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Retail Apocalypse – Insights From Alternative Data

Abandoned shopping cart, Retail Apocalypse

They call it the retail apocalypse. Traditional bricks and mortar retailers are at risk as  changes in consumer shopping behavior drive continued rapid growth in e-commerce. Bloomberg posted a story today about System2, a big data start up that is crunching multiple sources of traditional and non-traditional data to determine the future trends in retail. Using their data, System2 identify 197 JC Penney stores they believe are at risk of closing, on top of the 140 stores already announced for closure by the company. What sort of data sources are System2 using for this analysis? The article quotes sources such as mobile phone pings, demographic information, credit card bills in addition to other sources of data. The System2 proposition focuses on the hedge fund and financial markets industry. However insight on these trends is relevant to a wide range of stakeholders in the Commercial Real Estate value chain. I’ve already […]

Real Estate Cap Rate Analysis: August Update

Investing in commercial real estate comes with risks as well as opportunity and you want to ensure you get an appropriate return on your investment. Our monthly blog summarizes market yields at the end of the month to provide context for the likely range the market will offer for commercial real estate cap rates. If you’ve uncovered investment opportunities that exceed this range, you’re beating the market! Market based cap rates typically lie somewhere in the range shown below based on the risk profile of property investment against a range of financial assets. If you’re interested you can read the original article here. August Month End Yields At the end of August rates across the range of financial assets barely moved compared to July except the ten year treasury note which showed some tightening over the month. There’s speculation that financial investors are moving towards safe-have assets though these short […]

What is a good cap rate?

Commercial real estate investments can provide handsome rewards, but one of the most important steps an investor can take is to ensure the purchase price is appropriate for the opportunity. Valuation levels are high today, as they are across many investment markets. Investors chasing yield are driving down the opportunities for rates of return that have historically been achieved. If you believe we are close to a market top, this is an especially important question for you as you consider the cap rate to include in your valuation calculator. In real estate valuation, the yield opportunity is commonly reflected in the capitalization rate (or cap rate), which is a simplified valuation metric for assessing an investment opportunity. The cap rate is the initial yield on an opportunity – in a world of zero inflation and constant income and costs through time, it is equivalent to the discount rate you would […]

Using Data To Improve Your Commercial Real Estate Valuation

Entering into a commercial real estate investment is a significant long-term investment, and reaching a valuation you are comfortable with is a challenge. Real Estate is an emotional investment as well, for all but the most hard-nosed investor. You’ve probably asked yourself at some point whether you’ve allowed your emotions to get the better of the hard facts. Allocating a few hundred dollars to buying data is a great risk reduction strategy in this regard, and nowadays you can get great bang for the buck. There are many reasonably-priced sources of data available in the market today that can help keep you honest. At we’ve been scouring the landscape of data providers and building tools to help you find data quickly and easily. In this blog I break down the valuation challenge into actionable steps you can take with data. You can view all of these through the dmi […]

What’s new with

Our journey took an exciting turn last month when we joined the Boomtown Accelerator program. As part of the program we are working with mentors including some leading names in the professional services worlds (including the marketing and consulting industries). Based upon their advice plus our own experiences we are renewing our focus upon understanding the needs of our buyers. This already appears to be yielding returns, as we’ve started unearthing some pretty rich discoveries on buyer needs and patterns. With that in mind, if you’re in the marketing, consulting, and/or data science worlds and have a passion for getting better data to give you that edge, we’d love to hear from you to learn more about how we can help. Please feel free to browse our current listings as well, but please be aware that we have temporarily deprioritized building out our inventory as we develop a better understanding of what buyers value most and continue through […]

Five Interesting Lead Sources

If you’re working on finding new and improves sources of lead information, here are five interesting options to consider. If these don’t meet your needs, just type ‘leads’ into the search bar and see what additional options come up for you. Do you have interest in these segmentations? What other segmentations are you interested in? Let us know by commenting on the blog. CompanyOfficers Our friends at BCD have a great set of data available for company officer data globally – though they’re flexible on packaging that data to meet your specific need. Construction project leads Need to get in front of the key decision makers at the right stage in the construction project lifecycle? Try out this data set to help you identify the projects that fit your criteria and identify the people to talk to. Insurance clients This source has lead generation products covering premium, discount and […]

Video – getting up and running on

We held a webinar last week to provide an interactive demonstration of how to get set up on in three easy steps. If you didn’t have a chance to attend the webinar, you can access the recording below (scroll down further to see the timestamps of each section if you want to cut to a specific topic). By the way, those three easy steps are: 1) Sign up for a company account 2) Create your listing 3) Publish the listing That’s it! We had a healthy attendance for the webinar and some good questions. For your benefit, I’ve summarized the key things things that our audience wanted to know about: is designed with the needs of sellers of data in mind, as well as buyers. So we don’t get in the way of things that our sellers tell us are important such as product delivery, control over distribution, who […]

Why your data could be valuable in the coming election campaign

One interesting class of data buyers and sellers that we have engaged with on the journey has been participants in the political data world, who perform activities such as lobbying, political research, polling, political consulting, analysis and predictive modeling. With data now becoming a central part of any campaign strategy, I want to use this blog to share some of the learnings we have gained from the industry experts and leave you to think about whether your data has value to the campaigns. Despite all the hoopla around the 2012 election and the success of the Obama campaign in harnessing big data, there is a long way to go until this process reaches maturity. In particular, the data is often insufficiently granular at the voting district level. Keep that in mind as you read on, as you may be pleasantly surprised at the ability of your data offering to […]

Attracting Buyers

Many of our first sellers have asked us how we will attract buyers that they don’t presently reach. We’ve heard other similar questions: “Why should I spend my time entering my data products into your website? How will it benefit me?” To answer those and other similar questions, I’ll take you through an overview of our buyer acquisition strategy, which is based upon extensive market research with data buyers: We will continually assess and refine our listing model and user interface i.e., all the information you enter when you create a listing Why it’s important: Capturing lots of listing information is good! Buyers can search, categorize, and filter along more dimensions and therefore more precisely Buyers can compare multiple listings side by side when trying to decide what to purchase (feature coming soon) Sellers have less sales-support work as buyers self-educate The less information sellers must provide, however, the faster […]

Will you be a winner or a loser in the Information Age?

Length: 742 words; Time to read: 3 minutes “Twenty-five or 30 years ago, the thing that was differentiating companies was how well managed they are. But if you think about the companies that have just kicked butt in the past decade, they are deep-domain, technology-led, innovative companies—Google, Amazon, Apple. So I think this notion of, if the only common thread you have as an industrial company is the fact that you think you’re well managed, you can still be a pretty good company, but you’re not going to be a dominant company, a competitive company over time.”  Jeff Immelt, GE CEO Despite struggling with the pivots to mobile, cloud and search, Microsoft shares provided a decent return over the last ten years:   Certainly better than Blackberry, who lost their way: But of course the main games in town were being played out at Apple and Google: Jeff Immelt’s quote […]

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