Hailwhich provides fully managed and hosted services for major open source projects including Kafka, Cassandra, and Grafana, announced its first-ever acquisition — the Finnish company bought Kafkawizean open-source, self-service data governance tool for Apache Kafka. The terms of the contract are not disclosed.
The acquisition comes amid renewed interest in open source software security, with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently legal action warning against any organization that has not patched the highly publicized Log4j flaw that appeared last year. Elsewhere, a new bipartisan US Senate bill called the Securing Open Source Software Act appeared last week to help strengthen open source software, especially with regards to how it is operated in federal agencies.
Securing open source
Founded in Helsinki in 2016, Aiven basically solves many headaches involved in running open source software, which permeates just about every modern tech stack. From scripts that speed up servers to databases and beyond, open source is what makes the world of modern software tick. But open source software takes time to configure, deploy and maintain, which is where Aiven enters the fray by absorbing much of the heavy lifting involved in running and securing open source data infrastructure. across all major public clouds, freeing up enterprises to focus on building their “differentiated” core products.
Fees of a A fundraising of 210 million dollars which valued it at 3 billion dollarsAiven is now doubling down on its existing support for Kafka, an open source data streaming project that emerged from LinkedIn back in 2011. Some 80% of Fortune 100 companies apparently use Kafka to access real-time data in their apps, essential for use cases like matching passengers with drivers in ridesharing apps or processing commerce payments electronic.
Kafkawize, for its part, is an open source project launched in 2018 by Murali Basani to help companies build good data governance into their Kafka deployments, especially around the hundreds of “topics” generated by Kafka – a topic is essentially a category name in which records are organized and stored. This raises important security questions, including who is allowed to create and use a topic – and who owns it? Also, how does a company back up its Kafka configuration?
And that’s essentially what Kafkawize does – it’s designed to fill in the gaps in data governance in Kafka.
This acquisition means that Aiven now owns the intellectual property (IP), including the Kafkawise brand, and has employed Basani to continue working on the project as part of Aiven’s open source program office (OSPO). . And Aiven’s first decision as owner was to rename Kafkawize to Klaw.
“We were looking for an open-source tool that could provide self-service governance with enterprise-grade security and user management features,” Aiven CEO Oskari Saarenmaa told TechCrunch. “We believe that the Kafka community deserves open source tools, which is why we have hired the creator and maintainer of Klaw, placed those responsibilities in our open source program office, and will provide the necessary resources for the technology to ensure its ongoing open source development.”
While any open source project joining a commercial venture often raises eyebrows as to what will eventually become of the community project, joining Aiven goes some way to preserving its future viability. Funding remains a major issue for open source projects, which creates scalability barriers – companies may be hesitant to trust a product that has limited support.
As noted by Basani in his own blog post today: “This project is entirely developed by me in my spare time…with the support of Aiven, Klaw can reach his full potential in the years to come.”