Snowflake Computing scored $450 million in new funding on the heels of expanding the reach of its data warehousing capabilities to Microsoft’s Azure platform. The latest funding nearly doubled the company’s total VC haul and pushed its valuation to $3.5 billion.
Snowflake provides data warehouse services using a cloud-based architecture. This is constructed as a central repository for data that can also be analyzed using business intelligence tools or other analytics applications.
The Snowflake model is offered through an as-a-service model. Matt Glickman, vice president of customer and product strategy at Snowflake, explained that basically customers get a dial that allows them to control the amount of data and compute resources they want to dedicate to their cloud storage needs. Snowflake then procures those resources from a public cloud provider.
Data can be transferred between the customer and the cloud provider using dedicated private internet links like AWS’ Direct Connect. “This blurs what it means to be on prem or in the cloud,” Glickman said. “We are just an IP connection in their network.”
The company initially started using Amazon Web Services (AWS) to host its platform, but last month expanded that reach into Microsoft’s Azure.
Glickman mentioned Teradata several times as an on-premises and cloud storage vendor that Snowflake competes against.
Snowflake’s latest funding round was led by Sequoia Capital, which also participated in past rounds. Other participants in the latest round included existing investors Altimeter Capital, Capital One Growth Ventures, ICONIQ Capital, Madrona Venture Group, Redpoint Ventures, Sutter Hill Ventures and Wing Ventures. The one new investor was Meritech Capital.
Snowflake raised $263 million earlier this year, which came less than five months after it raised $105 million. The firm has raised $923 million in total since its founding in 2012.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Snowflake was now ranked No. 4 in valuation by Dow Jones VentureSource among privately held U.S.-based business software and services company.
Glickman noted that Snowflake had “some fixed overhead costs,” but that the big push behind the latest funding round was on expansion.
“It’s about driving us into more regions and where our customers want us to be,” Glickman said. “We want to be in every Amazon and Azure region because that is where our customers want to have their data.”
As for cloud expansion, Glickman said the company is looking to tap into other providers. “The second one is always seen as the hardest for expansion, but now that we have done that we are ready to expand into other providers,” he said.
That expansion will also include a bigger push into Europe and Asia Pacific, where the company is seeing a large amount of its growth. Specifically, Snowflake is set to announce the launch of a new engineering hub in Berlin to support European growth.
The financial resources will also be targeted at headcount. Snowflake is currently home to more than 600 employees, with plans to expand to 1,000 by year-end. Glickman said the company wants to double that by the end of 2019, and then double again by the end of 2020.
“We want to be on the ground in terms of getting customers going and into production and that’s where a big part of the funding is going,” Glickman said.
Glickman added that the company will likely remain private during this expansion push, but that an initial public offering is still on the table.