“Alternative Data Is Valued on Wall Street”, in Wall Street Journal, November 2, 2018. pp. B1, B2.
Thasos Group collects geolocation data from about 1000 Apps, many of which know a mobile phone’s location. When Elon Musk said Tesla Inc. would boost production, Thasos built a digital corral around the Fremont, California Tesla plant: They identified a 30% surge in the workforce and gave advance information to their Wall Street clients ahead of the surprise announcement by Tesla that production had doubled: Shares shot ip 9.1% the next day.
Thasos buys massive amount of geocodes, scrubbed of personal information: just time-stamped strings of latitudes and longitudes. However, this data allows compilation of very detailed maps of activity at specific sites. Some applications are retail location analysis or workforce size in remote oilfield operations, and future applications are seen in urban planning and disaster recovery.