Thinknum, a leading provider of web-sourced alternative data, has secured USD11.6 million in Series A funding round. Participants included Green Visor Capital, one of the original investors in the firm’s USD1 million seed round in 2014.
Thinknum will use the fresh capital to fund its continuing growth and allow it to further penetrate the institutional investment community and corporate market.
Thinknum’s SaaS-based platform empowers anyone who allocates capital – from “quantamental”-style investors to corporate strategy groups seeking an edge on the competition – to harness the disparate, unstructured data sources available today as a result of online commerce and other web-based activity and ultimately make better, data-driven decisions. Using the longest history of web data available, the firm captures the digital footprints of over 400,000 companies worldwide, across a variety of sectors, and provides rich toolsets for extracting intelligence in real time.
Thinknum’s proprietary interface is visual, intuitive and simple, effectively democratising data as clients don’t need to have a team of data scientists, or engineers writing code, in order to take full advantage of the product. By evaluating a broad range of public online sources, Thinknum generates datasets that capture otherwise ephemeral information on products, operating efficiency, labor markets and more. Examples of Thinknum’s intelligence include anticipated performance of retailers derived from analysing median income levels near individual store locations, and analysis of a company’s performance based on Glassdoor’s ratings of the CEO.
According to a January report by Greenwich Associates, 50 per cent of institutional investors plan to increase their usage of alternative data in the coming year. Among the various types of alternative data available, web-scraped data like Thinknum’s is the most popular, with 48 per cent of respondents noting their usage of it. As Greenwich analyst Richard Johnson noted in the report, there are currently 4 billion webpages and 1.2 million terabytes of data available on the internet, creating “a mountain of information that can be valuable to investors” by providing “important new information about a company’s business and outlook”.
Thinknum, profitable since 2016, has achieved significant growth since its 2014 launch. The firm has more than doubled its top-line revenues in each of the past two years and has grown its client base to hundreds of firms, including investment managers, eight out of the top ten investment banks and, increasingly, major corporations.
“Over the past several years, we have seen a tremendous response from the early adopters in the financial and corporate communities who understand the power of alternative data and the potential for what datasets from firms like Thinknum can provide,” says Justin Zhen, Co-Founder and President of Thinknum. “This new funding round allows us to accelerate our growth and extend our reach into new markets, helping companies use data to uncover opportunities, find impactful solutions to challenges, and better engage on global issues.”
Thinknum intelligence has been used in equity research and analysis by top financial firms including Barclays, Goldman Sachs, Cowen and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. The firm and its data have been featured by leading global media including CNBC, Barron’s, CNN, Business Insider and VentureBeat.