Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO) and Benchmark Capital today announced the formation of Hortonworks, an independent company consisting of key architects and core contributors to the open source Apache Hadoop technology pioneered by Yahoo!. The formation of Hortonworks increases investment in the development of Apache Hadoop and will accelerate adoption by making it more robust and easier to install, manage and use for enterprises and technology vendors. This investment will enable Apache Hadoop to meet the growing market demand and become the big data management and analysis platform of choice for the industry.
Apache Hadoop is the open source technology at the epicenter of big data and cloud computing. It enables organizations to more efficiently and cost-effectively store, process, manage and analyze the ever-increasing volume of data being created and collected every day. With Apache Hadoop companies can connect thousands of servers to process and analyze data at supercomputing speed. Yahoo! pioneered, is the primary contributor to, and one of the leading users of Apache Hadoop.
“Apache Hadoop has been and will continue to be an important area of investment for Yahoo!. The creation of Hortonworks will enable Yahoo! to leverage a commercial partnership in addition to our continued internal investment to accelerate the evolution of the technology and its use to power Yahoo!’s business,” said Jay Rossiter, senior vice president, Cloud Platform Group at Yahoo!. “Forming Hortonworks with Benchmark Capital is the natural next step in the evolution of Apache Hadoop. As Hadoop demand continues to increase, Hortonworks will help organizations more rapidly and effectively implement the technology to derive value and insights from large data sets.”
“We anticipate that within five years, more than half the world’s data will be stored in Apache Hadoop. We’ve assembled a top caliber team committed to the Apache open source community and with the technology and business expertise to deliver value to the big data market,” said Eric Baldeschwieler, named CEO of Hortonworks and formerly VP of software engineering for the Hadoop team at Yahoo!. “Apache Hadoop is an exceptionally valuable technology and its growing adoption during the last five years demonstrates its potential to quickly become the de facto platform for managing big data.”

“As businesses generate, organize and process more data than ever before, the importance of Apache Hadoop in the enterprise has never been more apparent,” said Val Bercovici, cloud Czar at NetApp. “NetApp is focused on working together with Hortonworks to empower our customers with the advanced tools and services required for managing big data in enterprise environments. We are excited to collaborate with the Hortonworks team, the extended Apache-Hadoop community and our extensive ecosystem of solution partners to accelerate the development and adoption of Apache Hadoop.”

Apache Hadoop plays a critical role in helping Yahoo! deliver personalized content and experiences to its nearly 700 million consumers worldwide.  Apache Hadoop also helps drive Yahoo!’s powerful advertising platforms that serve billions of digital advertisements daily, and enables Yahoo! to provide enhanced anti-spam capabilities for Yahoo! Mail.
Yahoo! funded the early prototyping of Hadoop in 2005. In 2006 Yahoo! committed
to using the technology in its core infrastructure and invested in building it from a prototype to the system it is today, contributing all its work back to Apache. Today Apache Hadoop is widely deployed at organizations around the globe, including industry leaders from across the Internet and social networking landscape such as eBay, Facebook, Netflix and LinkedIn. Other technology leaders including Microsoft, Amazon Web Services and IBM have integrated Apache Hadoop into their offerings.
The investment by Yahoo! and Benchmark Capital in Hortonworks is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close in July 2011.
Read Yahoo! CTO Raymie Stata’s blog about the news today at: