Stephen Purpura
Stephen Purpura

Context Relevant has reeled in $7 million in fresh funding, money that the Seattle company will use for continued development of its advanced analytics software.

Investors in the round include Madrona Venture Group, as well as new investors such as Bloomberg Beta and Paul Allen’s Vulcan. Seattle angel investor Geoff Entress also made a large investment.

The new money follows a $1.5 million financing round from last fall, which also included an announcement that the upstart had inked a deal to provide software to Concur Technologies. Context Relevant, which now employs about 20 people, is selling its products to customers in the travel and financial services sector.

CEO Stephen Purpura said that the software provides automation for data science that had previously been done by hand.

“It is substantially faster than techniques that are currently in practice,” says Purpura. “So what the investors are thrilled about and are reacting to is that we are getting traction showing that we are able to do really complicated tasks, and deliver really good results that even experts would struggle to produce.”

As an example, Purpura said that the software can calculate the value of a derivative on Wall Street much faster than existing technologies.

The Context Relevant software starts at about $50,000 per head for enterprises. That may seem like a lot, but business intelligence and data analytics is all of the rage right now in IT circles. (One of the reasons why Tableau Software is worth more than $3 billion).

Speaking of Tableau, Purpura said that the company has done a “fantastic job” of helping customers analyze data. Context Relevant wants to plug in to systems like Tableau, kind of like an “add-on” to make the people using the tools that much smarter by providing additional insights.

“That’s different from a lot of (business intelligence) tools of the past, which have really focused on visualization or counting or summarizing,” he said.

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