&facts Founder Sohaib Ahmed: Helping Small Businesses Make Better Data-Driven Decisions

Sohaib Ahmed, &facts

&facts is a market research platform to help small businesses make better data-driven decisions.

The platform integrates a library of data sources and uses AI to understand the users business. This matches business owners with the right insights that help them answer their questions and better understand their market. We are making data more accessible and understandable by providing actionable insights curated to the business.

We want to help small businesses make successful decisions and grow—all with the power of data. It’s time to get rid of the old, boring and long-winded way market research which took weeks and months.

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How did you come up with the idea?

I come from a finance and banking background where I have used data extensively to support the development of business strategies. Larger businesses have specialist resource to analyse data, have masses of internal data and are also able to afford the services of large market research agencies. In previous roles we have paid £40-50k for a market research report.

Unfortunately, small businesses have non of that, and data literacy in the UK is amongst the lowest in the world. So using data to inform decisions in an average small business is an enormous challenge.

We want to democratise data and empower small businesses with actionable insights through an easy-to-use and affordable platform.

What advice would you give to other aspiring entrepreneurs?

Read ’The Mom Test’. It’s an incredible book that teaches you how to ask the right questions to validate your business idea. A lot of new entrepreneurs can gain false confidence on their ideas because they’ve asked the wrong questions.

Be part of a community. The support and feedback you get can really help you create momentum. The Yena community has been incredible for us. At the beginning of the year they did a Startup Challenge which takes you through a guided process – it helps you to just get started rather than spending a lot of time thinking about it. Other communities like YSYS and Foundervine are incredible too.

For 99% of businesses, you can definitely get started without raising any funds. There are so many off the shelf solutions that can help you get started within days!

What can we hope to see from &facts in the future?

We’re in the process of building our MVP and will be launching early Q1 2021. We’ve tested our platform with a number of early users and gotten some amazing feedback, so cant wait to launch to the wider community! We also have a number of really cool partnerships in the pipeline so look out for those announcements too!