The Syndera Journey

Posted on 02/23/09 9 Comments

Syndera, a defunct privately held company founded in 2002 and headquartered in Monterey, California sold their core software assets to TIBCO in 2008 for $1M USD.  Syndera was based on the concept of application syndication,providing “visibility into software assets across the enterprise and provides a way to re-use these assets to pre-integrate applications.”

On February 24, 2003 Syndera announced they had raised $5 Million in Series A Financing from ONSET Ventures and Clearstone Venture Partners. Syndera also announced that Erik Lassila of Clearstone Venture Partners and Mark Hilderbrand of ONSET Ventures were named to the Syndera Board of Directors. The Board also included Prashant Gupta, Syndera’s founder and CEO.  Prior to founding Syndera, Mr. Gupta was founder, president and CEO of Tivre and the CTO for CrossWorlds Software, a company focused on enterprise application integration (EAI) and acquired by IBM on 14 January 2002.  Mr. Gupta had also served as chief architect for Sybase.

Syndera’s product focus was:

  • Transaction Assurance: Diagnose what went wrong, where, why and how to fix a transaction problem.
  • Enterprise Transaction Auditing: Automating the tracing of material sales transactions for audit and regulatory compliance, or quote-to-return process for reconciliation, for example.
  • Enterprise Transaction Metrics: Measuring inefficiencies and determine bottlenecks in a business process.

On June 10, 2004, Syndera announced that it has been named a winner of the Investors’ Choice award at Enterprise Outlook 2004. At this time Syndera was focused on operational performance and risk management “dashboards and alerts” based customer-define key performance indicators (KPIs) such as inventory levels, product line profitability, abandoned orders, demand spikes, programmatic trading levels, fraud detection, fill rates and supply chain metrics.

On June 20, 2005 Syndera announced it has raised $10 million in Series B financing led by private investor Andy Ludwick. Ludwick had been a member of the Syndera Board of Directors since May 2003. Existing investors, Clearstone Venture Partners and ONSET Ventures, also participated pro-rata in that round of financing. With an increased focus on electronic trading and capital markets, the Syndera solution was advertised to “empower users to monitor, analyze and react to events in a timely, effective manner, and establish a more responsive, competitive business.”

On December 14, 2006 Bloor Research recognized Syndera in the Operational BI vendor category as the strongest product offering in its November 2006 report on Event Processing.  Bloor Research Director, Philip Howard, acknowledged Syndera with the highest honor, the “Gold Award,” citing its process awareness and high performance as distinguishing characteristics.

Syndera’s market focus was capital markets and electronic trading with products like the “Syndera Electronic Trading Intelligence for Fixed Income and Foreign Exchange” and the “Syndera Operational Business Intelligence Suite 3.0″ including a time-series and trend analysis capability “to improve real-time decisions and historical analysis, and enhanced performance to tackle the most demanding transaction environments.”

During the same time period, Syndera began to market themselves both a “complex event processing” (CEP) and “event stream processing” (ESP) platform.  The only Syndera customer we could find in the public records was the Capital Markets division of Citigroup Corporate and Investment Banking.

On July 8, 2008, TIBCO acquired “certain assets” of Syndera Corporation for approximately $1.0 million paid in cash and on November 12, 2008 TIBCO released Syndera 3.3.0. Marco Seiriö has mentioned that Syndera raised over $20M USD in funding; however, we could only find $15M in financing announced in the press.   (Perhaps we missed a final $5M in Series C financing?)

It does appear, however, that at least $15M was invested into Syndera and “certain (software) assets” were sold to TIBCO for around $1M USD, resulting in a considerable loss for Andy Ludwick, Clearstone Venture Partners and ONSET Ventures.

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8 Comments

  1. Anonymous says:
    Monday, February 23, 2009 at 2:52pm

    Syndera was never used….

  2. Tim Bass says:
    Monday, February 23, 2009 at 3:00pm

    Hello Anonymous :-)

    Thanks for the update.

  3. Marco Seiriö says:
    Friday, February 27, 2009 at 7:59pm

    Anonymous, do you imply that Syndera spent $15M (which is an amazing 135 million Swedish crowns, quick math: this is would give me about 320000 hours of work done here in Sweden, can’t dream of the things I could do with that kind of cash…).

    It would surprise me much how one could spend so much and not manage to build something that found at least some customers….

  4. Anonymous says:
    Sunday, March 1, 2009 at 5:23pm

    >>> The only Syndera customer we could find in the public records was the Capital Markets division of Citigroup Corporate and Investment Banking. <<<

    Never used.

  5. Tim Bass says:
    Sunday, March 1, 2009 at 5:29pm

    Hi Marco,

    Anonymous is staying (as I read the comments) that the only company in the public records as a Syndera customer, Citigroup Corporate and Investment Banking, never actually used Syndera in operations.

    Yours faithfully, Tim

    PS: I have in on very good authority that “Anonymous” is credible and knows what they are talking about.

  6. Brian Connell says:
    Thursday, March 5, 2009 at 5:38pm

    So what about the Bloor Research highest award? Was that just for a product in the labs? Pretty strange to be awarded for lab-ware … or am I just being a little naive :-)

  7. Tim Bass says:
    Thursday, March 5, 2009 at 5:54pm

    Hi Brian!

    You know the game!

    The analyst normally prepares a list of questions and asks the vendors to fill it out. Then after doing some analysis, the analyst asks to speak to customers to confirm.

    Then, the vendor normally says “we have a lot of customers but they are worried about being competitive, blah blah blah” but don’t worry, I’ll make some calls and see if they want to talk.

    Then, the vendor takes the analyst out to dinner, maybe provides some complimentary tickets to their booth at a conference in a posh resort. There is wine, thick juicy stakes, maybe some romance :-)

    That is why folks like Marc Adler call these award “the fluffies” — the entire relationship between vendors and analysts is a business ecosystem — it’s a racket, LOL.

    I basically break out laughing every time I see their posts featured on complexevents.com ….. just more BS !

    If you want truth, read this and other independent user blogs, but keep in mind, the truth is painful :-) Sweet words and BS are easier to swallow than the actual facts.

    Yours faithfully, Tim

  8. Anonymous says:
    Sunday, March 8, 2009 at 1:20pm

    I generally try to ignore everything that comes out of organizations like Aite and Bloor. To tell you the truth, if a potential customer does not follow the blogosphere in order to root out some grains of truth, then that customer is not doing their proper due diligence. Then again, it is very difficult to get people to blog about their actual experiences with these CEP products, so in their absence, you have talking heads like Aite and Bloor taking people down a certain path.

One Trackback

  1. By Syndera - R.I.P. | Marco on CEP on February 23, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    [...]  [Edit: Here's a nice summary of Syndera] [...]