Seems Like Big Data: DataGravity Gets $30M VC Investment, Stays Mum On Product Plans

DataGravity, a stealth developer of technology for gleaning information from data founded by a co-founder of storage vendor EqualLogic, this week said it has raised $30 million in its second round of investment.

The new investment round, which was led by venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, brings total investment in the company to $42 million, which includes a $12 million A round that closed in April.

DataGravity's mission is to transform stored data into information without the need for complex software packages, said John Joseph, president of the Nashua, N.H.-based startup and the former vice president of marketing and product management at EqualLogic, which in 2008 was acquired by Dell.

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That description sounds similar to a definition of "big data," which involves gleaning business intelligence from unstructured data, which often scales to multiple petabytes of capacity.

However, Joseph declined to attach the term big data to DataGravity.

"We're not ready to disclose products yet in any detail," he said. "It's safe to say we are going after midsized companies and the data they store and extract information for that data."

Even so, the company, according to its website, is looking to recruit the kind of engineers who could develop big data technology including data visualization engineers and a data mining and analysis team.

The company's location in Nashua, N.H., just an hour or so by car from Boston, which has become a hotbed of big data investments and close to one of the biggest big data companies in the industry, storage vendor EMC, also helps give a big data patina to DataGravity.

While Joseph declined to talk about products, he did say that his company's planned market sweet spot is companies with 200 to 2,000 people and about 100 TB of data, give or take 30 TB to 40 TB.

Go-to-market plans have not yet been finalized, but DataGravity will look at how to work with indirect sales channels, Joseph said. "We're seeing a new segment of indirect market emerging where part of a company's revenue stream comes from solution sales and where the company is looking to provide metro services, or a combination of on-premise equipment and off-premise cloud platforms," he said.

NEXT: DataGravity Takes Cue From EqualLogic

DataGravity's Joseph said the company wants to do to information mining what EqualLogic, which was founded by DataGravity co-founder and CEO Paula Long, did for storage area networking.

EqualLogic, before its acquisition by Dell, had become the leading developer of iSCSI SANs that allow storage networks to be built using companies' IP networks without the need to install a separate Fibre Channel network.

"Think about what EqualLogic did to transform the IT specialist around a SAN," he said. "You'll see DataGravity do the same around extraction of information from data. You'll see the need for a data scientist to pull information from data. Our solution is geared to helping provide that value in a steady feed."

With the new $30 million in the bank, DataGravity expects to be able to develop and launch its first product in 2014 without any additional investment, Joseph said.

For Joseph and Long, starting DataGravity is like returning home. The company's headquarters is just a couple of parking lots away from the EqualLogic headquarters in the same campus where Dell still maintains a large storage presence.