Apr 17th 2017 - by Patrick Adrian, CFA
You have likely heard the phrase Content is King, it is perhaps one of the earliest internet idioms. It has origins prior than the web, but was popularized most by Bill Gates in a 1996 essay where he describes in fairly accurate terms how distributed content through the web is going to change the world. Here is an especially good part:
"I expect societies will see intense competition, ample failure as well as success in all categories of popular content, not just software and news, but also games, entertainment, sports programming, directories, classified advertising, and online communities devoted to major interests."
When we created RedQuarry in 2014, we focused on our major interest, which was investment research. We knew there was demand for an app that would help professionals like us do better work within their internal teams. We did countless hours of user research, hundreds of mockups, and launched the first version for a group of early adopters (who are still clients today!).
We have come a long way with our technology since the first version, but so has the rest of the tech-enabled world. Specifically the behavior, expectations, and mindset of the general business app user. So today, we are having very different conversations about how to best leverage RedQuarry. Originally it was just a tool for internal workflow, but now people can look beyond to marketplace and content consumption patterns that have become familiar and normal like Netflix and Amazon. Here are some of the topics relevant to our users today:
Research creation is what I think of as our original problem space. It's how most of our current users think about the system and essentially allows the CIO and her team to do day-to-day work, manage the investment process, and maintain compliance. Essentially a productivity tool.
Content distribution is the fundamental challenge of scalability in the investment research space. Imagine trying to email out every single piece of research your firm creates? That's how 99% of research content is distributed today, whether internally or externally. It's insane. How can people see the distribution channels like Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, etc. and not see the parallels in the investment research? Well, today people are talking about research through a distributed lens. The beauty of RedQuarry is of course that we are a highly engaging and interactive research platform with $50 Billion of eyeballs using it everyday. An example might be a group of advisors who want to form a pooled research consortium or a large advisor roll up firm wanting to connect their acquired resources into a consolidated team of analysts.
As of today, all RedQuarry users have some form of internal research capability, but as the distribution pieces comes together it's conceivable that RedQuarry users of tomorrow could be consumers only.
I can't wait to see what a more connected and collaborative investment research community looks like. I hope to see a vibrancy and diversity of business models that don't currently exist today. In the end, clients and owners of capital will be the big winners in the form of investment results that can be linked directly to higher quality research as a function of technology, collaboration, and education.
RedQuarry's cutting edge research management software is used by leading investment firms around the world to manage their investment process, due diligence files and research compliance.