Spoken Communications, a 7-year-old Bellevue company led by former HyperQuality and PhotoWorks CEO Howard Lee, has raised $11.5 million in funding from Ignition Partners and Ignition Capital.

Spoken Communications uses speech recognition technologies to automate processes in call centers, with the company saying that the service processes millions of minutes of customer service interactions each year on behalf of more than 4,500 call center agents.

The company said that the new funding would be used to expand its customer footprint and cloud platform offerings.

“Spoken Communications is excited to expand our cloud infrastructure capabilities to accommodate the growing demand for the Spoken hosted platform,” said Lee in a statement. “Ignition’s strategic investment allows us to keep up with the demand for our hosted switch solution while planning for further innovation.”

The company was formed in 2005 with technology from Wingcast, a wireless and vehicle-monitoring joint venture that Ford Motor Co. and Qualcomm shut down in 2002. The company says it can dramatically cut the costs of operating call centers by automating processes, reducing the average handle times and misrouted calls.

Ignition Capital is the private equity arm of Ignition Partners, spinning off from the Bellevue venture capital firm a few years ago.

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