Braking Down The News

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Data warehousing giant Snowflake has announced its first industry-specific data cloud, with a focus on helping the financial services industry collaborate on data across departments while addressing regulatory requirements.

Snowflake’s data storage and analytics platform is used by businesses such as HubSpot and Office Depot to query and extract insights from their vast, disparate pools of data. It can be deployed across Google Cloud, AWS, and Microsoft, and its “data warehouse-as-a-service” status means companies don’t have to worry about choosing and configuring their hardware and software — Snowflake takes care of it all.

Industry clouds

Snowflake’s decision to launch its first industry-specific data cloud hints at where the broader cloud computing sphere is heading — industry clouds are shaping up to be the next big thing, with Google, Amazon, and Microsoft battling for more cloud dollars by creating differentiated toolsets that cater to sector-specific use cases. For example, earlier this year Microsoft launched industry clouds for finance, manufacturing, and nonprofits, while Amazon recently launched FinSpace, a data analytics service for the financial industry.

The finance industry, in particular, often has very specific needs in terms of security and regulatory compliance, which is partly why Snowflake is launching its Financial Services Data Cloud.

The Bozeman, Montana-based company already claims major customers from the financial services sphere, including Allianz, Western Union, BlackRock, AXA, and NYSE, and it also noted in its announcement today that it has seen its product revenue from the finance industry more than double year-on-year. Now it’s looking to double down on this growth with a more tailored offering.

Among the “enhanced security features” in Snowflake’s new data cloud are an infrastructure-as-code approach to powering auditable, trackable, and reversible infrastructure deployment and management; stricter network, identity, and access policies designed to spot any unauthorized activity; “enhanced” encryption with support for bring your own key (BYOK); and built-in classification and anonymization for sensitive data.

Elsewhere, Snowflake said it’s the first company to achieve the newly launched Cloud Data Management Capabilities (CDMC) industry standard, after being independently assessed by KPMG. CDMC is a “framework for data management best practices” spanning cloud, multicloud, and hybrid cloud environments, and although it’s currently focused on the financial services sector, it will eventually expand to cover other industries.

Snowflake also announced a handful of new services offered in partnership with third parties such as Amazon, BlackRock, Cognizant, Dataiku, Deloitte, and EY. This includes Amazon’s FinSpace, which will now include Snowflake as one of its external data sources.

As part of today’s announcement, Snowflake also revealed that it’s extending its existing private network access support — previously limited to Azure and AWS — to Google Cloud.

Matt Glickman, Snowflake’s VP and global head of FinServ industry, said that while this latest move represents the company’s first industry-specific data cloud, Snowflake will likely extend the concept to other industries. “Stay tuned for more to come in the future,” Glickman told VentureBeat.

 

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