A pioneer in a harsh data environment
About 20 years ago, many companies focused on introducing new computer systems in line with the spread of PCs and digital technology. At that time, most of their attention was focused on introducing solutions such as CRM, ERP, and KPIs that could automate tasks previously only done by humans. As a result, computers have dramatically increased in work capacity. Data is at the heart of today's digital transformation, but 20 years ago, the general interest in data was very low.
However, even at a time when the importance of data was underestimated, there were companies that quickly recognized the importance of data. Datastreams is one of those companies. The company was founded in 2001 under the name Innovative Data Solutions (IDS) and celebrated its 20th anniversary this year. Since then, it has launched various data management and integration products such as TeraStream, DeltaStream, and MetaStream, and has grown into a hallmark Korean data company renowned for its excellent products and services.
In the early days, the data-related market was dominated by DBMS companies, a key example being Oracle. As various different business systems were introduced, technologies that quickly and accurately store and load data were in the spotlight. However, as time went on, the types and quantities of work systems only increased, and the data produced by them increased exponentially. As the size of a company grows, there are tens of thousands of DBs that will need to be managed, and it is impossible to utilize data simply by storing and retrieving it in a DB.
So how do you find the data you want from countless DBs and combine it to get the information you want? About 20 years ago, Datastreams launched its first product, the data integration solution 'Terastream'. With Terastream, Datastreams advocated a de-DBMS that breaks the existing DB-centrism. It was predicted that the amount and type of data would explode, and one day DB alone would not be able to cope with it. A single platform that can connect a large number of DBs and integrate data could solve this.
Since the launch of Terastream, Datastreams has been rolling out many other solutions for data integration over the last 20 years. In particular, in 2016, the company launched TeraONE, which combines its core products (Terastream, Deltastream, and Metastream) to support the entire data management process. TeraOne selectively combines various open source technologies, including the Hadoop ecosystem, with Datastreams' 14 data solutions to help customers build an optimized big data collection and analysis platform.
We caught up with the CEO of Datastreams to hear about the path Datastreams has taken this last 20 years and what the future holds.
Rapid growth opportunities in the data-driven era What gives Datastreams its competitive edge?
It used to be the case that CRM accounted for most of the IT needs of companies. Since 2000, Unix servers have been supplied cheaply, and there has been a lot of interest in introducing computers to streamline existing work. The data side was an assortment of DBMS and ETL. For example, Oracle has taken on the market by saying that it is a one-stop strategy, suggesting that it would be effective simply putting all data into an Oracle DB. However, this strategy only worked back when there wasn't much demand for data.
However, Datastreams always conducted itself with the notion that the data market would not always be as it was. The existing DB-centric strategy would soon reach its limit, and it was believed that de-DBMS through data integration, data governance (via metadata management), and building a data fabric that encompasses all data in one platform would be a market game changer. And, in hindsight, we got it absolutely right.
The Digital Transformation era, also known as the fourth industrial revolution, has seen companies' data strategies change significantly. Now, the IT needs of most enterprises have shifted from application-centric to data-driven. Most aim to create a vast data lake by gathering data from multiple places to keep on Hadoop, and to obtain more accurate information by simultaneously analyzing a large amount of data based on excellent HW specifications. On that notion, the data integration and management technology that Datastreams has honed so far is coming to fruition.
What are Datastreams' core products today?
Terastream and Metastream are our products. Terastream, which was launched not long after the company’s foundation, is an essential data integration solution for DW construction, and can quickly extract, transform, and load (ETL) various types of data in large quantities. As a result of preemptively launching and continuously attacking the data integration market even before it was created, it is consolidating its No. 1 market share in Korea. Currently, it is understood that the data integration market has a market share of about 70% across all industries in Korea and a higher market share of 80% in the financial sector.
Metastream is a product that performs metadata standardization and management, data dictionary or data catalog construction, and more. Metadata management is the basis for integrating and analyzing various data. If it is not properly equipped, it is impossible to communicate about data and its utility is greatly reduced. This is very important because without a Data Catalog, it is unlikely that you can find the data you want because you don't know where and how it's stored. Currently, Metastream also has a considerable share in the domestic metadata management market, and has recently shown remarkable growth.
You said that you have combined all of the technologies into one with 'TeraOne'?
TeraOne is a big data platform solution that is currently making waves in the public market. As far as the public market is concerned, it is so monopolistic that it is difficult to find a match. It is still less recognized in general industries such as finance, manufacturing, and distribution, but this is the result of entering the market later than other global big data. Nevertheless, domestic companies that were using our global competitors’ products are steadily turning to DataStreams for their data services, as they were won over by TeraOne.
One of TeraOne's core technologies is data governance management. Data governance is centered on metadata management tools that gather all the relevant information on data, standardizes it, and manages it to ensure that problems do not occur. This is a function of the aforementioned Metastream. There is also QualityStream, which is equipped to verify the quality of data and compliance with metadata management. Then we have 'Q-Track, a solution equipped to track and analyze the entire process from data generation to disposal. The data governance platform 'IRUDA', which integrates data integration, standardization, quality control, and flow management, is also readily available.
The other key technology is data virtualization. Data virtualization is a technology element that Datastreams is currently pursuing with intent, and the goal is to easily find the desired data by throwing a single query from a distributed data source. Using this, various heterogeneous data can be integrated and analyzed on the virtualization layer without physically moving. The technology is implemented as TeraOne Super Query and has already been adopted and used by many public institutions and financial organizations.
As such, TeraOne is equipped with 14 core products owned by Datastreams. The world's best technologies acquired through the sequential development of products over the past 20 years have been applied, and it is succeeding in continuously winning over customers by competing with the products of global companies.