Descifra puts innovative market intelligence solutions on the map with Google Cloud
Rodrigo Sarmiento Pérez
CFO and CTO, Descifra
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Bootstrapping a new startup can be a rewarding and challenging experience. When we founded Descifra, we were determined to transform how organizations analyze data to grow their business. As we set out, we had to find smart ways to finance the business, set a path for growth, and develop an IT infrastructure to support our business plan.
We stayed committed because we had a unique vision for the future of market intelligence software. When we started our journey in 2012, a few big players dominated the sector. But we anticipated the rise of cloud computing and software as a service as a more affordable, accessible alternative for businesses, especially retailers.
Today, clients use our B2B SaaS solution to make location-based decisions based on extensive demographic data, traffic flows, public transport, and other sources. Our software includes powerful map-based visualizations and uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to curate, enrich, and analyze data from the physical and digital world.
Imagine you are a retailer looking to open a new store. Our software enables you to blend layers of complex information over digital maps and compare districts, share insights, and generate reports. You can also study the competition, the reach of your current point of sales, and even fine-tune inventories to better serve local customers.
One Descifra client is an urban commuting service that operates a fleet of buses that connect the busiest parts of a city. Using our software, they can identify the best pick up points and have increased the number of passengers by 30 percent. In another example, a gym chain was able to open more than 90 studios in record time and at a much lower cost than their previous model.
Charting a journey for growth
When we launched the business in 2012 in Mexico, we had to overcome two hurdles. First, the cloud and other flexible architectures weren’t affordable for smaller companies, especially startups. This made it difficult to scale our business in the early years. Second, it was a challenge attracting capital and investment in Latin America, so we had to bootstrap the business by relying on our own funds and determination to grow revenues.
In such a demanding business environment, selecting the right technology partner can make the difference between success and failure. You need a partner that does more than simply supply hardware and software — they need to understand your business and the obstacles you face. We knew that Google Cloud was best-suited to helping us achieve our goals. Google Cloud offers a powerful, scalable, and cost-effective cloud environment without the constraints of high upfront costs and complex infrastructure management.
We were impressed by the wide range of Google Cloud services and tools that cover everything from computing power to storage, analytics, and artificial intelligence. They include Compute Engine, which we use for running models that require high compute power and delivering personalized solutions to our customers. For accessing databases, we use Cloud SQL because it’s easy to scale and straightforward to use.
BigQuery is also incredible. We ingest about eight billion data points daily. BigQuery makes it easy to undertake SQL structure queries with large amounts of data and understand the size of our data sets.
Mapping the future with Google Cloud
Our services revolve largely around geographically based data and information so Google Maps Platform is a must. We use a lot of the capabilities in the Google Maps ecosystem for everything from georeferencing to understanding addresses. We're also exploring the possibilities of serverless — especially the opportunity to automatically scale our services up and down depending on traffic.
Another reason for choosing Google Cloud is the Google for Startups Cloud Program. The program offers Google Cloud credits that help us manage our cash flow and ensure viable operations. As well as financial, business, and marketing support, I’ve also been impressed by the caliber of the Google Cloud team including our Google Cloud Startup Success Manager. The expert guidance has been a big help over the years, and their team is available whenever we have questions or need additional support. With the help of the Google for Startups Cloud Program and standardizing on Google Cloud, we are even more confident as we expand across North America and Latin America, tapping into the surge of interest in advanced market intelligence software. We also expect to make further use of AI and machine learning tools to develop new features and functionality. As businesses seek more from their market intelligence services, Google Cloud gives us a strong foundation to grow our business, enabling us to provide clients with advanced geospatial analytics tools that support their expansion and success.
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