DefinedCrowd JapanがHmcommとのパートナーシップを発表

English version available here

当社は、日本における音声認識技術のリーダーであり、ソニーの出資先スタートアップ企業でもあるHmcomm株式会社とのパートナーシップを発表できることをたいへん光栄に思います。

この協業により、ビジネスと次世代AI向け技術開発の両面において大きな可能性を得たことを確信しています。

Hmcommの名前は「human-machine communication(ヒトとマシンのコミュニケーション)」に由来しており、ASR(自動音声認識)分野における革新的なAIソリューションを開発しています。DefinedCrowdの高品質なトレーニングデータを活用することにより、HmcommのAIは次なるレベルへと発展を遂げるでしょう。

当社ファウンダー兼CEOであるダニエラ・ブラガは次のように語ります。

「Hmcommとのパートナーシップ合意をたいへん光栄に思います。ソニーの出資先かつ、日本における音声認識技術のリーダーを担う企業とのコラボレーションは、私たちにとってまたとない機会です。DefinedCrowdの高品質なトレーニングデータによって、HmcommのASRモデル強化のお手伝いができることをたいへん嬉しく思います。」

ソニー株式会社のイノベーションファンド室にてシニアインベストメントマネジャーを務める北川 純氏から、次のようにお言葉をいただきました。

「ソニーグループの投資先であるスタートアップ2社間での戦略的パートナーシップ締結の基本合意について、心よりお喜び申し上げます。Machine Learningを活用した音声認識精度最大化の両輪となる『アルゴリズム』、『トレーニングデータ』それぞれの領域において、数多くの導入実績と顧客数を持つ両社が連携することにより、新技術のさらなる社会実装が推進され、画期的な顧客体験がもたらされることを期待しております。」

国立研究開発法人産業技術総合研究所(AIST)発のスタートアップであるHmcommは、辞書ベースのモデル学習と感情アノテーションから成るソリューション提供のパイオニアとして発展を遂げてきました。DefinedCrowdによる音声アノテーションは、マシンラーニングと人による作業とを組み合わせることで、効率的かつ信頼できる品質を実現し、Hmcommのモデルに新たな価値を加えることができる存在であると確信しています。

今回の業務提携に関して、Hmcomm株式会社代表取締役CEOの三本幸司氏は下記のようにコメントしています。
「私たちと同じソニーグループの出資先であるDefinedCrowdとパートナーシップ合意に至り、たいへんうれしく思います。AIの社会実装を高速に推進するためには、質の良い収集基盤が不可欠であり、この分野において、グローバル・トップレベルのDefinedCrowdとの協業スキームは、私たちのソリューションの質を短期的に、飛躍的に向上することができると期待しています」

言語学のエキスパートによって創設され、品質とグローバルな規模というコアバリューを備えた企業として、DefinedCrowdはこのパートナーシップ合意を通し、Hmcommの価値をさらに国際的なレベルへと押し上げる力となれれば幸いです。日本の新たなパートナーとの協業によって大きく広がる可能性に、私たちの期待は高まるばかりです。

DefinedCrowd Japan announces strategic partnership with Hmcomm

日本語版はこちら

We are delighted to announce our partnership with Hmcomm Inc, a leader in speech recognition technology in Japan and a fellow Sony-backed startup. A strategic move for both businesses, our joining poses great potential for the development of next-generation solutions in AI.

Hmcomm – whose name is derived from human-machine communication – develops innovative AI solutions in the field of automatic speech recognition (ASR). DefinedCrowd will be providing them with high-quality training data to take their AI initiatives to the next level. Our Founder and CEO expressed her enthusiasm about the joint venture:

“We are thrilled to partner with Hmcomm. It’s an exciting opportunity to collaborate with a fellow Sony-backed company that is a leader in speech recognition technology in Japan. We look forward to helping improve Hmcomm’s ASR model with high quality training data.”

Dr. Daniela Braga, Founder and CEO, DefinedCrowd

An AI startup spun out of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Hmcomm has developed ground-breaking solutions in their field, combining both dictionary model learning and emotional annotation processes. DefinedCrowd’s ability to provide efficient and reliable speech annotation through our unique combination of machine learning technology and human intelligence, means we’re perfectly positioned to deliver added value to Hmcomm’s work.

“We’re happy to announce our partnership with DefinedCrowd, a Sony investee company like us. To enable the social implementation of AI, access to a data collection platform with high-quality is key. I’m excited to collaborate with a global leader in AI data like DefinedCrowd that elevates our solution dramatically and rapidly.”

Koji Mitsumoto, CEO, Hmcomm

Our partnership is further endorsed by Mr. Jun Kitagawa, Senior Investment Manager of Sony’s Innovation Fund: “We sincerely look forward to the formation of a strategic partnership between the two startups that Sony has chosen to support. As experts in algorithms and training data technology, two fundamental pillars in the maximization of speech recognition accuracy through Machine Learning, the collaboration between these companies holds great potential. Both have shown rapid customer growth with outstanding results and we look forward to further promoting their work as they bring about revolutionary customer experiences through new and innovative technologies.”

Founded by a linguistics expert and with quality and global scale as two of our core values, this partnership is a perfect example of DefinedCrowd’s commitment to raising the bar on an international level. We couldn’t be more excited to see the results of our joint efforts with Hmcomm and look forward to working closely with our new partners in Japan.

Job description: talent for a smarter AI

We’re in a huge growth stage and are looking for talent to join our global team in Portugal, Japan, and the United States. Check out our careers page for current openings.

We accelerate the evolution of Artificial Intelligence initiatives by delivering high-quality training data to enterprise companies. We are investing heavily in our business and the people to make this happen. Over the coming months, we’ll be searching for professionals who are looking to embark on an exciting career while making a difference in AI.  

So, who are we? We’re an 80-employee startup based in Seattle, with offices in Lisbon, Porto, and Tokyo. Our CEO, Daniela Braga founded DefinedCrowd in 2015 to fill a gap in the market by offering high-quality training data to help machine learning products reach the market at optimal quality and speed. And with the rapid growth of AI applications and the high demand for this data, our business is growing so quickly that we are looking to nearly double our team by the end of 2019.

“We have a very ambitious goal –  to be the number one provider of data for AI in the world. This year will be crucial to achieving this goal, as we mature our product, grow our client base, and increase our partnerships with the companies that are leading the AI revolution.”

Founder and CEO, Dr. Daniela Braga

We are currently hiring positions in the following departments: Development, Product, Marketing, and Operations, with several openings for Software Developers (Frontend, Backend, and Full Stack), QA Automation Engineers, and Machine Learning Engineers. These positions are available within our four offices and will have an important role in the expansion of the company’s product: an all-in-one data platform.  

Earlier this year, DefinedCrowd was selected as one of CB Insights top 100 AI startups. Our client list includes many Fortune 500 companies including BMW, Mastercard, Nuance, and Yahoo Japan. We also have partnerships with IBM, Microsoft, and Amazon.  

“We are looking for the best talent to join our team in this exciting moment, and to be part of the construction of a smarter AI”

Founder and CEO, Dr. Daniela Braga

For anyone interested, make sure you keep an eye out on our careers page http://careers.definedcrowd.com, where there will be new jobs added throughout the year.  

100 most promising AI startups

日本語版はこちら

We’ve come a long way since forming in 2015. Starting out as a small team, we now have four offices worldwide – Lisbon, Porto, Tokyo, and Seattle – and continue to grow every day.  

Our unique platform has helped many successful companies feed their artificial intelligence applications with training data. Using human intelligence coupled with machine-learning, we deliver project-specific, quality-guaranteed data.    

Today, we’re proud to announce that DefinedCrowd is among CB Insights’ third annual list of 100 AI startups. A research team from CB Insights selected 100 startups based on the following factors: investor profile, market potential, partnerships, competitive landscape, and team strength. 

Source: CB Insights

Companies are categorized by focus area. These focus areas aren’t mutually exclusive and include core sectors such as telecommunications, government, retail, healthcare and enterprise tech sectors such as training data (where we sit), software development, data management, and cybersecurity. 

We are pleased to be among this group of incredible AI startups, selected from an extensive list of 3k+ AI companies, and look forward to seeing these companies grow.  

It´s been a great start to 2019. And, we´re very thankful to everyone who has helped get us here.  

AI分野における最も有望なスタートアップ企業 トップ100社

English version available here

DefinedCrowd社の”AI向け学習データプラットフォーム”は、ヒューマンインテリジェンスとマシンラーニングを組み合わせたワークフローにより、、AIアプリケーションの開発・改善に必要な”学習データ”を、お客様毎に、更には、個別のプロジェクト毎に最適化された形でご提供しています。

この度、DefinedCrowd社は、米調査会社CB Insightsが発表した、AI分野における最も有望なスタートアップ企業 トップ100社の中の1社に選ばれました。       

Source: CB Insights

この発表は今年で3回目となり、今回は総数3,000社以上のAI関連のスタートアップ企業の中から、投資家のプロフィール、市場ポテンシャル、パートナーシップ、競争環境、その企業の強みなど、複数の要素を加味・評価した上で、トップ100社が選ばれています。

これらの”AIスタートアップ企業 トップ100社”は、その注力する業界や技術分野毎にカテゴリー分けされており、DefinedCrowd社は”エンタープライズ テクノロジー”の一角、「トレーニングデータ部門」の1社として選ばれました。私たちのデータプラットフォームは、多くの活躍している企業の人工知能アプリケーションに必要なトレーニングデータを、ヒューマンインテリジェンスと機械学習を組み合わせ、プロジェクト固有の高品質データを提供しています。

Daniela Braga’s journey with DefinedCrowd

Earlier this week, DefinedCrowd was Featured in Jornal Económico, a premium financial publication in Portugal. We’ve translated the article from the original Portuguese for our English- speaking friends. Enjoy!

Original Article by
António Sarmento

Founded in Seattle, USA, DefinedCrowd is a startup specializing in training data for Artificial Intelligence. The company counts Amazon, IBM, and EDP as investors and clients. 

DefinedCrowd provides services so that data scientists can gather, structure, and enrich datasets for Artificial Intelligence, helping companies improve speed to market and the overall quality of their AI products. DefinedCrowd accelerates enterprise AI initiatives by combining machine learning technology with human-in-the-loop collection processes. Founded in August 2015 by entrepreneur Daniela Braga, the company is headquartered in Seattle, has R&D centers in Lisbon and Porto, and a sales office in Tokyo. 

Three months after its founding, the company opened their first R&D office at Startup Lisbon. Since then, DefinedCrowd has blossomed from an initial team of three employees to a workforce of more than 70 that is still growing.

In 2016, the company raised $ 1.1 million in seed funding, with investors such as Sony, Amazon Alexa Fund, Portugal Ventures, and Busy Angels.
In July 2018, DefinedCrowd closed a Series A funding worth $11.8 million, led by Evolution Equity Partners. EDP Ventures, Mastercard and Kibo Ventures joined as new investors, while Sony, Amazon, Portugal Ventures and Busy Angels bolstered their investments with additional capital for the data company.

“It is important to raise capital if we want to move fast, especially in the technological sector.”   

Daniela Braga to Jornal Económico

This influx of capital is being used to accelerate product development and accelerate team growth. Two-thirds of DefinedCrowd’s 70 employees work out of Portugal. The company expects to add 80 more team members by the end of 2019.

Over the past six months, DefinedCrowd has announced three partnerships: a formal designation as an Amazon Alexa Skills partner, a product integration with IBM Watson Studio; and participation as a featured vendor in Microsoft‘s co-sell program.

DefinedCrowd’s platform provides industry-agnostic data services and can support text, audio, and image annotation. The company’s clients span industries as a result: from Fintech, to Retail, Healthcare, Utilities, and the Internet of Things. Their client portfolio consists mostly of Fortune 500 companies, including BMW, MasterCard, EDP, José de Mello Saúde, SoftBank, Yahoo Japan, Randstad, and Nuance

DefinedCrowd’s goals are ambitious. The company aims to become the world’s number one AI data provider through expanding their client-base and forging new partnerships with industry leaders. 

With a degree in Portuguese Language and Literature, Daniela Braga has spent her career examining the rigorous use of language, the perfect foundation for her business. “We deal daily with data in 70 languages and dialects. Our clients need, at a minimum, native-level speakers and sometimes even require linguists or specialists in language sciences for all of them” says the entrepreneur.

After graduating with a master’s degree in applied linguistics, she went on to earn a PhD in Speech Technologies at the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Porto and taught at the University of A Coruña for two years before joining Microsoft (whom she worked for in Portugal, China and the United States).

After leaving Microsoft in 2013, Daniela moved to American company Voicebox. Simultaneously, she was invited to teach Data and Crowdsourcing for Speech Technologies at the University of Washington. It was during this time that she saw the gap between the Artificial Intelligence data scientists wanted to develop and the training data available to build it. She decided to found her own company as a result.

Waving a well-paid job goodbye, and with few personal resources, she started meeting with investors in Seattle, and quickly received an initial check: $ 200,000 in financing to start her business. A business that is now signing contracts with some of the largest companies in the world.

DefinedCrowd is in constant growth and employee numbers have been updated to reflect our current position.

See You at Web Summit 2018

 

Three years in a row makes for a tradition. Web Summit is here again! Taking place next week, November 5th-8th in Lisbon. We feel like we’ve grown up alongside this event, and know that it’s been critical to our success thus far. At last year’s conference, we launched our public API and met investors like Evolution Equity Partners, who ended up leading our series A. We can’t wait to see what doors open this year.

We’ll be spending most of our time at Growth Summit, which focuses on rapid-growth startups. Wednesday, November 7th, at 10:12am, founder and CEO, Daniela Braga, will take the Growth Stage to discuss her insights from three years spent at the helm of DefinedCrowd. Shortly thereafter, at 11:00am, she’ll return to discuss broad industry themes as part of the Hyper Growth in AI panel.

Finally, in the afternoon from 1-2pm,  Daniela will meet with three female entrepreneurs for 20-minute one-on-one sessions as part of Web Summit’s Women in Tech Mentor program. 

We’re excited for a busy, productive week and can’t wait to see you there. If you’re unable to make these events, or just want to chat in-person, we’ll be at booth G111 all day November 7th.

In summary:

  • Daniela will present DefinedCrowd on the Growth Stage November 7th at 10:12 am;
  • Shortly thereafter, she’ll serve on the Hyper Growth In AI panel at 11:00am, also on the Growth Stage;
  • From 1-2pm, Daniela will meet 1-on-1 with participants in Web Summit’s Women in tech Mentor Program;
  • We’ll be at booth G 111 all day November 7th.

We’re looking forward to spending the first part of November in sunny Lisbon. Stop by our booth, drop us a line on social, or email us at sales@definedcrowd.com if you’re looking to get in touch. See you all next week!