Star India Pvt. Ltd, a subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch’s Twenty-First Century Fox Inc., has invested close to $10 million in data science and analytics start-up Sagacito Technologies Pvt. Ltd founded by two former top executives at Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd (BCCL), according to two people familiar with the transaction who didn’t want to be identified.
Founded by former BCCL employees Ravi Dhariwal and Arunabh Das Sharma, Sagacito aims to help businesses maximize market share and margins through predictive data analysis. Star India is its first client.
“Star India has identified big data and analytics as one of the focus areas, and Sagacito is one of our partners in this pursuit. To help Sagacito accelerate its growth, Star India has decided to make a minority investment in this business,” said Prateek Garg, head of business development at Star India.
According to the two people familiar with the deal, Star India has invested $1 million in Sagacito against 10% equity and another $8.2 million through a so-called build-and-operate model under which it will use the start-up’s tools and services for five years. Star India declined to confirm the size of the transaction and other details.
Sagacito is a mobile-first, cloud-based enterprise solutions company that claims it will use internal and external databases to create measurable insights that go beyond conventional data manipulation and computation capabilities.
Mint has not drive-tested any of its tools or services.
“We’re trying to find solutions to very real problems of businesses that exist. All business leaders are coming to terms with tougher times, especially with so much technological disruption; companies are looking to cut costs and are clearly not making enough margins,” said Sharma.
Dhariwal agreed. “The most important decisions a company has to make are on pricing and their offering. Our analytics tools will study transaction data both online and offline and can be used across all sectors will help better decision making,” he said.
Apart from media, Sagacito hopes to focus on healthcare, cargo and logistics, hospitality and consumer products.
Companies are using big data analytics for everything from driving growth to reducing costs and recruiting better people to completely transforming their business strategy.
“Data analytics has gained tremendous prominence in current times. We can see it being used in every sector. Companies are increasingly using data analytics tools to create personalized experiences for their customers while bringing in operational efficiencies,” said Abhishek Goyal, co-founder, Tracxn Technologies Pvt. Ltd, a start-up data analytics provider.
Between 2010 and 2016, data analytics start-ups in India have attracted $250 million in funding, according to Tracxn data.