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All about that DBaaS: NoSQL cheerleader MongoDB sees revenue spike, but expects 'up to' $25m Covid-19 hit for 2021

Vows to be one of 'key beneficiaries' of 'platform shift towards the cloud'

NoSQL database bigwig MongoDB is warning the Covid-19 pandemic will hit turnover by between $15m and $25m for fiscal 2021.

"Like many global organisations, we believe our operations will likely be impacted by the slowdown in economic activity that is occurring globally," said Michael Gordon, COO and CFO at MongoDB on an earnings conference-call yesterday.

Weaker bookings are expected in the first half of the year, which started 1 February 2020, he added.

"We are seeing minimal impact across our sales channels around the world, including closing transactions in the first quarter, even in the countries hardest hit by COVID-19. However, as a management team, we believe that it is now prudent and responsible to incorporate that into our outlook that we expect what could be a much more challenging economic environment in the coming weeks and months," said Gordon.

MongoDB said it is continuing to invest in "high-priority projects across the organisation", including growing headcount in sales where in its US heartland does not cover all the major cities.

In better news for the firm, it also reported a 58 per cent year-on-year increase in revenue to $421.7m in its full-year financial results for 2020 [PDF].

Net losses for the year and quarter ending 31 January, 2020 were $62.6m, up from $22.2m a year earlier, although nearly $110m in acquisitions contributed to these losses.

MongoDB also confirmed that Eliot Horowitz, co-founder and CTO, is stepping down from July, but will stay on as technical advisor after leaving his full-time role.

CEO Dev Ittycheria claimed MongoDB was the world's most popular modern database in terms of downloads, with 90 million including 1.5 million free tier users of its flagship Atlas database and 17,000 paying customers.

"We strongly believe that the database market is at the very beginning of a profound platform shift towards the cloud over the next decade… [and] MongoDB is exceptionally well-positioned to be one of the key beneficiaries in this platform shift," he trilled.

TechMarketView principal analyst Martin Courtney said a partnership deal with data integration firm Informatica and integration and analytics platform Hitachi Vantara Pentaho was boosting the migration of large data sets from Oracle databases to MongoDB.

"The company is continuing to do a good job of enticing companies off legacy on-premise databases and onto a more flexible open source NoSQL alternative," he said.

New customer wins in the year included Japanese game producer Square Enix, enterprise software company Software AG, US no-code application platform Unqork and New York-based location-aware data infrastructure company Radar Labs, he said.

NoSQL databases have made a big impact since their arrival more than a decade ago and have successfully targeted new fast-moving and messy workloads. But their influence can be overstated. Downloads don't mean a great deal when Oracle's annual revenue is $39.5bn – 94 times greater than that of MongoDB. The NoSQL upstarts have a lot of growing to do before they threaten the giants of the database world. ®

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