Connected platforms manage data-in-motion and data-at-rest: Kamal Brar, Hortonworks

Kamal Brar, VP and GM, APAC, Hortonworks highlights how the company’s connected data platforms helping customers with actionable intelligence by managing data-in-motion and data-at-rest.

Sejuti Das May 18th 2017

The emergence of big data technology has revolutionized the data science and analytics allowing businesses to store, access and analyze vast amounts of historical data. But the existing data platforms require making progress to deal with the tsunami of data being generated by the IoT.

According to a recent NASSCOM release, the big data industry in the country is expected to grow eight-fold to touch USD 16 billion by 2025, from the present size of USD 2 billion.

Therefore, we need ground breaking strategies and enhanced solutions to maximize the value out of the data.

HortonWorks, the Silicon Valley data management company, who has stunned the industry by becoming the fastest enterprise software start-up to reach USD 100 million, claims to create enterprise-ready open data platforms and modern data applications.

The platforms are designed to deliver actionable intelligence from all data, whether be it, data-in-motion or data-at-rest. The company along with its partners provide the expertise that allows customers to unlock value from their data.

On this note, Kamal Brar, VP and GM APAC at Hortonworks discusses how the company’s connected data platforms manage data, and help its customers with actionable insights.

Edited excerpts.

What megatrends is HortonWorks betting on for 2017? How is the company addressing the market opportunity?

With the emergence of Digital India initiative, the consumption of data in the market is remarkable, which made it a megatrend for this year. Individuals, businesses, and even governments are starting to consider data as the most tangible asset, and therefore managing, storing and analyzing it is critically important. Another trend gaining popularity is the cloud, which has also become an important aspect for businesses. This is primarily because in the future hardware will be outshined by the cloud infrastructure.

Open source is another big trend that is going to gain traction. It is helping small companies get on feet, and with time, larger enterprises are realizing the benefits.

We have got customers in India especially in sectors like e-commerce and telecommunications, who are already witnessing the benefits of Hadoop. The government of India is one such customer, who is keen to adopt newer technologies such open-source, which is proven with the launch of projects like the digital locker, and payment gateways which are coming through the demonetization move.

Alongside, we are betting big on selling services and support for the Hadoop open-source data analytics framework to businesses in India as well as for government’s big data projects. We are also leading a bunch of companies that are pursuing the opportunity to monetize Hadoop.

What are the big data initiatives HortonWorks is working on?

Although we have started off being just a Hadoop company, we have quickly realized that with the emergence of IoT, more data will be generated outside the enterprise data center than inside it. To make it easy for customers to automate, secure data flows, and curate real-time business insights, we acquired Onyara, a key contributor to Apache NiFi. It helps customers to capture the data at the point of origin.

We are betting big on selling services and support for the Hadoop open-source data analytics framework to businesses in India as well as for government’s big data projects.

Kamal Brar, VP and GM, APAC, Hortonworks

Additionally, we have launched data platform version 2.6, which leverages open source innovations to deliver enhanced services in real time. We call it industry’s only secure, enterprise-ready open source Apache Hadoop distribution. It addresses the complete requirements of data-at-rest and delivers robust analytics to accelerate decision making.

We have also collaborated with strategic data center players, to enable enterprise-grade connected data platforms. It enables our customers to receive integrated solutions for addressing their modern data architecture requirements.

Developing skills needed around data science and data technologies are also a part of our big data initiatives. We are also actively looking at partnering with government and education providers to manage the skill shortage.

How are the Asian countries doing in the big data space, especially India? How are you beating the skills gap?

While some Asia-Pacific regions are more cutting edge than others in terms of deployment and being mission-critical ready, there are others who are still behind. However, countries like Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia are leading the curve. And therefore, we believe this is the right time to be in this industry and develop skills needed around data science and data technologies.

India is certainly a very forward-looking country primarily from the digitization point, and a major user of Hadoop. This is because of the government initiated projects like Digital India, IndiaStack, Aadhar, and etcetera.

Although the North American market is way ahead in terms of business, but India along with other Asian countries is catching up rapidly. Also, the growth curve is much steeper for Indian and APAC as compared to North America.

To balance the skills shortage for data scientists in the region, we are eyeing opportunities in the Indian market as well as to hire talent here. We have opened an office in Bengaluru, where our engineering, sales and support team are anchored.

This center would employ120 people to do the R&D, and provide consulting and support services to businesses. We aim to plow more investment in international markets this year and drive more usage of its connected data platforms and new solutions.

What is your public sector spending? How much priority are you giving to the government sector of the country?

Public sector organizations in India are always struggling to extract insights from data using different sources. And their resource and budget constraints make it an even greater challenge for organizations. Therefore we have come up with enterprise-grade economic solutions, with which customers can turn all their data to competitive advantage at an affordable price.

The government of India has always been our major focus. With the sector being in the middle of a massive digital transformation, they are keen to adopt emerging platforms along with big data solutions. Also, we have some service integration which will help us integrate with companies who are building niche offerings on top of the data platform in open source.

Additionally, we had partnered with NetApp to develop Apache Hadoop solutions using Hortonworks Data Platform. Along with catering industries like financial services and media, it also accommodates the public sector of the country. Another partnership that has helped us in penetrating the sector is with Connvertex. With this partnership, we work with the governments to develop analytic services for them and ensure they receive returns on their analytic investments.

Last November, we had announced exceeding 1,000 customers worldwide across several industries, including public sector—by delivering open and connected data platforms to manage data-at-rest and data-in-motion in any environment.