By Brian Jacobs, General Partner
Our most recent investment is Eversight, an Industry Cloud for consumer packaged goods (“CPG’s”) and retailers to optimize promotional spending.
Big data remains a pipedream for many companies. The promise of studying data from real customer behavior is alluring, but the reality of assembling the infrastructure, tools and talent to staff a sustained big data capability is just too much for most companies. Let’s face it: most of us only have budget for projects with immediate payback. In many industries, the real leverage from big data comes from mission critical domain-specific questions which are unique to that industry, such as default rates for credit cards, reimbursement rates in healthcare or cart abandonment for eCommerce.
The cloud enables a solution for these industry-specific requirements, and we are seeing strong adoption for vertical big data analytic solutions, delivered as a cloud service. Together with Veeva Systems, we have coined the term, “Industry Cloud” to describe companies serving this need. Industry Clouds are particularly powerful when they enable insights that can only be found by deep, specialized analysis focused on the most important industry-specific challenges. A trusted third-party cloud can help uncover these insights while enabling collaboration across channel partners. Enlisting partners allows everyone to share the costs, without compromising their independent views of the data.
Such an opportunity exists today for consumer products manufacturers and retailers who work together to better meet consumer needs with their large promotional budgets. CPG brands are fighting a multi-front war to win the hearts and minds of consumers by partnering with retailers in every market to find the right incentives that drive volume and profits. The promotions budget for CPGs is almost twice their marketing budget but the sad truth is that this budget is not managed effectively. Actual consumer behavior is fragmented across dozens of regions and retail partners, and requires a big data approach.
The founders, David Moran and Jamie Rapperport, are the perfect team to serve identify and serve this need. David spent the first 10,000 hours of his career at McKinsey learning how consumers respond to promotions and how the leading CPGs struggle to understand what consumers really value. He also served as a Global VP of Sales at Anheuser-Busch Inbev, where he led the Revenue Management efforts at the largest brewer on the planet. We have learned that no Industry Cloud can succeed without a deep, deep understanding of the specific constraints of the domain.
Jamie Rapperport brings additional experience in this domain along with entrepreneurial leadership, Silicon Valley startup DNA and acumen for large company sales and business development. Jamie founded Vendavo, the venture-backed leader in price optimization (just purchased by Francisco Partners) and has experience at a long list of successful startups, including VXtreme, WebTV, Lotus and others.
Eversight is enabling CPGs to test real consumer response to different promotions across retailer channels and geographies. Collecting data at this scale and complexity was impossible just a few years ago. By leveraging the Industry Cloud approach, Eversight allows CPGs to partner and jointly explore different offers with retailers while ensuring the integrity of each their proprietary insights and strategies.
When we met Eversight, we were excited to see the ingredients of our Industry Cloud thesis: deep domain expertise, world class startup experience, a shared big-data architecture and a clear vision of how to coordinate CPGs and Retailers to accomplish their critical joint objective. David, Jamie and the Eversight team are building an Industry Cloud by partnering with large CPGs and national retailers, and we are happy to support their efforts.