Interesting Innovations in Location Analysis, SLA Forum, London, 23rd Oct

Date: Tuesday 23rd October
Time: 9.30am registration, 10am start, 4.30pm finish
Venue: CBRE, Henrietta House, Henrietta Place, London W1G 0NB
Nearest tube: Bond Street

This year’s theme, ‘Interesting innovations in location analysis’ has sparked much interest amongst the suppliers in the industry. Below is the line-up for the day. To reserve your place please email


9.30 Registration / coffee
10.00 Peter Sleight – intro.
10.10 Paul Thompson, Pitney Bowes Software – Waypoint
10.40 Mark Thurstain-Goodwin, Geofutures – The Knowledge Garden

11.10 Coffee break

11.40 Ian Abbott, MapMechanics – GeoXploit
12.10 Blair Freebairn, GeoLytics – Innovations in Analytical Data
12.40 Crawford Davidson, MD and Nigel Dodd, Retail Consultant, Telefónica Dynamic Insights – Smartsteps

13.10 Lunch

14.10 Mark Stileman and Sarah Gibbons, Ordnance Survey
14.40 Q&A

15.00 Tea break

15.30 Expert Panel
15.45 Jon Walker Award presentation.
16.00 Networking
16.30 Peter Sleight – close.

Download speaker’s presentations

Download Ian Abbott’s presentation “Advanced drive time analysis with GeoXploit” or read it online:

Download Ordnance Survey’s presentation “Enriching our geospatial data for analytic applications”

Download Blair Freebairn from GeoLytix presentation “Innovations in Analytical Data”

We hope to have the rest available shortly…

Speakers’ synopsis

Geofutures – The Knowledge Garden: where insight grows

Mark Thurstain Goodwin, GeoFutures

Geofutures is an independent technology company specialising in spatial insight and mapping. Spun out from UCL, its achievements include designing and creating the CLG Town Centres statistical series, The Local Data Company’s Town Centre Intelligence application, a series of analyses for the British Council of Shopping Centres, and property valuation models for clients including Transport for London, Grosvenor Estates and the Rent Service.

Over ten years we’ve seen constant change in the data, software, mapping and online delivery we can offer our clients. The temptation is to be led by the technology – throwing every innovation into complex analysis tools and expecting everyone to be grateful.

What we’ve learned is that experts making multi-million pound development decisions tend not to want oceans of data to analyse. They want straightforward, easy accessed outputs of sound analysis, to allow them to apply their knowledge and expertise to its interpretation. They want to share and build insights with colleagues and reach rapid, robust conclusions together.

We learned it, so we built it. The Knowledge Garden is an easy to use online insight application based on a wealth of data but requiring no GIS, statistics or database skills to use. Supplied as a fully supported subscription service, it offers instant access to economic, demographic and social data, pre-processed and ready to map and chart. Interactive map tools allow every user to zoom into areas of interest, understand multiple phenomena at a range of spatial scales and query underlying information at the click of a mouse. Even better, it offers seamless community insight tools within every screen, enabling researchers to save and share unique viewpoints with commentary, pointers, discussion threads, images and documents within defined project spaces.

Yes, it’s supported by the very latest mapping, query engine and fast data tabulation innovations out there, but The Knowledge Garden is designed for real users, not geeks. We keep data constantly and seamlessly updated, but our research professionals need hardly be aware of that. It offers access to unique derived datasets including urban and retail statistics, but the focus is on making these insights commercially usable.

For more information about The Knowledge Garden and to request a demo, please visit

Advanced drive time analysis with GeoXploit

Ian Abbot, MapMechanics

Using drive times for optimising site location analysis has come a long way in the last few years. With the introduction of the new GeoXploit 4 and updated real-world road speed data, drive-time analysis has become faster, more accurate and more reliable than ever before.

Learn how retailers and property professionals can benefit from intelligent site location analysis and optimised drive time catchments by utilising the latest in Geographic Information Systems in conjunction with detailed road speed data.

Title to be confirmed

Blair Freebairn, GeoLytix

Location analysts and their managers rely on precise, accurate, and up to date data. Some of these data are general across the GIS industry (boundary files, road networks, postcodes etc) and some are highly specialist and need to be custom build (demand surfaces, massive drivetime matrices, relevant POI databases). Location Analytic data has historically been bought ‘salad bar’ style from many vendor’s at a high price and with complex licensing, the more niche ‘products’ have often been internally built at a large ‘time cost’ within larger departments.

The rapid growth in the Open Data movement has led to many of the raw materials required to produce the analytical datasets needed by Location Analysts available under fantastically open license terms. Over the last six months GeoLytix have been steadily building a diverse and comprehensive catalogue of both the generalist and specialist datasets used by location analysts, and these data are today being used by several of our early adopter clients. Over 200 layers of powerful data comprising many thousands of attributes have been created, quality assured, documented and are now ready to go to work for the location analyst community. For each layer the best-in-breed source data has been selected, processed, styled, consolidated, documented and cleaned. Then all layers have been reconciled to be internally consistent and had a global set of standards and styles applied. The data is a one-stop-shop and is ready to be installed today. With very few exceptions the data is extremely high resolution, richly attributed and UK wide in coverage.

We will look at the full range of the data repository and reveal how SLA members can either acquire the data at a great price with simple shrink-wrap licenses or exploit it simply by using GeoLytix’s services. Amongst the analytical data assets we will look at are postal boundaries, admin boundaries, named carriage-way level road centrelines, bus stops with volumes, building outlines, category level consumer demand surfaces, traffic counts and speeds, core physical geography (rivers, lakes, foreshore, woodland), rail lines and stations with volumes, cartograms, online and worker spends, geo-demographics, retailing hubs with scores and profiles, house price paid data, schools with pupil counts, road networks for routing, base demographics, population updates, generic POI data, Companies house data and 1:10K Raster backgrounds will all be shown working together

Smart Steps Benefits Summary

Crawford Davidson, Managing Director and Nigel Dodd, Retail Consultant, Telefónica Dynamic Insights

Locality’s economic opportunity

We provide an objective view of a locality’s economic opportunity:

• How many customers visit by time, gender, age and wealth?
• Viewed Hourly, daily, weekly
• Ability to make comparisons between areas

If you sought to open or close a store or were about to under-go a rent review, then the trend in locality footfall is critical insight which you rarely have access to. Especially as you can get this trend for the age, gender and wealth types that define your ideal customers.

Understanding Catchment;

Smart Steps can show you the areas your audience live in to give businesses greater decision making powers around

– the efficiency/likely ROI of advertising campaigns
– the scale and geographic targeting of couponing/door drop activity
– investments to attract new customers such as local taxi or bus deal

Audience Demographic

Footfall is good, but footfall of the right demography allows you to tailor your shop windows and your range to suit the audience. Smart Steps will deliver Audience Footfall breakdown by

• Gender
• Age
• Wealth
• Family type
• Brand behaviour propensity

This will assist with greater precision of ranging, and local marketing communications.

Store Performance measurement, Area comparison and Competitor Store monitoring

Best of all we can compare area vs. area, so performance can be triangulated, store area vs. store area, own area vs. competitor area. Giving insight into the physical space around key locations allows businesses to see not only the Footfall around their own premises, but around their competitors too.

Origination, Destination and Dwell time

A complete view of your customers activities (where they were before this visit, how long they spend here and where they go next) enables much greater decision making capability across a business:

– Origination helps you work out where to place outdoor advertising, leafleting, or street sign walkers to attract footfall to your destination
– Dwell time allows you to work out how attractive your area is, and where there is potential to improve this by, for example, changing your range, or adding wifi in seated areas.
– Destination traffic can highlight where customer needs are not being met highlighting where custom is being lost to a competitor. And by location, which competitor.

Staffing level demands

Many stores risk under trading as lost custom is not easily measurable. Smart Steps measures missed opportunity often perceived by the store manager but hard to evidence:

– How many people drive past at key times when service is perceived to take too long?
– How many more people are driving past in the 30 minutes either side of current opening times?

Quantitative information can inform when and where staffing levels could be optimised to meet customer demand.

Waypoint – Overview

PBS (Pitney Bowes Software), a location intelligence, data management and customer communication management company, has developed a new innovative SaaS (Software as a Service) solution that gives organisations the ability to see and interact with spatial and customer data in real-time through a web browser.

Advances in location technology are changing the way that we consume data and run analysis. Waypoint™ is an easy-to-use, online application for spatial data mapping and catchment reporting that supports customised forecasting models. It is designed for analysts and non-analysts alike who visualise and analyse spatial data dynamically while in the office on a traditional workstation and/or out in the field on smart device/ipad to support location based business decisions.

WayPoint: Sales Forecasting

Waypoint™ is built using PBS’ latest enterprise platform Spectrum Spatial™ which enables location data integration with business/customer data and the ability to run complex “what-if” scenarios on sales forecasting, market planning, thematic mapping and catchment area reviews. This means that anyone, anytime, anywhere, can access and utilise spatial visualisation of data, which was once accessible only by the GIS department. Key features are listed below:

  • EASY TO NAVIGATE Empowers all levels of decision-makers, from entry-level users to executives.
  • FULLY HOSTED SOLUTION No hardware to buy and no software updates to manually install.
  • Software updates will automatically install through the web environment.
  • SECURITY PBS OnDemand co-location facilities are fully secure and open for business 24x7x365.
  • INTEGRATED WITH BING AND GOOGLE Allows for users to choose their mapping platform of choice.
  • DATA UPLOAD User can upload data directly into the online system i.e. customer data
  • SUPPORTS MARKET SCANNING AND HOT-SPOT ANALYSIS Functionality can be further extended to feature advanced
    forecasting modelling.
  • FLEXIBLE The solution can be customised by the PBS services team to fit client exact specific needs i.e. lock-down certain features/data for non-analysts

PBS Analytical Data Suite is integrated into the solution to provide the user with powerful insight on site selection. Example datasets include Destinations (identifies areas of retail activity), PitchPoint (retail pitch), Demographics, Consumer Expenditure, Valuation Office and Business Points along with an array of OpenData from Traffic Counts to Crime data.

Waypoint™ has been rolled out to multi-territories including UK, US, Canada and France for such clients
as Home Depot, Dennys, Qdoba and Vitamin Shoppe.

Speakers’ Biographies

Paul Thompson, Director Analytical Services – EMEA, Pitney Bowes Software
Paul has accumulated over 17 years of experience helping businesses harness the power of predictive analytics to grow their business. Working with some of the largest businesses in the world such as Home Depot, Pep Boys, IKEA, T-Mobile, and TJX, Dennys, Hooters, Rogers Communication, BBC, Japan Tobacco, Paul has developed and implemented state of the art real estate market optimisation systems and customer behavioural models that bridge the gaps between real estate and marketing. Paul has recently relocated from Toronto, Canada to head up the predictive analytics practice across EMEA.

Mark Thurstain-Goodwin is the founder and MD of Geofutures Ltd, an independent data, analysis and mapping software business, originally spun out of UCL in 2002. Having built Geofutures’ reputation delivering large-scale GIS projects such as the CLG Town Centres boundaries, property value models for Transport for London and Grosvenor Estates and the CPI spatial sampling model for ONS, Mark led the design of web-delivered mapping and data applications, enabling any organisation to access spatial data insight without software or training investment. The company’s latest innovation, The Knowledge Garden, takes the next step in meeting research and strategic needs by enabling teams to interact with maps, graphics and data and build insight together.

Mark was among the earliest MSc graduates in GIS from UCL’s Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, which he undertook following an early career in commercial property analysis. He also holds a Cambridge BA (Hons) in Geography, and remains an honorary fellow at CASA. Contact Mark at

Nigel Dodd joined the Telefónica Dynamic Insights team earlier this year after nearly 25 years experience in food retailing with Tesco and Morrisons.

Following a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics, he joined the Tesco graduate training programme, performing a number of roles across Property, Marketing and including Director of Insight, Director of Marketing as well as heading up UK Site Research. Nigel joined Morrisons in 2007 as Insight Director, creating Morrisons first Insight department and supporting Marketing as Morrisons successfully made the transition from regional to national brand.

Crawford Davidson, MD in the UK at Telefónica Dynamic Insights , has extensive experience within the industry and has previously driven principal consumer data programmes as Marketing Director at, Tesco Direct and Clubcard in addition to Boots Advantage card.

Gary Powell is the UK Sales Director at Telefónica Dynamic Insights. With years of sales and marketing experience in data analytics companies including Acxiom, Experian, Equifax and Dun & Bradstreet, Gary heads up our sales team looking after our customers.

Ian Abbott, Business Development Manager, MapMechanics
Ian Abbott is a business development manager in the emerging markets team at MapMechanics. He previously worked for MapInfo and Pitney Bowes software for 14 years in a number of roles from support, consulting and presales. He has specialised in the retail and property sectors and has worked closely with many leading organisations ensuring that they have the best software and data for their needs and are able to use them to their full potential. He has a BSc in Geographical Information Systems from Kingston University.

About Blair Freebairn
o Founder and Principal Geolytix – 2011 present
o Global head of analytical data and routing at PB MapInfo – 2011
o Manager of the MapInfo UK predictive analytics (PA) business 2009-2011
o Principal architect and methodologist for EMEA PA 2005-2009
o Modeller working in UK retail 2001-2005
o Head of Site Research at UK largest leisure retailer 1997-2001
o Operational management for leisure retailer 1991-1997
o Over the last ten years have served the site research teams at the majority of the top 25 UK retailers

About GeoLytix
o Founded by Blair Freebairn in 2011 to deliver vendor neutral spatial analytical consulting, development and deployment services
o Sarah Hitchcock joined in Oct 2012 from managing the Network Planning team at J Sainsbury’s bringing additional business consulting, project management and training skills
o Recent projects have included bespoke store forecasting models, training, custom data development, system development and consulting projects
o Can be found via or by email to

Mark Stileman is a Propositions Manager at Ordnance Survey, responsible for developing new product and service concepts. Mark has played a leading role in developing new products enabled with the third dimension. He has a background in Geography, GIS and Marketing, and has previously worked for Halcrow and the Government of Bermuda.

Sarah Gibbons is the OS MasterMap Topography Layer Product Manager. Her background is predominantly in OS large-scales data Product Management including Product Manager for Land-Line (OS MasterMap Topography Layer’s predecessor) but also having spent some time within the OS Sales team as a Partner Account Manager.