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Splunk Inc.
Public company
Traded as SPLK
Founded 2003
Founder Michael Baum, Rob Das and Erik Swan
Headquarters San Francisco, California, United States
Key people
  • Rob Das (chief architect)
  • Erik Swan (senior advisor)
  • Michael Baum (founding CEO)
Revenue US$450.9 Million (2015)
Number of employees
1500 (2015)
Website splunk.com

Splunk is an American multinational corporation based in San Francisco, California, which produces software for searching, monitoring, and analyzing machine-generated big data, via a web-style interface.[1]

Splunk (the product) captures, indexes and correlates real-time data in a searchable repository from which it can generate graphs, reports, alerts, dashboards and visualizations.[2][3]

Splunk has a mission of making machine data accessible across an organization by identifing data patterns,[4] providing metrics, diagnosing problems and providing intelligence for business operations. Splunk is a horizontal technology used for application management, security and compliance, as well as business and web analytics.[1] As of Q2 2015, Splunk has over 7,900 customers worldwide.[5]

Splunk is based in San Francisco, with regional operations across EMEA and Asia and has over 900 employees.[6]


The company was started in 2003 by co-founders Michael Baum, Rob Das and Erik Swan.[7] The name "Splunk" is a reference to exploring caves, as in spelunking. Thus, the name was used to reference deep dives in the emerging field of big data.

Splunk was backed by venture firms August Capital and JK&B Capital. By 2007, Splunk raised 40 million USD [8] and became profitable in 2009.[9] In 2012, Splunk had its initial public offering, trading under NASDAQ symbol SPLK.

In September 2013, the company acquired Bugsense, a mobile device data analytics company.[10] Bugsense is a mobile analytics platform used by developers to improve app performance and improve quality. It provided a software developer kit, to give developers access to data analytics from mobile devices that it managed from its scalable cloud platform.[11] The acquisition amount is undisclosed.


Splunk offers products that perform real-time and historical search, as well as reports and statistical analysis. The product can index structured or unstructured textual machine-generated data. Search and analytics operations are specified using Search Processing Language, created for managing machine-generated big data. Originally based upon Unix Piping and SQL, its scope includes data searching, filtering, modification, manipulation, insertion, and deletion.

In 2011, Splunk released Splunk Storm, a cloud-based version of the core Splunk product. Splunk Storm offers a turnkey, managed and hosted service for machine data.[12] In 2013, Splunk announced that Splunk Storm would become a completely free service and expanded its cloud offering with Splunk Cloud.[13]

In 2013, Splunk announced a product called Hunk: Splunk Analytics for Hadoop, which supports accessing, searching, and reporting on external data sets located in Hadoop from a Splunk interface.[14]


Splunk offers its main software in two license types: —an Enterprise License designed for companies and large organizations, and a freeware License[15][16] designed for personal use. The freeware version is limited to 500 MB of data a day, and lacks some features of the Enterprise license edition.

As of the release of Splunk Cloud, Splunk Storm is free and includes 20GB of data storage.[17]


Splunk was designed for use in information technology operations; it is also used in other ways.[18] Users in IT operations include Metropcs,[19] Ceryx,[20] and Denver Water.[21] Cars.com,[22][23] Domino's Pizza,[24] and National Public Radio[25] are among those who use it for web analytics. In the Internet of Things it is used by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration Department of Drainage and Sewage to send alerts,[26] by Eglin Air Force Base for energy conservation,[27] by Nest Labs to analyze thermostat data,[citation needed] by iRhythm to check on product performance[citation needed] and by an elevator company to monitor elevator usage.[28] In computer security the University of Connecticut[29] and federal and state agencies use the technology.[30] It is used to help with regulatory compliance by Barclays bank,[31][32] Credit Suisse,[citation needed] Monster.com, [33] and Sportsbet.com.au.[34]



  1. ^ a b "How Splunk Is Riding IT Search Toward an IPO — Tech News and Analysis". Gigaom.com. 2010-12-17. Retrieved 2013-04-22. 
  2. ^ Start-Ups Aim to Help Tame Corporate Data, Pui-Wing Tam, Wall Street Journal, September 08, 2009
  3. ^ Woods, Dan (2011-01-06). "Business Intelligence and the Data Center". citoresearch.com. Archived from the original on 2012-03-20. 
  4. ^ Central, CIO (2010-12-15). "How CIOs Should Be Helping Marketers". Forbes. 
  5. ^ "Splunk's (SPLK) CEO Godfrey Sullivan on Q2 2015 Results - Earnings Call Transcript". 
  6. ^ Hoge, Patrick (January 21, 2011). "Splunk doubles 2010 revenue". 
  7. ^ Data Center Search Party: ComputerWorld
  8. ^ Splunk search engine raises $25 million, IT PRO 12 Sep 2007
  9. ^ "IT search company Splunk reaches profitability". VentureBeat. Retrieved 2013-04-22. 
  10. ^ "Splunk Announces Agreement to Acquire BugSense". Splunk. Retrieved 2013-09-16. 
  11. ^ "Splunk Acquires Bugsense". TechCrunch. 
  12. ^ "Splunk Storm brings log management to the cloud". InfoWorld. 2012-08-28. 
  13. ^ "Splunk Announces General Availability of Splunk Cloud". Wall Street Journal Marketwatch. 2013-10-01. 
  14. ^ "Splunk Spawns Hunk Hadoop Tool". Information Week. 2013-06-18. 
  15. ^ Cash in on free IT management software for a limited time only, Denise Dubie, Network World, November 01, 2009
  16. ^ Free SIM Tools Save Money -- And Maybe Your Data, John Sar, DarkReading, June 12, 2009
  17. ^ "Splunk Unveils Splunk Cloud". Cloud Hosting. 2013-10-04. 
  18. ^ "Splunk CEO: Unintended use cases important to machine data business". Computer Weekly. 2013-04-30. 
  19. ^ "Carriers call up mobile data". Financial Times. 2013-03-18. 
  20. ^ "Splunk Enterprise Helps Ceryx Achieve ROI of 200 percent". Information Technology. 2013-01-17. 
  21. ^ "SDenver Water Uses Big Data to Improve Efficiency". Government Technology Magazine. 2013-10-04. 
  22. ^ "Big data drives high performance for Cars.com". Information World. 2013-10-24. 
  23. ^ "Big data drives high performance for Cars.com". Fierce CIO. 2012-10-24. 
  24. ^ "Security tool delivers surprise insights to Domino's Pizza". Network World. 2012-12-02. 
  25. ^ "NPR Deploys Splunk for Web Analytics". CIO Magazine. 2011-03-24. 
  26. ^ "Erecting Operational Intelligence Using Machine Data". Datanami. 2013-04-09. 
  27. ^ "Eglin Air Force Base Deploys Sensors to Save Energy". Energy Manager Today. 2013-05-06. 
  28. ^ "Our connected future: what to expect when elevators and toys start phoning home". GigaOM. 2013-05-10. 
  29. ^ "Can Big Dats Help Universities Tackle Security BYOD?". CIO Magazine. 2012-07-31. 
  30. ^ "Can automated security put agencies a step ahead of the hackers?". GCN. 2013-06-14. 
  31. ^ "Barclays tackles complex regulatory environment with Splunk". Computerworld UK. 2013-04-18. 
  32. ^ "'Without Splunk we might be taken out of the market,' says Barclays". Computing Magazine UK. 2013-04-19. 
  33. ^ "Monster Chooses Splunk For Big Data Security". Information Week Healthcare. 2012-11-14. 
  34. ^ "Sportsbet reduces pain of PCI compliance". CIO Magazine. 2013-05-09. 

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