India’s leading accelerator fund 9Unicorns has invested in the USD 1 Million pre-Series A round of AI-driven content start-up Instoried. The round was led by Mumbai Angels and also saw participation from London-based JPIN, Jain Angel Network, SOSV, Artesian, FAAD Angel Network, Lead Angels and a US-based VC.
The Bangalore-based start-up had earlier raised USD 500K as part of a seed round last year from SOSV, Venture Catalysts, Jain Angel Network, Artesian and JPIN from London. The round was enabled by Censie Capital
Founded by former Mu Sigma employee Sharmin Ali in 2018, Instoried is a deep technology content start-up that understands consumer’s emotional engagement with content and helps create intelligent marketing campaigns influencing consumer behaviour and optimizing marketing spend. The start-up helps gather quality emotion data, which is critical, as it predicts key success metrics such as brand recall, sales lift, purchase intent and likelihood to share. Instoried’s AI tool helps large companies build personal connections with their audiences by using technology to measure the effectiveness of content and rewrite their communication. The company’s approach is data-driven, scalable and measurable with long-lasting, visible results.
Commenting on the fund-raise, Sharmin Ali,founder of Instoried stated, “We have grown over 3X in the last 10 months. We found a huge opportunity in this adversity and have scaled at a rate of 60 per cent month-on-month. Brands globally now understand and acknowledge the importance of having a strong online engagement as an absolute mandate with the new normal. This is the best time for marketing tech companies. Since writing is a creative endeavour, it has always been exempt from the rigors of data-backed technical scrutiny and this is what Instoried wishes to change.” Sutanshu Raj, who has a masters in AI and is a former Microsoft employee, joined Instoried as the CTO in 2018.
Dr Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, MD & Co-founder, 9Unicorns, quoted: “AI-based content marketing is a fast growing segment globally with a $70 billion market size. Companies across the globe have been now leveraging AI-based content to engage with their customers for better sales. We are extremely delighted to have found and invested in a start-up that has been able to crack this growing segment. We believe that as businesses are moving online, the need for such services are likely to grow exponentially.”
Sharmin Ali also said, “By quantifying the emotional element of the written word, and recommending changes using its AI model, the platform ensures that content production for any business adheres to the quality standards that other areas have already achieved,”
In the last one year, Instoried has switched gears and levelled up its marketing to scale the business to meet the growth goals. Being a B2B platform for marketers that is not limited to either the boundaries of the sector, today, the two-years-young company boasts of a solid number of clients across industries and geographies.
The company plans to utilise the fresh funds in its expansion activities, hire a larger team, initiate marketing activities and increase its product offerings globally. Instoried was focused on text based content so far but is now moving into the video space.