modern analytics, we’re seeing a new stack emerge adjacent to the data warehouse. Companies need an open, flexible approach to access their data, and the data lake with Presto on top provides that. Ahana Cloud provides the foundation for this new stack, giving all platform teams the ability to easily use Presto on their data lake. With Ahana, any company can leverage the open data lake for their analytics. This is extremely powerful.”
Cheers to our next phase of growth, and did I mention we’re hiring? 😉
We are just getting started. Join us on this incredible journey at the intersection of cloud, data, and open source…what many unicorns are made of.