Back in July last year we came across Arachnys, a startup part of the Springboard accelerator programme. A cross between Control Risks and a project to analyse ‘big data’ about Brazil, India, China, and Russia, we described it as ‘Google for emerging markets’. Well clearly it’s caught the imagination of some as it’s now raised a seed round led by Peter Cowley of Martlet which was participated in by Cambridge and London-based angels including Cambridge Capital Group and Cambridge Angels.
The information about emerging markets is fragmented, badly organised, unsearchable and not in real time. That’s the problem they are trying to crack, as is the multi-milion dollar backed Quid and PalantirTech. This is not just raw data but insight and could be useful as a compliance product.
David Buxton, Arachnys’s CEO said, “This investment will enable us to provide information in niche markets from Albania to Uzbekistan, but also in major investment destinations and private banking markets like India.”
Buxton previously worked at leading international security consultancy Control Risks as an investigator. He is a specialist in Russia and CIS countries’ business and political environments and has provided advice to FTSE 100 CEOs and major financial institutions on operational risk, compliance and anti-corruption in Russia, Ukraine and other former Soviet countries.
Currently Arachnys’s systems are being used by analysts in the City of London and other global financial centres for compliance, security and risk management research, but the company plans to offer broader research products including regular news alerts across emerging markets in 2012.
In addition Arachnys plans to move out of Cambridge into Shoreditch or close to the City – an area promoted as Tech City by the UK government. Why? It’s simple really – they can’t get the people in Cambridge. They say London’s talent pool is more liquid as Cambridge people are less willing to leave jobs with big employers. London’s talent is truly international, and they will be closer to their potential clients.