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CrowdFlower Raises $20 Million to Bloom AI Adoption

AI data enrichment platform, CrowdFlower, has pulled in $20 million in funding today. This is the California-based company’s sixth round of funding since it was founded in 2009 and brings its total raised to $58 million.

Leading today’s round is Industry Ventures. A new investor, Salesforce Ventures, is also participating along with existing investors Canvas Ventures, Microsoft Ventures and Trinity Ventures. CrowdFlower will use the funding to expand the functionality of its platform, integrate with other machine learning technologies, and hire new talent. The company’s CEO, Robin Bordoli, said, “With this funding, we can accelerate our reach and help data science and machine learning teams everywhere produce the training data they need within the scale, cost and quality parameters that matter to them.”

CrowdFlower creates human-in-the-loop technology that offers quality control for data scientists. The company leverages an on-demand workforce to collect, label, and clean data that requires human intelligence. According to Bordoli, we are just starting to scratch the surface of AI. He described AI apps for the enterprise as being “at the beginning of a Cambrian explosion” and said that the bottleneck for mass adoption of machine learning is “the availability of high quality training data and human-in-the-loop workflows to handle the failure states of the algorithm.” Bordoli went on to explain that an algorithm without human input is like “a rocket ship with a large engine but no fuel and no navigation system.”

CrowdFlower’s Tatiana Josephy (VP Product) and Seth Teicher (Head of Content & Business Development) at FinovateFall 2014

At FinovateFall 2014, CrowdFlower won Best of Show in a demo that showed how the on-demand workforce uses its platform to collect, clean, and label financial transaction data. Last month, the company launched a set of dedicated tools for computer vision to enhance its Pixel Labeling Tool.