Over the last two years I have become convinced that there is a big opportunity to build a professional quality business on top of the API’s provided by Google, Bing and of course OpenStreetMap to serve mainstream clients in public sector and commercial markets who want more than a quick mashup. Sort of neo stuff for some more traditional clients.

So amidst all of the networking, consulting, conferences and other activities I have been on the lookout for a geostartup that had a solid technical capability and a realistic business model. Yes you can probably guess I believe I have found just such an opportunity. I have joined Solutions as their chairman and an investor. have a very neat platform that makes it simple to publish client’s content on any of the major mapping services and leverage the unique capabilities of each service, I have dubbed it a geoContent Management System (have to see whether geoCMS catches on). They offer some very elegant interfaces and ways of visualising data which are particularly interesting as all of this free and open data becomes available and the challenges of “derived data” diminish (hopefully).

It’s fun to be working with a geostartup and I cannot think of a better time to be launching a cloud based geo-business – exciting times ahead.

As a taster have a look at this UK General Election Map which shows geotagged tweets with the hashtag #ge2010 or any of the other trending election tags which are near to you, it also has the latest OS OpenData constituency boundaries and some feeds from the Guardian’s Politics API. Not finished yet and probably never will be but it will interesting to see whether the twitterati are in any way indicative of the broader electorate as the results start to come in on Thursday night.