Our Series B Investment in Collibra

We announced our Series B investment in Collibra today, a $23m round together with our friends at Index Ventures. Collibra is a software vendor in the data governance and stewardship segment that helps customers understand, trust, and use data efficiently. The company, currently headquartered in Brussels but moving to the the US, has been rapidly growing over the last few years reaching over 200% annual revenue growth.

What is data governance?

Data has become the lifeblood of businesses of all sizes, and the technologies for storing, processing and analyzing Big Data have developed significantly. However, with the rapidly increasing amount of data, complex regulation, and the increased privacy and security concerns, managing data has proven challenging especially in larger corporations. Data governance is the process and management layer for utilizing data effectively. It enables organizations to understand what their data means, where it is stored, how does it flow inside of the organization, assign clear responsibilities, automate review and approval processes, specify policy and quality rules, and ensure regulatory compliance.

Data governance can be thought to be analogous to the IT Service Management practice which deals with the governance of IT assets and processes in an organization, but data governance deals with data assets and the associated processes such as locating, ingesting, utilizing and maintaining data.

Why Collibra?

Collibra is an easy to use business application that automates any data-related business process for enterprise users and knowledge workers, not just the data stewards and Chief Data Officers who are implementing the data governance efforts. Unlike competing offerings, it is an end-to-end solution providing all the functionality for implementing data governance with an easy to use, modern user experience. Collibra has been recognized as a leader in its space by multiple analysts such as Forrester alongside significantly larger enterprise software vendors IBM and Informatica.

Why now?

We are at the brink of a perfect storm for data governance due to a convergence of multiple factors. Big data initiatives and technology such as Hadoop have become mainstream in large enterprises increasing the amount and complexity of data significantly. The need for regulatory compliance with the likes of BCBS 239, IFRS 9, HIPAA is making data governance a necessity in industries such as financial services and healthcare. Finally, the public and customers have become very conscious about how companies handle their personal and privacy data internally as well as across organizations.

In addition to financial services and healthcare industries responding to very targeted and constantly evolving regulation around privacy data, many organizations are implementing data governance primarily for competitive advantage. Companies use Collibra to increase their trust in data-driven decision ensuring they have clear definitions of data inside the company with certified KPI’s and reports. Improving processes such as data ingestion has significant business value, for example, when the use case is to shorten the time products enter the product database of a retail company.

With their industry leading offering, Collibra is well positioned to capture the big data opportunity in data governance. The company is moving its headquarters to New York and looking to double its headcount by hiring over 80 employees within the next year. At Dawn, we are delighted to be partnering with Collibra on their journey and to help them build a world-class software business in a rapidly growing market.

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