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Indian Angel Network Invests, along with Ray Stata and YourNest Angel Fund, in Uniphore Software Systems


March 13, 2014 - Chennai, Tamil Nadu , India

India’s first and Asia’s largest network of angel investors investing in start-ups and early stage ventures, Indian Angel Network (IAN) announced today an undisclosed investment in Chennai-based Uniphore Software Systems, the pioneer in Indian Language Speech Recognition solutions. This round of investment was led by the IAN members, Nagaraja Prakasam and M.V.Subramanian along with Ray Stata and YourNest Angel Fund. IAN investor member, Nagaraja Prakasam will join the board the company.
 
The funding will be primarily used to expand Uniphore’s global presence, by foraying into other non-English speaking regions such as South East Asia and the Middle East, where businesses face similar challenges to those Uniphore has been taking on in the Indian context. Uniphore will also look to strengthen its speech-based products, creating more context-aware, personalized applications.
 
“Customers today demand personalized service delivery in a language of their choice and Uniphore's speech-based solutions are the most intuitive and scalable way to make this happen”, said Umesh Sachdev, co-founder and CEO, Uniphore Software Systems. “This investment is a powerful endorsement of Uniphore’s ability to provide unique and measurable value to our enterprise customers across industries through speech technology. We are delighted to partner with a strong team of investors who can help realize our vision and aggressive growth expectations.”
 
Analyst and industry estimates place the global market for enterprise mobility applications at $174 Billion 2017, and the ability to integrate speech into these mobility application is a clear and present need. Furthermore, the global speech analytics market is projected to be worth $1.33 Billion by 2019. This fast-growing market for speech-based solutions presents an enormous opportunity to Uniphore to take its product portfolio overseas.
 
Commenting on IAN’s decision to invest in Uniphore, Nagaraja Prakasam said, “Continuing on our theme on backing inclusive innovations, we are optimistic of the success of Uniphore, which has already completed six successful years. In a country of 1.2 billion people where only 250 million speaks English vernacular speech recognition can enable financial inclusion to information dissemination to farmers. Uniphore is also a great example of solving problems of billion people which opens opportunity for another 4 billion in emerging nations. We feel the passion Umesh and Ravi bring along and their domain knowledge and expertise makes all this possible.”
 
M.V.Subramanian, an IAN investor member said, “Uniphore is the archetype organisation that we like to invest in – very large market, talented entrepreneurs, disruptive technology platform that improves millions of lives. The domain expertise of the co-founders, Umesh and Ravi has also helped them create a strong product.”
 
“Uniphore Software Systems is an early mover in the Indian Language Speech Recognition solutions’ space. With over 60 percent of non-English speaking population in the world, Uniphore is really addressing a huge potential market,” said Ray Stata.
 
“Uniphore has built path-breaking speech solutions on the top of available technologies. Uniphore’s unique solutions shall connect millions via speech access on mobile and internet” said Sunil K Goyal, Founder & CEO, YourNest Angel Fund.   
 
About Uniphore

Uniphore Software Systems is the leader in Indian language speech-based software solutions. Uniphore’s solutions allow any machine to understand and respond to natural human speech, thus enabling humans to use the most natural of communication modes, speech, to engage and instruct machines. Uniphore boasts a roster of high-profile, satisfied customers across many industries, including banking, financial services, healthcare, agriculture, education and retail. These enterprises deploy Uniphore’s solution to dramatically improve employee productivity and deliver superior customer service.

Launched in 2008, Uniphore was the 17th fastest growing technology company in India by 2012, according to Deloitte. Profitable since its second year, the company has deployed local language solutions that reach nearly 4 million people. Its strong growth and commitment to innovation have been achieved through the support of three hands-on, high-quality Seed investors: IIT Madras’ Rural Technology and Business Incubator, Villgro Innovations Foundation, and the National Research Development Corporation.
 
About Indian Angel Network

Indian Angel Network (IAN) is India’s first and Asia’s largest angel network of over 250 angel investors comprising the who’s who of successful Indian entrepreneurs and dynamic CEOs. These angels are passionate about entrepreneurship and apart from financial investments in start-ups and early stage ventures, are keen to provide strategic mentoring, guidance execution, and an opportunity to leverage their global networks. Built "By Entrepreneurs, For Entrepreneurs", IAN provides the critical funding and mentoring for creating large footprint, valuable companies. A global network, IAN has mentored and nurtured start-ups across geographies including India, Sri Lanka, UK, US, Canada, France and Honkong, is sector agnostic and has a portfolio of 100+ companies across multiple sectors like IT, Mobile, Healthcare and Education, Gaming, Hospitality, Semiconductor, social media, etc. across India and overseas and has made several successful exits.

In the last two years IAN has invested around a million dollars a month in almost 30 companies, which makes over a deal a month. IAN Incubator’s 50 companies have either become revenue earning or raised seed funding within 6 to 9 months of incubation.
 
About YourNest

YourNest is an Angel Fund that believes in 'liberating human potential' by investing in technology enabled, vibrant, new business ideas. YourNest has seen the opportunity and has the passion to build the start-ups into significant, meaningful businesses. YourNest bets Big on “very few ideas” as it invests with conviction and support start-ups in the areas that they know the best. YourNest portfolio has already invested in innovative start-ups like mycity4kids.com, Proof of Performance, and bookmycab.com.
 
About Ray Stata

Mr. Stata was a cofounder of Analog Devices, Inc. (ADI) in 1965 and served as CEO and Chairman until 1996. He now serves as Chairman of the Board. With sales of $2.6B, ADI is recognized for leadership in the design and manufacture of analog and digital signal processing semiconductors.  Mr. Stata has been active as an investor in and board member of more than 40 early stage technology based new ventures.

Mr. Stata, class of ’57, holds a BSEE and MSEE from MIT. Until 2010 he served for many years as Chairman of the Visiting Committee of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and as a member of the Executive Committee of the MIT Corporation.  He also served on the visiting committees for Sponsored Research and for Linguistics and Philosophy.  He is presently a member of the Dean of Engineering Advisory Council.  He is also actively engaged in MIT’s Venture Mentoring Service which advises students and faculty who wish to become entrepreneurs.
 
He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1990 and to the National Academy of Engineering in 1992.

Source: Business Wire India

BusinessWireIndia

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