There’s no denying that 2020 has been a rollercoaster ride and like any ride, it’s had its series of ups and downs. As we get closer to the end of the year, we want to take a moment to reflect on and celebrate the highs and carry this energy with us into 2021. So, fasten your seatbelts and join us on the techspert.io 2020 highlights ride – all aboard!
Connecting our customers with leading subject matter experts
Partnering with our customers and supporting them with primary insights is undoubtedly a top highlight for us. This year, we connected our customers with subject matter experts across 63 countries and 50 expertise categories, ranging from market access to cancer research and infectious diseases. Engaging with these experts for domain-specific insights enabled our customers to complete projects such as go-to-market strategies, due diligence, product development and marketing strategies.
A map showing the 63 countries we sourced experts from in 2020 based on our customers’ requests
A word cloud of the fields we sourced experts from based on our customers’ requests
Raising £3.76M Series A funding
In February we closed £3.76 million Series A funding. Led by Pan-European VC Nauta Capital and existing investors including Cambridge Angels, GW Asia Capital, and serial entrepreneurs Zack Feather and John Spearman, the funding has been instrumental to the further advancement of our deep AI search technology, making our US expansion a reality and much more.
Introducing the D&I committee
Following the tragic death of George Floyd and the global Black Lives Matter (BLM) demonstrations, we reflected on systemic racism and injustice around the world and what part we can play as individuals and as a company in addressing these issues. We held a company-wide discussion on BLM and societal issues and how we want to respond to them. One of the outcomes of this open dialogue was the introduction of our diversity and inclusion (D&I) committee made of techspertians whose mission is to further the agenda of diversity, inclusion, and social responsibility at techspert.io.
Since its inception in June, the committee has completed a range of activities including:
- Arranging a company-wide D&I training session with an external consultant
- Updating our Diversity & Inclusion Policy with input from the wider company
- Conducting a company-wide survey to inform our 2021 D&I and social responsibility activities, ensuring we focus on what matters to techspertians
- Creating a dedicated Slack channel for discussing societal issues to encourage open dialogue, ensure we remain engaged, share resources, and plan any actions we might wish to take as a business to support societal causes.
Developing our feasibility calculator
Leveraging our AI-driven approach to expert identification and powered by data from our knowledge graph and prior expert connections, we developed an internal feasibility calculator which accurately predicts if we can deliver expert connections based on a project’s parameters. This transformative tool ensures we never overpromise or underdeliver on our ability to source high-quality specialists for our customers.
A screenshot showing the feasibility results of a search query for 20 dermatologists specialising in psoriasis, based in Germany, Spain, France and Italy.
Being shortlisted for AI Company of the Year and Ones to Watch
Cambridge is an incredibly competitive science and tech space, so being shortlisted in the AI Company of the Year and The Ones to Watch categories of the Cambridge Independent Science & Technology Awards is a wonderful recognition of what we’ve achieved so far. The winners will be announced in the new year at a date to be confirmed. Until then, our fingers are crossed for good news!
Supporting our customers’ COVID projects
COVID caught all of us off guard and it’s highlighted the urgent need to democratise knowledge-sharing. With many of our customers specialising in life sciences and healthcare and working on the cutting-edge of their fields, we’ve supported on several COVID projects this year, including:
- Connecting a healthcare communications agency with pulmonologists (physicians specialising in the respiratory system) and intensivists (physicians specialising in the care of critically ill patients) to strengthen its end client’s go-to-market strategy with primary insights.
- Arranging qualitative interviews between a consultancy and virologists, enabling the consultancy to unlock insights to COVID-19 treatments and vaccines, and boost their end client’s project with first-hand specialist knowledge.
Ayaka winning AI Professional of the Year
Ayaka Shinozaki, a backend engineer on our tech team, was named AI Professional of the Year for the Computing AI & Machine Learning Awards 2020. The judges described Ayaka as a hard-working and innovative individual with a bright future in the AI space. We couldn’t agree more!
Ayaka Shinozaki, a techspertian and backend engineer
Getting selected for Tech Nation’s Applied AI 2.0 programme
In October we were chosen as a member of Tech Nation’s exclusive Applied AI 2.0 programme, a growth programme to help the UK’s most promising founders who are applying AI in practical areas to create real-world impact. We're thrilled to have been chosen and the 6-month programme will have a tremendous impact in boosting our growth trajectory.
Being named a #21toWatch winner
The cofinitive #21toWatch awards celebrate the People, Companies, and the ‘Things’ that they create that are setting the standards in innovation and entrepreneurship across the globe. We were recognised for our deep search technology which eliminates the limitations of human-led market research with AI-driven science and named a Top21 winner.
Graham Mills, techspert.io Co-Founder and Managing Director
Making key strategic appointments and growing our team
At the end of 2019 we were a 15-person strong team of techspertians. This year our team has grown to 43! Along with expanding our tech, business development and operations units, we’ve also strengthened our leadership team by welcoming Martin Wilks as our Chief Technology Officer and Vivien de Tusch-Lec as a Non-Executive Director.
Our annual company retreat
We had planned to jet off to Tuscany, Italy, for our company retreat this year but two days before we were set to leave Italy experienced a major coronavirus outbreak. Thanks to our Ops Team’s rapid response a plan B was made, and we had our retreat in Devon. Over two days we held various workshops and interactive presentations where we put our brainpower together to come up with strategies, complete group tasks, and bond with techspertians from different teams.
The 2020 retreat team
And that brings us to the end of our ride! Thank you for joining us and we hope you’ll come aboard in 2021.