We have covered Algorithms.io before on ProgrammableWeb and it is an exciting API using machine learning algorithms to deliver predictive analytics. It has specialized in classifying streaming data using machine learning. Algorithms.io was acquired in December 2013 by LumenData, and we have an exclusive interview with Algorithms.io co-founder Andy Bartley post the acquisition.
Programmable Web (PW)- What are the reasons for you going for an acquisition in 9 months?
Andy Bartley (AB)- The company had reached an inflection point. It needed to add several competencies in a compressed timeframe in order to capitalize on the market opportunities we were seeing. Raising outside capital and building organically just wasn’t an option from a timing perspective. In addition, the people we needed were going to be very difficult to acquire. With the acquisition by LumenData we had the opportunity to join a best-in class team with exactly the skills we needed.
PW- What are the synergies with Lumen Data?
AB- Our clientele are Fortune 1000 companies with highly complex data structures. There is often a need for data integration and cleansing work as a precursor to applying our analytics. LumenData is a best in-class Master Data Management (MDM) and data integration company, with years of experience and over 50 successful customer implementations. As a combined company, we can now tackle the most complex enterprise analytics problems from conception through implementation. There was also a strong cultural fit with the LumenData team. They also bootstrapped their company, back in 2008, and were featured on last year’s Inc. magazine list of fastest growing private companies.
PW- What intellectual property has been able to develop and for what domains?
AB- The easiest way to explain our IP is to think of a process that turns complex algorithms into reusable building blocks. We’ve filed IP around this and it serves as the core of our current platform.
PW- What was the capital raised, the revenues and the type of funding (in broad terms)?
AB- We bootstrapped the business. Fortunately we were able to generate revenue early on which allowed us to operate independently. It was important to the team not to raise capital too early and dilute the company. Since the launch of our streaming analytics platform in September we’ve been seeing a lot of interest. Until now we’ve been very selective in engaging with companies to make sure that we deliver a best-in class experience. We’re planning to increase the number of our engagements in early 2014.
PW- Where was Algorithms.io seeing more traction?
AB- We were seeing the most traction in the manufacturing and consumer wearables sectors which both generate a lot of streaming data. In addition to having the right type of data, these companies tend to be very analytical so there is an inherent understanding of machine learning and how it can add value.
PW- How does it feel to be young, rich and just selling off your first startup?
AB- I don’t know about the first two, but the third is exciting. Every company has its own trajectory, and one of the challenges as an entrepreneur is assessing this accurately. Exit too early and you can leave value on the table, too late and value can pass you by. I believe that we got the timing right with Algorithms.io.
PW- How do you do classification of streaming data on the cloud and using what technologies?
AB- We use a proprietary mix of technologies to perform classification of streaming data. Classification gives streaming data context – it tells you what is happening with the device at a given time. Once this context has been established you can start to apply secondary “prescriptive” analytics (a term I’ve borrowed from Steve Hillion at Alpine Data Labs). I think what most companies want to get to with their streaming data is automating certain processes or business decisions. Whether its on the cloud or on-premise, the great things for companies today is that they have lots of options when it comes to analytics. If you have an analytics need there is almost certainly a company out there who can solve your problem.