With a new focus on marketing software, NewsCred relaunches as Welcome

0 Comments

The company formerly known as NewsCred has a new name and a new product: Welcome.

Co-founder and CEO Shafqat Islam explained that this follows a broader shift in the company’s strategy. While previously known as a content marketing business, Islam said NewsCred has been increasingly focused on building a broader software platform for marketers (a platform that it uses itself).

Eventually, this led the company to sell its content services business to business journalism company Industry Dive and its owner Falfurrias Capital Partners over the summer. Now Welcome is officially unveiling its new brand, which it’s also using for its new marketing orchestration software.

“It’s not often not often that startups like ours get to close one chapter and open another chapter,” Islam said. “We kind of went back to being a Series A, Series B startup, iterating and working very closely with our customers.”

While today is the official launch of Welcome platform, Islam said the company has been moving the software in this direction for the past year, and that this side of the business has already seen significant growth, with daily average users up 300% year-over-year.

Islam also suggested that while this was the right time to come up with a new company name, it’s something that’s been discussed repeatedly in the past.

Welcome Gantt Calendar
Welcome Gantt Calendar

Image Credits: Welcome

“Every time we raised money ever in last 10 years, the new investor would say, ‘What about the name? Can we change it?'” he recalled. “We could never do it, because we had this content heritage built up and enough brand equity. Finally, with this deal, and with the launch of the new software … we came up with the name Welcome.”

While there’s no shortage of marketing software out there already, Islam said marketers need an orchestration

Eric Liaw and Tom Loverro Named on the 2020 GrowthCap’s Top 25 Software Investors List

0 Comments

IVP, a premier later-stage venture capital and growth equity firm, is pleased to announce that Eric Liaw and Tom Loverro have been named to the 2020 GrowthCap’s Top 25 Software Investors List. The list highlights the most exceptional private capital investors who have demonstrated deep software sector expertise, high leadership acumen, exceptional investment judgment, and consistent professional performance over a sustained period of time.

“It’s an exciting time to invest in later-stage software companies,” said Eric Liaw. “Companies are targeting hundreds of millions of users in ever larger global markets, allowing them to grow faster than ever and generate significant revenue within a very short timeframe. The acceleration of digital transformation drives a massive opportunity for our current and future portfolio companies. It is an honor to work with many talented entrepreneurs and partner with them to create the market leaders of the future.”

“IVP invests in the fastest-growing technology companies and software is the majority of what we do,” added Tom Loverro. “We partner with exceptional management teams to build software companies of consequence.”

IVP manages $7 billion in committed capital and is one of the top-performing firms in the venture capital industry. The firm has backed innovative companies such as CrowdStrike, Datadog, GitHub, Glossier, Grammarly, HashiCorp, Hopin, Klarna, MuleSoft, Slack, Snap, Supercell, TransferWise, Twitter, and UiPath and remains committed to its focused strategy of supporting innovation at the growth stage and partnering closely with exceptional management teams.

About Eric Liaw

Eric joined IVP in 2011. He is focused primarily on later-stage investments in high growth companies across a variety of sectors, including enterprise software, Internet, and mobile. Eric serves as a Board Director or Observer for IVP portfolio companies Aiven, App Annie, Deputy, Glossier, The Honest Company, IEX, Lulus, MasterClass, NextRoll, Supermetrics, and ZipRecruiter and led IVP’s investments

BlackSwan Technologies Launches World’s First AI Operating System, Raises $28 Million in Funding to Pioneer Next Generation of Enterprise Software

0 Comments

Groundbreaking AI Software Highlighted by Gartner As “Bringing AI Closer to Human Learning and Intelligence”  

Company’s Stealth Mode Successes Include Tens of Millions in Revenue, Long-Term Contracts & Partnerships with the World’s Largest Consultancies & Fortune 500 Clients

BlackSwan Technologies launches as the world’s first enterprise AI operating system, enabling any company to leverage the most advanced artificial intelligence for an unprecedented level of operational efficiency and data-driven decision making. Since it began offering its technology to a limited customer base earlier this year, BlackSwan Technologies has generated tens of millions of dollars in revenue through multi-year contracts with many leading businesses. The company has also established a groundbreaking partnership with Deloitte to provide leading global banks an AI-powered platform that is already proven to increase revenue and drive efficiencies.

BlackSwan Technologies was recently recognized in Gartner’s 2020 Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies report as a pioneer in “bringing AI closer to human learning and intelligence.” The company’s signature Platform as a Service (PaaS), ELEMENT, accomplishes this by combining multiple AI technologies — including machine learning, natural language processing, deep learning, neural network and data operation facilities — into a single platform.

Unlike other enterprise AI offerings, ELEMENT does not require well-organized data sets, countless hours of data normalization or technical in-house expertise to implement. ELEMENT’s Low code/No code, cloud-agnostic system includes several advanced enterprise applications including for Risk Management, Compliance, Lead Generation, Personalization and Market Intelligence. The platform also allows users to build enterprise applications up to 60 times faster and at a fraction of the cost of market alternatives. ELEMENT is designed to continuously learn and evolve with the enterprise and has a completely customizable structure with a simple, drag-and-drop interface, democratizing the development and execution of large, industrial enterprise applications.

“We believe this represents a

Nasdaq Women in Technology: Niharika Sharma, Senior Software Engineer, Nasdaq’s Machine Intelligence Lab

0 Comments

Women in Tech: Niharika Sharma

Niharika Sharma is a Senior Software Engineer for Nasdaq’s Machine Intelligence Lab. She designs systems that gather, process and apply machine learning/natural language processing technologies on natural language data, generating valuable insights to support business decisions. Over the past years, she worked on Natural Language Generation (NLG) and Surveillance Automation for Nasdaq Advisory Services. We sat down with Niharika to learn more about how she got her start in computer science and how she approaches challenges in her career.

Can you describe your day-to-day as a senior software engineer at Nasdaq?

My day-to-day work involves collaborating with Data Scientists to solve problems, ideating business possibilities with product teams and working with Data/Software Engineers to transform ideas into solutions.

How did you become involved in the technology industry, and how has technology influenced your role?

My first exposure to Computer Science was a Logo programming class that I took as a junior in high school. After that, I took a couple of coding classes for fun.

When it came to choosing a college major, my high school Mathematics teacher suggested I consider a career in Software Engineering. At first, I thought, “Programming?! That’s too geeky!”. I liked coding, but I never wanted to be that nerd who sits in a cube staring at a computer all day. For college, I chose to study Chemistry at Delhi University, but a few months into the course, I realized technology was where I belonged, and I eventually pivoted to Engineering.

A decade later, I admit that it was the best decision I ever made. I found the concepts and problem solving so engaging that after obtaining my degree, I took a leap of faith and moved to the U.S. to pursue a Masters in Computer Science from Northeastern University. In the final semester, I

How to mandate agility in software development, operations, and data science

0 Comments

Even when leaders proclaim in their townhalls that your organization needs to be more agile and nimble, they can’t mandate it. Your CIO and IT leaders may standardize on practices, metrics, and responsibilities that they describe as agile methodology standards, but they can’t dictate that everyone adopts agile cultures and mindsets.

You can select agile tools, automate more with devops practices, and enable citizen data science programs, but you can’t force adoption and demand employee happiness. IT operations may operate a hybrid multicloud architecture, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that costs are optimized or that infrastructure can scale up and down auto-magically.

So, if you were looking to quickly standardize your agile processes, or to miraculously address technical debt by shifting to agile architectures, or to instantly transform into an agile way of working, then I am sorry to disappoint you. Agility doesn’t come free, cheap, or easily. You can’t manage it on a Gantt chart with fixed timelines.

And while I believe that agility is largely a bottom-up transformation, that doesn’t mean that developers, engineers, testers, scrum masters, and other IT team members can drive agility independently. The team must work collaboratively, acknowledge tradeoffs, and define agile operating principles where there is consensus on the benefits.

So if agility can’t be mandated and requires everyone’s contributions, how do organizations become more agile? In the spirit of agile methodologies, data-driven practices, and adopting a devops culture, here are some ways everyone in the IT organization can drive agility collaboratively.

Make the case for agile methodologies 

Chapter 2 of my book, Driving Digital, is all about going from basic scrum practices to a more comprehensive agile planning process that includes assigning roles and responsibilities, planning multi-sprint backlogs, and standardizing estimating practices. When I work with teams trying to adopt agile