Dan Houghton, Developer in London, United Kingdom
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Dan Houghton

Verified Expert  in Engineering

Leadership Developer

London, United Kingdom
Toptal Member Since
February 12, 2020

Dan is a data-driven executive, with a Double First in Maths from Cambridge. He started and sold TextMagic.com, worked as a Product Manager at Skype during its hyper-growth phase, then founded a restaurant group, Chilango, where he installed modern business intelligence and did the data engineering and business analysis himself. He is now taking contract roles in data leadership positions in scale-ups in London.



Preferred Environment

SQL, Databricks, Redshift, RStudio, Domo, Tableau, Looker

The most amazing...

...experience was winning a silver medal in my first competition on Kaggle where we analyzed a Google Merchandise Store dataset to predict revenue per customer.

Work Experience

Head of Data (interim)

2020 - PRESENT
City Pantry
  • Restructured the data team to a hybrid decentralized model, as part of making the company more data-driven.
  • Rolled out Looker and a new data warehouse, powered by DBT. I led the team and actively wrote SQL and LookML code myself.
  • Built a new customer-centric data product using DBT and Looker. I created a customer event stream from a dozen data sources and built a tool to visualize it.
Technologies: PostgreSQL, RStudio, SQL, Looker

Co-CEO and Data Scientist

2007 - 2019
  • Changed the culture from one where gathering data was a pain, to one where BI was readily accessible to everyone, and used in decision making.
  • Built our BI stack with the help of an outsourced data engineering partner. I wrote most of the SQL transforms myself.
  • Trained and mentored one of our operations managers into our first BI analyst.
  • Researched and built our property model in R, using data from the UK Census and a third-party geo-data provider.
Technologies: Redshift, SQL, Domo, Tableau

Kaggle Silver Medal: Google Analytics Customer Revenue Prediction

I won a silver medal for 26th place (out of 3600) in my first competition on Kaggle. In this competition, we were challenged to analyze a Google Merchandise Store customer dataset to predict revenue per customer. I used R for my entry—full source code and explanation in the link above.
1998 - 1999

Master of Philosophy Degree in Computer Speech and Language Processing

University of Cambridge - Cambridge, England

1995 - 1998

Bachelor's Degree in Mathematics

University of Cambridge - Cambridge, England


Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence for Managers



Executive Data Science



Domo, Looker, Tableau


R, SQL, Python


Data Science


Redshift, PostgreSQL


RStudio, Jupyter Notebook, Databricks


Startups, Communication, Leadership, Finance, Machine Learning

Collaboration That Works

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