Indigenous company raises $3.3m for improved data services – New Telegraph

Nigerian data and intelligence company, Stears, has raised $3.3 million to improve its data collection and analysis capabilities, acquire talent and expand in East and Southern Africa. This funding round was led by MaC Venture Capital.

It also saw participation from Serena Ventures, Melo 7 Tech Partners, Omidyar Group’s Luminate Fund and Cascador. London School of Economics and Oxford students Preston Ideh, Abdul Abdulrahim, Foluso Ogunlana and Michael Famoroti founded Stears in 2017 as a solution to the country’s data shortage. Since then, Stears has grown from a free publication to a data and intelligence company. The startup’s flagship product is Stears Insights, formerly known as Stears Business, a site that offers in-depth insights to finance professionals using data.

By analyzing proprietary and publicly available data, Stears Insights is able to provide valuable insights to its individual and business customers. Over the years, Stears has slowly but surely entered the data and intelligence industry and currently provides data collection, production, consulting and analytics services. “We know that global professionals need our data and insights, as banks, research firms, development organizations and investors are already using our early products. Our customers tell us that we are building a ‘systemically important’ business to solve Africa’s data problem,” Stears CEO Preston Ideh said in a statement. Its $100 annual subscription product, Stears Premium, publishes in-depth articles that cover relevant issues in business and finance, economics, technology, government and politics. In addition to finance professionals and knowledge workers who use it to get ahead, large companies and institutions who see its value pay for a group subscription for their employees.

Some of these companies and institutions include Sterling Bank, Sparkle, Piggyvest, Paystack, United Nations Development Program, Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office, and European Investment Bank. In a statement, Stears said its user base has grown by around 6.5% per month over the past year, doubling its total number of users over the past year. Business customers contribute 75% of its revenue, up from 45% in 2021. According to the company, its revenue in the last six months of 2022 exceeded that of all of 2021. “Our experience with our flagship information product, Stears Premium, has shown us significant demand for more than just information.

Today, we work with international development institutions and financial institutions to produce proprietary and proprietary datasets that exist nowhere else. With this new investment, we can expand our data coverage to target the needs of global professionals who want direct access to our data, not just our information,” said Abdul Abdulrahim, Chief Operating Officer and Scientist of data from Stear. Despite having published his publication for two years already, Stears first came into the limelight in 2019 when he launched Stears Election, Nigeria’s first real-time election database that aggregated official election data.

During the presidential election fever periods of 2019, February and March, Stears Election was visited by 7 million Nigerians. It then averaged two million visits for the rest of the year. In 2019, Stears received $600,000 in pre-seed funding from Omidyar Group’s Luminate Fund to grow its data arm, Stears Data, and create a premium subscription product, Stears Premium. Just last month, he received up to $100,000 in non-dilutive funding after being selected for the 2022 cohort of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund. With this new fund, Stears’ total cumulative funding has grown to approximately $4 million.


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