Our Story

Snowflake Software provides standards-based Open Data Exchange solutions. We have offices in Southampton, UK – famous for pioneers, adventurers and engineering advances (check out the Pilgrim Fathers, the Titanic and Spitfire airplanes) – and also in Washington DC, USA.


Our office!

In the beginning….

It all started back in 2001 when former Ordnance Survey colleagues Ian Painter and Eddie Curtis took the plunge and set up Snowflake. With a passion for software development and geospatial data the guys wanted to build a techy company to develop software tools that enable data exchange. From day one the vision has always been to develop generic commercial off-the-shelf software, and within the first 3 weeks Snowflake’s first product was live – a free OS MasterMap GML viewer. Free to download, the idea behind the viewer was to attract interest in the company … over 10 years later our OS MasterMap Viewer remains one of the most popular downloads of the UK spatial community.


In over 10 years we’ve grown Snowflake Software from two techies to a truly international business with offices on both sides of the pond. Not only do we have customers in Europe, Oceania, North America, South America and Asia but our team provides a rich cultural mix with people from Wales, England, Germany, Greece, Russia, Spain, South Africa, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Romania, Canada and India. Not just that, but we must be one of the few software houses in the UK with nearly 50% women, both of these things make Snowflakeland an easy place to come to work in the morning.



We’re really proud of Snowflake as a company, of our products and services, and most importantly, that our original goal hasn’t changed – we’re still passionate about delivering great off-the-shelf software for data exchange. But that’s only a snapshot. Read Ian Painter’s blog covering Snowflake’s complete history. It’s worth a read.


What’s in a name?

In our industry there are so many geo, info, map, spatial, tech, thingy named companies that it’s hard to stand out. We decided to break the mould. Yes we get some strange looks, but nobody forgets our name.


So why Snowflake Software? Well, our founders Ian and Eddie are both software engineers by trade and whilst Ian’s first software program printed Hello World on screen, Eddie’s first software program was a Snowflake crystal emulator – thus the name Snowflake Software and the reason why Eddie turned out to be our CTO!