Treasure Data: Looking Back at 2021
Treasure Data was founded by three of us (Hiro, Sada, myself) 10 years ago, and it has been an amazing journey having now grown to over 500 colleagues globally. 2021 has been a record year with accelerated customer growth, continued product innovation and the launch of new product offerings – CDP for Service and CDP for Sales, under the new vision.
It was not always smooth sailing.
While our original vision was as a Cloud Data Management platform, around 2016, we pivoted our company to focus on the Customer Data Platform (CDP) space (SaaStr: $100 Million ARR Pivot: From Platform Product to Vertical Apps). Over the last three years, Treasure Data has gone through a lot of corporate changes. We were acquired by Arm in August 2018 and operated as their data business unit, we separated from Arm and became an independent company in June 2021, and recently closed a $234m funding round led by SoftBank Corporation with participation by Carbide Ventures in October 2021. The culture has shifted from start-up to corporate, and then start-up again. That was a roller coaster experience for everyone. However, what has remained true are the fundamental values that we established at the onset of the company. At our core, we believe in humility – continual learning and growth; openness- embracing transparency in all that we do; honesty- being direct and sincere in our communications; and reliability- our customers rely on us for outstanding service and we rely on each other to build our business and be successful.
Sada, Hiro, Kaz, Dan at Nasdaq MarketSite, New York City (Nov 2021)
Each of our colleagues, customers, partners and investors played a critical role in getting us to where we are today, and I’m so thankful for the support and commitment to Treasure Data’s success.
I’m very proud of what we have accomplished in 2021 – below are a few of my favorite highlights.
Growth of Digital & Privacy Disruption, and “Beyond Marketing”
We live in a world where businesses have more digital interactions with their customers than ever before. According to a McKinsey survey, 60% of customer journeys are now digital which tripled after COVID-19 pandemic: we’re in the “Age of the Digital Customer.” Businesses must execute a data-first, customer-centric growth strategy.
On the other hand, enterprises face increasing security, privacy, and data governance requirements due to the increasing concerns and regulations on consumer data usage. Businesses must make every customer interaction both personalized and respectful of the consumer’s privacy preferences. In addition to this, over the next few years, third-party cookies will disappear, forcing companies to incorporate first-party data as the core asset of the company for the future growth (See how Penske Media Corporation, the media company who owns billboard, ARTNews, VARIETY, WWD, etc, is not wasting any time prioritizing first-party data).
Of all these trends combined, I expect 2022 is going to be “The year of CDP,” where every major enterprise company will implement a CDP as one of its core systems such as CRM or ERP. And I’m confident Treasure Data is the best CDP in the market such that every enterprise company can rely on it for the growth in the age of digital customers.
We specifically created a new product vision called “Beyond Marketing”. The typical CDP solutions focus on Marketing as the only use case, but we strongly believe that the power of customer data is across the enterprise.
That’s why we released the new products: CDP for Service and CDP for Sales, to unlock the value of customer data in the Contact Center and Sales division. We will continue delivering the products to maximize the value of your customer data assets across the enterprise in 2022 as well.
Growing the Team
I always say in the world of B2B SaaS, “the Company is the Product”. As a software company who is selling a key data product for Customer Experience, we need to be an extremely customer-centric organization. To do so, we need to make the company a desirable place to work, and I’m proud to say that this year we earned a spot on a Best Places to Work list that recognized our efforts.
Our customer base is in enterprise grade, where our customers often run multiple brands in many countries. To support their global CDP roll outs, we now employ 500+ people across 20 countries.
The leadership team is getting stronger than ever. In June 2021, the once-retired core leadership team – Hiro Yoshikawa (Executive Chairman, former CEO and my co-founder), Dan Weirich (COO/CFO) and myself Kazuki Ohta (CEO, former CTO) rejoined the company. Since then, the following new members have joined our executive team:
- Eugene Saburi (Chief Business Officer)
- Kim Bronstein (Chief People Officer)
- Jason Aubin (VP of Sales, North America)
- Ryan Willette (VP of Global Account Management & Customer Success)
- Stephanie Sayer Long (VP, Sales Development)
- Mark Greenaway (GM, EMEAI)
- Shoji Ozawa (GM/COO, Japan)
With their deep enterprise experience, they have become a delightful addition to our hard-driving team.
$234m Funding Round
In November 2021, we announced the $234m investment led by SoftBank Corp. This is the largest single funding round for a CDP to date.
This was a huge milestone for our company. The investment allows us to continue executing our CDP product innovation and growing the team to strengthen our commitment to our customers’ success. I specifically wanted to say thank you to the SoftBank executives who have strongly supported the future of the company and the team.
We hit a lot of milestones this year as a company. We went live with many global brands, some projects were tough but we made it. We couldn’t have done it without our Treasure Data team, and I’m very very proud of everyone.
I have no doubt that 2022 is going to be the year of CDP (Customer Data Platform), and that Treasure Data provides the best CDP in the market. I can’t wait for what’s next! Let’s stay humble and keep our customers happy!
Team Treasure Data, Dec 2021
Meanwhile, Happy Holidays everyone! Cheers! -K