20 May 2019

Prowler.io announces $24m funding round with participation from Chinese tech giant Tencent and multinational publishing company Pearson

Prowler.io announces $24m funding round with participation from Chinese tech giant Tencent and multinational publishing company Pearson

Portfolio company Prowler.io, an artificial intelligence leader based in Cambridge, UK, has been valued at $100 million following a $24m funding round.

The company uses AI to help businesses make decisions about everything from rebalancing financial portfolios to managing supply chains and logistics.

Prowler said it’s receiving $24 million in new funding and that Tencent led the investment round with participation from Pearson and others including Amadeus Capital Partners, Atlantic Bridge, Cambridge Innovation Capital, Mandatum Life, Passion Capital, RB Capital and Singapore Innovate.

The AI company said it will use the money to launch products and move into new industry areas, including education. Pearson is an education company, and Mandatum Life, a Finnish asset manager and insurance firm, has used Prowler’s software previously.

Ling Ge, Tencent’s chief European representative, said in a statement that the Chinese company is “looking forward to Prowler.io applying its AI decision platform to a broadening range of customers, potentially including some of Tencent’s affiliate companies.” Ge said that Prowler’s focus on data-efficient learning methods and “human-machine teaming” set it apart from other AI companies.

The company’s AI decision-making platform, which it calls VUKU, has been used by other Nordic asset managers to do risk modeling and portfolio optimization and also by Barcelona-based delivery startup Paack to plan optimal routes for its drivers. Unlike many AI companies that use supervised machine-learning techniques that rely on vast amounts of data, Prowler’s software uses unsupervised methods based on a field of mathematics that deals with probabilities and doesn’t require massive data sets. Its decision-making software also relies on reinforcement learning –- in which software learns from experience rather than data –- as well as game theory.

“This investment is a huge sign of confidence in our efforts,” Vishal Chatrath, Prowler’s co-founder and chief executive officer, said in the statement. Chatrath and one of the company’s other three co-founders, Dongho Kim, Prowler’s chief technology officer, are veterans of VocalIQ, a Cambridge speech technology company that Apple Inc. acquired in 2015 just 13 months after its founding.