The emergence of the cloud has powered a paradigm shift in data infrastructure from Extract Transform Load (ETL) to Extract Load Transform (ELT). Companies used to transform data before moving it to their warehouse (ETL), requiring data teams to predict from the get-go all of the downstream data use cases. In today’s world, given the volumes of data and sheer quantum of potential use cases, this is unrealistic. ELT has therefore become the new standard: data cleaning, enrichment, and transformation happen after the loading process. 

Alongside this change of paradigm, a modern data stack has emerged around tools such as  Snowflake (data warehouse), dbt (data transformation), Monte Carlo (data reliability), or Airbyte (data integration). But this modern data stack has lacked a native business intelligence (BI) solution. Existing BI tools have created (i) workflow inefficiencies for data analysts who’ve had to duplicate semantic logic in various tools (e.g. dbt and Looker) and (ii) metrics confusion across organizations as they don’t rely on a unified metrics repository upstream from the BI layer to be used across use cases such as BI, ML, and data apps.

Enter Lightdash. The team provides an open-source BI platform that natively integrates with the modern data stack, delivered via their app or API. Lightdash enables data analysts to build visualizations on top of transformation projects and metrics powered by dbt. In the words of Oliver Laslett, Lightdash’s co-founder and CTO: “Almost all of the data analyst’s work around creating a visualization layer is already done before they even start on Lightdash.”

Lightdash is building a strong open-source community: in September, a query was run every 30 seconds on Lightdash across >70 organizations, including teams at Accenture, Beauty Pie, and Warner Media. In addition, Lightdash has just launched its cloud version to enable anyone to access the power of their product out of the box. Check it out here

When we first met the Lightdash team more than a year ago, we were struck by their empathy for data analysts and their passion for improving data workflows, ultimately empowering companies to make better decisions, faster. Hamzah (CEO) and Oliver experienced the data analysts’ pain points first-hand when they worked together at an insurtech startup and later on as they advised clients on their data infrastructure, giving them a unique insight into the challenges they faced and how best to solve them.

We’re thrilled to be leading Lightdash’s seed round, alongside outstanding angels such as Ashley Kramer (GitLab), Lars Bjork (former Qlik CEO), Tristan Handy (dbt), and Guy Podjarny (Snyk).

Our partnership with Lightdash further builds on Accel’s thesis around the power of open source, and our work with leaders such as Airbyte, Rasa, Segment, Sentry, Snyk, Vercel, and more. We look forward to supporting the Lightdash team as they continue building the standard BI platform for the modern data stack!