Welcome!

News Feed Item

Kensho Secures $10 Million in Seed Financing for 'Warren,' an Intelligent Market Research Assistant That Can Answer Complex Financial Questions Posed in Natural Language

General Catalyst, NEA, Accel Partners, Google Ventures, Devonshire/Fidelity Investments, and Other VCs Participate

NEW YORK, Jan. 22, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Kensho, a pioneer in cloud-based intelligent computer systems capable of answering complex financial and market research questions posed in natural language, today announced that it has secured $10 million in seed funding. Investors from General Catalyst, NEA, Accel Partners, Google Ventures, Devonshire Investors (the private equity arm affiliated with Fidelity Investments), and other VCs participated.  'Warren,' the company's groundbreaking virtual market research assistant, is currently being tested by a select set of asset managers and research teams.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140122/NE50548)  

Kensho designed Warren to shorten traditional investment research cycles from days to minutes. The system was built by several veteran software engineers from Google Inc. and Apple Inc., including one of the original engineers on the first iPhone team. Warren can currently answer a million distinct types of natural language questions about the impact of global events on asset prices, such as, "What happens to the share prices of energy companies when oil trades above $100 a barrel and political unrest has recently occurred in the Middle East?" According to Kensho CTO Pete Kruskall and Kensho Lead Engineer Nicolai Krakowiak, both former Google software engineers, Warren will be able to answer 100 million distinct types of complex financial questions by the end of 2014.  

Daniel Nadler, CEO of Kensho, commented: "If you look at what Apple is doing with 'Siri,' what IBM is doing with 'Watson,' and what Google is doing with 'Now,' it is clear that the most powerful technology companies are investing immense resources to make virtual intelligent assistants ubiquitous before the end of the decade. Until now, we haven't seen systems optimized for finance—one of the largest industries in the world. Kensho is dedicated to the idea that communicating in natural language with intelligent computer systems which serve as virtual personal assistants will form the leading edge of global innovation over the next half-decade, and will transform not just the consumer space, but industries from medicine and finance to energy and defense as well. We are delighted to receive continued support from so many premier venture capital firms and investors, and this funding will significantly expand our capacity to support a growing number of the best and most experienced engineers in the world in their development of Warren."

Warren currently can answer a million distinct types of natural language questions about the impact of global events on asset prices, such as:

  • "What happens to the share prices of energy companies when oil trades above $100 a barrel and political unrest has recently occurred in the Middle East?"
  • "What happens to Samsung, the South Korean stock market, and U.S. defense stocks in the 48 hours following North Korean nuclear tests and long range missile launches?"
  • "What happens to Home Depot, home builder stocks, and cement company share prices following Category 4 hurricane landfalls in the continental U.S.?"
  • "How do credit card company stocks react after the discovery of major credit card breaches?"

In order to build Warren, Kensho created one of the largest unstructured geopolitical and natural world event databases in the civilian arena. Dr. James Shinn, the former National Intelligence Officer for Asia at the Central Intelligence Agency and the former Assistant Secretary for Asia in the U.S. Department of Defense, has joined Kensho's Advisory Board and will help guide the company in this unprecedented effort outside the intelligence community.

Dr. Shinn said, "Event-driven statistical analysis is a remarkably powerful lens through which to understand the world. The effects of geopolitical events on assets—such as oil prices, currencies, and foreign and domestic equity volatility—is one of the least understood areas and, without technology, is one of the hardest, human-labor intensive, and costliest things to measure, despite clearly having massive effects on these markets." 

David Jegen, Managing Director at Devonshire Investors, the private equity arm affiliated with Fidelity Investments, added, "Active asset management requires constant innovation to stay ahead, and we are just beginning to see how technology will transform existing approaches. Kensho is at the forefront of bringing next-generation technology to help portfolio managers outperform, and we are proud to be part of their team. Since its earliest iterations, Kensho's software has been adding valuable improvements to the research and portfolio management processes."

"The enterprise financial technology built by the industry's legacy players has not kept up with consumer technology—$500 smartphones are more powerful and easier to use than the 30 year-old technologies for which financial institutions currently pay billions of dollars a year," said Stanley Young, former CEO of Bloomberg Enterprise, and Kensho Advisory Board member. "But the next wave of financial technology innovations, built by firms such as Kensho—using ultra-modern software paradigms and secure cloud computing—will bring the accessibility of consumer technology to the enterprise, and put high-end computational capabilities in the hands of non-programmers. Millions of hours now wasted on spreadsheet manipulations will be saved, and the high-priced professionals currently mired in those tasks will be freed to dive straight into the high-value endeavor of asking important questions and finding needed answers."

Kensho has a long-standing technology partnership with NASDAQ OMX, and Warren is the first professional-grade financial research and analytics platform built completely on NASDAQ OMX FinQloud, a secure cloud computing platform designed exclusively for the financial services sector. 

In honor of the funding announcement, as well as Kensho's deep relationship with NASDAQ OMX FinQloud, Kensho, Inc. will visit the NASDAQ MarketSite in Times Square to ring the Closing Bell today.

About Kensho

Kensho is bringing the intelligent assistant revolution to finance with user-friendly interactive research environments that combine cloud computing with graphical user interfaces and natural language querying capabilities, allowing financial professionals to perform sophisticated empirical analyses in a fraction of the time spent by institutional research teams today, and without writing code. The Kensho team is made up of world-class software engineers who came to Kensho from Google Inc. and Apple Inc. (including one of the original engineers on the first iPhone team), as well as Wall Street veterans, PhD physicists, and economists.  

For more information please visit: www.kensho.com

Kensho Contact:

Ian Brady
[email protected]
857-600-2657

SOURCE Kensho

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Historically, some banking activities such as trading have been relying heavily on analytics and cutting edge algorithmic tools. The coming of age of powerful data analytics solutions combined with the development of intelligent algorithms have created new opportunities for financial institutions. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sebastien Meunier, Head of Digital for North America at Chappuis Halder & Co., will discuss how these tools can be leveraged to develop a lasting competitive advanta...
SYS-CON Events announced today that HTBase will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. HTBase (Gartner 2016 Cool Vendor) delivers a Composable IT infrastructure solution architected for agility and increased efficiency. It turns compute, storage, and fabric into fluid pools of resources that are easily composed and re-composed to meet each application’s needs. With HTBase, companies can quickly prov...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Loom Systems will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 2015, Loom Systems delivers an advanced AI solution to predict and prevent problems in the digital business. Loom stands alone in the industry as an AI analysis platform requiring no prior math knowledge from operators, leveraging the existing staff to succeed in the digital era. With offices in S...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CA Technologies has been named “Platinum Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CA Technologies helps customers succeed in a future where every business – from apparel to energy – is being rewritten by software. From ...
What if you could build a web application that could support true web-scale traffic without having to ever provision or manage a single server? Sounds magical, and it is! In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Munns, Senior Developer Advocate for Serverless Applications at Amazon Web Services, will show how to build a serverless website that scales automatically using services like AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, and Amazon S3. We will review several frameworks that can help you build serverle...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
After more than five years of DevOps, definitions are evolving, boundaries are expanding, ‘unicorns’ are no longer rare, enterprises are on board, and pundits are moving on. Can we now look at an evolution of DevOps? Should we? Is the foundation of DevOps ‘done’, or is there still too much left to do? What is mature, and what is still missing? What does the next 5 years of DevOps look like? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by DevOps Summit Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists l...
The essence of cloud computing is that all consumable IT resources are delivered as services. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Yung Chou, Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, demonstrated the concepts and implementations of two important cloud computing deliveries: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). He discussed from business and technical viewpoints what exactly they are, why we care, how they are different and in what ways, and the strategies for IT to transi...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership abi...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the work...
Keeping pace with advancements in software delivery processes and tooling is taxing even for the most proficient organizations. Point tools, platforms, open source and the increasing adoption of private and public cloud services requires strong engineering rigor - all in the face of developer demands to use the tools of choice. As Agile has settled in as a mainstream practice, now DevOps has emerged as the next wave to improve software delivery speed and output. To make DevOps work, organization...
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.
What sort of WebRTC based applications can we expect to see over the next year and beyond? One way to predict development trends is to see what sorts of applications startups are building. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Arin Sime, founder of WebRTC.ventures, will discuss the current and likely future trends in WebRTC application development based on real requests for custom applications from real customers, as well as other public sources of information,