Today YipitData, an alternative data firm that collects web data to analyze the operating performance of public and private companies, is launching a new service allowing clients to collect their own web data by leveraging YipitData’s internal technology platform. The new service is called ReadyPipe.
Launch of ReadyPipe
YipitData’s new service called ReadyPipe is an outgrowth of the firm’s internal web scraping technology that has been used over the past few years to identify, collect and database the web data used by their analysts to analyze the 70 companies currently under coverage.
With ReadyPipe, YipitData has enabled customers to access the firm’s web scraping technology via a SaaS model. Clients can write the logic and ReadyPipe handles all of the back end processing including managing the proxies, servers, databases, monitoring dashboards, alerts, etc. YipitData also provides training and technical support to help even non-technical users to be able to write, debug and launch web scrapers with ReadyPipe. If required, ReadyPipe subscribers can also hire YipitData staff to quickly and affordably build a custom web scraper and deliver them clean analyzed data. For more information about ReadyPipe click here.
Vinicius Vacanti, the CEO of YipitData explained the new product launch, “Web data is the largest public dataset available to investors. Unfortunately, most managers don’t have the skillset to collect this data themselves – particularly from complex websites. However, YipitData built a system to allow our own analysts to write and launch web scrapers quickly and easily. ReadyPipe is the logical extension of our internal platform to clients so they can collect the web data they want to use in their research process without having to manage all the back-end processing required to do this effectively.”
Steve Pulec, CTO of YipitData adds: “For asset managers trying to incorporate web data into their process, it makes much more sense for them to use ReadyPipe than trying to recreate the wheel.” For the past few months ReadyPipe has been in use by 5 large Beta customers, including both technical and nontechnical users at both asset managers and non-financial companies.
Web data is one of the most accessible types of alternative data around since it is freely available on millions of websites across the Internet. However, depending on the complexity of the data, the frequency of collection, and the sophistication of the websites the data is available on, collecting this data is not always straightforward.
While some asset managers have the resources to hire a team of programmers with python experience, many firms do not. Consequently, these firms are forced either to hire third-party consultants to collect data on a bespoke basis, or they need to buy and implement one of the many off-the-shelf web scraping tools on the market like Connotate, Import.io, Mozenda, or Ficstar.
While the first option might be expensive, the second option may not always work. The reason for this is these vendors provide “point and click” web scrapers. Unfortunately, these solutions often can’t consistently scrape data from more complex websites. ReadyPipe addresses this issue by providing their clients with the training so they can hand code their scrapers, enabling even nontechnical users to quickly create their own professional scrapers.
The launch of ReadyPipe makes tremendous sense for YipitData as they are merely leveraging technology created for its own internal use. We also suspect YipitData will have a large built in client base for ReadyPipe from current clients and the hundreds of requests made in the past for custom data collection. This new business also shouldn’t interfere with YipitData’s traditional business of producing deep company-focused investment research driven by web scraped data.
Despite these facts, not all investors will find ReadyPipe to be a good fit. Larger asset managers who have already invested in their own IT teams to collect their own web scraped data will be harder to convert to an off-the-shelf solution like ReadyPipe. This doesn’t mean these managers shouldn’t use off-the-shelf solutions like ReadyPipe to provide services that aren’t integral to their core competencies of generating and implementing profitable investment ideas. However, it does mean that these managers will need to get comfortable with outsourcing these IT capabilities even though they can provide them internally.