Continuing on the Path to Innovation and Growth

Nick Halstead
15th October 2014 1 Comment

In the last seven years, we’ve been having an incredible run at DataSift. Working with more than 1,000 customers in 40 countries and enjoying explosive growth. Since I founded the company, we’ve seen the team expand from humble beginnings in Reading, UK to a global operation with more than 120 employees spread across the US, Canada and the UK. DataSift is on a roll and poised to take an even bigger leap in 2015.

With DataSift established as the only independent provider of social data, and the market leader in this category, it’s time for us to assess where the next wave of growth will come from and how we best organize to get there.

As CEO over the last three years, Rob Bailey, has helped DataSift grow beyond its UK roots and into the international success it is today. We’ve built a great foundation but the time is right for me to take the CEO position and lead the company into its next chapter. I would like to thank Rob for his leadership in building DataSift to this stage and look forward to our new partnership. See Rob’s blog post here.

We’ve accomplished a lot over the past few years. The inspiration for building DataSift came from my experience in building Tweetmeme, where we processed the Twitter Firehose to surface breaking news stories. We learnt first hand how hard it was to extract value from social data at scale. From this experience, we created DataSift – a platform that simplifies social data access, processing and analytics. Today DataSift is helping social and news networks build an economy around their data and enables brands and entrepreneurs to innovate using Big Data technology to analyze and act on this data in real-time.

We are now ready to take DataSift’s ability to simplify access and understanding of social and apply it anywhere people are generating data, a category we think of as Human Data. We want to provide easy to use technology that enables understanding of what people say and the context around this data: where they said it, what content was referenced and the topic and sentiment and intent of the conversation. Human-created data, especially unstructured data (found in documents, posts, emails etc) has huge untapped potential for creating new types of analytical applications. We’ve always helped people to easily build on our technology to drive joint success. My vision for the future is to enable all Human Data to be clearly understood and used by companies globally.

Our opportunity is to take the scalable and easy to use technology that takes real-time big public data and integrate it with big internal data. This will require us to think creatively about how we automate real-time recognition, interpretation and integration of any Human Data without the need for data analysts and scientists to create and maintain schemas, tables and mappings.

I’m excited to lead the charge into Human Data and build on the great success we’ve seen over the past 7 seven years. Much more to come on this in the coming weeks, months and years ahead!

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