Berlin Blockchain Startup BigchainDB Raises €3 Million


Berlin-based Blockchain startup BigchainDB has raised €3m euro in venture capital to fruther develop BigchainDB, a scalable Blockchain database.

According to media reports, the round was led by Earlybird Ventures and featuring participation from Anthemis Group, RWE Ventures, innogy SE and Digital Currency Group, BigchainDB‘s Series A round is intended to help expand the company’s staff and bolster its security.

Rather than trying to scale up Blockchain technology, BigchainDB starts with a big data distributed database and then adds Blockchain characteristics – decentralized control, immutability and the transfer of digital assets – turning the idea around. 

BigchainDB’s co-founder and CEO Bruce Pon told CoinDesk:

“Blockchain is a way to give access to assets equally. You’re still going to need intermediaries, but the access is equalized. They will never own your data like Google or Apple or Amazon.”

From their whitepaper:

BigchainDB fills a gap in the decentralization ecosystem: a decentralized database, at scale. It points to performance of 1 million writes per second throughput, storing petabytes of data, and sub-second latency.

The BigchainDB design starts with a distributed database (DB), and through a set of innovations adds Blockchain characteristics: decentralized control, immutability, and creation & movement of digital assets. BigchainDB inherits characteristics of modern distributed databases: linear scaling in throughput and capacity with the number of nodes, a full-featured NoSQL query language, efficient querying, and permissioning. Being built on an existing distributed DB, it also inherits enterprise-hardened code for most of its codebase.

Scalable capacity means that legally binding con- tracts and certificates may be stored directly on the Blockchain database. The permissioning system enables configurations ranging from private enterprise Blockchain databases to open, public Blockchain databases. BigchainDB is complementary to decentralized processing platforms like Ethereum, and decentralized file systems like InterPlanetary File System (IPFS).

This paper describes technology perspectives that led to the BigchainDB design: traditional Blockchains, distributed databases, and a case study of the domain name system (DNS). We introduce a concept called Blockchain pipelining, which is key to scalability when adding Blockchainlike characteristics to the distributed DB. We present a thorough description of BigchainDB, a detailed analysis of latency, and experimental results. The paper concludes with a description of use cases.