BUSINESS GEOGRAPHICS LIMITED

Business Geographics Limited (BGL) was co-founded by Adrian Tear and Antony Sellen in September 1993.

The company was one of the most innovative users of geographic information for business in the 1990s embarking on some major projects for clients including Royal Mail, Camelot Group, Financial Times and others.

As early adaptors of Internet and Web technology BGL was one of the first companies in the sector to offer a comprehensive catalogue of GIS data sets and software online.

BGL also pioneered the use and visualisation of GIS data online. Notable projects inluded:

  • 1997 UK General Election
    At the time New Media Age magazine rated BGL's election.co.uk ahead of the BBC's election output. Not bad for a site constructed by a 3-man team! The code still exists and can be visited today.
  • 2000 London Election
    Following the earlier electoral theme a site was built to cover the 2000 London Election for mayor and assembly in collaboration with the Association for Geographic Information. The site pioneered an all browser safe multiple tiled GIF map navigation system subsequently used in Google Maps.

Business Geographics was the first Census Agency to deliver data and mapping online, demonstrating practical uses within a web browser many years before much larger organisations developed any data-driven web capability.

Expertise in this area led to the WebMapping Project in collaboration with Christopher Roper of Landmark Information Group, showing users such as Ordnance Survey, the Environment Agency and others what could be done with map data online.

Tear and Sellen, joined by Mark Watson (now at Bluewave Geographics), sold Business Geographics to the Interpublic Group of Companies in 1997 in a seven figure deal. The two original founders left the company in 2000 to pursue their Internet interests.