Analytics startup Imply raises $100m in Series D funding

Eight-year-old startup Imply has raised $100 million to help grow its real-time analytics business based on Apache Druid software.

Imply’s fourth VC round takes the total raised to $215.3 million.

Imply was founded by Druid’s code originators: CEO Fangjin “FJ” Yang, chief experience officer Vadim Ogievetsky, and CTO Gian Merlino. It announced a delivery milestone of its 12-month Project Shapeshift to develop a hardware-abstracting, auto-scaling control plane and SaaS service for Druid in March.

Yang said: “In its early days, Druid was adopted for a set of use cases in a handful of industries. Today, developers have shown its applicability across all industries – and the use cases have expanded exponentially.” 

Imply says that for decades analytics have been confined to static executive dashboards and reports powered by batch-oriented data warehouses. But digital companies want analytics applications that deliver interactive, real-time data experiences to both internal and external users. Thousands, Imply says, have turned to Apache Druid.

Shariq Rizvi, Ads Monetization EVP at Reddit, provided a testimonial: “By using Apache Druid and Imply, we can ingest multiple events straight from Kafka and our data lake, ensuring advertisers have the information they need for successful campaigns in real-time.”

Lior Schachter, CTO of Natural Intelligence, said: “In order for Natural Intelligence to effectively match high-intent consumers with leading brands, it’s critical we capture and understand millions of end-to-end user interactions. This is why we have chosen Apache Druid and Imply, to be able to understand massive amounts of data in near real-time, from the ads consumers watch, through the entire decision-making process to ultimately power better and more personalized marketing campaigns.”

Imply multi-stage query engine
Imply multi-stage query engine

Recently Imply announced a multi-stage query engine enabling Druid to support reports and complex alerts alongside interactive, real-time analytics. The startup provides Druid as a fully managed DBaaS (Polaris), hybrid-managed software (Enterprise Hybrid), and self-managed software offering (Enterprise).

Imply is one of a few companies leading the development of real-time, interactive querying of massive datasets, with Ocient and Sqream being others. 

The round was led by Thoma Bravo with participation from OMERS Growth Equity, both new investors. Existing investors Bessemer Venture Funds, Andreessen Horowitz, and Khosla Ventures also participated. Imply is now valued at $1.1 billion.