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VMblog's Expert Interviews: Citus Data Talks Open Source Community and Pledge 1% Movement


Citus Data recently announced it is donating 1% of its equity to the non-profit PostgreSQL organizations in the U.S. and Europe.  This is the first time a company is donating part of its equity to support the mission of an open source foundation.  VMblog spoke with Citus Data CTO Ozgun Erdogan to learn more about the donation and why Citus is so passionate about supporting the open source community.

VMblog:  Can you tell us about this donation and who it is going to?

Ozgun Erdogan:  We are giving 1% equity in Citus Data as a donation to The United States PostgreSQL Association in conjunction with the PostgreSQL Europe organization. The intention is that this donation will support the growth, education, and future innovation of the open source Postgres database in both the U.S. and in Europe.

VMblog:  Why is Citus Data making this donation?

Erdogan:  The short answer: because it's the right thing to do. Our flagship product, Citus, builds on and transforms Postgres into a distributed database. We would not exist without Postgres. By giving back to the PostgreSQL open source community, we're saying thank you to the many developers and community contributors in the project. By sharing a piece of our future success, we hope to strengthen the Postgres project and to enable future innovation in PostgreSQL.

To our knowledge, this is the first time a company has donated 1% of its equity to support the mission of an open source foundation.

For many years, we have contributed to the Postgres open source project in lots of other ways: our team attends and presents at Postgres conferences; we sponsor PostgreSQL events and meetups; we contribute code to and maintain PostgreSQL extensions. Because PostgreSQL is so important to our mission and to the work of our users and our customers, and because we believe in the work being done by the Postgres community, it seemed fitting that we step up and donate 1% equity to the PostgreSQL non-profit organizations.

VMblog:  What impact do you hope this donation has on open source initiatives?

Erdogan:  In this cloud age, the distribution model for software is changing, and along with it, the economics of open source are changing, too. By giving a piece of our future success to the PostgreSQL non-profit organizations, we hope to contribute to the funding for future PostgreSQL activities.

And we certainly hope that giving 1% equity to open source projects becomes a "thing," so that more and more companies will give back to their open source projects in this way.

VMblog:  What is it about Postgres that Citus Data is hoping to support and call attention to?

Erdogan:  PostgreSQL is unique. PostgreSQL is the world's most advanced open source relational database and the world's only independent database. No single commercial entity backs or represents the Postgres project. Earlier this year, DB-Engines announced that Postgres was the "DBMS (Database Management System) of the Year" for 2017. Postgres is continuing to grow in popularity for a host of reasons, including that it is open source and relational and developer-friendly.

By donating 1% equity to the PostgreSQL non-profit organizations, we are hoping to shine a light on how valuable the PostgreSQL project is.

VMblog:  To coincide with Citus Data's equity donation, the company is also joining the Pledge 1% movement.  Can you tell us more about that movement and partnership?

Erdogan:  Pledge 1% is a global movement that encourages and empowers companies of all sizes and stages to donate 1% of their equity, profit, product, and/or employee time to any charity of their choosing. Organizations all over the world are signing up to the Pledge 1% initiative every day, and we are proud to be part of a group that includes the likes of Atlassian, Twilio, and Box, among many others.

Published Wednesday, October 31, 2018 9:01 AM by David Marshall
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