Microsoft Acquires Citus to Embiggen Data

Mitch Wagner
1/24/2019
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Microsoft has acquired Citus Data, a small vendor that improves scalability and performance for the open source PostgreSQL database. The acquisition ups Microsoft's open source game and competitive position against Amazon Web Services and Oracle.

Eight-year-old Citus Data provides an open source extension to the open source PostgreSQL database that "transforms PostgreSQL into a distributed database, dramatically increasing performance and scale for application developers," Rohan Kumar, corporate vice president of Azure Data, said in a post on the Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) blog announcing the deal Thursday. Using Citus tools, enterprises gain "the performance advantages of a horizontally scalable database while staying current with all the latest innovations in PostgreSQL," he said. Citus is available as a managed database-as-a-service, enterprise software and a free open source download.


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Umur Cubukcu, Citus CEO and co-founder, said in a blog Thursday: "We created Citus to transform PostgreSQL into a distributed database -- giving developers game-changing performance improvements and delivering queries that are magnitudes faster than proprietary implementations of Postgres. We packaged Citus as an open source extension of PostgreSQL -- so you could always stay current with the latest version of Postgres, unlike all forks of databases prior to it. We launched our Citus Cloud database as a service and grew it to power billions of transactions every day -- creating the world's first horizontally scalable relational database that you can run both on premises, and as a fully-managed service on the cloud."

Citus Cloud is in use by software-as-a-service (SaaS) providers, enterprises running real-time analytics dashboards, organizations serving both transactional and analytical workloads in one database, Fortune 100 companies and developers, Cubukcu says.

Microsoft launched its own PostgreSQL implementation in March. Microsoft also supports open source MySQL and MariaDB, as well as running its own SQL Server database on Linux, Azure Cosmos DB for multi-model NoSQL support and support for Spark and Hadoop open source analytics. And Microsoft acquired open source collaboration platform GitHub in October for $7.5 billion. (See Microsoft Completes $7.5B GitHub Acquisition .)

Data is becoming a vendor battleground, as enterprises and telcos need to make sense of oceans of information collected from smart devices and Internet of Things.

Terms of the Microsoft-Citus deal were not disclosed.

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