Varun Singh, ScaleArc: "In the database infrastructure software space, scalability is everything."
“Someday, all database environments will be implemented this way.” – Vishal Gondal, CEO, IndiaGames.This is the first thing you see when you hit ScaleArc’s website and it’s a testimonial that makes you sit up and take notice. ScaleArc is a Mumbai and Silicon Valley-based database infrastructure software maker, whose flagship iDB software abstracts database servers from application servers to provide instant horizontal scaling and connection management. It also enables real-time visibility into queries to provide real-time analytics, instant troubleshooting, one-click query caching, wire-speed security enforcement, and much more.
If the name sounds familiar, it’s because ScaleArc made the news recently when they raised a $5.33 million Series B round of funding in a widely-reported December 2011 deal involving investors Trinity Ventures and their early backer Nexus Venture Partners.
With an enviable set of customers (IndiaGames, Yatra.com, Netmagic, Martjack.com etc) across domains like e-commerce, SaaS, online gaming and digital media, ScaleArc’s ascent is interesting on multiple levels and we at YourStory caught up with ScaleArc’s founder Varun Singh, who used to be the CTO of Web18, Network18’s internet and mobile arm. Varun’s an old hand at this game, having built the highly scalable technology behind large websites like IN.com, MoneyControl.com and various other portals.
“I’ve been working with web and database technologies for a while now and hence, I could identify first-hand the emerging challenges of database environments and turn my focus towards transparent database simplification. This led to the formation of ScaleArc,” explains Varun.
Currently, ScaleArc’s iDB software is available for MySQL and SQL Server, with betas lined up for Oracle and Postgres database environments and Varun tells us that support for MongoDB is on the anvil, as well. Talking about urge to be omnipresent, Varun says, “The accent has always been on scalability. We’d like to serve everyone, right from the big guys to the lowest common denominator. We have a patent in the US. But what ScaleArc’s solving is a global problem. And we want to solve it elegantly.”And the intervention that Varun talks about isn’t what you would call minor. ScaleArc claims that iDB is the only solution that reduces overall CapEx and OpEx costs by up to 50%, delivering instant performance improvements of 6x-24x with no disruptions to existing environments.
The ambitious approach acted in their favour when they secured their first round of funding from Nexus Venture Partners, based on a proof-of-concept demo. Varun adds that their clarity with respect to targeting might have also helped. “It’s a lot easier to break into the web development and e-commerce space. But for enterprise software, the time it takes to go to market can be painfully long. The real deal lies not just in gaining momentum, but in also sustaining and building upon it,” says the entrepreneur.
ScaleArc intends to hire up to 40 new employees this year, with about 60% of the company's new hires to be placed at its engineering headquarters in Mumbai, with the remainder in the U.S. “We have about 18 people now. And it’s a young team. The median age must be around 28. But they’re very accomplished, having worked with organizations like Symantec, IBM, Oracle, Microsoft, etc. This year, we’re really looking to hire some great engineers with expertise in data analytics, data mining and information extraction, as well as some C, C++ and web developers,” mentions Varun.
His excitement is clear when he talks about building the team, with the sense of urgency saying a lot about the number of things in the pipeline. In fact, when ScaleArc broke the news of their Series B round in December 2011, they also announced the appointment of Justin Barney, who has headed sales for companies like Juniper Networks and Citrix, as their president and COO. “We have a cost advantage with our twin-base structure. But the clincher is in building a great sales pipeline and having Justin around is really helping the cause. He understands the cycle very well and that’s helping us accelerate the pace of growth,” reasons Varun. So, where does the road lead from here? Pat comes the response - "An IPO in the US, hopefully."
After the conversation with Varun about ScaleArc’s plans, one can sense where Vishal Gondal’s testimonial comes from. ScaleArc operates in a space that many have touted to be ripe for disruption and it will be interesting to see how things turn out for this young startup which is witnessing solid traction. We're going to be keeping an eye on ScaleArc's growth. So, do watch this space.
To know more about ScaleArc, check out www.scalearc.com
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