John Dillon, Chief Executive Officer, Aerospike Blog

Today we announced that Aerospike took additional funding. You can read the details here. This milestone is another important step forward in Aerospike’s long-term evolution — and certainly not a destination in itself.

I want to take a step back and provide some perspective on our more than 50% year-over-year growth for the past five consecutive years and our more than 95% customer retention rate. In so doing, I’ll detail the larger strategy, opportunity and how the industry has come to embrace the benefits of machine-speed-and-scale, data-rich applications.

Machine Scale and Speed Is Now Table Stakes

When Aerospike started years back, we were really a pioneering business. Our first customers — the true pioneers — were embarking on the cutting edge of what is now called “digital transformation.” The entire adtech vertical market is practically built on this notion of real-time delivery of information at a massive scale and that’s where we got our start. These innovators leverage vast amounts of data at internet scale to deliver breakthrough results and disrupt legacy business models with applications never built before. Applications that, if they could reliably leverage data at extreme speed, could provide significant competitive advantage that would delight users, boost revenues, and leave competitors scratching their heads.

Fast forward. Big data is now really, really big — bigger really than anyone expected. The data a company has is a modern-day form of IP. If you can put it to work, the potential is endless. Business constantly accelerates. Everything is moving to the edge. And internet — or machine-speed-and-scale — is now mainstream scale. It’s table stakes and no longer optional – at least for companies that want to win. Poor customer experience, crashing applications, and runaway infrastructure costs all have dire business consequences.

Real-time, extreme-scale and data-rich applications are now pervasive, and quietly behind the scenes, Aerospike powers many of them. Anybody reading right now likely touches an Aerospike-powered application at some point during their day. Banks and payments networks use Aerospike for instant fraud protection and online payments. That advertisement on the right? The one that knows you looked at red sofas earlier today and has a suggestion that is relevant to you? Well, that too, is probably powered by Aerospike. And many other companies leverage Aerospike in applications that capture moments that matter and deliver value to businesses and their customers not possible a few years ago.

A Modern, New Stack

Working with customers such as PayPal, Wayfair, Snap and others over the years, a very interesting pattern emerged. As machine scale and speed becomes the “new normal,” it is apparent that many enterprises have outgrown legacy database systems that fail to scale in a linear manner, aren’t persistent and durable enough (lose critical data and can’t recover quickly), and often break the bank. More and more enterprises come to Aerospike and say, “we couldn’t do this with database X,” or “database Y simply collapsed when we hit petabyte scale.” Others say, “we simply cannot afford to keep adding servers to keep up with our scale.” And the old notion of putting volatile DRAM memory caching servers in front of a flagging database is proving to be a failed strategy.

What has become clear in an age of instant answers is that a new stack is required. A stack, designed, like Aerospike, from the ground up for the purpose of machine scale and speed. There are so many technologies today converging into the new stack — hardware (like Intel Persistent Memory and ADQ), connectivity (Spark and Kafka, etc.) and cloud, that torturing old databases to try to meet new demands is a costly fool’s errand.

The new stack is also in the early stages of becoming “the” stack for more traditional data workloads. Last week, our founder and chief product officer, Srini Srinivasan wrote extensively on this phenomenon. As Aerospike customers got one, two, or more Aerospike edge applications under their belt, they wanted the same speed, hyperscale footprint, and low total cost of ownership in other use cases. Verizon Media is a prime example of this, as it consolidates and streamlines its data infrastructure with Aerospike.

As the new stack emerges, Aerospike increasingly finds itself as the core, real-time data platform behind exciting new applications — and the upgrade and modernization of old ones. This is Aerospike at a whole new business scale. With this additional investment and our already strong balance sheet and positive cash flow, Aerospike will continue to accelerate our investment in our product, in our global go-to-market footprint, and the cloud to meet what we believe is now mainstream demand for next-generation, real-time NoSQL data platforms.

We appreciate our valued customers for trusting Aerospike and continuing to innovate to delight customers and improve shareholder returns. Our employees work diligently to partner with customers on exciting projects that help companies transform to the new mainstream. Aerospike has a lot of experience under its belt across many industries. But the fun part is that we all feel like we’re just getting started.

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    John Dillon, Chief Executive Officer, Aerospike

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    John is the Chief Executive Officer of Aerospike. John has more than 30 years of experience building high-growth technology companies, and a passion for empowering developers creating next-gen applications in the cloud. John previously held CEO roles at Engine Yard, Hyperion Solutions, Navis and Salesforce.com. Earlier in his career he was an engineer at Electronic Data Systems and held sales management roles at Oracle as the relational database management company grew from $100M to $1B.