Accel Partners beefs up big data investment team

Venture capital firm Accel Partners is looking to ramp up its investments in the big data and cloud computing spaces with the addition of a new principal and a new entrpreneur in residence.

New principal Jake Flomenberg comes from Splunk (s splk), where he was director of product management, and was previously at Hadoop pioneer Cloudera. New EIR Nick Mehta was most recently CEO at LiveOffice and has also been a VP at storage provider Veritas (Symantec (s symc) acquired both companies). Flomenberg will work primarily on Accel’s $100 million Big Data Fund, which it launched last November, while Mehta will likely focus a lot of attention on the intersection of SaaS applications and big data.

The firm’s Big Data Fund targets big data applications and higher-level analytics software rather Hadoop distributions, databases and other infrastructure-level technologies. According to Accel Partner Ping Li, the firm has several companies as part of that portfolio, including Code 42, RelateIQ and Vigilent. A few others are set to come out of stealth mode in the fall. Accel’s previous data-focused investments include Cloudera, Couchbase and Nimble Storage.

Although it’s far from the only area in which Accel is interested right now (mobile, software-defined networks and what Li calls the “Apple-ization” of enterprise IT are all hot), Li did note that data permeates almost all discussions these days. Startups that understand how to use the data they’re getting from customers to build better products are in a really good position.

“You’re getting data whether you like it or not,” Li said, “so figure out how to use it.”

Image courtesy of Shutterstock user Bruce Rolff.