ShareThis Page
Technology

Pittsburgh data company Niche raises $6.6 million, plans to hire 20 people

Aaron Aupperlee
| Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, 4:45 p.m.
Niche, a data company that gathers information on schools and places to live, expects to grow to about 80 employees by the end of the year. (Photo from Niche)
Niche, a data company that gathers information on schools and places to live, expects to grow to about 80 employees by the end of the year. (Photo from Niche)

Niche, a Pittsburgh data company that gathers information on nearly every school, college, university, neighborhood, town and suburb in the country, expects to outgrow its Shadyside office this year as it adds employees.

The company announced Monday it raised $6.6 million and expects to hire more than 20 people by the end of the year.

“It's really starting to gel and come together right now,” said Luke Skurman, CEO of Niche. “We're working on something pretty ambitious.”

Skurman said the funding and growth will allow Niche to provide more data on the K-12 schools, college and universities and neighborhoods, towns and suburbs. Niche could also branch out into other categories of information, though Skurman wouldn't go into further details.

Niche scrapes information from publicly available data sets like school information from the Department of Education, crime statistics from the FBI and demographic information from the census. It adds in its own proprietary data to create a robust listing for schools and communities.

“We get our hands on so many datasets,” Skurman said. “It's not for the faint of heart.”

The site creates lists of the best places to live, the safest places to live, best places to buy a house, the most diverse places, the best public schools and the best places for millennials.

Niche has more than 120 million reviews and opinions, Skurman said. Its site is near the top of Google search results for schools, colleges and universities and in queries like “Best place to raise a family in Pennsylvania.”

Niche was founded in 2013. The company has 56 employees. Skurman hopes to have about 80 by the end of the year. The whole team will stay in Pittsburgh.

“We want to build a great company here,” Skurman said, adding that he is a Carnegie Mellon University graduate as it much of his team. “We have an amazing team that can stack up against any team. We couldn't be happier.”

Aaron Aupperlee is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at aaupperlee@tribweb.com, 412-336-8448 or via Twitter @tinynotebook.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me