Berlin-based Mobius Labs has closed €5.2 million (~$6.1M) in funding on the back of growing demand for its computer vision training platform. The Series A investment is led by Ventec VC, Atlantic Labs, Apex Ventures, Space Capital, Lunar Ventures and a few additional angel investors.
The startup offers an SDK that lets the user build custom computer vision models—fed with their own training data—as an alternative to off-the-shelf tools that may not have the specificity needed for a particular use-case. Is.
It also marks a ‘no code’ focus, saying that its technology is designed with the non-technical user in mind.
Because it’s an SDK, Mobius Labs’ platform can also be deployed on premise and/or device – not requiring a customer to connect to a cloud service to tap into the usefulness of the AI tool.
“Our custom training user interface is very easy to work with, and does not require any prior technical knowledge at any level,” claims Appu Shaji, CEO and Chief Scientist.
“Over the years, a trend we have observed is that often the people who get the most value out of AI are non-technical individuals such as a content manager in a press and creative agency, or an applications manager in the space sector. Our no-code AI allows anyone to build their own applications, thus enabling these users to get closer to their vision without having to wait for AI experts or developer teams to assist them. “
Mobius Labs — which was founded back in 2018 — now has 30 customers who use its tools for a wide variety of use cases.
Uses include cClassify, recommend, predict, reduce operating expenses, and/or “generally engage users and audiences with visual content that is most relevant to their needs”. (The press and broadcast and stock photography sectors have been a surprisingly large focus so far.)
But it believes it has broad utility for the technology and is gearing up for growth.
It caters to businesses of different sizes, from startups to SMEs, but says it primarily targets global enterprises with major content challenges – hence its historical focus on the media sector and video use cases.
Now, however, it is also targeting geospatial and Earth observation applications as it looks to expand its customer base.
The 30-strong startup has more than doubled in size in the past 18 months. With the new funding it plans to double its headcount again over the next 12 months as it looks to expand its geographic footprint — focusing on Europe and the Americas.
The year-over-year growth has also been 2x, but it believes it can dial it up by tapping into other regions.
“We are working with industries that are rich in visual data,” Shaji says. “Geospatial regions are something we are currently focusing on because we firmly believe that there is a huge amount of visual data being produced by them. However, these huge collections of raw pixel data in their own right. are useless.
“For example, if we want to track how river fronts are expanding, we have to look at the data collected by satellites, sort and tag them to analyze them. At the moment this is done manually. The technology we are building comes in a lightweight SDK, and can be deployed directly to these satellites so that the raw data can be detected and then analyzed by machine learning algorithms. At the moment We are working with satellite companies in this area.
on the competitive front, shaji name Clarifai and Google Cloud Vision are its main rivals.
“We realize that these are big players, but at the same time recognize that we have something unique to offer that these players cannot: unlike their solution, our platform users are outside the field of computer vision. By democratizing the training of machine learning models beyond just the technical crowd, we are making computer vision accessible and understandable to anyone, regardless of their job titles,” he argues.
“Another core value that sets us apart is the way we treat client data. Our solutions are delivered as a software development kit (SDK), fully localized on clients’ systems. No data is ever sent back to us. Our role is to empower people to build applications and make them their own.”
Computer vision startups have been a hot acquisition target in recent years and some of the earlier startups offering ‘computer vision as a service’ have been acquired by IT services firms to augment their existing offerings, while Amazon And tech giants like (above) Google offer their own computer vision services as well.
but Shaji suggests the technology is now at a different stage of development – and ready for “mass adoption.”
“We are talking about providing solutions that empower customers to build their own applications,” he says, summarizing Competitive Sport. “And that [do that] With complete data privacy, where our solutions run on-premises, and we don’t see our client data. Along with this is the ease of use that our technology provides: it is a lightweight solution that can be deployed on multiple ‘edge’ devices such as smartphones, laptops and even satellites.”
Commenting on the funding in a statement, Ventec VC partner Stephan Vries said: “The team at Appu and Mobius Labs have developed a unique offering in the computer vision space. Superhuman vision is very capable of recognizing new objects at excellent computational efficiency. Impressively innovative with its high accuracy despite the limited training required. We believe industries will be transformed through AI, and Mobius Labs is the European Deep Tech Innovator Teaching Machine.