Startup Elm, which provides tools to help SMEs make sense of retail and e-commerce sales data, has secured £250,000 in seed funding.
The company will use the funding to build out its engineering team and further develop its product.
While SMEs with supermarket listings have access to large amounts of sales data, it can be hard for them to make sense of and act upon it without the in-house data scientist teams boasted by bigger brands, said Elm co-founder Cian Kennedy.
“The future of retail is built on data, but today’s fmcg data systems are beyond inefficient, and challenger brands are paying the heaviest price, he added. “We’re excited to use this investment to bring big brand data power to every supplier, to make sure brands are judged by the quality of their products, not the size of their data team.”
Elm helped challenger brands “break up the megabrand monopoly on data power” he added.
Brands using Elm’s suite of tools – among them Minor Figures, Livia’s and Teapigs – pay a monthly subscription, and early adopters are being offered no minimum contract.
“Data can be a bit of a mystery for growing brands – you often lack the time or the team to get real value from your sales figures,” said Minor Figures commercial director Ben Vear. “But now we’re identifying growth opportunities, saving time and taking effective company-wide actions.”
Elm was founded this year by Kennedy, who has worked for challenger fmcg brands Lucky Saint and Edgard & Cooper; and partner Emily Prevezer, a former data scientist with Uber.
The company’s data tools have been available in beta form since July.
Its funding has come from 12 angel investors, among them Jon Rudoe, formerly head of retail at Ocado and digital director for Sainsbury’s.
“Elm is solving data problems that have slowed the industry for years. It’s already saving brands valuable time and unlocking the sort of insight previously reserved for big-name suppliers,” Rudoe said.