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Alation Raises $50 Million In Financing, Vows Accelerated Development Of Its Data Catalog Technology

Channel partners are leading the way in expanding the potential use cases for the Alation Data Catalog software.

Big data software developer Alation has raised $50 million in Series C financing, the company said Thursday, funding the company plans to largely devote to accelerating development of its data catalog technology.

The financing is likely to further the company's already rapid growth, which CEO Satyen Sangani told CRN has included a three-fold increase in sales each year since the company launched its Alation Data Catalog in 2015.

"We've seen this extraordinary growth, both due to our being the leader in this technology and due to growth in the space," Sangani said in an interview.

 [Related: Trust And Verify: Alation Adds Data Governance Capabilities To Its Big Data System]

Alation, based in Redwood City, Calif., develops data catalog technology that locates and indexes data that may be scattered across multiple sources within an organization. The software makes it possible for users to discover, access and utilize that data – a critical point with more organizations today providing information workers with "self-service" business analytics – and for data governance tasks.

Businesses are increasingly recognizing that their data is an asset that can be monetized, Sangani said, and the Alation Data Catalog is a key technology for making that happen. Beyond data discovery and data governance, the CEO said Alation's software is finding its way into new use cases including data migration projects and "infonomics" – understanding the potential financial value of a company's data assets.

Sangani said Alation's channel partners, such as the First San Francisco Partners consultancy, have been particularly effective in quickly implementing Alation's software and expanding its use within customer organizations for additional purposes.

"We're really seeing the channel as a mechanism to expand the use cases for our technology within customers," Sangani said.

The new funding round was led by SAP's Sapphire Ventures and joined by Salesforce Ventures – both new investors – along with participation by existing investors Costanoa Venture Capital, Data Collective Venture Capital, Harmony Partners and Icon Ventures.

Sangani noted along with the capital, SAP and Salesforce will provide Alation with advice and market expansion opportunities. "These are companies that really understand the enterprise," he said.

The CEO noted that Alation wasn't particularly in need of additional funding at this time – 80 percent of the $23 million raised in the company's Series B round in July 2017 is "still in the bank," he said.

But with the funding available and the market moving so quickly, Sangani said the additional money will allow Alation to double its engineering resources, accelerate its product research and development efforts, and expand the product's functional capabilities to meet market demands.

Alation has appeared on both the CRN 2018 Emerging Vendors list and the CRN 2018 Big Data 100 list.

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