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Prominent venture capital firm Madrona Venture Group today released the latest edition of its IA40 list, an annually published list of 40 promising intelligent application startups.

Madrona released the first edition of the IA40 list last year. At the time, the firm defined intelligent applications as products that use machine learning to extract useful information from real-time and historical data. Moreover, such applications must “solve a business problem” either automatically or by helping users make better decisions. 

The 40 startups on the newly released IA40 2022 list are organized into four categories. Each category includes 10 startups.

The Early Stage category consists of 10 companies that have raised up to $30 million from investors, while the Mid Stage category includes startups backed by between $30 million and $200 million in funding. The IA40 list also includes 10 late-stage startups that have raised more than $200 million. The fourth category in the list,  Intelligent Application Enablers, features companies with tools that can be used to build intelligent applications.

Early-stage startups

Many of the startups in the IA40 2022’s list Early Stage category provide AI-focused tools for engineers. Credo AI makes software that facilitates responsible machine learning development, while LinearB Inc. and Tabnine Inc. offer tools designed to help engineers write code faster.

Other startups on the list offer industry-specific products. Vanti Analytics Ltd. is using AI to help manufacturers identify and fix technical issues in industrial equipment faster. A-Alpha Bio Inc.’s namesake software product is used by scientists to speed up medical research, while Lexion UK Ltd. offers a contract management tool for legal professionals.

Rounding out the Early Stage section of the IA40 list are DoNotPay Inc., Copy.ai Inc. and Jasper Inc. DoNotPay is a chatbot capable of performing legal tasks that usually require specialized expertise. Copy.ai and Jasper, in turn, both sell cloud services that leverage artificial intelligence for automatic content generation. 

Mid-stage startups

Similarly to the early-stage startups featured in the IA40 2022, many of the mid-stage companies on the list provide tools for information technology professionals. Vanta Inc. helps IT teams make their company’s systems compliant with cybersecurity standards such as SOC 2, while Panther Labs Inc. makes a platform for detecting and remediating breaches. Jellyfish, incorporated as Orthogonal Networks Inc., sells a cloud service that helps engineering teams align their work with their company’s high-level business goals.

The other mid-stage startups featured in the IA40 focus on a variety of market segments. The group includes general-purpose AI maker Adept Inc., video messaging provider Loom Inc. and Glean Technologies Inc., which develops a search engine optimized for enterprises.

Several of the startups on the list offer tools that are designed for specific business units. CaptivateIQ Inc. helps sales departments manage employee compensation, Cresta.ai Inc. eases contract center teams’ work and Gem Software Inc. promises to simplify recruiting with its namesake hiring software. Runway AI Inc., the tenth startup in the mid-size startup section of the IA40 list, sells a suite of AI-powered creative applications.

Late-stage startups

The IA40 list also features 10 established intelligent application startups that have raised more than $200 million in funding from investors. Many of the startups on the list received valuations in excess of $1 billion after their most recent funding rounds.

The list includes Snyk Ltd. and Abnormal Security Corp., two prominent players in the cybersecurity market. The companies specialize in code vulnerability detection and phishing prevention, respectively. They’re joined by three startups that make products focused on improving sales teams’ productivity: Clari Inc., Highspot Inc. and Gong Ltd.

The five other startups in the group compete in five different areas. They include writing assist provider Grammarly Inc., scheduling specialist Calendly Inc. and Celonis GmbH, which sells a process mining platform that enterprises use to find ways of increasing operational efficiency. The list is rounded out by collaboration startup Miro Inc. and low-code application development provider Airtable Inc.

Intelligent application enablers

The fourth and final section of the IA40 list includes 10 startups that Madrona describes as intelligent application enablers. The startups in this group sell data management software, AI tools and other products that organizations can use to build intelligent applications.

The group includes major industry players such as Databricks Inc., DataRobot Inc. and Hugging Face Inc., whose AI software hosting platform plays a similar role as GitHub in the machine learning ecosystem. A number of newer startups have been included in the list as well. Anyscale Inc., Weights & Biases Inc. and OctoML Inc. sell software tools that make it easier to build and deploy neural networks.

The remaining startups on the list focus on the data management market. ThoughtSpot Inc. and dbt Labs Inc. offer products that ease cloud-based data analytics projects. Airbyte Inc. and Fivetran Inc. sell tools for performing data integration, or the task of combining information from multiple sources into a form that lends itself to analysis.

According to Madrona, the 40 startups on the IA40 list raised $5 billion of funding from the beginning of the year through Sept. 30. The startups were selected by a group of more than 50 venture capitalists from over 40 leading capital firms. Madrona also used a startup evaluation algorithm developed by market intelligence provider PitchBook to compile the list. 

Image: Madrona

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