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Just because you work at an early-stage startup doesn’t mean you have to go it alone.

Today hot big data startup Trifacta announced a partnership with Cloudera, a considerably more prominent company in that arena, which means Trifacta’s software could become much more popular.

Cloudera provides commercial support for open-source software in the Hadoop ecosystem, which is intended for storing and analyzing large volumes of many kinds of data. Trifacta helps business users take a look at raw data in Hadoop and manipulate it before throwing it into, say, business-intelligence software for further analysis.

“I think it’s a very natural relationship,” Ping Li, a general partner in Accel Partners who has invested in both Cloudera and Trifacta, told VentureBeat in an interview.

Trifacta’s technology has received considerable attention in the data world in recent months, as people believe its technology could decrease the amount of time people spend just getting data ready for further analysis and exploration. Any time savings will translate into more time for other work, and that’s exciting, because data transformation can be boring. Now, Trifacta can save the day for more companies as part of the new partnership with Cloudera that includes “joint development, certification, and solution collaboration with customers,” according to a press release.

Companies like Hortonworks, Intel, MapR, and Pivotal also serve as vendors of Hadoop distributions, but Cloudera is considered the biggest one, or certainly among the biggest.

And unlike some Hadoop vendors, Cloudera has introduced pieces of closed-source software on top of the open-source Apache Hadoop project, like the Cloudera manager for keeping track of entire Hadoop clusters of servers. Now Trifacta’s tool, which is not available for free under an open-source license, can be used in partnership with Cloudera’s Hadoop kit. The companies share a view that open-source software alone might not do the trick.

Nothing stops Trifacta from inking partnerships with other Hadoop vendors. But it makes sense to go to Cloudera first, according to Li. (Especially considering that Cloudera is well capitalized and is now raising another $200 million or more in funding, according to a report yesterday from Bloomberg.)

“As any startup should, you start with bigger ones and you work your way down based on customer needs and customers’ presence,” said Li, who works on Accel’s Big Data Fund.

Still, Trifacta and Cloudera specifically line up well, with both aiming to make Hadoop a standard for storing massive amounts of a wide variety of data. The big question is, even working together, how quickly will they be able to convert enterprises all over the world to the Hadoop way and get their heads out of more time-tested data warehouses and relational databases?

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