Hadoop Distributions

Today’s landscape of Hadoop vendors is mostly comprised of privately held companies that have big investments and partnerships with well established companies. This is very similar to the MPP marketplace in 2010 when these companies were purchased by much larger companies.

Here are a few of the MPP database vendors with their buyers:
Greenplum => EMC
Netezza => IBM
DATAllegro => Microsoft
Aster Data => Teradata
Vertica => HP

Similarly, I think the landscape of Hadoop vendors will change in the near future. Here are the major vendors in this Hadoop space as of September 2014:


  • Private
  • Investments: 2011 – $40M; 2014 – $900M
  • Around 600 employees
  • Founded in 2009
  • Partners with Oracle, Intel (funding), and Amazon (but also competes with Amazon)


  • Private
  • Investements: 2011 – $23M + $25M
  • 201-500 employees
  • Founded in 2011
  • Partners with Yahoo, Teradata, and SAP


  • Public
  • $100B Revenue / year
  • 400K employees
  • Founded in 1911


  • Private
  • Investments: 2009 – $9M; 2014 – $110M
  • 201-500 employees
  • Founded in 2009
  • Partners with Google


  • Private
  • Investments: 2013 – $100M from GE and assets from EMC and VMWare
  • 3000+ employees
  • Founded in 2013 (Pivotal), 2003 (Greenplum), 1998 (VMWare) and 1979 (EMC)
  • Partners with EMC, VMWare, and GE


  • Public
  • $75B Revenue / year
  • 132K employees
  • Founded in 1994

Hadoop Vendors Tomorrow
Cloudera => Oracle or Amazon
It will probably be Oracle because of the existing partnership and leadership that came from Oracle but Amazon may want it more. If Oracle doesn’t buy Cloudera, they will probably try to create their own distribution like they did with Linux.

Hortonworks => Teradata
It is only a matter of time before Teradata will have to buy Hortonworks. Microsoft might try to buy Hortonworks or just take a fork of the Windows version to rebrand. Microsoft worked with Sybase a long time ago with SQL Server and then took the code and ran rather than buying Sybase. So because of that history, I think Microsoft won’t buy and Teradata will.

Teradata bought Aster Data and Hortonworks would complete their data portfolio. Teradata for the EDW, Aster Data for Data Marts, and Hortonworks for their Data Lake.

MapR => Google
Google will snatch up MapR which will make MapR very happy.

So that leaves IBM and Amazon as the two publicly held companies left. Pivotal is privately held but by EMC, VMWare, and GE which gives all indications based on past actions by EMC that this company will go public and be big.

Post Acquisitions
So after the big shakeup, I think you’ll see these vendors remaining selling Hadoop:

  • Pivotal: 100% Apache based with the best SQL Engine
  • IBM: Big Insights
  • Teradata: Hortonworks
  • Oracle: Cloudera
  • Google: MapR
  • Amazon: Elastic MapReduce

I could be wrong but I really do think there will be a consolidation of vendors in the near future.

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