SA’s Spatialedge leveraging connections for growth in big data

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South African startup Spatialedge is looking to take advantage of its high level investor and inclusion in the latest Barclays Accelerator to drive growth in big data analytics.

Launched in 2015 with a focus on high precision spatial and consumer analytics, Spatialedge is a technology and data enabler that creates one-on-one marketing opportunities through a 360-degree customer view.

The startup’s proprietary technology and wholly owned spatial and consumer datasets are used to drive precision-targeted engagements for businesses with current and prospective clients, growing both customer bases and customer lifetime values.  

“Critical customer acquisition and retention activities become data driven,” Spatialedge chief executive officer (CEO) Retief Gerber told Disrupt Africa. “We believe that data-driven organisations, will outperform competitors.”

The company’s belief is that organisations will have to use data-driven decision support systems to direct business practices, marketing, new product development and operations with improved efficiency and economic benefit, in order to get ahead.

Spatialedge offers a host of consumer verification, consumer insights, consumer profiling and consumer targeting tools to companies.

“We could not find any businesses that could handle Big Data, Spatial Intelligence and Business Intelligence at scale,” said Gerber.

“We identified a definite need to derive real value from big data, create and maintain quality and relevant data sets, and deploy cost-effective, easy-to-use decision support systems. There are a number of companies in this space that excel at one or two of the required disciplines, but very few can provide both the systems and data to deliver the full value that we do.”

This expertise across a number of verticals has attracted some significant backers to Spatialedge. Last year, it raised funding from William Kirsh’s Tritech Media in return for a 20 per cent stake in the business, while last month it was accepted onto the second edition of the Cape Town-based Barclays Accelerator, which is powered by global accelerator Techstars.

“William Kirsh and Tritech Media as shareholders support the growth of Spatial Edge with strategic and financial support as required,” said Gerber. “The Barclays programme is now kicking off to provide strategic growth input for the participating businesses.”

Spatialedge has already seen significant uptake, which Gerber describes as “fantastic”.

At the moment our growth is mainly constrained by our limited delivery capacity, which requires us to aggressively grow our team,” he said.

“Our precision-targeted customer acquisition offering has seen tremendous growth in this tough consumer environment which proves that our offering is indeed outperforming market norms.”

Spatialedge is currently focused on establishing itself as a leader in the South African market, but Gerber says the startup also has wider ambitions.

“Our technology and systems can scale internationally, which makes our cooperation with Techstars and Barclays Africa so attractive at this juncture,” he said.

The startup, which offers businesses managed subscription services that include data management and rental, predictive and prescriptive analytics, data sales and sourcing, and enterprise big data engineering, consulting and analytics services, has also seen an upward trend in revenues.

“We’ve delivered pleasing revenue growth month-on-month with cash flows breaching break-even, as we expand our predictable and scalable revenue streams,” Gerber said.

“All very positive considering the substantial cost of an experienced specialist technical team. Specialist technical talent has been a challenge to find and then afford.”

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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