Successful Companies Use Erlang and Elixir

Erlang Solutions
Published in
4 min readMar 5, 2018


Erlang is a trusted and stable language used to run core procedures within major systems, invented at Ericsson. Erlang (and Elixir) are used by many industries within many areas, including Fintech, Security, Blockchain and IoT.

Companies choose Erlang and Elixir, because of the ease with which fault-tolerant and scalable programs deployable in a distributed network can be written. Erlang and Elixir are both functional languages that can use an Actor system to simplify the handling of concurrency and make error recovery possible. They are able to take full advantage of multicore computing, allowing more to be done with less. We are also now seeing a wider adoption of Elixir in production, especially for those companies more used to the syntax of Ruby.

What follows is a list of 10 companies using Erlang and/or Elixir in the day-to-day running of their core business systems. This is only a snapshot, numerous companies (250+) are now using Erlang and/or Elixir within their tech stacks.


How do you support 450 million users with only 32 engineers? For WhatsApp, the answer was Erlang.

Anton Lavrik from WhatsApp will be talking at Code BEAM SF 2018 on how they did this. View his talk details here.


Elixir is used at Pinterest for the system that manages rate limits on Ads API. Its response time is around 500 to 800 microseconds. Moving their notifications system from Java to Elixir, meant 10,000 lines of code were cut to just 1000 lines in Elixir. Their Elixir system now runs faster, is more consistent and only requires half the number of servers.

Join Pinterest developer and Elixir Core Team member James Fish at Code BEAM SF 2018, where he will giving an Elixir Core Team Update.


AdRoll use Erlang within the live monitoring of their real-time bidding system. This involves live monitoring everything that could go wrong on a system receiving 500K+ bid requests per second, with a substantial monetary value attached. Learn more about this here.

Miriam Pena and Mike Watters from AdRoll will be speaking at Code BEAM SF 2017. Miriam will be giving the Keynote, Unsung Heroes of the BEAM, view her talk details here. Mike will be giving the talk, Quaff that potion: saving $millions, view his talk details here.


Bet365, use Erlang and Elixir to help it service 20 million+ users and to meet the demands of 100,000s of concurrent users at peak times. Erlang was chosen because of its strengths in distribution, concurrency and resilience. With Erlang the development team were able to build quickly a hugely scalable platform where new features could be added at pace.

IBM Cloudant

Erlang, along with Scala, are used to power Cloudant’s full-text search system. The system is powered by two complementary projects Clouseau and Dreyfus. Dreyfus is written in Erlang and deals with plugging into existing CouchDB/Cloudant clustering technologies. It manages Clouseau nodes to deliver full-text search features. Clouseau and Dreyfus communicate using Erlang’s external term format (using the Scalang library on the Clouseau side).

Goldman Sachs

Erlang is being used by Goldman Sachs in part of its HF trading platform. The Goldman Sachs platform is a very low latency (microseconds) event-driven market data processing, strategy, and order submission engine. It runs trading algorithms with low latency requirements that are responsive to changes in the market conditions. Erlang is used as part of the real-time monitoring solution for this distributed trading system.


Moz Pro, the leading SEO analytics company, scrapped MySQL database storage for a database-free architecture powered by an Elixir driven data indexing model. The result is that their new API serves the core rankings datasets 20 times faster than the previous API, with average response times consistently below 50ms, compared to 800+ ms previously.

Lonely Planet

This well known travel company needed to serve millions of unique visitors each month pushing requests to sites like and HostelWorld. Part of the solution they adopted involved an Elixir microserver with an API sub-service using the Phoenix web framework.


Erlang is used as part of the system Grindr use to maintain a reliable, top performing and scalable stack for more than 3.2 Million daily active users.


USwitch started out in Elixir by rewriting one of their small microservices in Elixir. Adoption was easy due to the excellent documentation, useful error messages and an extremely helpful Elixir community.

Join big names at Code BEAM SF — San Francisco 15–16 March 18

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Erlang Solutions

World-class solutions for issues of scale, reliability & performance. Passionate about Erlang & Elixir. MongooseIM & WombatOAM creators. Also RabbitMQ experts!