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Presto Company Ahana Stands Tall In The Crowded AWS Marketplace

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Ahana has been selected into two AWS programs that not only set them apart from the crowd but also help work closely with AWS customers to serve them better.

Guest: Steven Mih
Company: Ahana
Show: Let’s Talk

Presto, originally created at Facebook, is the de facto standard for fast SQL processing on data lakes. Ahana, the leading member of the Presto community, is the only Presto company that offers managed service for Presto on AWS to simplify the otherwise complex job of data lake analytics.

Ahana recently added two new feathers to its hat within the AWS ecosystem to further help users consume Presto. Ahana has become a member of the AWS ISV Accelerate Program and it has also been selected into the AWS Global Startup Program.

“ISV Accelerate is a program that helps independent software vendors (ISVs) work with the AWS field teams and end customers so that customers have more choices,” said Steven Mih, Co-Founder and CEO of Ahana, who recently joined us on Let’s Talk show.

Similar to the AWS ISV Accelerate Program, which is an invite-only program for ISVs, the Global Startup Program from AWS is also an invite-only program for fast-growing startups. “They identify companies that they believe are helping customers in the AWS Cloud, and allow these companies to collaborate more closely, providing more turnkey solutions for AWS customers,” added Mih.

AWS Marketplace is a very crowded space with more than 10,000 or so vendors trying to compete for customers and the invite-only programs like these help companies like Ahana differentiate themselves as only a small subset of those 10,000 get invited to be in those programs.

As Mih explained during the show, these programs are certainly a win-win for AWS, Ahana and more importantly, the customers.

“If you’re an AWS Account Manager that’s watching this, we really encourage you to learn more about Ahana, and how we’re helping customers leverage Presto in the cloud,” said Mih.

We encourage you to watch this short and crisp version of the show. We have also published a raw transcript of the show.


Swapnil Bhartiya: I’m your host Swapnil Bhartiya and welcome to TFiR Let’s Talk. My next guest is, once again, Steven Mih, Co-Founder and CEO of Ahana. Steven, first of all, congratulations on becoming a member of the AWS ISV Accelerate Program. I want to know a bit about the program itself. What is the program all about, and how is it going to benefit, not only Ahana, but also AWS customers?

Steven Mih: AWS has a number of great partner programs for third-party software vendors like us. And so we found that working with AWS has been fantastic because they just have so many customers that are using data in their data lakes, and are looking to do analytics.

So ISV Accelerate is a program that helps ISVs work with the AWS field teams and end customers, and work in a way whereby there’s a lot of cooperation. And at the end is the customers have more choice. They can look at solutions that AWS provides from their own services, and also services like Ahana, the managed service for Presto.

Swapnil Bhartiya: Ahana has also been selected into the AWS Global Startups Program, once again. Tell me about the Program, and how it’s going to benefit both Ahana and AWS customers.

Steven Mih: Similar to the ISV Accelerate Program, which is an invite-only program for ISVs, the Global Startups Program from AWS is also an invite-only program for fast-growing startups. And so they identify companies that they believe are helping customers in the AWS cloud, and allows us to collaborate more closely, providing more turnkey solutions for AWS customers.

And so a big benefit to us is some of those programs, they provide some additional incentives for end customers, and for example, funding requests for extra credits for AWS customers to use trial licenses and whatnot. So we find that the combination of both these things is a really big benefit.

And if you’re a AWS account manager that’s watching this, we really encourage you to learn more about Ahana, and how we’re helping customers leverage Presto in the cloud.

Swapnil Bhartiya: Since we’re talking about AWS, and everybody knows that even the AWS Marketplace or even a lot of these invite-only programs are quite crowded. So can you talk about how Ahana sets itself apart from its competitors, especially in the Presto ecosystem?

Steven Mih: So, in fact, that’s right. AWS Marketplace has over 10,000 sellers, so it’s very, very crowded. And then the data area has many sellers as well. But ISV Accelerate and Global Startups Program, those are the ways that they differentiate because it’s only a small subset of those 10,000 get invited to be in those programs.

And so what customers can find is that they are well-architected solutions, cloud native solutions, and ones that work really, really well with AWS.

And we found that our Presto managed service lets people get at least three times better price performance than other Presto variants. And as far as Presto vendors are concerned, we’re the only Presto vendor in the ISV Accelerate Program or in the Global Startups business today.

Swapnil Bhartiya: Now, let’s narrow down and look at how does using Presto as a managed service for open data lakes analytics, make it easier to use SQL on Amazon S3?

Steven Mih: Most companies that are using AWS are finding that they’ll have their operational databases, and then they’ll have a data lake or a data warehouse. But as the data gets more and more, the data lake fills up much more. And running SQL on S3 is a fairly difficult for most companies to be able to set up, configure, and then operate as that data scales.

And so Ahana for Presto allows a managed service which is deployed in the customers’ accounts. There’s no data that’s transferred over, you don’t have to ingest data like a data warehouse, and it lets you run SQL on S3. This lets you run the insights that your business may want, and reports and dashboards. And so it’s the most cost-effective solution out there for running your analytics.

Swapnil Bhartiya: Can you talk a bit about some of the interesting use cases that you have seen?

Steven Mih: Because Presto speaks ANSI SQL, you can run any type of SQL query against it. So there’s three main use cases that are pretty popular for data lake analytics.

One is to run your ad hoc queries against your data lakes. And in order to have something that can be interactively worked with, you need to have a very high-performance system. And Presto is a distributive SQL engine that’s in memory, and so most of the results sets come back in seconds of time. This allows analysts and scientists to ask questions of their data in an interactive way. So ad hoc analytics is first.

Second is your reporting dashboard. This is your typical workhorse associated with, “Hey, I need to get my monthly and quarterly reports, or daily reports,” and analysts are helping their business units understand what’s going on with their data. And so that’s another big one.

And lastly I’d say is an area where companies are providing analytics to their end customers. And so their SAS applications, they need to include analytics. And so they present with Presto, and using Ahana to present those dashboards and reports to their end customers.

Swapnil Bhartiya: Awesome! Steven, thank you so much for taking time out today, and not only talk about these two partner programs that you have joined with AWS, but also give us an update about use cases and also the open sources story. So thanks for your time today, and as usual, I’ll look forward to talking to you again.

Steven Mih: Thanks, Swap. Great to be here. Cheers.

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