In the fast-growth big data market, some pundits spent recent months wondering if Hadoop's rapid rise was set for a slowdown. At least for the moment, Hortonworks has silenced those pundits.

Indeed, the Hadoop provider says 2Q 2015 revenue was $30.7 million -- up 154 percent from 2Q 2014. Moreover, gross billings jumped 114 percent to $19.6 million.

Hortonworks' 2Q results, announced Aug. 5, easily beat Wall Street's expectations -- potentially providing peace of mind to data scientists, business and technology leaders that are seeking big data platforms for predictive analytics, machine learning and more.

Hortonworks is on track to become the fastest enterprise software company to reach $100 million in revenue in only four years, according to a company spokesperson. Salesforce, in stark contrast, achieved that milestone in five years.

Behind the Numbers (And the Chatter)

No doubt, a growing number of companies are embracing Hadoop for big data applications. But a Gartner report earlier this year suggested that industry growth rates could be slowing. Part of the challenge involves Hadoop's complexity and highly targeted use case.

While general purpose software -- such as operating systems and relational databases -- attract tens of thousands of customers, paid Hadoop customer subscriptions are far more targeted. Hortonworks, for instance, in 2Q attracted 119 new customers that pay the company for support. That figure may sound somewhat small, but it's actually quite strong for the emerging, mission-critical software platform -- especially since some open source-savvy businesses may opt instead for free Hadoop offerings.

Meanwhile, Hadoop rivals like Cloudera and MapR are striving to promote growth and momentum milestones as well. Privately held MapR in July said its 2Q 2015 bookings and billings grew more than 100 percent vs. Q2 2014. The company has also bolstered its training and certification efforts in recent months, striving to further grow the Hadoop support ecosystem.

For its part, Cloudera recently joined the Lockheed Martin Healthcare Technology Alliance -- which will promote big data solutions that advance genomic research; secure patient medical information; and improve overall public health.

The next major Hadoop-focused summit -- Strata+Hadoop World -- is set for Sept. 29-Oct. 1 in New York.

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