Snowflake's cloud-based data-warehousing service has long been associated with Amazon Web Services (AWS), which has served the company well as it looked to establish a foothold in the market. But as cloud adoption grows among enterprises, Snowflake can't stand pat with a single vendor, so the company recently made available its data-warehousing service on Microsoft Azure. The move not only provides customer choice but also enables Snowflake to enhance other capabilities, such as replication. Investors continue to show confidence in Snowflake, which is reflected in the company landing $263m earlier this year.
The 451 Take
Since its inception, the company has garnered a good deal of attention, particularly within the investor community. In January, Snowflake secured an additional $263m in funding, led by Iconiq Capital, Altimeter Capital
While the company was tight-lipped about revenue and specific growth numbers, management did disclose that total paying customers are approaching 1,500 and includes what the company calls its 30-day customers that number about 800. What the company has learned is that many customers initially sign on for 30 days, for instance, which serves as a stepping stone to engage with Snowflake on a longer-term basis. Moreover, management notes that the workloads for those customers that have not yet entered into a proof of concept and those with longer-term contracts are relatively the same and include a mix of short-run scenarios as well as many customers running longer, more consistent workloads.
For its latest news, Snowflake is making its service available on Microsoft Azure starting in July as a public preview with general availability expected sometime in Q3 2018. The new service on Azure will be functionally similar to what has been available on AWS, which is the cloud platform the company started with. The addition of Azure is noteworthy for a couple of reasons. One is that it affords Snowflake's customers a choice that could come into play should the customer have conflicts with AWS; for instance, from a retail perspective, need a multi-cloud strategy or have existing applications already running on Azure.
However, there are other cloud platforms, such as from IBM and Oracle, both of which provide data-warehousing services. IBM provides Db2 on Cloud while Oracle offers its Autonomous Data Warehouse Cloud. Both also provide on-premises deployments including IBM for Db2 and Oracle with Exadata, as well as the Oracle Exadata Cloud at Customer.
Still, there are other cloud-based data-warehousing services available, with the caveat that these companies do not necessarily provide public cloud platforms, although some do provide managed cloud offerings. For instance, Teradata, which promotes its Teradata Everywhere strategy, offers support for on-premises, private clouds, public clouds
The distributed data-processing vendors (Hadoop) are getting in the game as well and drive a type of decoupled architecture approach, in that querying, compute and storage are separate open source or proprietary products but also include some optimizations to ensure certain efficiencies when deployed. These systems can be deployed for data-warehouse workloads. For instance, there is the Cloudera Analytic DB offering, which is also available as a beta service on the company's PaaS platform, Altus. Hortonworks offers what it calls its Enterprise Data Warehouse and MapR offers its Data Warehouse Optimization and Analytics as part of its portfolio.
James Curtis is a Senior Analyst for the Data, AI & Analytics Channel at 451 Research. He has had experience covering the BI reporting and analytics sector and currently covers Hadoop, NoSQL
Jeremy Korn is a Research Associate at 451 Research. He graduated from Brown University with a BA in Biology and East Asian Studies and received
Aaron Sherrill is a Senior Analyst for 451 Research covering emerging trends, innovation