Making data and insights meaningful for every industry
Data Republic is in the business of changing the way organisations exchange and collaborate with data. The Data Republic platform provides a marketplace and governance solution for organisations to mange proprietary data exchanges, third-party data analysis and the ongoing application of exchanged insights. This new technology platform makes data exchange secure, simple and accessible for data professionals. Put very simply, they create trust and liquidity in the most significant new asset class emerging – data.
“AWS is helping us to change the way the world collaborates with data.”
Data Republic has created an entire industry by using the AWS Cloud. Juan Delard de Rigoulières is Head of Engineering and self-proclaimed Psychohistorian – a title that relates to Asimov’s fictional science of predicting events based on data from the past and present – and sums up his role at Data Republic.
“We’ve created a central environment,” he says, “where people can come, curate and contribute their data – monetise it, exchange it, this is a one-stop shop for everything that you would like to do with data,” says Delard de Rigoulières.
“Data is essential because every single action that you want to take, or every outcome, depends on deriving a proper analysis or meaningful insight to help you make an informed decision. Data Republic provides a secure way and a privacy-compliant way to exchange data. By analogy with financial exchanges that free up capital, Data Republic calls it making the data more liquid”.
“As we move towards greater accessibility to and greater liquidity of curated datasets, the next step will be to consider the need to develop actionable and clear policies and guidelines for businesses and government departments to protect the consumer when opening up and sharing data,” says McCarney.
“I love data, I like the challenges it presents and I’m very passionate about the insights that you can get with data and how can you change the economy and society,” says Delard de Rigoulières.
Data Republic’s mission is to unlock the world’s data
He believes that the way to unlock value, to get better insight and make better decisions, comes from having access to relevant data in a timely fashion – but the fact that data is locked away limits that access. “What we strive to do is basically to give liquidity to the data in a very secure way. If we can achieve that, it means more kinds of use cases can be enabled.”
Data Republic’s mission is to unlock the world’s data. According to McCarney. “Only when data sharing agreements can be made both safely – and at scale – can we really see the productivity and innovation benefits of data exchange,” says McCarney.
The challenges to such an ambitious mission are scale and security, and that’s where AWS helps. Security comes first for us and it would be difficult, if not impossible, to imagine delivering on such a scale without access to the AWS Cloud,” says Delard de Rigoulières.
Data Republic’s relationship with AWS goes right back to the very beginnings of the company, when AWS identified the startup as having promise and offered its support through the AWS Activate program. “When we started three years ago, the kind of complex scenarios and hypotheses that we needed to test were not that simple. We had to rely on a cloud provider that had all of these services to build and iterate on top of and prototype.”
"We’re handling terabytes of information daily — that would be impossible if we didn’t have the power of AWS behind us.”
“It’s hard to imagine Data Republic working without the power and scale of AWS. We’re handling terabytes of information daily – that would be impossible if we didn’t have the power of AWS behind us,”says Delard de Rigoulières.
Data Republic’s first foray into AWS’s services was with an Amazon Elastic MapReduce (EMR) cluster.
“EMR allowed us to test all of the core functionality of what we wanted to achieve in terms of data pipelines, security, storage and scalability and some analysis, before spending the time and resources to design exactly the solution that we wanted.”
“Since then, Data Republic has gone all-in with our AWS implementation. We have EC2 (Elastic Compute Cloud), we use S3 (Simple Storage Service), we’ve used EMR; we used KMS (Key Management Service) to encrypt data, we’ve used Lambda and Kinesis, we use Redshift, we use every single network capability, we use cloud formation, we use workspaces. We basically use almost every service that is available.”
“My favourite is Identity and Access Management (IAM). We are trying to create a secure exchange, so that underrated service that no-one mentions is, for us, of utmost importance.”
Beyond enabling Data Republic to build its business in those early days, AWS continues to be essential to the company’s growth by enabling quick and cost-effective experimentation.
“AWS is allowing us to be more competitive in the market by allowing us to iterate faster, to be able to access basically unlimited resources. We are in a completely new market and defining it ourselves, so we need to be constantly testing hypotheses with customers. We test hypotheses every single day with new services by combining different services all within the AWS Cloud.”
AWS’s global presence means AWS is there to support Data Republic’s international expansion.
“To take this platform and deliver it in another market is easy, because AWS is everywhere. We build on top of Amazon. That makes everything almost infinitely scalable and extremely simple to deploy all around the world. Also because of data sovereignty and privacy policies, we keep the data within Australia, and AWS has data centres here in its Sydney Region.”
“Cloud simplifies your life – from a business perspective, from the results you can get, from a financial perspective, everything is based on usage. From a security perspective, the amount of development and engineering behind every one of the features is unparalleled.”
“Data Republic’s mission is to unlock the world’s data, and AWS enables us to do that by giving us a secure, scalable infrastructure that underpins our platform globally.”