sold to Adobe in 2009 for $1.8 billion. After selling Omniture, James founded a startup that's been in stealth until today. The new company, Domo (formerly called Shacho), is a business intelligence software-as-a-service and has received $43 million in funding, including $33 million from Benchmark Capital. According to a previous announcement, the angel investors included Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff, Ron Conway/David Lee and Andreessen Horowitz.In 1996, Josh James founded Omniture, a Web analytics company that
So what's the product that's being announced, now that this is out of stealth? I'm not sure.
In the two page press release we received, there's much boasting Domo transforming BI. But no talk about how it will actually do that. The actual product is only mentioned in the final paragraph, and it is only described as an "executive management platform." That tells us nothing.
My initial instinct was to skip the story. We're a tech blog, we usually leave the funding stories to other sites. But the tech press has been quick to pick this up - and it is an awfully big funding. And the lack of details is bothering me. When the stories about Color were going around, at least there were clear descriptions of what the app actually did.
Now that the announcement has happened, there's some detail on the Domo site, but for the most part it's just advertising copy. "Domo seamlessly delivers real-time intelligence from all those sources into one browser-based view, accessible across any device, including mobile platforms such as the iPhone, iPad, Blackberry and Android." The whole point of BI is to aggregate data from around the enterprise into one location so that it can be visualized and analyzed, so this statement doesn't tell us much, except that it's a real-time BI tool with mobile clients. There's some screenshots that look pretty, but Domo's certainly not the first pretty BI suite.
We can work out a little from the fact that Domo acquired Corda Technologies, which had actual products available before the acquisition.
I get a few pitches a week from companies claiming to reinvent or revolutionize or democratize business intelligence. Most of them have a hard time explaining how its dashboards are actually any different than Cognos or Business Objects or newer offers from TIBCO or JackBe.
Domo may have some amazing secret sauce. And I'm sure the investors are better informed than we are about what's under the hood. I want to hear more about Domo before I write it off as just another BI dashboard vendor. And to Domo and James' credit, there was an actual product demo at the press event.
But this feels awfully a lot like bubble behavior. Lots of talk about funding and revolutionary technology. Not much talk about what the products actually do or how they are different from existing technology.
Lead image by Umberto Salvagnin