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September 28, 2010

Profile of weather forecasting firm SkyMet

Outlook Business has a profile of private weather forecasting company SkyMet.
Media outfits, such as Hindustan Times, Zee TV, Aaj Tak, The Hindu, Times Now and Mint (subscribe) to its services....“(Nokia) wanted a reliable weather forecast supplier for farmers,” recalls Singh. SkyMet was given the job of forecasting the weather for 3,000 tehsils across India. This meany redoing infrastructure and investing more to generate forecasts for each region. Soon, an even more engaging client was knocking at its doors. Thomson Reuters wanted forecasts right down to the village level for its Market Light service that provides localised information on the weather, market prices, commodity news and advisory tips on crops.

SkyMet, which operates on a subscription-driven model, has been growing steadily over the years. Today, it has 22 clients and its headcount has grown from three people at launch to 44 experts now. Turnover, which was a mere Rs 18 lakh in 2003, rose to Rs 2 crore in FY10. The enterprise has remained profitable throughout its journey.

Since 2006, the company has been expanding steadily into other sectors. The power portfolio now accounts for 20% of its annual revenues. Its weather forecasts help power utilities plan their energy purchases from power generators. Clients include Reliance Energy, North Delhi Power, Power Grid Corporation and Power Trading Corporation.

Arun Natarajan is the Founder & CEO of Venture Intelligence, the leading provider of data and analysis on private equity, venture capital and M&A deals in India. View free samples of Venture Intelligence newsletters and reports. Email the author at arun@ventureintelligence.in