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UK AI media monitoring start up secures £5.8m investment

By Sam

British AI-powered information intelligence company, Signal Media, raised £5.8m ($7.4m) in funding from UK and US VCs to take their award-winning UK business into new industry verticals, expand into the US during 2017 and strengthen the existing product.

It brings total investment to £8.3m ($10.5m).

The company said in a statement: “In the year that will be remembered for Brexit, Trump and for a perfect storm of political, economic and social unpredictability, many businesses are finding it impossible to track news cycles, monitor markets and manage change, an issue compounded by fake or unreliable news sources.”

David Benigson, Signal CEO, said: “High volumes of poor quality information is making it impossible for leaders to understand what is really happening in their world. Our revolutionary technology helps businesses track change and make smarter, faster decisions with certainty and clarity. This funding will fuel our global growth and drive product development.”

The funding will allow Signal to expand its partnerships with universities including Essex, Glasgow, UCL, City, Amsterdam and Regina (Canada).

It will also enable additional investment in product development beyond news media to track change in tax & regulation, risk & compliance and business development, as well as ensuring its platform can access even the most hard-to-reach information sources.

Knowledge workers, communications teams and research executives use Signal’s AI to monitor the world’s news media. Signal principally targets the financial services, legal and professional services sectors. Signal’s technology analyses more than two million articles per day across 90 countries to curate real-time, accessible, actionable knowledge on everything from competitor activity to reputational threats and market movement.

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Signal is used by some of the UK’s biggest financial, legal and professional services businesses such as Freshfields, Old Mutual Wealth and PageGroup.

The new funding will enable Signal to deepen its news coverage in these markets – where it has grown its client base from 10 to 100 in just 12 months – and expand to new verticals including Health, Pharma and Technology. It will also fuel Signal’s growth in the US.

The business has tripled its headcount since seed investment, and currently employs 50 people worldwide, having achieved over 500% YoY revenue growth during 2015-16.

Today’s funding brings the total invested in Signal to £8.25m since its inception.

Simon Menashy, Investment Director at MMC Ventures, said: “Signal is one of the most promising companies in UK tech, and David and Miguel’s drive and vision has attracted some of the top AI talent in Europe. The company has grown incredibly quickly by solving real business problems using cutting-edge technology. Its impressive list of clients demonstrates the value of Signal’s product and we think the team can build the next big global information business.”

 

Megumi Ikeda, Partner at Hearst Ventures, said: “The Signal team recognises that businesses need to change the way they access and act on information. In a 24-second news cycle, slow and incomplete news monitoring have forced businesses onto the defensive. In a market that has long struggled to innovate, Signal has effectively differentiated itself from its competitors, offering a product that enables businesses be proactive in their communications and decision-making.”

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