Introduction of API and SimFin+ accounts
Dear SimFin users, and those that might become them,
in this post I want to tell you a bit more about our new API as well as our decision to start offering new premium accounts called “SimFin+ accounts”. I will also tell you a bit more about the future plans of SimFin and how this endeavour is currently being run.
First of all, our foremost aim is still to make fundamental financial data freely available to everyone, and this is not going to change. That’s why all the functionality available on SimFin so far is still available for free, this includes the bulk download and the data finder, with which you should already be able to download all of our data for free.
The main reason for the introduction of the SimFin+ premium accounts is the launch of our API. We would like to offer the API totally for free as well, but there is a fundamental difference between an API and the bulk download for example, in the sense that an API usually implies calls to it on a regular basis or a lot of calls at once in order to build up a specific dataset etc. While the bulk download requires only a pre-built CSV file that we can serve you for virtually no cost at all (for SimFin), the server-side cost (in terms of CPU usage) is directly proportional to the usage of the API, and therefore to the number of people using it and the frequency of their calls. As we want to offer a professional API that you can rely on, we might have to scale up our server infrastructure in times of high demand, and this could imply quite a substantial amount of additional costs for us. To cover that, we are offering unlimited API calls only on a premium basis.
As you can still access our entire dataset for free (bulk download) and as you can even use the new premium features if you are a significant contributor to SimFin, we think the introduction of premium features is still in line with our mission of making data more open and accessible.
The introduction of the SimFin+ accounts also helps SimFin to grow as an organisation. Currently I am doing all the programming (front- and backend) of the SimFin platform besides being a freelancer, so additional funds could help make the whole site a lot more professional and the data gathering process much quicker. While it’s amazing that we have people contributing to SimFin in their free-time (we recently set up a team with coders from around the world working on getting data from markets other than the US — if you are interested in helping, write me an e-mail), I believe that additional funds are necessary in order to employ people on a full-time basis and that this would be very beneficial to our goal of making high quality fundamental data accessible to a large audience.
Thomas Flassbeck, CEO and founder of SimFin