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November 2, 2017

Alibaba leads $27m open source database MariaDB’s funding round

Company plans to create new cloud solutions and automation through machine learning.

By James Nunns

MariaDB’s wallet just got a little thicker with a strong Series C investment round that featured Alibaba as the lead investor.

The round, which saw the open source database company raise $27m in investment, was led by the Chinese company to the tune of €20 million of the total €22.9 million raised, according to Tech Crunch.

Alibaba, which joined existing investors in the round such as Intel Capital, Open Ocean, Tesi, SmartFin Capital, and California Technology Ventures, is already a sponsor involved in the MariaDB Foundation, and offers Database-as-a-Service products from the Alibaba Cloud with AliSQL. 


This isn’t the first encouraging investment round that the Finnish company has had this year, with it raising $27 million from the European Investment Bank, bringing the total for the yar up to $54 million and the total raised from investors to $98 million.

“MariaDB is becoming the gold standard for enterprise-grade open source databases,” said Jin Li, Vice President of Alibaba Cloud. “We believe that the symbiotic relationships found in the open source community contribute to the success of both MariaDB’s database technology and our cloud platform, and we have an opportunity to build some truly innovative solutions for cloud, on premise and hybrid deployments.”

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The investment from Alibaba seems to point to the company’s broader goal of challenging the likes of AWS, Google Cloud, and Microsoft Azure. The Chinese company’s cloud division saw 138% growth to $468m in the 2016 financial year.

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The company already holds a strong position in China and has been seeking to grow its presence into Europe, and in the US, having opened two data centre facilities in the country.

For MariaDB the investment will the company continue to grow, with it saying that its average deal size had doubled over the past year.

“Companies around the world are standardizing on open source for modern application development,” said Michael Howard, CEO of MariaDB Corporation. “From global banks to leading telecommunication companies, MariaDB is selected over proprietary offerings for its complete set of database features built for the next generation of applications. This investment allows MariaDB to further accelerate growth, while delivering new solutions for the cloud and automation through machine learning.”

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