Ramp, the UK-based predictive analytics start-up co-founded by the man who helped put Candy Crush on the map, is on the hunt for South African talent for its Cape Town operation – and developers and venture capital analysts are top of their list, says the company’s chief growth officer, Dan Marcus.
Ramp was co-founded by Angus Lovitt, the former marketing vice-president at game developer King; veteran tech entrepreneurs Dan Marcus and Jan Pickard, who sold their successful workflow platform Magnetic in 2018; and software engineer Francois du Toit. The company is not short of ambition: its stated aim is to build a tech “unicorn”, by creating what it calls “the next evolution in analytics”.
To hear Marcus tell it, Ramp is already well on its way, with a growing client base in the UK in sectors as diverse as gaming, Fintech and Venture Capital. What their clients have in common is that they all want to understand how big their businesses can become, how much they should invest in growth to get there, and make better strategic business decisions along the way.
“Today most businesses use analytics platforms to help understand happened in the past. Our focus is analysing how your business will grow in the future and what you can do to improve. We are part of a new wave of predictive and prescriptive analytics,” said Lovitt.
“Our SaaS platform helps finance teams move from being spreadsheet jockeys engaging in guesswork, to being empowered with data science. This ultimately means better decision making within businesses.”
So why South Africa? Apart from it being the base for three of the founders, Marcus says the country has incredible developer talent, while Australian-born Lovitt has long been a fan of the country’s entrepreneurial spirit. Not that it matters: Ramp takes the view that we live in a remote world, and its people should be able to work from anywhere.
Pickard says data analytics is a “super-challenging” work environment, which requires the latest technology. “We know developers bore easily. They’re not going to get bored with us,” he said.
For his part, Marcus is selling the vision. “Prescriptive analytics is the future of business. It’s a multibillion-dollar opportunity that’s growing by the week. We’re looking for the brightest talent on the planet to get on board – and then hang on for the ride of their lives,” he said.