Fresh off stealth mode, Samya.ai bags $6 mn from Sequoia

Fresh off stealth mode, Samya.ai bags $6 mn from Sequoia
Founding team at Samya.ai
20 Jan, 2020

Samya.ai, an emerging technologies-based SaaS (software-as-a-service) for revenue growth, has raised $6 million seed funding from Sequoia India, according to a statement from the company on Monday.

Samya’s use of emerging technologies such as AI (artificial intelligence) and ML (machine learning) will help the company tap into a clientele of companies in the CPG (consumer packaged goods) industry, which operates in silo-styled multiple legacy systems and isn’t fully ready on emerging patterns, blind-spots and interdependencies in its activities, the statement added.

The fresh infusion will be allocated into product development, R&D, enterprise customer development, data and technology partnerships, co-founder Deepinder Dhingra told TechCircle.

“It’s not just predictive analytics, which was the case in the past. We are applying deep learning algorithms that are usually associated with computer vision and robotics and chatbots and we’re bringing that to the enterprise space. And those same algorithms are now able to anticipate revenue risks and opportunities for CPG companies at the intersection of their demand and supply operations which includes sales, distributions, pricing, promotions and inventory operations,” Dhingra said.

The Chicago-headquartered company has an office in London and a main product R&D centre in Bengaluru. Samya AI Artificial Intelligence Technologies, which is the Indian subsidiary of the foreign parent holding, was incorporated in September 2019, as per local regulatory filings.

Currently a 15-member team, Samya.ai is assembling its AI, ML engineering team in Bengaluru. The United States and European regions will house the startup’s GTM (go-to-market).

“Currently we are working with three anchor CPGs, spread across personal care, food and beverage sectors. We help these companies anticipate demand movements, improve sales activities, and better inventory allocation based on where demand is moving,” Dhingra added.

The company’s founding team consists of former Mu Sigma executives Dhingra, Shailendra Shelly Singh and Pavan Palety. They have previously held leadership positions at IBM, Noodle.ai and MarketsandMarkets.

Samya.ai expects to close in on what it estimates is a 8-10% revenue growth of lost opportunity in the CPG industry. The revenue growth gap amounts out of increased scale, complexity and volatility at the intersection of demand and supply operations. The gap is estimated to be $150 billion in the United States alone, the statement said.

“... This trend will continue unless addressed proactively, especially when a large number of CPG companies have been facing saturating growth,” Singh said. External factors of evolving weather conditions, macro-economics and consumer preferences accelerate revenue leakage in such an industry.

Excluding the Samya.ai investment, investor Sequoia Capital India has announced its participation in at least four technology-based startup fundraises totalling over $35 million, just 20 days into 2020, as per TechCircle estimates. 

The four portfolio companies are all Bengaluru-based -- fintech startup Klub Works, neo banking startup epiFi Technologies, personal care brand Mamaearth and e-sports streaming and community platform Rheo.

“They are pursuing a bold vision and the early results of ‘proof of value’ pilots with global CPG companies are very exciting. Our goal here is to help build one of the leading cross-border AI SaaS companies out of India,” Shailendra Singh, managing director at Sequoia Capital, was quoted as saying in the statement.

Samya’s early investors include high networth individuals such as Junglee.com founder and Helion Venture Partners co-founder Ashish Gupta; Procter & Gamble former group president and partner at G100 Companies Deb Henretta; Kradle Ventures and Antuit  founder Arijit Sengupta; former CEO of Antuit and former CMO of WNS Global Services Deborah Kops; and founder of MarketsandMarkets Sandeep Sugla.