Nearing Break-Even, Continuum Analytics Takes $10M Debt Financing
After doubling the size of its staff to 145 and almost tripling its customer base this year, Austin, TX-based data insights provider Continuum Analytics is preparing itself for the possibility of making enough revenue to break even in 2016, according to co-founder and CEO Travis Oliphant.
The four-year-old company announced this week that it has received $10 million in debt financing from Silicon Valley Bank, only about five months after the company raised a $24 million Series A round that the company is using to build out its analytics tools and to expand its sales and marketing efforts. Continuum decided to seek the bank funding so that has extra money in its reserves to invest in the business if necessary, Oliphant says.
“This year we’re flirting with break even,” Oliphant says. “The debt round is really an insurance policy to make sure we can adjust if needed—just in case we don’t break even, we have some capital reserves.”
Continuum sells data analytics tools to large companies, targeting the fact that more and more industries are gathering and utilizing data to gain insight into their customers and operations. The company sells its platform, called Anaconda, to companies in industries including pharmaceuticals, financial services, engineering, government, oil and gas, and consumer products, Oliphant says.
The tools, based in the programming language Python, takes large data sets—such as tracking the success rate of ad campaigns or the time purchases occur at a grocer—and provides businesses with insights, particularly in the form of visualizations, meant to improve the business, Oliphant says. The services are generally intended for data scientists or analysts at companies, who are already studying data, he says.
The cost of the company’s corporate services depend on the number of accounts a business buys, and can range from $10,000 per year to several hundred thousand dollars annually, Oliphant says. Continuum’s customer total is now “in the hundreds,” he says.
Continuum’s platform is built on open-source technology, and the company also offers a free version of the Anaconda service.
The Series A funding came in July and was led by General Catalyst Partners and BuildGroup. The debt financing comes in the form of a $5 million revolving credit line that can be drawn and repaid, and $5 million of venture debt. Venture debt typically occurs after a recent financing round in a venture-backed company, such as a Series A, and is repaid like a loan, according to Silicon Valley Bank. It is is attractive to entrepreneurs because it provides additional capital without demanding equity in return, the bank says.