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SwiftKey Attracts $2.4 Million in Series A Financing to Accelerate Consumer and OEM Adoption(December 07, 2011)
LONDON and SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- (Marketwire) -- 12/07/11 -- TouchType Ltd., the London-based company behind SwiftKey (http://www.swiftkey.net), one of the world's most popular Android applications, announces today that it has secured $2.4 million (£1.5m) Series A investment from an internal round of major financing led by Octopus Investments.
This latest funding will be used to build on the worldwide success of SwiftKey, an Android keyboard application that uses the company's patented natural language Fluency engine technology to learn a user's writing style, correcting and predicting their text input with unrivaled accuracy. SwiftKey reduces keystrokes, and speeds up text entry on smartphones, tablets, and other devices. It has been adopted by a number of Android mobile phone and tablet manufacturers, and has attracted more than 3.5 million downloads.
"The success of SwiftKey and quality of the team building our natural language processing technology has led to several strategic and financial investment approaches," said Mark Paterson, Chairman, TouchType. "Following considerable internal demand, the management team decided that a Series A funding round led by Octopus would form the most appropriate investment. This will enable TouchType to accelerate consumer and corporate adoption of SwiftKey as well as developing the underlying Fluency Engine."
Jo Oliver, Investment Director at Octopus, said: "Octopus is delighted to have led TouchType's Series A. Since our first meeting with the team, we have been impressed by their vision and innovation, and we are now even more pleased with their execution. The potential of the Fluency Engine is enormous and is just starting to be realized -- we are looking forward to an exciting future together."
TouchType plans to strengthen its executive, commercial and technical teams with the new investment, increasing its worldwide presence, particularly in the US and Asia. The company also plans to improve the capabilities and features of its SwiftKey products and Fluency platform, while continuing to innovate in the fields of natural language processing, artificial intelligence and machine learning.
"We've seen tremendous consumer adoption of our SwiftKey keyboards on Android, and have secured significant OEM deals to pre-install our technology," said Jon Reynolds, CEO, TouchType. "While SwiftKey has already received widespread praise, we're always striving to improve our products in response to our customers' needs. We're also planning to enter new vertical markets in the New Year, where faster and more accurate text entry can drive significant benefits."
The financing round, led by Octopus Investments, was supported by several of Europe's leading angel investors and VCs including Cambridge Capital Group; Jon Craton, Cramer Systems founder; Nick Hynes and Carl Uminski, CEO and COO founders of Somo; Richard Brennan, former CMO of Orange Group; and Andrew Thornton, barrister with Erskine Chambers.
To date, SwiftKey has saved its users more than 20 billion keystrokes, equivalent to over 250 years spent typing. The recent v2.2 release of SwiftKey X and SwiftKey Tablet X, which added significant international language variants as well as improved speed and user experience, saw the application rise to become the most popular Android paid app in the US and UK. You can download the apps from http://www.swiftkey.net/download.
Press ready images can be downloaded from https://www.dropbox.com/gallery/21479396/1/SwiftKey?h=bac6be
About SwiftKey (www.swiftkey.net)
SwiftKey makes typing much easier on Android smartphones, replacing the touchscreen keyboard with one powered by smarter natural language technology. The app, which launched in beta in July 2010, understands how words work together to give much more accurate corrections and predictions than other keyboards. It also powerfully learns over time to make typing easier and even more accurate, and users can personalize it using Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, SMS or their blog posts.
To date SwiftKey has received more than 3.5 million downloads, saving users more than 20 billion keystrokes: equivalent to over 250 years spent typing.
TouchType Ltd, the company behind SwiftKey, was founded in August 2008 by Jon Reynolds, CEO and Dr Ben Medlock, CTO, both Cambridge University graduates. The company currently has over 30 staff, with its headquarters in Southwark, London, UK.
About Octopus Investments (www.octopusinvestments.com)
Octopus Investments, founded in 2000, is a leading investment specialist. We offer innovative core and satellite investment solutions to UK investors, and a wide range of funding options for exceptional companies.
Our core investments include a discretionary management service, multi-manager multi-asset OEICs, and single manager OEICs. These are complemented by our range of satellite solutions, including venture capital trusts, enterprise investment schemes and inheritance tax products. Each product has been designed to solve specific problems faced by financial advisers and their clients.
Our funding solutions cover the entire capital structure, from equity through mezzanine to senior debt, and we seek out outstanding management teams in unlisted companies with whom we can partner.
Octopus has built its business around three core pillars: customer led innovation, excellence in customer service and the quality of our people. We employ more than 200 people and currently have more than £2.3 billion in assets under management.
Octopus has won a number of awards for its products and customer service. We have twice been voted one of the best 100 SMEs to work for by the Sunday Times, and we are one of only two fund management companies to be AAA rated by financial advisers for customer service.
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