By Sanford Bragg November 25, 2022
Veteran alternative data firm Earnest Research launched a new website and logo as part of a marketing overhaul designed to raise its visibility among corporates and consultants. The firm, which centers on tracking consumer trends, continues to expand its product offerings, recently launching a new analytics platform and a major new transaction data set.
The new website showcases the diverse datasets the firm offers, beyond the transaction data for which it is best known. The firm acquired geolocation data provider Alpha Hat in 2020 and has also added hospital claims data and various web-scraped datasets such as consumer products pricing and used car sales.
The revamped website also emphasizes the firm’s increasing focus on corporate and consulting clients.
The rebranding coincides with the launch of a new analytics platform, Earnest Dash, designed to provide company level analysis across the firm’s transaction, product, pricing, and healthcare data. The platform allows users to subscribe to earnings surprise alerts and segment revenues across geographies and channels.
Earnest, which was one of the first alternative data firms to market credit card transaction data, recently added a second major transaction data set based on a panel of 50 million credit and debit cards, containing history dating back to 2016. It launched a U.S. healthcare claims data set in 2021 and introduced media streaming coverage in 2020, using transaction data to track revenues, pricing, and subscription trends for eleven streaming services including Hulu, Netflix, Youtube TV, Disney+.
Earnest Analytics closed a $15 million Series B funding in September 2019, two years after emerging from stealth mode.
Earnest Analytics’ employee registrations on LinkedIn have been growing at about a 12% annual rate since 2018. The company says its employee levels have been relatively consistent between 100 and 120 staff over the past three years. In a statement, it emphasized that the pandemic was net positive for the company: “Earnest experienced an acceleration in client growth during the pandemic as brands, consultants, and governments turned to our real-time transaction data to fill the gaps that traditional economic indicators like Census and syndicated data could not.”
Founder Kevin Carson started the company in 2011 after working as a Managing Director at hedge fund Lone Pine Capital for eight years, focusing on consumer and industrial sectors. The company was originally launched as Great Bridge Corporation, before being rebranded as Earnest Research in 2014.
In our view, alternative data spending moderated over the last few years after an initial period of strong growth. Many users pushed back on high fees as data sets became more commoditized. Transaction data, historically one of the pricier datasets, was one of the hardest hit by the discounting. Unlike rival 7Park Data, which was effectively shut down by Vista Equity Partners in January 2021, Earnest Analytics has maintained a level of growth throughout the period.
The new rebranding, and the suite of new capabilities underlying it, positions the firm for further growth. Earnest Research appears committed to expanding its product suite beyond transaction data, and most importantly diversifying its client base away from the financial segment into corporates and consultants. Like the expert network industry before it, alternative data firms will find their next stage of growth beyond the buy side.
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