Founder x Breega story: reciTAL
Technology, in all its forms, has become the driving force in both our personal and professional lives. And one of the most notable changes in the workplace over the past two decades has been the digitalisation of work documents with the vast majority of company data today being stocked on private servers or the cloud.
In spite of the many advantages of digitalisation, retrieving and exploiting data is often still an endeavor due to the sheer volume and heterogeneity of the company documents it’s contained in (emails and their attachments, contracts, reports, memos, studies, legal/ regulatory documents…).
Imagine therefore a solution that would read documents as humans do, to quickly access and exploit all of that unstructured company data to its fullest. Sounds useful doesn’t it? Welcome to reciTAL.
reciTAL is a document intelligence platform that transforms the way businesses access and use their documents.
Launched back in 2017, the startup was born through a meeting of minds, those of Gilles Moyse and Frédéric Allary. Gilles had just completed his PHD in Artificial Intelligence focused on Natural Language Processing, and Frédéric, previously Director of Strategy at leading French newspaper, le Parisien, was running his own communications agency, Bronx.
The pair got to talking about how, by automating simple editing and formatting tasks, natural language processing (NLP) had revolutionised publishing, allowing content producers to focus more on value. They then got to thinking about how, with the right solution, NPL could completely transform the way most companies work.
NLP solutions for companies being scarce, particularly in Europe, Gilles and Frédéric decided to build a software that would allow companies to save huge amounts of time and effort and give them a competitive advantage.
With the help of AI and data science experts, Thomas Scialom and Melchior de Toldi, they created a user-friendly platform that allows companies to process and analyse documents and emails quickly and efficiently.
With reciTAL’s solution, companies can now use a simple natural language request to automatically scan thousands of digital documents and reliably retrieve any given text document or text extract in record time.
The platform responds to requests on any given subject by extracting fragments from documents. The researcher can then ask questions and the platform will automatically produce answers for them, highlighted in yellow. This automatic and reliable information gathering helps to make usually time-consuming tasks such as research, contract analysis, risk assessment, due diligence, compliance and responding to customer queries far quicker and less painful thus increasing team productivity.
reciTAL’s document intelligence solutions, which are already available in English, French and Italian, can be adapted to virtually any language and they rely on user feedback and Deep Learning to automatically and continually improve speed and accuracy.
If the solutions proposed by reciTAL appear to be fairly straightforward, it is only recent technological progress that has made them possible and the technology behind the NLP solutions produced by reciTAL’s team is best-in-class. The company, which today has 25 employees, is at the cutting edge of AI research and development. Their team counts no less than 6 PhDs that are regularly published in the best international conferences, and a scientific committee that includes Stuart Russell, AI Professor at UC Berkeley and Antoine Bordes, Director of Facebook AI Research in Europe.
As Breega Co-founding Partner and reciTAL board member, François Palus says:
“Breega is convinced not only by the relevance of reciTAL’s solution, but also by the expertise and determination of its team of experienced entrepreneurs and AI PhDs. As pioneers in their domain, they are continually pushing the boundaries of AI in natural language processing. We are proud to be accompanying them in their mission to become the reference in NLP solutions”.
Breega believes that with time reciTAL has everything it takes to become the number one supplier of NLP solutions on a global scale. Which is why when they came to see us last year when looking to raise a €3.5 m seed round, we were only too happy to oblige. 🙂
Breega was already on reciTAL’s “VC radar” when looking to raise. They liked the idea of working with entrepreneurs who were well acquainted with the entrepreneurial journey and its challenges.
“With Breega, we had a great fit and we really liked the fact that it’s a fund created by entrepreneurs. Our exchanges with board members François and Camille are always frank and the feedback we get is both down-to-earth and actionable”.
The team also appreciates the support they receive in their recruitment processes with Breega’s HR squad and the advice and help they get from the biz dev and coms teams. Gilles says:
“ It’s great to feel that we are being accompanied in our development and that we have partners we know we can rely on”.
Over the past year, reciTAL have flourished. The startup now has over 80 000 regular users and big name clients such as France’s banking network, Crédit Agricole, and CNP Assurances. Over the next couple of years they will continue to focus on both product development and growth whilst breaking into international markets, Europe and the US.
Breega is delighted to be accompanying the reciTAL team on their pioneering journey to push the boundaries of AI and produce NLP solutions that will help to fuel business productivity and further transform tomorrow’s work environment. From Deep Learning to deep change. And there’s nothing artificial about that 😉