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People to Watch 2017

Matt Mills
MapR Technologies

The big data market is full of companies that were long on ideas but short on disciplined execution. As experienced software executive with a 20-year career at Oracle, Matt Mills’ steady hand will guide MapR through the next phase of its rapid growth.

Datanami: Hi Matt. Congratulations on being named a Datanami Person to Watch in 2017! What can you tell us about MapR’s roadmap for 2017 and beyond?

Matt Mills: Increasingly, we see that organizations are using data-driven “intelligent applications” to create competitive advantage and disrupt industries. They are transforming products and services, redefining customer experiences, driving new revenue streams, and achieving operational excellence so they can be faster, smarter, more agile, and cost efficient. For example, retailers are using data in real-time to personalize the shopping experience, while they are simultaneously optimizing pricing and supply chain operations.

However, the reality is that these intelligent applications require data capabilities which are not adequately addressed by existing open-source or legacy technologies. MapR pioneered a new data platform that converges all data types and processing capabilities required by intelligent applications. And we intend to continue to set the pace for innovation and growth, providing by continuing to invest in new capabilities that empower our customers to fully operationalize their data.

Datanami: How is the converged platform strategy resonating with MapR customers, and how do you see the platform evolving in 2017?

MapR is experiencing great success with hundreds of customers across a wide range of industries around the world. They are realizing tremendous value from the Converged Data Platform. The numbers prove that out, based on the high percentage of customers who choose to stay with MapR.

As our customers realize the benefits of our platform, many choose to buy even more our our products. They may deploy additional capacity, increase the number of use cases deployed on the platform or purchase new elements of the platform that increase functionality.

Although our platform can be adopted by organizations of nearly any size, we will continue to focus our sales efforts on the largest global organizations and those that place a high degree of value and reliance on data.

Datanami: Generally speaking, on the subject of big data, what do you see as the most important trends for 2017 that will have an impact now and into the future?

The growth and diversity of data being generated by an increasing number of sources is truly staggering. It has created significant challenges for organizations that need to operationalize their data to remain competitive. At the same time, the move toward modern hardware infrastructure is challenging their conventional data management approaches.

While a number of big data technologies, especially from open-source communities, have attempted to address these issues, they have their own limitations since most were designed as focused point products.

After experimenting with these big data technologies for the past few years, most large enterprises have hit a wall: they’ve discovered that these technologies lack the speed, scale, reliability and full set of enterprise capabilities required to power intelligent applications. The future of big data, and frankly all data, lies in new platforms that seamlessly integrate the essential compute and data management technologies across all data types in a unified, enterprise-grade platform. They will empower organizations to achieve new levels of value and differentiation by delivering innovative applications that operationalize their data.

Datanami: Outside of the professional sphere, are there any fun facts about you that your colleagues may be surprised to learn?

I grew up in a blue-collar working household in the Detroit area. My father had to be at work by 6:00 every morning, so we all got up at 4:00 a.m. because if you wanted to eat, that’s when breakfast was served. Getting up early has been ingrained in me ever since. Turns out, being an early riser provides a great time for me to pursue two things I’m passionate about… being an avid reader and an enthusiastic outdoorsman. Quality time spent reading allows me to continue to learn and grow in areas I care about like leadership.

To get outdoors, I’m fortunate enough to have a home in the hill country outside Austin, TX, which is a great place for fishing and hunting. Whether by myself or with friends, I get to test my skills and take in the great outdoors.

More about Matt Mills:

Matt Mills is the Chief Executive Officer and a Board Member at MapR Technologies. Matt is a seasoned industry veteran who brings a strong track record for leading high-growth organizations. He joined MapR after 20 years at Oracle, most recently leading the North American business while serving on the company’s executive committee.


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Matt Mills
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