News
December 15, 2022
4 min read

Giskard closes its first financing round to expand Enterprise offering

The funding led by Elaia, with participation from Bessemer Venture Partners and notable angel investors, will accelerate the development of an enterprise-ready platform to help companies test, audit & ensure the quality of AI models.

Giskard's co-founders: Andrei Avtomonov (left), Jean-Marie John-Mathews (center), Alex Combessie (right)
Alex Combessie
Giskard's co-founders: Andrei Avtomonov (left), Jean-Marie John-Mathews (center), Alex Combessie (right)
Giskard's co-founders: Andrei Avtomonov (left), Jean-Marie John-Mathews (center), Alex Combessie (right)

Today, we’re delighted to announce that Giskard has closed its first round of funding! The round was led by European VC Elaia, with participation from Bessemer Venture Partners and notable angel investors including Julien Chaumond (CTO of Hugging Face), Oscar Salazar (Founding CTO of Uber), Christine Balagué (Founder of Good in Tech), Nathalie Gaveau (Co-Founder of PriceMinister), Charles Gorintin (CTO of Alan), Nick Hernandez (CEO of 360Learning), Vincent Huguet (CEO of Malt), Shéhérazade Semsar de Boisséson (CEO of McCourt Global), Chris Schagen (ex-CMO of Contentful) and Victor Coisne (VP Marketing of Strapi).

In addition to giving us financial resources at a time of uncertainty, this funding allows us to accelerate on building a sustainable business and invest in the development of the Giskard product & community. More importantly, it enables us to deliver on our mission of empowering companies to ensure the quality of all AI models.

⚠️ AI is growing, but issues around the quality of AI models are rising

Since 2019, over 2,000 incidents related to Artificial Intelligence (AI) models have been reported on the public AI Incident Database. Today, AI models pose significant economic & ethical risks for businesses and the general public. In 2021, a U.S. company, Zillow, lost $569 million due to a robustness bias in its pricing model. The risk even extends to human lives in the case of autonomous vehicle accidents.

This problem affects all industries and is becoming increasingly critical as AI adoption has tripled since 2017 (McKinsey AI Survey). In the face of these risks, the European AI regulation will enforce fines of 6% of global turnover in case of incidents on high-risk AI models.

In this context, Alex Combessie (CEO), Jean-Marie John-Mathews (CPO & AI Ethics researcher), and Andrei Avtomonov (CTO), three experts previously working on business-critical AI systems at Dataiku & Thales, created Giskard: a Quality Assurance software platform for AI models.

Giskard defends the vision of a Responsible AI that serves the business performance of companies & respects the rights of citizens. To embody this mission, Giskard enables AI professionals (Data Scientists and Machine Learning Engineers) to collaborate with business teams to evaluate & test the quality of AI models.

✅ Giskard brings a solution to AI Quality with a collaborative platform to test, audit & ensure the quality of AI models

Giskard already empowers customers with two solutions:

  • AI Inspect helps visualize and explain AI models to identify errors & biases. It makes the AI development process more efficient, saving time & reducing friction between AI & business teams.
  • AI Test allows building automated tests on AI models to measure critical quality criteria, including ethics, robustness, reliability & efficiency. Thanks to these tests, businesses can prevent the risks of costly AI incidents in production.

Thanks to Giskard, data scientists can quickly implement and automate a screening process to ensure the release of fair and trustworthy Natural Language Processing (NLP) models. For business-critical use cases such as fraud detection, Giskard helps identify data slices where the AI underperforms, thus preventing costly AI errors.

Giskard aims to democratize its mission by enabling the AI community to benefit from responsible and efficient models. Part of Giskard is open-source, guaranteeing transparency and allowing external contributors to customize the platform. Giskard also offers an enterprise version to larger companies that need to audit their models.

💸 A first round of financing to expand Giskard’s offering

Giskard's ambition is to become the reference software platform to ensure the quality of all AI models. A dozen European corporates and startups already use Giskard, such as Webedia, CGI, Citibeats, Altaroad, or Unifai. Giskard is also a partner of the French Association of Standardization (AFNOR). 

After only one year since its launch, Giskard confirmed its ambition by being selected among the FrenchTech DeepNum20 winners. 

Giskard finalizes today its first round of 1.5 million euros led by European VC Elaia, with participation from investors including Bessemer Venture Partners and well-known angels including Christine Balagué (Founder of Good in Tech), Julien Chaumond (CTO of Hugging Face), Oscar Salazar (Founding CTO of Uber), Nathalie Gaveau (Co-Founder of PriceMinister), Charles Gorintin (CTO of Alan), Nick Hernandez (CEO of 360Learning), Vincent Huguet (CEO of Malt), Shéhérazade Semsar de Boisséson (CEO of McCourt Global), Chris Schagen (ex-CMO of Contentful) and Victor Coisne (VP Marketing of Strapi).

"As AI becomes more ubiquitous, the more impact it will have on our lives. This increases the need for testing models and ensures no detrimental biases to any party. This is why we’re excited by the Giskard team and their ability to be besides data scientists who are building the future of AI.” adds Sébastien Lefebvre, Partner at Elaia.

Thanks to this first financing round, Giskard will recruit more talent to develop and commercialize its AI Quality Assurance software. In particular, Giskard plans to extend its platform to Computer Vision, Time Series, and Generative AI models.

🙏 Thank you!

What we have achieved over the past year, including this round, would not have been possible without the amazing Giskard community: customers, advisors and team members. Thank you so much for all of your contributions!

The best is yet to come. We look forward to growing and building even faster, together. Stay tuned because this is just the beginning!

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