DueDil Posted Strong 2016 Turnover Growth; Positions Itself for European Expansion

DueDil's new credit risk filter allows users to filter prospects by the degree of trade credit risk.
DueDil’s new credit risk filter allows users to filter prospects by the degree of trade credit risk.

European private company information platform DueDil recently filed its 2016 financials with Companies House. Revenue increased from £1.21M to £2.25M. The startup continues to run in deficit (£6.17M), but that should be anticipated for an information services startup that is rapidly expanding its content and functionality. DueDil averaged 75 employees last year, up from 46 in 2015.

DueDil’s losses expanded last year as it pursued the European company intelligence market which it believes is becoming more hospitable.

“In the last 12 months, our competitive landscape has changed dramatically, Bureau Van Dijk got sold for $3.3 billion to Moody’s, and Dun & Bradstreet divested its Benelux division. This, along with our much better unit economics, gave our board and management team a clear signal to grow the product and the team and start to compete directly with them. The higher costs are the result of growing our product coverage from the UK and Ireland to pan-European, soon to cover 100 million+ companies.”

  • CEO Damian Kimmelman

Because subscription services are ratable, growth in revenue lags billings. Although enterprise sales grew 100% last year, much of this growth won’t show up in the top line until 2017. DueDil had its best quarter in Q1 and then grew 60% in Q2.

“Over the last 6 months, we have grown sales 5% week over week and are continuing to do so,” said Kimmelman.

To fund growth until its next equity round, the firm recently issued a £900,000 convertible note and plans to issue a £1.1 million convertible note. “I think you can assume that we wouldn’t be so bullish on a convertible if there hadn’t been an immediate liquidity event in sight,” Kimmelman told Business Insider. “I am not trying to be coy but that is all I can say.”


In product news, DueDil added Credit Risk and Ownership filters to its list building module. Sales and Marketing can employ the credit risk filter to remove prospects that are unlikely to pass credit checks or to target higher risk companies. The filter can also be used by credit risk and procurement teams during the onboarding process allowing them to streamline the processing of low-risk companies.

Ownership search filters assist with targeting firms with concentrated shareholdings which are “ripe for takeover.”  New Ownership screens include Total Shareholding Count, Individuals Count, Companies Count, and Shareholder Name.

Along with credit scores and ownership filters, DueDil supports a broad set of financial screening filters spanning 40 million companies in the UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Benelux, Norway, and Sweden with additional European countries in queue.

DueDil added four new shareholder filters for identifying firms "ripe for takeover."
DueDil added four new shareholder filters for identifying firms “ripe for takeover.”

Sales Intelligence: US vs. UK

UK private company financials (source: Artesian Solutions)
UK private company financials (source: Artesian Solutions)

The UK is the second largest market for sales intelligence services.  For US firms, the UK is usually either the second or third market (after Canada) which they support.  Thus, the UK market is served by both British (e.g. DueDil, Artesian Solutions, Bureau van Dijk) and American companies (e.g. Avention, Dun & Bradstreet, Factiva).

A key difference between the US and UK markets is the availability of UK private company data.  Approximately three million active UK firms are required to register with Companies House (the major exceptions are small businesses, partnerships, and public sector entities).  Large firms are required to provide full financials while mid-size firms may only be required to file a Balance Sheet or summary financials.  The smallest firms may simply be required to file a basic Annual Return with Director and Shareholder information and abbreviated accounts.

Along with annual financials, the UK filing regime requires statements concerning Directors and Shareholders (DASH); Mortgages, Charges, and County Court Judgments (MCCJ); and Gazette filings concerning receiverships and the winding down of businesses.  The net effect is a richer set of financial figures, superior intelligence concerning corporate families and ownership, a broad list directors, and intelligence concerning cross-company director linkages.

There are some drawbacks to this system.  First, the filings for private companies are not filed until three quarters after the end of the financial year so one is generally looking at data that is three to seven quarters in arrears.  A company’s financial position can shift significantly during this time.  Of course, few companies in the US are required to make any kind of financial filings.

Second, statements may be filed from the offices of corporate secretaries, accountants, or corporate owners.  Thus, the registered address often differs from the actual “trading address”.  When evaluating UK sales intelligence tools, look for vendors that provide both registered and trading addresses.  You should also ask about the population of URLs and phone numbers.

In the UK, sales reps should be calling into the Trading Address (physical) location, not the Registered Address (legal). Make sure your Sales Intelligence service provides both.
In the UK, sales reps should be calling into the Trading Address (physical) location, not the Registered Address (legal). Make sure your Sales Intelligence service provides both.  (Source: Avention)

Third, while there is very good data concerning corporate linkages, including minority shareholdings, the data only goes to the subsidiary level.  But companies may have hundreds of operating locations not listed.  In the US, vendors capture all of these branch locations, but this intelligence is more limited in the UK.

Another problem with this regime is there is little focus on who is managing the organization.  While a few directors are listed, they may not be the people the sales rep will be calling into.  Thus, the sales intelligence vendors have been working to tie in marketing datasets which provide additional color (British translation: colour) including mid-level managers with emails, URLs, and phone numbers.

Finally, one is more likely to have turnover figures (US translation: revenue) in the UK than in the US.  Conversely, US vendors are more likely to have employee figures and modeled revenue figures.  As a result, the employee count is a better sizing metric when prospecting in the US and turnover is the superior prospecting metric in the UK.

I am currently working on the next edition of my Field Guide for Sales Intelligence Vendors.  One of the key additions to this year’s edition is the inclusion of three UK vendors: Artesian Solutions, Bureau van Dijk, and DueDilAvention, which also offers a strong UK product, was previously included.  The new edition will be available before the end of this year.  I am now taking pre-orders for the expanded guide with purchasers receiving the 2015 edition at no charge.