Sydney-based artificial intelligence video startup Oovvuu has raised $3.8 million in its latest funding round co-led by Cygnet Capital and CapitalPitch, according to a company statement.
Founded in 2014 by former Fairfax Media and broadcast executives, Oovvuu has more than 40 publishers and broadcasters on board, including the ABC, Al Jazeera, BBC, Endemol Shine, The Guardian, HBO, News Corp, SBS, and Seven West. It combines proprietary technology with IBM Watson AI capabilities to match video from 75 global broadcasters with articles from publishers in 143 countries in near-real time. In a statement, the company said its platform, Compass, uses IBM Watson capabilities to read and understand articles from 100,000 global publishers in real time, while also watching and analysing tens of thousands of videos from its broadcasters to match them with relevant articles.
“Compass can match up to 1,000 videos to relevant articles in less than a second – far exceeding the 40 videos per day that manual processes can handle,” Oovvuu said. Founder and CEO Ricky Sutton said Oovvuu seeks to build a consortium of publishers and broadcasters to distribute quality news and help them boost media earnings and maximise the reach of feature relevant videos.
“A billion people are watching news video today, and all the data shows they want more. Publishers see this massive audience demand, but they cannot make enough video to meet it. Broadcasters, on the other hand, have the video, but until Oovvuu, they lacked an automated instant global distribution model,” Sutton added. The investment round was co-led by Cygnet Capital, a privately owned Australian Investment Banking group headed by founders Darien Jagger and Jonathan Rosham.
The other lead investor was CapitalPitch, a Neo Investment Firm that helps Pre-Series A technology companies, sophisticated and professional investors by providing a capital raising platform, venture capital investment funds and advisory services from seed to IPO or acquisition. “We believe Australia needs more technology startups like Canva and Oovvuu; globally competitive companies that solve massive problems, scale up and create jobs,” said Jeremy Liddle, Co-Founder and Exec Director of CapitalPitch.