New Case Study: Why and How Databricks Chose Simba to Deliver ODBC Connectivity in the Cloud

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA – February 18, 2015 – Today Simba Technologies Inc.®, the worldwide leader in Big Data connectivity, announced the release of a new case study: “Databricks Chooses Simba for ODBC Connectivity in the Cloud.” The case study describes in detail how Databricks—the company founded by the creators of the popular open-source Big Data processing engine Apache Spark—selected and collaborated with Simba Technologies to deliver ODBC connectivity for its flagship Databricks Cloud product.

“Databricks continues to deliver innovation in data-access performance to the Apache Spark community with Databricks Cloud,” says Toph Whitmore, Simba Technologies VP of Marketing. “We’ve been fortunate enough to collaborate with the industry visionaries at Databricks since the early days of Spark, and here at Simba we remain committed to delivering seamless ODBC connectivity paired with native SQL access for Databricks’ enterprise customers.”

Apache Spark was initially developed by Databricks CEO Ion Stoica, CTO Matei Zaharia, and team in 2009 at U.C. Berkeley’s AMPLab. The team then went on to create Databricks Cloud, a cloud platform built around Apache Spark, providing users with impressive data-access performance gains (up to 100x acceleration compared to MapReduce). However, key stakeholders recognized a potential barrier to broad Spark adoption: Enterprise analysts demanded the performance benefits of Spark, but wanted to bring their own BI apps to the table.

“One increasingly common request from enterprise customers is to be able plug in their favorite BI tools to extend the capabilities of Databricks Cloud,” said Arsalan Tavakoli-Shiraji, Databricks’ Customer Engagement Lead. “ODBC connectivity provided by Simba is simple to implement, and is one of the most widely-supported options to enable these customers.”

Databricks selected Simba Technologies to provide its ODBC 3.8 driver for Databricks Spark SQL, its powerful SQL-query engine for Apache Spark. Databricks now includes the driver free of charge in its Databricks Cloud platform. For Databricks, the Simba ODBC driver enables Databricks customers to query their Spark data with their preferred BI tools (like Tableau, Excel, Qlik, MicroStrategy, or others) on Windows, Linux, and Mac.

“As part of the Spark unified platform, Spark SQL enables interactive and large-scale, long-running queries at blazing speeds, as well as seamless access to all of Spark’s advanced analytics capabilities,” says Ion Stoica, Databricks CEO and U.C. Berkeley Computer Science Professor. “Simba’s ODBC 3.8 connectivity broadens Spark SQL’s reach to a wealth of BI and analytics applications that enterprise users employ.”

Tavakoli-Shiraji concludes that Databricks Cloud users value its connectivity and compatibility with BI tools: “We’ve basically knocked down the barriers for less-technical users to be able to work with their data, even if they don’t know about all the complexities that are being abstracted under the covers.”

Simba-developed ODBC 3.8 connectivity and SQL access is provided as part of the Databricks Cloud service. Learn more about Databricks and Databricks Cloud at

About Simba Technologies Inc.

Simba Technologies (, @SimbaTech) is the recognized world leader in standards-based data access and analytics products and solutions for both relational and multi-dimensional data sources. Simba provides the world’s leading companies with data connectivity solutions running on multiple platforms, including Windows, Mac, UNIX, Linux and many mobile platforms. Simba’s data connectivity products support multiple interfaces, including ODBC, JDBC, OLE DB, OLE DB for OLAP (ODBO), XML for Analysis (XMLA), ADO, ADO.NET, ADOMD and ADOMD.NET.

Simba’s software is used worldwide. Its customers include leading independent software vendors and global enterprises like Alteryx®, Altiscale®, Cloudera®, Couchbase®, Databricks®, DataStax®, Google®, Hortonworks®, MapR®, Microsoft®, Oracle®, Qubole®, SAP®, Splunk®, Tableau®, and Teradata®.

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Media Contact

Toph Whitmore
Simba Technologies Inc.
(604) 633-0008 x140