RFA launches platform for data and analytics sharing between GPs and portcos

The new Managed Data Services offering allows GPs and portfolio companies to communicate data and analytics directly.

Technology solutions provider RFA recently launched Managed Data Services, a data warehousing service allowing GPs and portfolio companies to communicate company data and analytics efficiently.

The fully-managed service offers data warehousing, ingestion and analytics guarded by the firm’s disaster recovery capabilities.

Data sharing has given GPs “unparalleled insight into the operations of the portfolio companies, and ultimately, the performance of their fund,” said Mark Alayev, chief data officer at RFA, who was promoted to spearhead the Managed Data Service offering.

The platform is comprised of a single data warehouse built to facilitate all of the major public cloud platforms, including AWS, Azure, Snowflake and Google Cloud Platform. It completely separates the data-processing and storage layers, allowing firms to independently share data with their portfolio companies instead of having to pay for data service providers to help both parties do so.

“For the first time, you have the proper separation of what is called a data economy,” said Alayev. “Because the computing and data layers are separated properly, you can now share your data, and the person that’s paying for the analysis of that data is the company that wants to run it.”

“In the past, if [a portfolio company] wanted to pass data to a private equity firm, it had to drop it off in an SSDP (self-serve data preparation), and the GP needed to pick it up, process, then ingest it. So both sides were processing the data in order to set up the link. With the new model, you’re going to have the portfolio companies share it with the GP and the GP is paying for the compute.”

That GPs would pay for data warehousing is only a recent phenomenon, according to Alayev. “Private equity firms wouldn’t typically invest in a platform this large [because] traditional data warehousing was very expensive,” Alayev said. “I think what we’re seeing is that the barrier to entry has reduced significantly.”