It’s hard to believe but today marks the 2 year anniversary of the launch of Estimize.com.
The community and the platform have come a long way, and I want to take a second to reflect on where we’ve been and share a bit about where we’re headed.
When we launched the platform if was very much an experiment, straight out of a Daniel Kahneman behavioral economics study. Who could really know ahead of time if opening up a platform for fundamental equity estimates to the entire financial ecosystem would result in quality data, or whether anyone would even contribute? It was an experiment in every sense of the word, and we’re thankful that it worked.
Two years later our community of 17,000+ registered members and 3,200+ contributing analysts cover 900+ stocks each quarter. More than 65% of the time our consensus numbers are more accurate than the Wall Street numbers as provided by Thomson Reuters IBES, and the Estimize Consensus is more representative of true expectations in the market than those IBES numbers, both claims independently verified via an academic research paper from Rice University.
The community now includes not only a broad range of hedge fund, asset management firm, and mutual fund professionals, but an insanely awesome crowd of independent analysts, non professional traders and investors, as well as students, and industry experts. And more recently we’ve begun to bring in large sell side firms as well with an average of 20 analysts from each firm contributing. We’re not quiet about the fact that we’re running an end around on Thomson Reuters IBES and capturing all of the data they have as well so that we can own the whole pie.
We brought on Vinesh Jha, the former Head of Quantitative Research at Starmine (bought by Thomson Reuters in 2008) and the massive quant fund PDT Partners, who not only helped us provide our quant clients research around how to use our data, but was a major part in building our Select Consensus and User Confidence algorithms.
That analytics layer along with all of the alerts and notifications on the platform have added a ton of value, and we see it every day in our user engagement and user retention numbers.
So where do we go from here? In the next few months you are going to see us roll out new and expanded user profile pages, a new rankings page, a much better guided experience on the platform which will keep analysts on track with what they should be looking at and making estimates on, and the things that I’m excited about the most, two new data sets to estimate on.
Estimize began as a platform for creating EPS and Revenue estimates for public companies, but the infrastructure and community we’ve built here were designed to go way beyond that. We think of the platform as the place where future expectations for a whole range of data sets can be crowdsourced, filtered, ranked, and rated. We’re about to take our next step towards that, which for me is extremely exciting.
I want to mention one other thing.
When we started this company and launched the platform, I personally told many of the early adopters that there wasn’t going to be much value for them in the data set for at least a year, maybe more, but that if they contributed and stuck with it, eventually that data set would be extremely valuable to them. Over the past year we have without a shadow of a doubt reached that point, and while there is no direct incentive to contributing to Estimize (no give to get model, no monetary reward), there is huge benefit in being part of creating a better data set and incenting your peers to do so with you.
I want to thank our early contributors, and all of our contributors, for believing in the philosophies that are core to the Estimize platform, and for believing that their effort would be worth it. Our platform is completely free, and will continue to be completely free for a long time because we don’t want to put any friction between us and our community members getting value, or sharing their data. I think it’s pretty obvious to everyone that the value of our company is completely predicated on the orthogonal data set we aggregate and the analytics and intelligence we provide on top of it. The value of our company is not dependent on the few hundred dollars we could require of each individual using our platform right now. So we will continue to provide a better platform in service of building a better deeper data set.
Thank you for being part of this experiment with us, we’re so excited for where we’re headed in the next 2 years.
Founder and CEO of Estimize