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New York-headquartered Applied XL, a startup that focuses on building algorithms to help enterprises with real-time data tracking, today announced it has raised $3.5 million in seed funding.
Companies across industries, regardless of the size, remain flooded with information. Some data is relevant, but a large chunk of it is nothing but unnecessary noise and clutter. As a result, businesses often end up struggling with the problem of filtering and finding valuable insights.
For instance, in the clinical trials space, as many as 1.5 million developments took place this year alone but only 8% of it attributed to relevant events that mattered to enterprises that need to track the space for business/product development.
Applied XL’s AI-driven data tracking solution
Founded in 2020, Applied XL solves this challenge by leveraging machine learning and editorial algorithms to do the job of humans. The solution, as the company explains, monitors dozens of databases in real-time through a journalistic lens (computational journalism) and tries to make sense of disparate data streams to flag events that could be relevant today or sometime in the future.
“The engine is agnostic to third-party data sources. It includes enrichment layers that dynamically add editorial parameters, machine learning classification, data unification and entity normalization,” Francesco Marconi, CEO of Applied XL, told Venturebeat.
As part of this, rather than taking a snapshot view of data, the engine tracks thousands of daily changes across multiple data sources to find the most crucial updates. Each of these events is then classified and ranked by machine learning models that have been trained with editorial considerations defined by experts.
“By deriving and aggregating proprietary events and continuously looking at these new data points longitudinally, event detection algorithms are able to surface trends that provide an up-to-date view of emerging activity that others may miss,” Marconi said. Simultaneously, the company also works with a network of experts who contribute data to retrain the system’s algorithms and improve accuracy.
Offering for healthcare
While Applied XL’s goal is to help enterprises measure potential disruptions across the health of people, places and the entire planet, it is currently using it only for the former by providing Trials Pulse – a product developed in partnership with health-focused publication STAT News.
Trials Pulse allows pharma, healthcare and biotech professionals to navigate the most important updates happening in the clinical trials space and inform regulatory strategy, clinical development and investment decisions. For instance, the company notes, the platform helps identify patterns in patient enrollment changes and timeline shifts to anticipate interruptions to clinical trials.
“Applied XL has already been used by 700+ users spanning across global pharmaceutical companies, emerging biotech firms and life sciences investment funds,” Marconi said. “They are using our platform to inform decisions on partnerships, competitive positioning, regulatory strategy, business development and investment considerations.”
The CEO did not share the names of the customers, but he did note that a number of them are upgrading to their annual subscription priced at $1500. With this round, he said, the company will accelerate the development of Trials Pulse and expand its coverage in the healthcare and life sciences industry. A part of the funding, which was led by Hearst Ventures, will also go toward hiring fresh talent.
Applied XL could play a major role in better tackling challenges such as pandemics, infrastructure issues and the effects of climate change. However, it is far from being the only one exploring the real-time data tracking space. Companies such as Diffbot, Dataminr and AlphaSense are also active in the same space. Plus, in the financial services, Dow Jones and Bloomberg have made a significant mark.
Marconi indicated Applied XL differentiates itself by diving deep into certain areas of certain underserved industries, such as life sciences.
“Professionals in pharma and biotech (for instance) report being overwhelmed with unstructured clinical trials data and missing out on crucial information, thereby delaying their decision-making. One of the drivers for this is that a substantial amount of clinical trials and drug regulation data is unstructured. That’s where Applied XL comes in,” he said.
Globally, the life science analytics market is projected to reach $42 billion by 2025.
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