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June 30, 2014

MapR Announces $110M Investment Led by Google

Hadoop distributor MapR Technologies said today it has completed a $110 million financing round led by heavy hitters Google Capital and the venture capital arm of mobile chip specialist Qualcomm.

San Jose-based MapR said Google Capital led the equity-financing round with $80 million. Also participating was Qualcomm Ventures, along with existing investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, Mayfield Fund, New Enterprise Associates and Redpoint Ventures.

MapR also announced completion of a $30 million line of credit led by Silicon Valley Bank.

The financing will be used to fund expansion of MapR’s international enterprise business, including support for open source projects such as Apache Drill, Apache Spark and Hadoop 2.2 with YARN. The company said earlier this year that its latest Hadoop distribution would continue to run first generation Hadoop applications alongside newer apps developed for YARN.

In conjunction with its investment, Google Capital general partner Gene Frantz will join the MapR board of directors. Frantz, a private equity veteran, joined Google Capital in June 2013.

John Schroeder, MapR’s CEO and co-founder, noted that Google and MapR have previously partnered to offer Hadoop on Google’s cloud platform. MapR Distribution for Hadoop is integrated with Google Compute Engine, the cornerstone of the search giant’s cloud platform.

Qualcomm is a leading designer of chip sets for mobile phones and is an early player in developing an ecosystem around the emerging Internet of Things. Albert Wang, director of Qualcomm Ventures, called Hadoop “a cornerstone of the big data ecosystem.” Wang added in a statement that the MapR investment is intended to use its technology “in leveraging the expanding Internet of Things.”

Schroeder added that MapR currently has an installed base of more than 500 paying licensees for Hadoop services. It claims significant production Hadoop environments in financial services, health care, manufacturing, media, retail and telecommunications.

Along with Google, MapR’s other cloud partners include Amazon Web Services, Cisco Systems and Hewlett-Packard.

MapR is Google Capital’s fourth major investment since emerging from stealth mode last year. Up to now, its focus has been on technology companies with a proven track record. Previous investments include Freshdesk, a cloud-based customer support software vendor, Lending Club and SurveyMonkey. It has also acquired stakes in startups like the Uber car service and home automation specialist Nest.

Google, which a decade ago developed the MapReduce technology underpinning the first generation of Hadoop, has been quietly moving away from the technology. The company unveiled a possible successor on June 25 at its annual Google I/O developers’ conference called Dataflow. It is being sold through Google’s hosted cloud service.

Meanwhile, MapR unveiled a set of new products earlier this year based on the Hadoop version 2 codebase. The company also claims to offer the only Hadoop distribution that combines general-purpose storage platforms with YARN.

Related items:

Google Re-Imagines MapReduce, Launches DataFlow

MapR Embraces Co-Existence with Hadoop Update

Big Data Getting Big Bucks from VC Firms