Hortonworks confirms co-founder and CTO's departure

The co-founder of the Apache Hadoop distributor appears to be leaving on good terms, but why he is going remains a mystery.


Hortonworks co-founder and chief technology officer Eric Baldeschwieler is indeed leaving the company.

CEO Rob Bearden confirmed the news in a blog post on Tuesday, acknowledging he was following up on a GigaOM report on Monday already suggesting Baldeschwieler's departure.

The co-founder of the Apache Hadoop distributor appears to be leaving on good terms, but where he is going (and why) remains a mystery.

While thanking Baldeschwieler in his remarks, Bearden's only other comments were dedicated to the short history of the company with an optimistic outlook on where the market is going next:

We’ve attracted more active and experienced open source Hadoop committers under one roof than any other organization in support of building out a 100% open source, community driven, and enterprise ready Apache Hadoop platform. We’re also focused on supporting the needs of well over one hundred customers and partnering with some of the biggest names in the big data industry to help ensure Hadoop is integrated with technologies and tools within the enterprise. It’s certainly been an incredible two years and there’s a lot more exciting work ahead of us.

There are no comments from Baldeschwieler himself in the blog post, although he did send out the following Tweet on Monday, August 5:

Prior to co-founding Hortonworks with more than 20 other engineers, Baldeschwieler served as vice president of Hadoop Software Engineering at Yahoo.

Baldeschwieler actually joined Yahoo through an acquisition in 2003 when served as a technology leader for Inktomi’s web service engine, then picked up by the search company.

Hortonworks itself is self-touted as a Yahoo spinoff, which broke off in 2011 as enterprise data platform for open source Apache Hadoop deployments.

Baldeschwieler is being replaced by Ari Zilka as chief technology officer, presumably effective immediately as his bio has already been uploaded to the Hortonworks leadership team page.

Zilka, founder and previously CTO at Terracotta, has also served as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Accel Partners, chief architect at Walmart.com, and a consultant at both Sapient and PriceWaterhouseCoopers.

Image via Eric Baldeschwieler's Twitter page