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BlueData Helps Nasdaq Drive Business Innovation with Big Data

Here at BlueData, our customers include leading enterprise organizations across many different industries and geographies. One of those industries is financial services, and some of the world’s largest banks are BlueData customers. But perhaps one of our most emblematic customers in the financial services industry is Nasdaq.

Nasdaq created the world’s first electronic stock market, and its technology powers more than 90 marketplaces in 50 countries – including 1 in 10 of the world’s securities transactions. Today, Nasdaq is home to 3,800 total listings with a market value of $11 trillion. It lists more companies and, on average, trades more shares per day than any other U.S. market.

I think this quote from Mike Viola – principle technologist in the global technology CIO office at Nasdaq and one of our key contacts there – helps illustrate the scale and importance of data to their business:

“Nasdaq is a place where business meets technology. The data that travels through our systems is key to the whole business. By the time I finish this sentence, millions of transactions just went through our systems.”

So how does Nasdaq analyze all this data and turn it into insights that drive business innovation? In the past, they relied on traditional business intelligence and data warehousing solutions. These tools were good at that point in time and are still useful for certain use cases. But as they looked to scale, they were limited in the types and volume of data they could analyze; and cost became an increasing issue.

Nasdaq and BlueData

More recently, Nasdaq deployed Hadoop and other tools for large-scale Big Data analytics; yet they ran into several challenges. Each line of business within Nasdaq had its own unique requirements for Big Data analytics – including different Hadoop distributions and/or different versions. Each team had their own preferred set of tools that needed to be custom crafted and installed, as well as their own configuration requirements (including compute, network, and storage infrastructure).

This meant that each group needed their own dedicated Big Data environment, running on bare-metal physical servers. The deployment, configuration, and management for all the systems and infrastructure was complex, expensive, and time-consuming. Yet in a constantly changing business and regulatory environment, agility and time to market are of the utmost importance. And at the same time, they needed to meet the ever-increasing performance and security requirements of Nasdaq’s financial trading exchange.

In a new video, Mike Viola at Nasdaq summed up these challenges: “The tools we’ve used in the past have had limits on performance, scalability, and cost.”  So Nasdaq set out to find a faster, easier, and more cost-effective way to meet the Big Data needs of their business users.

Intel introduced Nasdaq to BlueData and they quickly recognized the value of the solution: Nasdaq selected the BlueData EPIC software platform to simplify and accelerate their on-premises Big Data deployment, running on Intel architecture. Powered by Docker containers, the BlueData platform provides Nasdaq with the flexibility to easily deploy multiple distributions and versions of Hadoop – as well as other Big Data analytics tools required by the data science teams in different lines of business. It allows them to support each of these different teams in a secure, multi-tenant environment – with the on-demand agility of Docker containers, while ensuring comparable performance to bare-metal. Finally, it helps Nasdaq to increase utilization and reduce costs for their Big Data infrastructure – by scaling compute and storage independently, as needed.

“From an engineering and operational perspective, we were able to quickly meet the Big Data analytics needs of our business teams and clients without having to increase our staff”, said Viola.  “In turn, this will allow them to quickly assess new business opportunities and decide to either proceed forward or fail fast and make adjustments. Fundamentally, BlueData helps Nasdaq drive business innovation.”

Watch the video to learn how BlueData helps Nasdaq improve agility and reduce costs for their Big Data analytics, while ensuring enterprise-grade security and performance: