Chattermill, the London based startup that provides what it refers a “customer understanding” platform that makes use of machine learning to acquire extensible insights into customer feedback, has managed to raise $8 million in Series A funding.
Insight about the Funding
DN Capital led the round, along with btov and Ventech Partners. Silicon Valley Bank also joined the round alongside several angel investors including Matt Price (Senior Vice President at Zendesk), and Nilan Peiris (VP Growth at Transferwise). Old investors such as Entrepreneur First, Avonmore Developments and 2be.lu also participated.
TechCrunch reported that Price, who in the past led Zendesk’s growth in EMEA, is going to join the Chattermill board as Non-Executive Director.
Co-founded by Dmitry Isupov and Mikhail Dubov in 2015 while traveling through the company builder program operated by Entrepreneur First, Chattermill was a result of frustration that it can take weeks or months for customer research to harvest any good insights, which would then be out of date by the time it arrived at decision-makers and action could be taken. Like many problems of scale, the pair thought machine learning could be a crucial part of the solution, combined with an accessible user interface that surfaces customer feedback across multiple channels in an actionable way.
Since that time, the platform of Chattermill has been utilized by several high-growth companies, such as Uber, HelloFresh, Deliveroo, and Zappos. London fintech darling Transferwise was also a previous customer — so maybe its not surprising that its VP of Growth is now an investor.
Connecting third-party software
“Chattermill enables our team to take customer insights deeper than ever before and focus on the key factors that make a difference to our users and drive our growth,” said Transferwise’s Peiris. “I’ve seen first-hand the value a product like Chattermill’s can add to a company, and that’s why I decided to invest in this round.”
Polemical to where the customer feedback is originated, Chattermill connects with lots of third-party software, amassing various feedbacks such as reviews, surveys, support tickets, and social media.
“We have built a large library of pre-built connections to the most popular customer feedback systems such as SurveyMonkey, Trustpilot, Zendesk, and Salesforce,” says Mikhail Dubov, Chattermill co-founder.
“A new customer would usually connect a few of these data sources to start with. We then build a model to understand their customer experience from both the data we see and the knowledge already embedded in our system. Once this is done, we can start delivering analytics and insights directly to their users in real-time and with high accuracy, enabling businesses to make better-informed decisions at a faster speed and scale.”
When asked about the assumptions Chattermill received right after raising its seed round in December 2017, Dubov says two major strategies have panned out well. One was to follow “customer-focused” businesses at the beginning, and the other was to scale up the length of insights and the product’s ease of use versus “over-investing” in specific machine learning technologies.
“This meant our offering became even more powerful as NLP made a huge step forward in the last two years with models such as GPT and BERT,” Dubov says. “We were able to swap out parts of our model to improve quickly rather than being attached to a specific architecture.”
However, not everything was anticipated, and Dubov explains he didn’t foresee how much the tech landscape around customer experience would evolve. “With the acquisitions of Qualtrics and IPOs from Medallia and SurveyMonkey, we now see a lot more attention to the sector from both customers and investors,” he says. “We also see a lot more interest in extracting insight from customer conversations via chat and voice than we did two years ago.”
Hello, I’m Anna Yeo. If you like my news coverage, please drop a good word in my inbox. I’m journalist by profession and have been part of many major reporting across the globe. I like to write crisp and factual news. I have completed my masters degree in journalism. Feel free to contact me at [email protected]