CWI spin-off company DuckDB Labs helped create startup MotherDuck, which aims to connect DuckDB to the cloud and which raised $47.5 million. The open-source DuckDB system was launched in 2019 by Hannes Mühleisen and Mark Raasveldt from the Database Architectures group of CWI. They designed and implemented an innovative lightweight database system that manages and analyzes large amounts of data in a highly efficient way, using state-of-the-art techniques, including CWI inventions such as vectorized query processing, and also introduced new techniques.
DuckDB is designed to work embedded within running processes – no separate server is needed. This new concept of ‘embedded analytics’ opens opportunities for adoption in many markets and use cases, for instance mobile apps or intelligent cars. Since its launch, DuckDB has gained widespread adoption from data scientists and tech companies alike for its ability to run efficiently anywhere, even inside a web browser. In 2021, the CWI spin-off company DuckDB Labs was created. DuckDB popularity keeps growing rapidly, with more than 800K downloads this month, a growth of more than 3x in the past year.