A New Chapter for Spark Profit

After more than two years spreading opportunity around the world, we’ve had to make some important changes to Spark Profit. Please read carefully!

Change #1: All withdrawals via TIQL

We built Spark Profit, the first app of its kind in the world, to ① help you safely and easily learn how to trade, and ② provide an income to fund your new hobby or career. That vision hasn’t changed! But Spark Profit is not regulated, unlike its sister app “TIQL“. Regulation is a good thing for customers, so until we are able to get Spark Profit regulated you will only be able to cash out Spark Profit earnings in TIQL.

Change #2: Skill rewards are limited to $10

Spark Profit has paid over $350,000 in awards since 2014. This money came from our own and our investor’s pockets, as we worked hard to find a way to generate the profits necessary from the games you were playing. No-one had ever done this before because it is a very hard problem! In addition we noticed that it often took several months for players to start earning more than a few cents a week.

As a result we will now restrict skill earnings to a lifetime maximum of $10. Once you have earned $10 you should be skilled enough to use TIQL to grow the $10 we’ve given you into $30, or even a lot more!

Incidentally, your income from supporters remains unaffected, and is unlimited. Just don’t forget to log in to TIQL or Spark Profit each week to ensure you get it.

TIQL is a fully regulated product with strong consumer protections. If you have any difficulty registering a TIQL account please check that you are registering for the correct country, the one where you live. If you live in a country where TIQL is currently unavailable due to laws or regulations, we are sorry for the delay but we do expect that you will be able to access your credits in the future, as we add additional licences over time.

We thought very hard about the best way to continue with our mission of making financial markets safe and fun. The changes will result in more people receiving awards than before, giving more opportunity to a larger number of people.

We ♡ News

One of the things we love about SparkProfit is the friendly trading community that’s building up, both inside and outside the app. One of the most fundamental things a community needs is a way to give simple, clear feedback. Now you can!

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Every user can heart ♥ or trash 🗑 a post. Make your feelings known! If enough people trash a post we’ll come along and make sure that it follows our posting guidelines and take action if necessary. If a post get lots of likes… well, that’s going to come with special benefits in the future :).

There are some very cool features we’ll be building on top of this foundation but please share lots of ♥ with your SparkProfit friends for now!

Spark Profit’s Origins

This post is by Justin Short, CEO and Founder of Nous.

Spark Profit sunrise

Hi! I wanted to explain why we built Spark Profit and why it’s so special. So let me start with a bit of personal history.

Before I and four very smart people quit our jobs to found Nous together, I was working at a large Investment Bank as Regional Head of Electronic Trading Strategy. I’d been working in that industry for 14 years and judging by my performance reports, I was pretty good at it. So why quit?

One of the reasons was that I saw an unbelievably huge opportunity – not just for me but for literally millions of people. Working in the financial markets, I knew first-hand how important technology and quantitative skills are to trading profitably. After all, I commissioned and built strategies that helped our customers shave valuable basis points from their costs, improving their efficiency and ultimately benefitting their customers, the public.

But I also saw that human intuition was still very much alive. Certain colleagues at all the financial firms I have worked at: UBS; Deutsche Bank; and Merrill Lynch / Bank of America, were fantastically good at understanding the rhythm of the market. They could sense when the tide was about to turn, and make a lot of money by being one of the first to jump in and by riding the movement all the way. They naturally understood the psychology of the market.

I have a lot of respect for these people.

But one thing bothered me. They were to some degree all from a common mould. They were all university graduates, mostly male, all speaking English. They were comfortable wearing a suit and living in the city. Of course, they’d all made it through interviews with similarly demanding firms: they had to fit a mould. But was all that really necessary, in order to be a great trader?

I didn’t think so. Not at all.

Which begs the question, how many other people never got the chance to find their calling, just because they failed to fit the mould?

When I had my Eureka! moment, I found a way to connect everyone in the world to the markets and give them the right tools and incentive to win, without requiring anything from them in return. That is Spark Profit. Of course, I was happy that the system would be profitable for us, the creators. But I was ecstatic that at the same time it would be such a tremendous force for equality. Unlike Investment Banks, Spark Profit doesn’t care where you are or what you look like. Spark Profit doesn’t even mind if you have another job!

We like to say that Nous is an “opportunity factory” – because every day, a thousand more people experience that opportunity. Which is why when we started out, back in 2012, we created the Nous company vision:

THE NOUS VISION:

A world in which millions of people are living richer, happier lives thanks to their talents and our assistance.

Nous was the first company in the world to truly make trading free — and then even cheaper! Only Spark Profit offers you, and everyone in the world, a chance to test and refine your trading talents, while guaranteeing a skill-based payout that requires no payment and no deposit. We’re incredibly proud that we’ve never taken a single penny from any of our 80,000 players and yet we’ve already been able to award $60,000 in prizes.

We hope you like what we’re doing too. If you do, please spread the word (and maybe earn yourself a little extra income at the same time!)

Neha Reiss joins the team

We’re delighted to announce that Neha Reiss has joined Nous as a consultant advising on strategy, business development, funding and general operations.

Neha joins us in the UK from Quantifeed, a Hong Kong based fin-tech startup where she held a joint CFO and COO role. At Quantifeed she led the fund raising efforts, worked on business development and was instrumental in setting up the finance and operations infrastructure.

Before Quantifeed, Neha spent a 15-year career in international investment banking, most recently as Liquidity Project Manager in Hong Kong for Nomura. She has also worked in Risk Analysis and Management for Merrill Lynch both in London and Hong Kong, and began her banking career as a Treasury Analyst at Lehman Brothers in New York in 1997.

Here at Nous, Neha will take the lead on financial operations – financial projections, financial reporting, payroll, payables, receivables and liquidity planning. She will also play a key role securing expansion capital and developing commercial relationships with hedge funds and other customers for Nous’ data feed products.

We are absolutely thrilled to have Neha’s experience added to the bench as we move into our next stage of growth — more on that very soon!

$1000, each and every week!

A few weeks ago back at Spark Profit HQ we were so excited about the World Cup we decided to double supporter bonuses for the duration! This means that when anyone you’ve invited earns money, you’ll now get 20% of what they earn too, as a thank-you bonus. Spark Profit pays that bonus, not your friend, so everyone’s a winner! (Except us maybe 🙂 ).

That started a few weeks ago. How’s it going? Well, we’re already paying out more than ever before!

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The very first week we awarded over $1,000 for the first time. Every week has set new records and this week will have an estimated $1,100 total prize award. Thousands of new reasons to love Spark Profit!

If you want to know how to earn a regular income using your personal supporter link, just take a look at the FAQ or send a mail to [email protected].

 

Press Release: New free global sentiment indicators to boost players’ market returns

22 May 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tokyo-based financial data company Nous has added global sentiment indicators for all markets, to its free-to-play Spark Profit fantasy trading platform.

Spark Profit's free Global Sentiment Indicator (Example)

Spark Profit’s free Global Sentiment Indicator (Example)

Using an intuitive visual format, the sentiment indicator provides an additional source of information to help players when making predictions. It shows whether all users of the system are buyers or sellers of each instrument, in aggregate. Spark Profit players who make accurate predictions collect points that convert to cash prizes.

To activate the free sentiment indicator, users will need to make 15 predictions of their own. Uniquely, historical data is also shown, to help players learn when to follow the crowd – and when to lead it.

There are currently 29,000 Spark Profit users in 194 different countries, with around 3,000 additional users signing up each month. Players have earned rewards totalling US $30,000.

Spark Profit can be accessed via https://sparkprofit.com or downloaded from iTunes or Google Play.

Many Spark Profit players started out with no previous trading experience, but the best have developed original strategies that consistently outcompete their peers and outperform the markets.

Nous intends to monetise Spark Profit’s price prediction data by integrating it into a range of professional data feed products it will sell to hedge funds, banks and other financial institutions. A pilot international hedge fund is trialling feeds that Nous launched in February.

Justin Short, CEO of Nous, says: “The purpose of our new free sentiment indicator is to help market participants improve their trading strategies by showing them the average person’s viewpoint, from right now all the way back to Spark Profit’s launch in January. This tool also hints at the powerful insights available in our Spark Data products – the suite of feeds we supply to professional traders.

“In launching the global sentiment indicator we have been at pains to design a system that provides exclusive, actionable information without creating a systemic bias for our players. We hope existing and new users will use it to boost their returns.”

Contacts

Justin Short CEO [email protected]

Neil Boom MD Gresham PR +44 7866 805 108 [email protected]

About Nous

Nous was founded in 2012 by Justin Short and four other former high flying Merrill Lynch traders and technologists, who saw an opportunity to help firms understand and predict financial markets, by empowering people around the world to discover and hone their natural trading talents.

It launched Spark Profit, the virtual trading game, in January 2014.

New year, new beginnings

Wishing you a very Happy New Year, from everyone here at Nous!

New Beginings

Plenty more in store for 2014

2013 has been really amazing – it’s only 8 months since GAIN started paying cash rewards and already 13,000 players joined from 190 countries, to collectively earn over US $11,000. We think that’s fantastic! We’re very grateful for your help, and rather proud of ourselves all at the same time :).

As you can probably guess, we have plenty more in store for 2014.

A new name

In the middle of January GAIN will get a new name, its own website, and be released to Apple’s App Store. The changes are mostly cosmetic so you’ll still feel right at home though. You can still earn money in just minutes per week and, just like now, if you do very well one week you’ll still receive money for many weeks afterwards. Of course we’ll carry over your full history to the new site, so you won’t lose anything there either.

Scoring

There is one other important change coming at the same time, to scoring. Although many people might not be aware of it, points that you won or lost more than six months ago no longer count towards your score and do not help you earn money. This can be a surprise long term users, who hit this wall and see their total points “fall” at the start of every week. We wanted to make it feel fairer to them and easier for everyone to understand. We cannot say any more right now but rest assured that everyone gets equal treatment and we you will always be rewarded for careful, long-term playing.

Stability

You might have noticed that we had a couple of outages recently. We’ve been working literally round the clock to fix this: adding new data suppliers; buying machines and coding like crazy. Pretty soon we’ll also be able to release upgrades without having to stop everything. We will continue working to increase uptime even further.

Sharing

There are other changes planned over the course of the year. In addition to the rebranding and new scoring system, we will be increasing prizes — that is, if you can help us continue to grow and add more winning users! We also plan to add new markets to the app and also allow you to make predictions that last more than a week. In addition we’ll let you withdraw your earnings via Skrill or direct to your own Bitcoin wallet! And we’ll be making it easier to chat — and show off! — to your friends from inside the app.

Here’s to the future!

So thanks once again for helping us have such a fantastic first year. Together we really can have fun making a better, fairer world for millions of people – starting with you!