Many in the consulting and analytics space will already know Rashid Bilimoria, a seasoned entrepreneur having co-founded Boston Analytics- a business and financial analytics firm, in 2005. Boston Analytics scaled globally and developed a reputation for providing valuable research and marketing insights mainly for US and European firms looking to explore emerging markets. Rashid sold non indices business of Boston Analytics to a couple of IBM veterans and moved on to startup another path breaking venture "BluFin" in April 2011BluFin develops proprietary macroeconomic and financial market indices that provide unique insights and analysis for investors, policy makers, economists and financial analysts.
BluFin released its first Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) for India in April this year with a score of 39.9. The scale is from 0 - 100 and a score under 50 reflects pessimism. The index has been developed by the BluFin team led by Dr. Sam Thomas, a renowned Professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, USA. The team strength at Blufin currently stands at 20 and at the helm is an ensemble of stalwart professionals. Apart from Rashid and Sam Thomas, Neeraj Bhargava, former co-founder and CEO of WNS Global Solutions, is the Chairman, Alay Desai is the COO and Debopam Chaudhuri is the VP of research. Neeraj is also the CEO of Zodius, which is the principal investor in BluFin along with the Anthemis Group a well renowned UK-based specialist holding company providing vision, strategy, leadership and capital to growth-stage companies with innovative business models at the intersection of financial services, markets and technology Zodius acquired the indices platform from Boston Analytics. Needless to say, BlueFin has built a strong team that is easily capable of reaching every milestone they have set out to conquer.
The indices developed by BluFin are an outcome of a highly sophisticated methodology. Using database tools, latest generation HTML5 technologies and SAS the primary statistical aid, the BluFin team constructs indices by collection and rigorously analyzing extended time series data sets. “For instance, the Consumer Confidence Index is constructed from interviewing 4000+ discrete consumers each month across 18 cities in India using computer-aided interviews conducted by TNS, the world’s largest custom market research firm. The sample size and demographic mix is chosen after a careful analysis and the index is created based on global standards of index design taking into account India’s unique characteristics. In fact using global standards in index design coupled with the latest technologies and then customizing their products for India is BluFin’s modus operandi.
The revenue for BluFin will be primarily driven by media sponsorships for its unique macroeconomic properties and also creating transactional models related to its other financial market properties. Apart from the Consumer Confidence Index, there are several other indices that are in the BluFin pipeline including the Business Climate Indicator and an equities-based Broad Market Index coming up. Out of the series of indices that Blufin will release, work on three of these had started from Boston Analytics days. BluFin’s motto is to be simple, transparent and social and it intends to put all of its data, tools and methodologies in the public domain in accessible app-enabled formats.
You can find out more about BluFin on their site.