Popular among developers, RethinkDB sought to strike a balance between a database that is simple to use and one that is scalable across many servers. Cofounder and chief executive Slava Akhmechet once told VentureBeat: “If you can build a product that does that, there’s an order of magnitude technological advancement. If you can easily build applications and scale them out, that’s a massive thing.”
Other open-source NoSQL databases are available in the space, but RethinkDB sought to differentiate itself from the well-funded database startup MongoDB. Like MongoDB, RethinkDB stores data in JSON documents, but it uses the RethinkDB query language (ReQL) that supports joins, among other things. Currently its GitHub project has accumulated more than 15,000 stars.
In a blog post, Akhmechet said those joining the payment processing company will use their expertise to solve new problems for Stripe, while building out infrastructure for developers worldwide.
Based on Akhmechet’s post, it appears that RethinkDB made an effort to help its various team members transition to other roles, but Stripe only appeared to be interested in the engineers. This makes sense, because Stripe is interested in creating tools developers can very simply incorporate into their apps.
Started in 2009, RethinkDB participated in the Y Combinator startup program before open-sourcing its database under a GNU license in November 2012. It eventually spawned a commercial cloud company to provide developers with a premium database. The company raised $12.2 million in venture funding from a bevy of investors, including Andreessen Horowitz, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Highland Capital Partners, SV Angel, and Webb Investment Network.
If you’re interested in participating in the process to open-source RethinkDB’s products, Akhmechet said you can join the public Slack group, and updates will be posted to the company’s blog and Twitter account.
Stripe declined to comment.
Updated as of 7:21 p.m. Pacific on Wednesday: Noted that Stripe did not wish to comment.