Google Ventures Likely to Invest in Startups Focused on Big Data

By Ed Silverstein March 21, 2012

Google Ventures, on the prowl for worthy investments, mergers and acquisitions, seems to have a preference for investing in big data.

The preference was recently confirmed by one of its partners: Karim Faris, an investor in CloudStory Data, a big data company just launched with backing from Google Ventures. Other venture capitalists playing a role in investing in the startup are Andreessen Horowitz and Khosla Ventures.

"The big data market is a large and fast-growing opportunity where the key challenge will be the ability for businesses to leverage publicly available data on the Web and bring it together with a company's own internal data seamlessly," Faris said in a recent statement carried by TechZone360.

It’s no accident big data is fertile ground for investments. The research firm IDC predicts a $16.9 billion market opportunity for big data by 2015, TechZone360 reported.  

"In 2011, the global output of data increased 62 percent, yet there's a massive shortage in the number of qualified data professionals to process this data," Sharmila Shahani-Mulligan, CEO and founder of ClearStory Data, said in the company statement.

The Business Insider also reports that Faris said he and other partners will launch more companies over the next several weeks, noting that much of the new technology used by big data startups is based on techniques invented at Google. Examples include Google File System and MapReduce.

"We're lucky to have in our backyard dozens of people that know a lot about the problem in real life," Faris told The Business Insider. "So we've got a good understanding of the issues and the opportunities. There's going to be a lot coming out of us in the next few months in this space.”

Advances in IT operations have inspired companies to sort through big data. "That creates opportunities for tools, and for cleansing services (because data feeds are typically very [disorganized or misrepresented]) and on the front end for visualization tools," Faris said.

Given these trends, big data startups could grow into big publically traded software companies, according to Faris.

The Business Insider added that Google will likely spend money from the $1 billion fund by dividing it up by $200 million each year, over five years.

Edited by Braden Becker

TechZone360 Contributor

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