Calcbench Looks to Help Budget-Minded Analysts Crunch Financial Data

11/8/11Follow @xconomy

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very expensive financial data services, like Bloomberg and Thomson Reuters, which aren’t a realistic option for individual users like freelance financial journalists. Calcbench is also targeting lawyers, accountants, investors, and financial analysts. Those looking to access the information on their own have typically had to go through the SEC website manually. Calcbench is also different in that it pulls directly from the company-supplied data, while other analytical tools rely on third party information. That means it’s also subject to the errors companies make when reporting the information, but the Calcbench engine can help catch those mistakes and inform XBRL, says Rapp.

Other startups have tackled the concept of making sophisticated financial data more accessible. Screener.co sells its financial analytical tool, using calculations built on on ThomsonReuters data, for $24.95 per month to personal users and $49.95 to professional users.

Calcbench is vying for a $20,000 grand prize that XBRL Challenge will award in February. But Ghai and Rapp are looking for the app to have life beyond that. The hope is that the tool will be able to support itself through display ads. It’s initially looking to add networks to serve those, but will target more strategic financial services advertisers if it gets enough momentum. Calcbench could also make money off a premium offering that includes more specialized calculations for the data, and it could develop it for individual broker dealer firms to use as their own branded tool, says Rapp.

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