Technology

Snowplow Analytics raises $40M to grow its behavioral data crunching platform


Snowplow Analytics Ltd., a startup that helps businesses collect and own their customer data, said today it has closed on a new $40 million round of funding that brings its total amount raised to $55 million.

Today’s Series B round was led by the venture capital firm NEA, with participation from existing investors Atlantic Bridge and MMC.

Snowplow has created a fully managed platform for creating behavioral data that’s used by companies to power artificial intelligence, machine learning and advanced analytics applications. With the Snowplow Behavioral Data Platform, data teams can access behavioral data that’s created, modeled and customized for the specific application they’re building. This solves many headaches for teams, allowing them to focus on getting the application just right, rather than on wasting time finding, cleansing and preparing data for analysis.

The startup says this is superior to traditional approaches that involve repurposing existing data that comes from various disparate analytics platforms and customer relationship management systems. As Snowplow explains, this kind of data is usually bunched up, with different field types, granularity, quality and completeness. It therefore needs a lot of preparation before it can be used.

Snowplow enables teams to collect and organize data from multiple sources. For instance, it can be used to track a company’s website, application or internet of things platform, organizing this data within a customer’s data warehouse or data lake. It then goes further, enhancing the data it collects with artificial, or synthetic data. This information can then be combined with data from other systems to create a Universal Data Language specific for each business. The purpose is to reduce the time spent on preparing this data to be used for AI and analytics.

“Snowplow was built to solve the need for predictive, behavioral data to drive decisions and insights in a privacy conscious and scalable way,” said Snowplow co-founder and Chief Executive Alex Dean.

Snowplow said its Behavioral Data Platform is typically used to power advanced analytics workloads, such as modeling customer’s behavioral data across multiple points of engagement, such as the web, mobile, point of sale and customer support services. Doing this, it says, it can create a superior dataset that gives companies a more accurate view of customer behavior and marketing attribution. The platform is also used in AI model training, providing more consistent data that results in more accurate models, the company says.

Analyst Holger Mueller of Constellation Research Inc. said data is the key ingredient for any modern artificial intelligence and analytics process, so it’s encouraging to see more venture capital coming into the “data creation space” with Snowplow.

“The challenge of data is that it’s hard to get, hard to cleanse and even harder to ensure that no personally identifiable information is leaked from that data,” Mueller said. “The alternative to doing this is to create data artificially, as Snowplow does. As with any deliberate process, the challenge is to first make sure the parameters keep this synthetic data realistic, so it reflects the real underlying data.”

Snowplow has developed quite a fanbase since launching back in 2020, with customers such as Datadog Inc., GitLab Inc., Autodesk Inc., Capital One Financial Corp., the Cable News Network and Axel Springer SE.

One of Snowplow’s most enthusiastic customers is Software.co Technologies Inc., a provider of DevOps performance metrics. Software uses Snowplow’s platform to track event data from across its services and support systems and deliver it all in a consistent, consolidated format. It said that enables it to process and analyze data in roughly 20 seconds, compared with the hours it would take previously.

NEA Managing General Partner Tony Florence said companies need full control over their data to maximize their return on AI and advanced analytics initiatives. “Snowplow is pioneering the data creation category with a developer-first platform that allows any company to create and consume AI-ready data as if they were Amazon or Netflix,” he said.

Image: Snowplow

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