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Friday, 18 October 2019 10:29

Splunk investing big in data startups with new Splunk Ventures


Machine data aggregator and analytics software company Splunk has announced a $US150m fund to invest in data startups.

Ammar Maraqa, Senior Vice President, Strategy and Business Operations, Splunk, recently visited Australia and explained the Splunk leadership are “big believers you have to make your technology innovation strategy inclusive of the ecosystem around you. That means using the ecosystem to accelerate your own innovation and get access to people.”

While Splunk has been making venture investments already, the new Splunk Ventures fund emphasises Splunk’s belief “every problem is a data problem. More and more we will see Splunk as a strategic choice, not only IT and security. It will be increasingly applied in other areas more and more to apply data-driven approaches to business problems and actions.”

The criteria Splunk is looking for, Maraqa explains, is to invest in companies and startups like a traditional corporate venture exercise. Splunk takes minority ownership and as the funded entity grows so too Splunk benefits strategically from learnings, access and understanding of what’s happening in the ecosystem. In turn, Splunk gives these companies differentiated access to technologies, go-to-market strategies and Splunk executives.

The fund is available now, with Splunk ready to invest in earlier-stage companies. It has no geographic limitations - “We recognise a lot of innovation occurs outside the United States and Silicon Valley,” Maraqa says.

Interested parties can make submissions through Splunk's website, though Maraqa says Splunk is also identifying leads through venture capitalists and technical teams.

Splunk also announced a $US50m social impact fund for organisations using data to drive social good with a shared vision of how data can change the world.

Splunk closed its $US1.05b acquisition of SignalFx earlier this month. SignalFx is in the “next-gen cloud monitoring space, adjacent to what we do,” Maraqa says. It is Splunk’s first billion-dollar acquisition.

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David M Williams

David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. David subsequently worked as a UNIX Systems Manager, Asia-Pacific technical specialist for an international software company, Business Analyst, IT Manager, and other roles. David has been the Chief Information Officer for national public companies since 2007, delivering IT knowledge and business acumen, seeking to transform the industries within which he works. David is also involved in the user group community, the Australian Computer Society technical advisory boards, and education.

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