Highlights: Why transparent company data should be on your product roadmap

Company data enables product managers to build tools that help their users solve a range of challenges: from risk management to trend analysis. 

But the company data landscape has held product managers back until recently, as accessing global data in the way it’s needed can be far from straightforward — and the data you could get from vendors is often opaque.

In our recent webinar, product leaders joined us to discuss why they and the industry are increasingly turning to transparent company data to overcome these challenges — and to accelerate product development. 

Our Vice President in the US, Shanti Salas, was joined by:

  • Adam Mulliken, Senior Vice President of Product – Quantifind
  • James Phare, CEO – Neural Alpha (who helped build Trase Finance)

Read highlights of the discussion below or watch the recording here.

Company data enables functionality

Company data is integral to many tech, data or SaaS tools as it helps them build functionality which their users need to:

  • Identify risk
    Company data can be integrated into a product to help its users verify who they are doing business with and then rank the risk they pose, such as in the due diligence process. This helps with onboarding and ongoing monitoring for supply chain, third party, ESG, credit and other risk management functions.
  • Analyse or investigate trends
    Users of a product can generate insights by combining company data with other datasets. Network analytics or graph analytics are just some examples of the technology increasingly being used in tools to help users investigate companies, often by combining legal entity data with sanctions, negative news or other risk related datasets. 
  • Manage data
    Users can cross-reference other data sources against a global dataset of foundational data on companies. They can use this to power their master data efforts or simply to clean their data.

But the data landscape has held product managers back 

Product managers want to build out and prove the value of an MVP or their tool’s functionality as quickly and efficiently as possible. 

Standing in the way of this, until recently, has been:

  • Poor access to global company registries
    The company data landscape is fractured. Different countries or local states maintain their own registries which are all siloed, inconsistent and provide data in a plethora of different formats. This makes it exceptionally difficult and time-consuming if a company wanted to collect data from all around the world at scale themselves — especially if this was on an ongoing basis.

    The time, effort and niche knowledge required are things that product managers don’t want to, and often cannot, commit their limited resources to. Never mind that some registries, such as Italy’s, charge extremely high sums in return for their information as a dataset.
  • Opaque data from legacy vendors
    Legacy company data vendors are often unclear about the provenance (origins) of their data, use an imprecise model which fails to explain what the data represents, and assign proprietary identifiers to records. If users of a product cannot be confident in the data they are using, then this will negatively affect their users too. 

The solution: transparent company data

Product managers are increasingly turning to transparent company data – and OpenCorporates’ data in particular – to accelerate their product development. 

Adam Mulliken of Quantifind summed up some of the benefits of transparent company data: “If we can go directly to the authoritative government registry information, link to that, reference that, but still put on top of that the right sort of analytics that integrate it with everything else, that, we’ve found, is really what our users want”.

The panellists put forward many compelling benefits of transparent company data, but here are just five of them:

  • Global access in one place – all in a standardised format
    Information on companies in 140 jurisdictions is all available, in a consistent easily understandable format, in the OpenCorporates database. As James Phare said: “Most users just want all of this complexity simplified into one nice and easy-to-use data package”, and that’s what providing the data in this way allows.

  • Defensible decisions from data provenance
    Knowing where data was collected from, and when it was collected, helps product managers architect solutions or processes with greater confidence – and allows their users to make more defensible decisions.

  • Official sources means better quality data
    Collecting data only from official public sources means the quality of the data is better and more able to help your users make defensible decisions.

  • Open identifiers remove barriers to innovation
    Non-proprietary company identifiers, like those which OpenCorporates uses, prevent vendor lock-in, enable you to combine company data with other datasets more easily and therefore remove barriers to innovation.

  • Access at scale
    Providing the data via API or as Bulk Data enables product managers to access an entire dataset of companies at scale – instead of the kind of record-by-record access that many registers only allow for. This kind of access means the data can be integrated into products to power repeatable processes (via API), or to drive insights across datasets (such as with Bulk Data).

The webinar concluded with Adam explaining how transparent company data helps power Quantifind’s due diligence and investigations tool, and James showing how the data enables Trase Finance to uncover deforestation risk.

Want to know more?

  • Quantifind
    Learn how Quantifind powers financial crime investigations with OpenCorporates’ data.
  • Trase Finance
    Read our case study on how transparent company data helps Trase Finance shed light on who finances deforestation.
  • Transparent company data
    OpenCorporates is disrupting the business information market by creating an entirely new category for transparent company data, and our data has powered countless innovative products and platforms.
    Find out more about access our data at scale >

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