Speechmatics closes growth funding round from leading tech investors

Date: Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017

Speechmatics, the Cambridge-based speech technology company, has received investment from multiple leading investors to accelerate the commercial roll-out of its products. Founded by Chief Technology Officer Dr Tony Robinson, who pioneered PhD research into Recurrent Neural Networks in the 1980s, Speechmatics has developed a unique machine learning technology to harness the full potential of speech technology.

“This is an exciting time to be in speech recognition”, comments Robinson. “We are at the forefront of how deep neural networks are changing speech recognition. With our ever expanding and highly experienced R&D team, we continue to push the boundaries in speech technology, especially around languages, accuracy and deployment.”

The firm received investment from several sources, including technology venture capitalist IQ Capital, AI/machine learning specialist and technology investors Amadeus Capital Partners and a number of leading technology investors including Laurence Garrett (Highland Capital Europe), Cambridge Professor Ted Briscoe, a world expert in Natural Language Processing, as well as co-founders of CSR, and Richard Gibson (previously Exec Chairman at SwiftKey).

Benedikt von Thüngen, CEO of Speechmatics, said: “Over the past two years Speechmatics has seen substantial growth, entirely through cash-flow. The addition of these highly-experienced investors as advisors to the business will help accelerate the on-going commercialisation of our technology and place speech recognition technology at the heart of all communications.”

Ed Stacey, Partner at IQ Capital Partners, added: “Speechmatics’ disruptive technology has significantly greater accuracy than competitors such as Google, IBM or Microsoft, which opens up many new commercial opportunities for speech recognition – from call compliance driven by legislation such as MiFID II and PCI DSS, to content discovery and speech analytics in order to spot trends and understand the voice of the customer.”

With a simple set-up and a combination of cloud and on-premise based solutions, Speechmatics technology enables businesses to generate data about customers and employees which is harnessed to improve process, efficiency, and benefit the bottom line. Speechmatics is now even more equipped to help clients navigate the complex changes in technology, to generate business insights, and to facilitate more powerful communications in the digital age.

In 2016, Speechmatics launched its new AI framework, Auto-Auto, which enables the company to add almost any language automatically. Since building the framework, Speechmatics has released a new language every two weeks, including most European languages, and Greek, Russian and Arabic.

Speechmatics has a successful track record of delivering exceptional results across a wide range of applications and industries: for example, language assessment with Cambridge English or content discovery with Udemy. Other applications include call centre analytics, call compliance, sub-titling, interview & lecture transcription and media monitoring. Speechmatics has developed highly accurate universal models that work across use cases and industries and do not need to be individually trained.

Tony Robinson’s world-class research team utilises the latest ML and AI technology to offer continual improvements in accuracy, an ever-increasing range of languages and new business applications. This technology is also designed to integrate with other applications in the workplace to generate value and insight.

Richard Gibson, recently appointed Chairman, said: “I am excited to be working with another successful game-changing deep technology company out of Cambridge. With this funding, Speechmatics will be able to harness the true potential of its technology and accelerate its commercial roll-out.”

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