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Chris Kelley. Photo via Context Relevant
Chris Kelley. Photo via Context Relevant

Seattle startup Context Relevant — a heavily-funded big data analytics company backed by Madrona Venture Group — has cut a significant portion of its workforce following what recently-appointed CEO Chris Kelley called a “deep operational review.”

The cuts come five months after CEO and co-founder Stephen Purpura left the company. Context Relevant vice president of engineering, Jim Walsh, left the company late last year to take a role at Salesforce.com’s growing office in the Seattle area.

“There are changes as any company grows, and we remain really confident in our direction,” said Kelley in a statement emailed to GeekWire. “We’re providing critical, predictive products to global corporations serving millions of people—in a phrase, we’re helping companies become data-driven. After a deep operational review, we concluded that a reorganization of teams would better service our customers.”

Kelley did not specify the number of people who are losing their jobs, but we’ve heard that about a third of the workforce was cut in Seattle and New York.

The company employed about 50 people at this time last year, though at the time Context Relevant executives said it planned to triple in size.

“These are not easy decisions, but focus is everything in bringing great products to market and we’re pretty excited about the products we have in production and what we’re working on right now with our customers,” said Kelley, a former aerospace engineer and venture capitalist at San Francisco-based Formation 8.

Context Relevant raised $13.5 million in venture funding last year, bringing total funding to $42 million. Backers include Goldman Sachs, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Formation 8, Madrona, New York Life and Bloomberg Beta.

Context Relevant’s clients have included Bank of America and Goldman Sachs, both of which use the data science technologies to offer better recommendations to clients about what products to buy. The company is pushing deeper into security offerings.

GeekWire’s Jacob Demmitt contributed to this report. 

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