Forefront Communications

Integrity Research: Alternative Data Firm Thasos Expands as Geolocation Data Thrives

Forefront Communications

Mark Dowd

Mark Dowd

Geolocation data firm Thasos Group is boosting its staffing and product range as geolocation data has become one of the hottest segments of the alternative data space.  With demand has come increased competition.

Thasos emerged from stealth mode in July 2017 after hiring a PR agency, launching a public website and issuing a public report on mall REITs.  Co-founder and CEO Greg Skibiski presented at Newsweek’s AI conference in December, co-founder John Collins was a speaker at Quandl’s Alternative Data conference this past January and co-founder Alex “Sandy” Pentland was the keynote speaker at the Quandl conference.

Increased demand

Thasos’ increased visibility has corresponded with heightened interest in geolocation data.  In an interview with Integrity, CEO Skibiski cited the need to validate credit card transaction data as a major driver of geolocation data demand.  “It’s table stakes these days to have credit card transaction data but the problem is that no matter who you buy your transaction data from, you are getting it from the same major underlying source,” he said.  “When you layer geolocation data on the transaction data, you get two signals which can independently validate each other.”

The flip side of increased demand is increased competition, as multiple AdTech firms like Factual, GroundTruth, Placed and PlaceIQ have recently begun dabbling in the alternative data space, lured by the prospect of six figure licenses.  Foursquare began wooing hedge funds in 2016 and Cuebiq followed in early 2017.  Alternativedata.org lists seventeen geolocation data providers in its database.

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