42. MongoDB

Cloud-based cross-platform database

Dwight Merriman, co-founder of MongoDB
Source: MongoDB
Dwight Merriman, co-founder of MongoDB

Founders: Eliot Horowitz, Dwight Merriman, Kevin Ryan
CEO: Max Schireson
Date launched: 2007
Funding: $231.1 million
Industries disrupted: Enterprise Technology, Software
Disrupting: IBM, Microsoft, Oracle
Competition: Amazon, DataStax, Sqrll

This New York City-based start-up—whose name is a play on the word humongous—processes huge data sets in a fraction of the time it takes traditional databases. Its growth is being driven in part by cloud computing adoption, which makes its online infrastructure easier to scale up and less complex.

The rise of big data is also revving up MongoDB's growth. Companies of all types are trying to find new ways to manage all the information they have on their customers and the markets they are in. MongoDB sells its database technology to customers, including more than a quarter of Fortune 100 companies, as a subscription service with support and training included. This differs from multiyear, multimillion-dollar contracts that have been the norm in the $30 billion database market.

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The company has raised $231 million in venture capital since its start-up in 2007, including a round for $150 million in October. This makes it the best-funded big data tech company to date, with backers that include Intel Capital, NEA, Red Hat, Sequoia Capital, Altimeter Capital and Salesforce.com. Co-founder Dwight Merriman previously helped to start DoubleClick, the online advertising firm, which was sold to Google in 2007 for $3.1 billion.

On the company's name:

"We wanted the name to reflect a database that could handle lots of data, scale easily and help you build modern applications quickly. We took the word “humongous” and combined it with the abbreviation for database (db) to get MongoDB." -Dwight Merriman, co-founder and Chairman

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