Talend MDM Celebrates Its One Year Birthday

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Jim Walker, who handles MDM Product Marketing at Talend, sat down with us recently for an analyst briefing to fill us in on how Talend is doing with its Talend Master Data Management product.

Talend launched the product in February 2010, so it’s just over a year old in the marketplace. Talend is an open source provider of data integration and data quality solutions, but until its acquisition in September 2009 of the Master Data Management (MDM) technology of Amalto Technologies, it didn’t have an MDM platform.

In a way, Talend pioneered the strategy later followed by Informatica, which also had data integration and data quality solutions, and through its acquisition of Siperian, added an MDM platform to its portfolio.

Talend is venture-backed and has 320 employees and operates in the US, Europe, China and Japan. With its open source model and three different product lines, it has a fast adoption rate – over 10 million downloads to date, over 500,000 users, and 1,600 customers. The company is developing 100 new customer relationships per month overall.

The products are licensed using a two-tier model: the Community Edition sold under the GNU Public License (GPL) for free software distribution, and the Enterprise Edition sold under a subscription model.

One major difference between the Community Edition and the Enterprise Edition is the number of users supported. The Community Edition supports one user, while the Enterprise Edition supports a team-based approach, right up to enterprise-wide usage, depending on licensing. There are other features in the Enterprise Edition that are not present in the Community Edition. Here’s a feature comparison matrix.

The sense I got was that most companies use the Community Edition for prototyping and doing a proof of concept, but that the large enterprises doing MDM initiatives are not trying to do them with a completely free MDM hub – that’s still not realistic. So they license the Enterprise Edition. But the Community Edition can be a great way to get a feel for the product during the early stages of a project or during a software evaluation effort.

Talend aims to be a multidomain MDM solution, and believes some of the other MDM platforms out there can be a little restrictive due to their heavy background in one domain or another (typically customer or product). In one example, a major Northeast university built its Student Master using Talend technology, and Talend is frequently used to provide MDM solutions for companies using Oracle and SAP for their ERP platforms.

In about 10 months, Talend has secured an impressive number of MDM Enterprise Edition customers, with quite a few “blue chip” organizations on its customer list in the US and Europe. Talend has a strong pipeline of demand as well, with over 30,000 Community Edition downloads to date.

I was impressed with the demonstrations I saw of Talend MDM’s features, with the degree of fit between the data integration, data quality and MDM platforms, and the extent that Talend tries to reduce the complexity of MDM for the user, by handling complex technology “under the covers”.

I came away from the demos feeling that the company had done a good job thinking about the users of their products, and providing a unified user experience between the data quality component, the data integration component, and the MDM hub.

Talend and the open source community will undoubtedly continue to advance the MDM product further, but this is a “real” solution right now, and deserves to be considered if you are looking for a flexible, multidomain MDM solution that can demonstrate value quickly.

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