It is a well-known fact that some of the largest and oldest brick and mortar retailers have been bearing the brunt of the rapid ecommerce growth in the world. Some large retailers, which at one point were the go-to places to purchase anything, are being replaced by the Amazons of the world.
In a tough time such as this, how can they survive and stand ground?
What if these stores could use data to their benefit? What if they could combine customer data they have with additional data points of customers from banks to be able to focus better on inventory, products, pricing and rolling out customer rewards? It could go a long way in keeping their customers coming back.
But data in itself is dumb, unless it’s processed, structured and made sense of. Large enterprises, especially banks, sit on enormous amounts of data over the last few decades. Most enterprises now understand the difficulty of exploring this data across multiple sources and want to build data roadmaps to make sense of it.
That is where a startup like Gathi Analytics comes in. Founded early in 2017, Gathi has built a unified data platform framework and services that help make enterprise data comprehensive.
For a given enterprise, it collects data from multiple sources and centralizes it on a single platform.
It is helping enterprises realise that data can in fact be monetized if structured accurately.
Its service offering collects, integrates and cleanses data to make it consistent for enterprises. This gives companies an insight into the data and helps them find ways of cashing in on it.
There are also a lot of companies that still run on old, outdated systems. Gathi’s services and solutions create transformational roadmaps, data warehouse modernization to help enterprises migrate to Big Data platforms, data management and governance to make enterprise data compliant and consistent.
“We are building a backbone for enterprises, setting their data free and making it readable to analysts in their own firms. This way, a lot more people have access to it. The idea is to democratize data and focus on return on investment for these enterprises,” says Vamsi Ram Kora, founder of Gathi Analytics.
However, with technology improving every day, there is a lot more that can be done with data to give businesses actionable insights into.
“In order for data to deliver value, multiple frameworks need to work in tandem. For this we need to be able to add deep learning and analytics to be able to provide actionable insights to enterprises. Currently we have a service offering that creates and prepares the data. But now we want to create products that are ready-to-use models for a business segment,” says Vamsi.
While currently the business model is generating revenue from the services it offers, it is not looking at building products that can do a lot more than organizing data.
For this, Gathi is focusing on the payments and smart cities domains. Under payments, the larger focus of Gathi will be banks that have been inundated by data for years together.
“We want to help payment companies and banks give their customers the advantage of analytics. The idea is for us to build the product and give it to a payments company or a bank, who can then provide this as a service to its customers and merchants,” says Vamsi.
The idea is for enterprises, say a bank, to use the data it has like credit card information, combine it with the data its merchants – say a retailer – has, to provide insights to understand consumer habits. This in turn will help both the banks and the merchants plan their business, and target marketing accordingly.
Gathi is clear on the fact that it wants to focus on enterprises and not retailers or end customers.
The startup’s focus currently is in the US. Vamsi says that there is currently more opportunity there. “Our focus is on banks which have data lying for years together which need to be mined. And comparatively, Indian banks are much newer and run on newer technology systems,” Vamsi says.
It is, however, open to working with clients in India and also wants to have a presence in APAC and Middle Eastern countries.
In terms of smart cities, Vamsi says that the opportunity currently is immense. Internet of Things (IoT) devices collect huge amounts of data, which can be used to create more responsive cities. For example, traffic can be streamlined, etc.
For this, it wants to work with governments and provide them with products that will help them make sense of the data collected through these IoT devices in smart cities.
However, having started only six months ago, Gathi is only in the initial stages of its plans for deep data analytics.
And in order to build products using deep learning and analytics, it is now looking at partnering with or acquiring startups that are already working in this space instead of investing in building products from scratch.
In fact it has also recently become a part of Hyderabad-based startup incubator T-Hub to be able to leverage the startup environment there and find the right kind of suitors to build products and grow its business.
“Say there is a startup that has built a visualization product that can help me get actionable insights, we can invest in them and work with them instead of us building it ourselves,” Vamsi says.
Gathi is currently in the initial stages of product delivery. Inking strategic partnerships, it hopes to take its capabilities to the next level and help enterprises make sense of and use data in the best way possible to generate high returns on investment.
This article has been produced with inputs from T-Hub as a part of a partner program.