Financial data provider Nous has raised $600k as it looks to provide a new type of data to financial institutions.

The London-based startup uses its SparkProfit virtual trading game to crowdsource currency, stock indices, commodities and bitcoin data.

Using its own proprietary software, Nous creates data feeds that can be used by banks, hedge funds and other financial institutions.

The investment has been led by a number of angel investors, primarily from the financial sector.

Gaming to banking

The startup was founded in 2012 by 5 Merryl Lynch traders and technologists.

SparkProfit lets amateur traders predict currency and liquid instrument movements. In return, there are cash prizes for those who perform best at the end of every month.

Nous is currently in talks with potential clients to trial the data feeds to be used in tandem with their existing ones.

SparkProfit currently has 79,000 users and CEO Justin Short hopes that the user base will be 250,000 in the next six months. The value of its data is driven by the number of users it has.

Crowdsourced data

Some of Nous’ competitors generate data by analysing text from sources like Twitter and Facebook.

The startup believes that its crowdsourced data, which is generated without interpreting natural language responses, can be more accurate.

The next stage for Nous is piloting the data feeds with hedge funds and banks, and CEO Short says that they are well on their way to getting the programmes off the ground.

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