Data Center Finance: DataStax Acquires Aurelius

Database vendor DataStax announced in early February that it had acquired Aurelius, a vendor of graph databases.

DataStax delivers a commercial version of Apache Cassandra, an open-source distributed database management system designed to handle large amounts of data across multiple commodity servers. The acquisition of Aurelius is an important step for DataStax, as graph databases offer a host of advantages, especially in terms of applications in which data relationships are stored in a network structure. With this purchase, DataStax will now be able to deliver databases for search, in-memory, analytics and now graph applications. The ability to support multiple database types will serve as a strong value proposition for DataStax.

Matt Pfeil, co-founder and chief customer officer for DataStax, said that clients had been requesting graph database functionality for a while and that customers were forced to build their own solution system on top of a DataStax offering because the company could not supply them beforehand.

"This was something that was on our radar," said Pfeil. "As we started to ramp up, it made sense from corporate to buy it instead of build it. There's not a ton of graph database experts [out there]."

Aurelius is the primary developer for the TinkerPop open-source graph stack, as well as the Titan open-source graph database. These will both benefit DataStax's more than 400 enterprise customers, including major companies like Netflix, Adobe and Intuit.

The financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed, but DataStax will likely be using a portion of the $106 million in funding it raised in September 2014 to purchase Aurelius. All eight of Aurelius' engineers will be joining the DataStax team and will begin working on "a massively scalable graph database for the enterprise" that will work natively with Cassandra.

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