Big Data

Databricks raises $1 billion funding round at $28 billion valuation

Databricks today announced the close of a $1 billion funding round, bringing the company’s valuation to $28 billion after post-money valuation, a company spokesperson told VentureBeat. News of the funding round — the largest to-date for Databricks — was first reported in late January by Newcomer.

This amounts to a series G funding round for the data analysis and AI company. Based in San Francisco, previous funding rounds have been led by Andreessen Horowitz and New Enterprise Associates (NEA) with participation from investors like Microsoft and Battery Ventures. Previous $400 million and $250 million funding rounds, held in February and October 2019 respectively, focused on development of the Unified Analytics platform, Delta Lake, and optimization of performance with the open source MLFlow platform for performing machine learning experiments and launching models into production. In June 2020, Databricks acquired Redash, the dashboard visualization for data scientists and turned over control of MLflow to the Linux Foundation.

Databricks was founded in 2013 by the creators of Apache Spark, an open source framework for distributed computation across multiple machines many deep learning projects use today. The group of data and machine learning researchers first met at UC Berkeley.

Alongside companies like C3.ai and Snowflake that filed IPOs in 2020, Databricks is the latest company focused on data analysis and AI to experience rapid growth. That’s despite a drop in gross domestic product in the U.S. economy in the past year the likes of which, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce, has not been seen since the 1940s.

In an unrelated but relevant matter, Databricks cofounder and UC Berkeley professor Ion Stoica talked about reinforcement learning trends as part of VentureBeat’s Transform conference.

More to come

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