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January 29, 2014

Redis Labs Emerges to Push Hosted NoSQL Business

Alex Woodie

The second time was a charm for Redis Labs, the new name for the company that offers cloud hosting of the open source NoSQL database of the same name. Formerly Garantia Data, the company (which tried to change its name last fall) is gearing up for growth, and aiming to get on the radar screens of those holding the corporate purse strings, not just developers.

Redis is the 13th most popular database in the world, and the most popular of the key-value store NoSQL databases, according to the database surveyors at DB-Engines.com. The in-memory database is used primarily for Web apps that need very fast access to a large database, which is possibly why it’s used by the likes of Twitter, Pintrest, and GitHub.

Redis Labs, meanwhile, sells access to a hosted version of Redis, called Redis Cloud, that addresses one of the open source’s database’s key deficiencies, which is that it’s not scalable beyond a single node. The company also provides greater high availability and manageability than the plain-vanilla, open-source Redis code.

The name changes is part of more aggressive effort to get in front of IT decision makers, not just the developers who have driven growth for Redis Labs up to this point, Redis Labs co-founder and CEO Ofer Bengal tells Datanami in an interview.

“So far it’s basically a zero-touch model. People read about us, they go to the website, pay with their credit card, and that’s it. No salespeople or marketing,” Bengal says. “We are now in the process, following this [latest] fundraising round, of building more structured and aggressive sales and marketing organization that would proactively engage with potential users.”

Bengal says the reputation that the Redis database has developed among developers is positioning his company to be on the cusp of a period of strong growth. He cites research that points to Redis being the second most popular NoSQL database in five years, behind MongoDB, but ahead of Cassandra (Datastax) and Couchbase.

“We hear also from companies like RightScale and NewRelic that …today Redis is among the three top databases chosen for new applications by developers, together with MySQL and MongoDB,” he says. “Redis is basically today number two in terms of adoption by developers among NoSQL databases.”

The company currently has 1,300 paying customers and about 25 employees, split between dual headquarters in the Silicon Valley and Israel. By the end of the year, Bengal hopes to add another 10 employees to the company. The company is also aiming to partner with other tier-one cloud hosting providers beyond Amazon and IBM, and to get them running the Redis Cloud too.

For the record, this is the second time the company tried to change its name. Last fall, just after the $9 million round of funding, the company announced it was changing its name to RedisDB, but pulled back after the open source Redis community did not approve. “The name Redis Cloud has been used by us for years now,” Bengal says. “Most people know us by the name. We have many customer who don’t know Garantia Data.”

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