Discover more from Vancouver Tech Journal
AI startup Circleback raises $125K
The company, like Zeeno, is founded by UBC grads and is participating in Neo’s accelerator.
San Francisco-based accelerator and VC community Neo is literally circling back on Vancouver-based AI innovators. Last spring, we told you of Zeeno’s UBC roots and Neo link up. Joining it in that accelerator is another company with roots in the institution: Circleback.
The company’s product joins your virtual meetings and provides AI-driven notes or action items for all attendees. It also lets you ask questions about any of your past meetings, with co-founder Ali Haghani using "where did James say his favourite sushi spot is?" as an example (It’s Sushi Nanaimo, if you’re curious). Haghani also quipped that the tech is, essentially, a second brain for your meetings.
Circleback’s focus is placed on meeting notes because it's such a dense and underutilized corpus of knowledge within companies. Its goal is to provide organizational insights that would otherwise fall through the cracks. As another example, a product manager should be able to use Circleback to find out what product feedback customers have been providing in calls with sales and use that insight when prioritizing the product roadmap.
The startup is co-founded by Haghani and Kevin Jacyna. Since graduating from UBC, the pair has worked at Tableau, Salesforce, Twitter, and Stripe. Those organizations and your organization alike, according to Haghani and Jacyna, are sitting on an untapped gold mine of information that has slipped through the cracks after meetings wrap up. With the advent of generative AI and AI transcription models, the technology is finally there to build a product that allows organizations to tap into this treasure trove and beyond.
The timing also felt right for Neo.
“Circleback is a rare example of how AI can deepen your human interactions,” said Neo CEO Ali Partovi. “It takes care of menial clerical work such as taking notes and following up on action items, so that you can give your full attention to the other people you're speaking to. The company is building one of those rare products that you instantly fall in love with. As soon as we started using it, it quickly became something we couldn't live without. We've tried the other comparable services, and none of them comes close to being as effective and useful as Circleback.”
It certainly makes sense why Neo would want to look to Vancouver for its cohort once again.