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VCs big data spending spree continues

Cloudera is just the latest to raise large sums

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Venture capital firms continue to funnel big sums of money to big data startups.

Most recently, Cloudera raised $160 million in new financing from investors including T. Rowe Price and Google Ventures. The latest round for Cloudera (which offers its own distribution of Hadoop plus integrated tools) brings its total funding to $300 million.

On the same day Cloudera announced its venture capital windfall, analytics startup Platfora announced funding of its own. Platfora, based in San Mateo, closed a $38 million round from investors including Tenaya Capital, Citi Ventures, Cisco and Allegis Capital. The latest round brings Platfora's total financing to $65 million.

Platfora's analytics and visualization software is designed to run on top of Hadoop; existing customers include DirecTV, Disney, and The Washington Post.

"Platfora's analytics layer not only makes legacy and Hadoop infrastructure instantly more valuable, but helps non-technical business professionals access the data they need to innovate," said Hilton Romanski, senior vice president of Corporate Business Development at Cisco, in a statement.

In the big picture, big data investments continue to climb. Roughly $4.9 billion was invested in big data companies from 2008 to 2012, according to CB Insights. The pace quickened in the first half of 2013, when private big data companies raised nearly $1.3 billion across 127 deals, the research firm reports. For the full 2013 year, investors pumped $3.6 billion into big data companies, estimates Big Data Startups, a Netherlands-based aggregator of big data resources.

Other new funding recipients in the big data world include:

Splice Machine: Last month Splice Machine closed a $15 million Series B round of funding. InterWest Partners led the investment, along with returning investor Mohr Davidow Ventures. The company, based in San Francisco, makes a transactional SQL-on-Hadoop database.

InfiniDB: Database company InfiniDB announced $7.5 million in funding -- and a name change (it used to be known as Calpont Corp.) last month. The new corporate moniker is taken from the name of the company's open-source columnar database.

BlueTalon: Newcomer BlueTalon just announced $1.5 million in seed funding for its platform, which aims to make it easier to collaborate on shared databases.

Spire Technologies: Based in Bangalore, Spire Technologies last month announced $8 million in Series A funding. Spire is creating targeted applications, based on its data analytics platform, for areas including talent management, CRM, and fraud detection.

Palantir: In late December, Palantir disclosed in an SEC filing that it raised $107.5 million in its latest funding round. Known for its work with government agencies, Palantir offers a suite of software for integrating, visualizing and analyzing data.

Ann Bednarz covers IT careers, outsourcing and Internet culture for Network World. Follow Ann on Twitter at@annbednarzand reach her via email


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