Atomico-backed European startup, Teralytics, is testing out its big data opportunity. It has built a platform selling analytics services to customers such as agencies and transport companies that want to understand complex problems relating to human mobility - analyzing things like commute pressure points, or calculating the optimum location for a new road, or even monitoring urban air quality without deploying sensors.
The original idea for the business was spun out of ETH Zurich University, sparked by a conversation one of the co-founders had with a local telco which was looking for help analyzing commuter data on behalf of the government.
Co-founder Georg Polzer says that he and his co-founders ended up sleeping in the company’s data center as they worked to write code to come up with the answer to the problem — though he notes he’s past the point of personally pulling coding all-nighters himself now.
“Back at ETH we were doing a lot of data analysis and by living in Zurich, working in Zurich we got exposure to a Swiss telecom company,” he tells TechCrunch, popular online publisher of technology industry news. “I got into a conversation with a person there, who mentioned the Swiss government wants to understand how long people travel across the country, to leave their home and reach their destination during the day, and that person at Swisscom said can you help us? And we said sure, we can do it. And with this project we started the company.”
Teraltyics has raised around $44 million to date, telling TechCrunch its taken investment up to a Series C level, and amassing a team of 65 people working out of headquarters in Zurich and offices in New York and Singapore. Along with Niklas Zennström’s Atomico fund, investors include Swiss VC firm Lakestar and Hong Kong-based Horizons Ventures.
Its current go-to-market proposition is focused on analyzing human mobility and behavior to meet the changing needs of urban planners and transport providers — sitting under another techie umbrella: smart cities.