Teradata Corporation is a publicly held international computer company that sells analytic data platforms, analytic products and related services. Its analytics products are meant to consolidate data from different sources and make the data available for analysis. The corporate headquarters are in Miamisburg, Ohio.
Teradata is an enterprise software company that develops and sells a relational database management system (RDBMS) with the same name. Teradata is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the stock symbol TDC.
The Teradata product is referred to as a “data warehouse system” and stores and manages data. The data warehouses use a “shared nothing” architecture, which means that each server node has its own memory and processing power. Adding more servers and nodes increases the amount of data that can be stored. The database software sits on top of the servers and spreads the workload among them. In 2010, Teradata added text analytics to track unstructured data, such as word processor documents, and semi-structured data, such as spreadsheets.
Teradata’s product can be used for business analysis. Data warehouses can track company data, such as sales, customer preferences, product placement, etc.
Teradata has a supplier diversity program that designates a minimum of 3 to 5% of spending on minority, women, veteran, or small business vendors.
Timeline information taken from Teradata company history unless otherwise cited.
- 1976–1979: concept of Teradata grows from research at California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and from the discussions of Citibank‘s advanced technology group.
- Incorporated in 1979 in Brentwood, CA by Jack E. Shemer, Philip M. Neches, Walter E. Muir, Jerold R. Modes, William P. Worth, and Carroll Reed.
- 1984: Teradata releases the world’s first parallel data warehouses and data marts.
- 1986: Fortune Magazine names Teradata “Product of the Year.”
- 1987: Teradata initial public offering in August
- 1989: Teradata partners with NCR to build new database computers.
- September 1991: AT&T Corporation acquires NCR.
- December 1991: NCR announces acquisition of Teradata.
- 1992: Teradata creates the first system over 1 terabyte, which goes live at Wal-Mart.
- 1996: A Teradata database becomes the world’s largest database at 11 terabytes.
- 1997: NCR becomes independent from AT&T.
- 1997: Teradata customer creates world’s largest production database at 24 terabytes.
- 1999: Teradata customer has world’s largest database with 130 terabytes.
- 2000: NCR acquires Ceres Integrated Solutions and its customer relationship management software.
- 2000: NCR acquired Stirling Douglas Group and its demand chain management software.
- 2003: Teradata University Network is created as an independent teaching portal led by university professors. Nearly 170 universities in 27 countries included in network.
- 2005: Teradata acquires DecisionPoint software and rebrands it as Teradata Decision Experts.
- 2007: Teradata established as an independent public company.
- 2007: Mike Koehler becomes the CEO of Teradata.
- 2008: Teradata acquires Claraview, a professional services company, establishing it as a division of Teradata.
- 2011: Teradata acquires Aprimo and Aster Data Systems.
- 2012: Teradata acquires eCircle, a direct marketing company with focus on email.
- 2014: Teradata acquires Revelytix, a provider of information management products for big data, Hadapt, a company that developed a platform integrating SQL with Apache Hadoop  and Think Big Analytics, a Big Data services firm specialized in Hadoop.
- 2014: Teradata acquires Rainstor, a company specializing in online big data archiving on Hadoop.
- 2015: Teradata acquires Appoxxee, a mobile marketing Software-as-a-Service provider.
- 2015: Teradata acquires FLXone, a DMP based in the Netherlands.
- 2016: Victor L. Lund becomes the CEO of Teradata.
- 2016:Teradata sells marketing applications division.
Technology and products
Teradata is a massively parallel processing system running a shared-nothing architecture. Its technology consists of hardware, software, database, and consulting. The system moves data to a data warehouse where it can be recalled and analyzed.
The systems can be used as back-up for one another during downtime, and in normal operation balance the work load across themselves.
In 2009, Forrester Research issued a report, “The Forrester Wave: Enterprise Data Warehouse Platform,” by James Kobielus, rating Teradata the industry’s number one enterprise data warehouse platform in the “Current Offering” category.
Teradata is the most popular data warehouse DBMS in the DB-Engines database ranking.
Active enterprise data warehouse
Teradata Active Enterprise Data Warehouse is the platform that runs the Teradata Database, with added data management tools and data mining software.
The data warehouse differentiates between “hot and cold” data – meaning that the warehouse puts data that is not often used in a slower storage section. As of October 2010, Teradata uses Xeon 5600 processors for the server nodes.
Teradata Integrated Analytics is a set of tools for data analysis that resides inside the data warehouse.
Backup, archive, and restore
BAR is Teradata’s backup and recovery system.
The Teradata Disaster Recovery Solution is automation and tools for data recovery and archiving. Customer data can be stored in an offsite recovery center.
The Teradata database includes a feature called QueryGrid,  that allows user of the Teradata database to fetch data from external databases from standard SQL queries, as if they were hosted in the local EDW. The data movement happens in parallel whenever possible, so it is as efficient as performance the external data source; this is usually still much slower than native Teradata database performance, but still acceptable for exploratory tasks.
Currently supported external data sources are Aster, Presto, Teradata, Hive and Oracle.
Teradata Platform Family is a set of products that include the Teradata Data Warehouse, Database, and a set of analytic tools. The platform family is marketed as smaller and less expensive than the other Teradata products.
Teradata’s Consulting Services organization supports the design and implementation of Teradata data warehousing products, Teradata Aster big data analytics and Teradata’s marketing and analytic applications. Teradata Consulting Services employs more than 3,000 consultants on data acquisition and integration services, business intelligence, big data, quality and testing, and general database support services in five consulting development centers Teradata Customer Services support customers experiencing hardware or software issues.
Below is a partial list of Teradata partners.
- Tata Consultancy Services (TCS)
- Informatica: dual load
- Kalido: Teradata and Kalido Accelerate product
- MicroStrategy: joint business intelligence products
- SAP: Netweaver data warehouse
- Tableau Software: interactive data visualization products focused on business intelligence
- TIBCO Software
- WhereScape: data warehouse development and management tools
Teradata Partners conference
Teradata holds an annual user group conference and expo known as Teradata Partners with keynote industry speakers, educational sessions led by customers and other vendors. The Teradata Partners Conference has been an annual event since 1985. The conference involves lectures and speeches on technical and business topics and announcements about new products.
Teradata began to associate itself with the term “Big Data” in 2010. CTO Stephen Brobst attributes the rise of big data to “new media sources, such as social media.” The increase in semi-structured and unstructured data gathered from online interactions prompted Teradata to form the “Petabyte club” in 2011 for its heaviest big data users.
The rise of big data resulted in many traditional data warehousing companies updating their products and technology. For Teradata, big data prompted the acquisition of Aster Data Systems in 2011 for the company’s MapReduce capabilities and ability to store and analyze semi-structured data.
Public interest in big data resulted in a 13% increase in Teradata’s global sales.
Teradata’s main competitors are similar products from vendors such as Oracle, IBM, Microsoft and Sybase IQ. Also, competitors include data warehouse appliance vendors such as Netezza (acquired in November 2010 by IBM), DATAllegro (acquired in August 2008 by Microsoft), ParAccel, Pivotal Greenplum Database, and Vertica Systems (acquired in February 2011 by HP), and from packaged data warehouse applications such as SAP BW and Kalido.