Snowflake Computing Raises $263M In Venture Funding, Plans Expansion Of Its R&D, Global Sales Efforts


Snowflake Computing has closed on a stunning $263 million round of funding, the company said Thursday, pushing its "pre-money" market valuation to $1.5 billion.

The fast-growing cloud data warehouse-as-a-service provider said the new financing brings its total funding to $473 million. The company said it would use the additional capital to step up its R&D operations and expand its global sales efforts.

Snowflake Computing, founded in 2012 and based in San Mateo, Calif., said that in the past year it tripled the size of its customer base and grew the volume of customer data stored in Snowflake by 400 percent. The vendor's service went live in June 2015.

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Snowflake is competing with suppliers of on-premise data warehouse systems such as Teradata and cloud data warehouse services from giants Amazon Web Services, Microsoft and Google. The company's pitch is that it provides data warehouse services that are easier to set up, more agile and lower cost than traditional on-premise systems.

"Data is the currency of today's economy and the data warehouse is the engine of that economy," said Snowflake CEO Bob Muglia in a statement. "But legacy technologies still hinder organizations from becoming modern, data-driven enterprises. Snowflake's vision, which began with the data warehouse built for the cloud, has gained significant traction with enterprises across dozens of industries.

"Today's [funding] announcement further validates Snowflake's continued mission to enable a true data economy by removing the barriers that prevent enterprises from easily acquiring insight from all their data no matter where that data resides," Muglia said.

The Series E funding round was led by existing investors ICONIQ Capital and Altimeter Capital and new investor Sequoia Capital. Also participating in the round were earlier investors Capital One Growth Ventures, Madrona Venture Group, Redpoint Ventures, Sutter Hill Ventures and Wing Ventures.

Snowflake said it would use the additional funding to grow its engineering teams at its San Mateo headquarters and at its new engineering office in Bellevue, Wash. With its accelerated R&D efforts the company plans to continue developing additional software for its service portfolio, such as The Data Sharehouse data sharing service and Snowpipe data loading technology the company debuted last year.

On the operational side Snowflake will use some of the funds to expand its current operations across North America, the European Union and Asia Pacific region. Snowflake uses AWS as the cloud platform for its services, which are now available across four AWS deployment zones.

"Similar to how Salesforce disrupted the CRM industry nearly 20 years ago, Snowflake is disrupting the data analytics market and leading the way in the modern data economy," Sequoia Capital Partner Pat Grady said in a statement. "Every company today needs a strategy for managing data in the cloud, and as IoT has ushered in a new era of complexity, Snowflake is helping enterprises gain the most value from their data."