Point72 Ventures

Announcing our investment in Unravel Data

If software ate the world and models will run it, then we better build great tools to ensure that those big data models are reliable, optimized, and secure.

At Point72 we’re investing behind the idea that “Models Will Run the World,” a reference to our belief that going forward the most successful companies will use data and machine learning models to improve their products and better understand their customers. It’s already happening: more than 50% of enterprises say they run their business on top of mission-critical big data applications today. [1]

Machine learning and other big data applications are moving from R&D projects to mission-critical enablers of business, but the excitement about what AI can do has run far ahead of the data infrastructure required to ensure these applications are reliable. Self-driving car software, a computer vision system on a drone, or the trade execution application at a bank need to be built in a way that they never go out of service. When these apps do go down it’s costly ($1M+ of cost and lost revenue on average), disruptive to business operations, and damaging to customer relationships.[2]

The established companies in application performance management (APM) provide good solutions to ensure the reliability of traditional web applications, but companies have struggled to adapt these solutions to big data applications. Chief Information Officers (CIOs) told us story after story of traditional APM and log management tools failing in a big data context because those tools were not built for modern data systems. And we didn’t just hear this problem from third parties, we were experiencing it at Point72. We strive to make the best investment decisions by combining human and artificial intelligence, and found that improved big data infrastructure allowed us to do that better and faster.

That’s what makes us so excited to lead Unravel Data’s $35M Series C funding round. Prior investors Menlo Ventures, GGV, and M12 all participated, and we were joined by new investor Harmony Partners.

We were initially interested in Unravel because of the clarity of their vision: they got that the enterprise of the future would run on machine learning models and distributed applications powered by huge datasets before a lot of people did. Those models and apps need totally different monitoring software and Unravel built it before customers even realized they’d need it. Now customers are raving about it.

Customers also rave about the breadth of Unravel’s product. Unravel isn’t just the best solution to monitor Hadoop. It’s the best solution to monitor Spark, Kafka, Cassandra, and most other big data technologies, on-prem or in the cloud. Unravel is the only company that covers whatever technology mix a customer might have, which is important in a market like big data where technology innovation is moving quickly and everyone is running multiple technologies in their stack.

People tend to view fundraising as an accomplishment in itself, but we recognize that the hard work is ahead of us. We’re thrilled to join the Unravel team and excited to work with them for years to come as we help companies transform their businesses with reliable, optimized, and secure big data and machine learning applications.