Featurespace raises £16.5 million to drive international growth
Featurespace, the leading machine learning company for fraud prevention, has raised £16.5 million ($21.6 million) from a funding round led by Highland Europe, the venture capital firm that invests in growth businesses.
Worldpay Group plc, a leading global payment processing company, and Invoke Capital also participated in the round as new investors.
The round also includes further funding from existing investors including Touchstone Innovations plc, NESTA, TTV Capital and Robert Sansom.
The funds will be used to support Featurespace’s international expansion and continued development of the company’s software capabilities.
Featurespace’s real-time, ARIC™ platform uses Adaptive Behavioural Analytics to detect anomalies in individual behaviour for fraud and risk management.
Featurespace was created out of Cambridge University’s Engineering Department, co-founded by world-renowned experts in applied statistics, the late Professor Bill Fitzgerald and Dave Excell, Featurespace CTO.
Martina King, Featurespace CEO, commented:
"This funding round will enable us to continue to protect our expanding client base and their customers from real time fraud attacks.
“These additional funds will also help support our continued international growth following the successful launch of our US offices earlier this year.”
Laurence Garrett, partner at Highland Europe, commented:
“Featurespace is one of the most exciting artificial intelligence companies we have seen, with huge potential for international expansion, since it offers one of the most advanced technologies in this area on the market.
“The demand for Featurespace’s products is great and I am delighted that this funding will help support its rapid growth in the US and other international markets. Martina King is an exceptional leader and we are truly looking forward to working with her and the team.”
Mike Lynch, Founder at Invoke Capital, commented:
“At Invoke, we aim to identify companies that can commercialise technologies with a demonstrative advantage over the competition. Featurespace is one such company. Its machine learning capabilities are hugely impressive, while it operates in a market that is potentially massive given the ubiquity of online fraud. We look forward to supporting the company’s further growth and technology development.”
Featurespace™ is the world-leader in Adaptive Behavioural Analytics and creator of the ARIC™ platform, a real-time, machine learning software system developed out of the University of Cambridge.
Head quartered in Cambridge, UK, Featurespace has deployed ARIC to financial services and gaming organisations that have services or products deployed in over 180 countries. Customers include TSYS®, Playtech, Betfair, Vocalink Zapp, CashFlows, Camelot and William Hill.
The ARIC™ platform – a real-time, AI software system – monitors individual behaviours and detects anomalies to identify risk and catch new fraud attacks as they happen. The increased accuracy of understanding customer behaviour simultaneously reduces the number of genuine customers whose purchases and transactions are incorrectly declined.
About Highland Europe
Highland Europe is exclusively focused on Growth Stage internet, mobile and software businesses. Launched in 2012 and with over €580m ($640m) in capital raised across two funds, the firm’s origins were as the European operations of Highland Capital Partners, a U.S. venture capital firm. Highland Europe is based in London and Geneva and its current portfolio includes Matchesfashion.com, GetYourGuide, WeTransfer, Nexthink and Malwarebytes, among many others.
Worldpay is a leading payments company with global reach. We provide an extensive range of technology-led payment products and services to around 400,000 customers, enabling their businesses to grow and prosper. We manage the increasing complexity of the payments landscape for our customers, allowing them to accept the widest range of payment types around the world. Using our network and technology, we are able to process payments from geographies covering 99% of global GDP, across 146 countries and 126 currencies. We help our customers to accept more than 300 different payment types.
About Invoke Capital
Invoke Capital is a very different type of technology investor. Founded by some of Europe’s most successful technology entrepreneurs it invests in, and supports, world-leading fundamental technology businesses emerging across Europe.
Our unique approach means we do not only provide capital, but we also draw on the expertise of entrepreneurial founders and their networks to provide support to entrepreneurs to develop their ideas and bring their technology to market.
To date, the value of Invoke’s investment in its portfolio is more than $500m.
About Touchstone Innovations
Touchstone Innovations plc (formerly Imperial Innovations Group plc or just “Innovations”) creates, builds and invests in pioneering technology companies and licensing opportunities developed from outstanding scientific research from the 'Golden Triangle', the geographical region broadly bounded by London, Cambridge and Oxford.
This area has an unrivalled cluster of outstanding academic research and technology businesses, and is home to four of the world’s top 10 universities, as well as leading research institutions, the cream of the UK’s science and technology businesses and many of its leading investors.
Innovations supports scientists and entrepreneurs in the commercialisation of their ideas through protecting and licensing out intellectual property (through its Technology Transfer subsidiary, Imperial Innovations Limited), by leading the formation of new companies, by recruiting high calibre management teams and by providing investment and encouraging co-investment. Innovations remains an active investor over the life of its portfolio companies, with the majority of Innovations’ investment going into businesses in which it is already a shareholder.
Since becoming a public company in 2006, Innovations has raised more than £440 million of equity from investors, which has enabled it to invest in some of the most exciting spin-outs to come out of UK academic research. In addition, the Group has drawn down the outstanding £50.0 million from the European Investment Bank (EIB) taking the total loan to £80.0 million.
Between Innovations’ admission to AIM (August 2006) and 31 January 2017, Innovations has invested a total of £335.7 million across its portfolio companies, which have collectively raised investment of £1.5 billion.
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