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Firebolt, a data warehouse startup, raises $100M at a $1.4B valuation for faster, cheaper analytics on large data sets – TechCrunch

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Israeli startup Firebolt has been taking on Google’s BigQuery, Snowflake and others with a cloud data warehouse solution that it claims can run analytics on large datasets cheaper and faster than its competitors. Now, it is announcing a big round of funding to fuel its big data growth: Firebolt has raised $100 million in a Series C round on a $1.4 billion valuation. It plans to use the money to continue investing in its technology stack, to step up with more business development, and to hire more talent for its team, to meet what it believes are changing tides in the world of data warehousing.

Firebolt’s customers — which include big tech companies, business intelligence firms, and any customer-facing business that needs to parse a lot of information to in turn serve information to users in real time and run back-end data applications — typically use multiple vendors when it comes to how they handle their data. “Now, they are looking for new solutions to drive new use cases,” said Eldad Farkash, Firebolt’s CEO. Snowflake and other incumbents figure significantly, but Firebolt has been entering the picture when those new use cases, and new cracks, come up.

“We rarely see people not liking Snowflake. In a room, they will never say we want to replace it. It’s unique and shows how much it means to them. But everything is changing, and their challenges are growing, and they can’t just keep one thing standing. They need options.”

Alkeon Capital is leading the round, with new backers Sozo Ventures and Glynn Capital, and previous backers Zeev Ventures, Angular Ventures, Dawn Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners, K5 Global and TLV Partners also participating.

Firebolt — founded in 2019 by by Farkash, COO Saar Bitner, and Ariel Yaroshevich, alums from business intelligence company Sisense — does not disclose how many customers it has today, nor who they are, but there are other signs of how it has been growing its business. Notably, it only emerged from stealth mode 13 months ago, and this is its third round of funding in that time, having previously announced $37 million when it came out of stealth, and then $127 million last June. (It’s raised nearly $270 million to date.)

Another sign of its growth is a big hire that the company is making. Mosha Pasumansky — a groundbreaking figure in the world of big data analytics — has been poached from Google, where he had been the principal engineer at BigQuery. He is now Firebolt’s CTO (a role previously held by Ariel Yaroshevich, one of the startup’s co-founders), and he will be leading a new Seattle office for the startup. While a portion of the funding will be going into business development and R&D, some of it will also be used to bulk up Firebolt’s team, which currently numbers 200 employees across 25 countries.

The opportunity that Firebolt is targeting is a ripe one in the world of enterprise.

Big data is at the heart of how a lot of applications, and a lot of business overall, works these days. And when it comes to big data troves, the priority for organizations is to have tools to manage them efficiently, and parse and analyse them effectively.

However, over time, as the data produced in organizations continues to expand and grow ever more complex, it has put a huge strain on organizations, both in terms of the costs of managing that data, and the investment needed to parse it in useful ways.

Firebolt’s pitch is that it has built a SQL-based architecture that handles this challenge better than anything that has come before it, using new techniques in compression that can connect data lakes and result in smaller cloud capacity requirements, resulting in lower costs and better performance, up to 182 times faster than that of other data warehouses.

“Data warehouses are solving yesterday’s problem, which was, ‘How do I migrate to the cloud and deal with scale?’” CEO Eldad Farkash once told me. Yes, Google’s BigQuery, Amazon’s RedShift and Snowflake are suitable enough answers, he believes, but “we see Firebolt as the new entrant in that space, with a new take on design on technology. We change the discussion from one of scale to one of speed and efficiency.”

Firebolt cites analysts that estimate the global cloud analytics market will be worth some $65 billion by 2025.

Investors are betting big at the moment on companies that are building platforms to meet not just the enterprise data challenges of today, but the growing challenges as they believe they will exist tomorrow. That’s having a very direct effect on companies like Firebolt that play very much into that area: Farkash said that this round was unsolicited and oversubscribed.

“We are extremely excited to partner with the world class team at Firebolt to further support their incredible growth,” said Abhi Arun, managing partner at Alkeon Capital, in a statement. “We’re seeing a shift in the market where every modern app today requires a performant and scalable data infrastructure and we believe that Firebolt is perfectly positioned to lead this segment of the market and become the cloud data warehouse of choice for modern data engineering and dev teams building interactive analytics experiences at scale.”

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Identity in the metaverse: Creating a global identity system

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With the advent of the metaverse, the need for a global identity system has become apparent. There are many different ways to create an identity in the metaverse, but no single system is universally accepted. 

The challenge is usually two-fold: first, how to create an identity that is accepted by all the different platforms and services in the metaverse, and second, how to keep track of all the different identities a person may have.

There are many proposed solutions to these challenges, but no clear consensus has emerged. Some believe that a single, global identity system is the only way to ensure interoperability between different platforms and services. Others believe that multiple identities are necessary to allow people to maintain their privacy and security.

The debate is ongoing, but it is clear that the need for a global identity system is becoming more urgent as the metaverse continues to grow.

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In this article, we will explore the various options for creating a global identity system in the metaverse. We will discuss the pros and cons of each option, and try to identify the best solution for the future.

Option 1: A single global identity

The simplest solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to create a single, global identity system. This would be a centralized system that would be responsible for managing all identities in the metaverse. 

The advantages of this approach are obvious: It would be much easier to keep track of identities, and there would be no need to worry about different platforms and services accepting different identities. In addition, a centralized identity system would allow for better security and privacy controls, as well as the ability to track identity theft and fraud.

However, this approach also has several disadvantages. First, it would be very difficult to create a global identity system that is accepted by everyone. Also, a centralized system would be vulnerable to attack and could be used to track people’s movements and activities. Third, it would be difficult to protect the privacy of users in a centralized system.

Option 2: Multiple identities

Another solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to allow each person to have multiple identities. This would mean that each person could have one or more identities that they use for different purposes. 

One of the main advantages of this approach is that it would allow people to maintain their privacy and security. Each person could choose which identity to use for each situation, and they would not have to worry about their entire identity being exposed. In addition, this approach would be more resilient to attack, as it would be much harder to take down multiple identities than a single one.

The limitations of such an approach would be that it could be difficult to keep track of all the different identities, and there would be no guarantee that different platforms and services would accept all of them. In addition, multiple identities could lead to confusion and could make it more difficult for people to build trust with others.

Option 3: A decentralized identity system

A third solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to create a decentralized identity system. This would be an identity system that is not controlled by any one centralized authority but rather is distributed among many different nodes. 

This might seem like the ideal approach, since decentralization is a common theme in the metaverse. However, there are still some challenges that need to be overcome. For instance, it would need to be ensured that all the different nodes in the system are properly synchronized and that the system as a whole is secure. In addition, it might be difficult to get people to adopt such a system if they are used to the more traditional centralized approach.

One solution would be to get the nodes in the system to be run by different organizations. This would help to decentralize the system and make it more secure. Another advantage of this approach is that it would allow different organizations to offer their own identity services, which could be more tailored to their needs.

Another would be to incorporate an edge computing solution into the system. This would allow for more decentralized processing of data and could help to improve performance. It would also make the system more resilient to attack since there would be no centralized point of failure.

The best solution for the future of identity in the metaverse is likely to be a combination of these approaches. A centralized system might be necessary to provide a basic level of identity services, but it should be supplemented by a decentralized system that is more secure and resilient. Ultimately, the goal should be to create an identity system that is both easy to use and secure.

The ideal identity standards of the metaverse

Now that we have explored the various options for identity in the metaverse, we can start to identify the ideal standards that should be met by any future global identity system. 

It is no easy task to create a global identity system that meets all of the criteria, but it is important to strive for an ideal solution. After all, the metaverse is still in its early stages, and the decisions made now will have a lasting impact on its future. 

Current iterations of the metaverse have used very traditional approaches to identity, but it is time to start thinking outside the box. The ideal solution will be one that is secure, private, decentralized, and easy to use. It will be a solution that allows people to maintain their privacy while still being able to interact with others in the metaverse. 

Most importantly, it will be a solution that can be accepted and used by everyone. Only then can we hope to create a truly global identity system for the metaverse.

The bottom line on identity in the metaverse

The question of identity in the metaverse is a complex one, but it is an important issue that needs to be addressed. 

The challenges associated with creating an implementation that is secure, private and decentralized are significant, but they are not insurmountable. For one, it will be important to get buy-in from organizations that have a vested interest in the metaverse. These organizations can help to promote and support the adoption of identity standards. 

It is also important to keep in mind that the metaverse is still evolving, and the solution that is ideal today might not be ideal tomorrow. As such, it will be critical to have a flexible identity system that can adapt as the needs of the metaverse change. 

Ultimately, the goal should be to create an identity system that is both easy to use and secure. Only then can we hope to create a truly global identity system for the metaverse.

Daniel Saito is CEO and cofounder of StrongNode

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How to Eliminate Scheduling Inefficiencies in Your Business

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What do salons, consultancies, and home service providers all have in common? This question may seem like the prime setup for a joke, but there’s no punchline to look forward…

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Why You Should Start a Business Only While You Have a Job

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Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Many people that I meet tell me that they dream of starting their own . I always ask them, “Then why don’t you?” They typically respond by saying that they have so many financial and personal responsibilities, that they can’t just quit their job to start a company, etc. Then I tell them my story …



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Related: How to Use Your Current Job to Start Your Next Business

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