UPDATED 12:27 EST / NOVEMBER 06 2019

coveo AI

Coveo nabs mammoth $172M round to make sites easier to navigate with AI

Canadian software-as-a-service provider Coveo Inc. officially joined the unicorn club today after announcing that it has closed $227 million Canadian dollars ($172 million) in funding at a $1.1 billion valuation.

The late-stage investment brings the company’s total capital raised to $402 million. Much of the money from the previous funding rounds is still in the bank, Chief Executive Officer Coveo Louis Tetu told TechCrunch, adding that it will used among other things to make acquisitions.

Coveo provides a cloud-based search and content recommendation service for large enterprises. Companies such as Tableau use the service to power the search function of their websites. Coveo doubles as a recommendation engine that can surface relevant content for users, like product listings and knowledge base articles, based on their viewing history. 

It’s a narrow but foundational set of features that the company claims provides a noticeable financial return for its customers. According to Coveo, the service enabled an unnamed “top 10” retailer to increase revenue per online visit by 8%. Tableau, in turn, saves $18 million annually on customer support by using Coveo to help users search its knowledge base for answers to their technical problems.

Some 500 organizations have adopted Coveo’s technology to date. The company increased subscription revenues 55% in the past year, a period during which it acquired artificial intelligence startup Tooso Inc. Coveo used the technology it obtained through that deal to enhance the machine learning algorithms powering its core search and recommendation features. 

The funding the company announced today was led by an arm of Canadian pension fund OMERS. Other participants included IQ Ventures, FSTQ and Evergreen Coast Capital, an affiliate of Elliott Management.

“We are rapidly expanding our Commerce solutions offerings,” Tetu wrote in a blog post outlining the company’s growth plans. “Recruitment across all areas of the business remains a priority. We’re now 500 employees strong, and actively hiring the best talent in data science and AI, at a clip of 60 new employees per quarter.”

Photo: Coveo

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