Teradata sees strong demand for Think Big in Malaysia

  • ​Think Big focuses on Data lakes, while Teradata looks at integrated data warehouse
  • Teradata and Think Big working with MDEC to accelerate the adoption of BDA
Teradata sees strong demand for Think Big in Malaysia
From left: Think Big principal data scientist Martin Oberhuber, Teradata Malaysia country manager Saqib Sabah, Teradata CTO Stephen Brobst

TERADATA Corp expects the demand for Think Big's consulting services in Malaysia will be strong over the next few years, as more people implement big data analytics strategies in their organisation.

"Response has been very encouraging. As the country, via MDEC, is aggressively driving the adoption of big data analytics (BDA) and is working with the industry to develop high impact BDA projects, we expect the demand for BDA solutions to grow," said Saqib Sabah, Teradata Malaysia country manager.

"Think Big will clearly augment our collaborative efforts with MDEC to accelerate the infusion of data science skill-sets into the nation's talent pool."

Think Big is a subsidiary of Teradata. However, it operates independently (without much interference from parent) as Think Big's services include providing vendor neutral advices to customers.

"The whole reason we are kept as an independent company is to keep the vendor neutrality. We are very good at that. We have kept that DNA and promoting solutions based on what is required," said Martin Oberhuber, principal data scientist and international practice lead at Think Big.

Teradata's chief technology officer Stephen Brobst concurred.

"The compensation structure and so on are completely independent. So, there's no reselling, there's no commission, there's no quota. They (Think Big) are only focusing on delivering value for customers," said Brobst.

"In fact, there are no incentives in financial way. In terms of management structure, the management does not report to someone who cares about sales in Teradata."

How will this benefit Teradata?

In order to understand how Teradata can benefit from Think Big, one would need to understand each parties' strengths.

Teradata has strong expertise in integrated data warehouse solutions, while Think Big's expertise is more on data lakes solutions, such as Hadoop. 

"We believe a successful data lake implementation will accelerate the overall ecosystem. Then, demand for Teradata's integrated data warehouse will also benefit.

"Also, many of our clients have hybrid architecture, where they use Teradata integrated data warehouse systems and also data lakes. With the acquisition of Think Big, it really compliments the whole portfolio," said Brobst. 

Asian culture adverse to failure

According to Brobst, one of the biggest challenge faced by companies today is on the confidence of its data, and to understand what kind of value companies can derive from the data.

"If the customer spends US$100,000 to store the data, what kind of use cases can it get? So, we at Teradata will need to provide relevant used cases for our Malaysian customers," he said.

He added that Asian companies are generally adverse to failure. 

"Unlike in Silicon Valley, failure is part of the process and people are somehow rewarded for it. They are rewarded for the learnings from the failures. In Asia, you are rewarded for the success.

"In Asia, before we do something with our customers, they want us to show them successful case study. Perhaps, something that has been implemented by another bank, just like the customer's bank, and they want to look at the outcome. In Silicon Valley, you get things like 'Nobody has every done this before, but we are going to try it'," said Brobst.

"It's not a good or bad thing, as each has its own pro and cons."

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