Skelter Labs was founded in 2015 byÂ founded by Ted Cho, the former engineering site director at Google Korea. It started out developing apps and services that made use of AI but then it pivoted to focus fully on AI tech, which it licenses out to companies and corporations that it works with. Now it is eying opportunities inÂ Japan and parts of Southeast Asia — which has a cumulative population of over 600 million —Â withÂ Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia specifically mentioned.
The startup raised a $9 million seed round earlier this year, and Golden GateÂ hasÂ added an additional check to that round which came from KakaoBrain — the AI unit of Korean messaging giant Kakao — Kakao’s K-Cute venture arm,Â Stonebridge Ventures and Lotte Homeshopping, the TV and internet shopping business owned by multi-billion dollar retail giant Lotte.
More specifically, Seoul-based Skelter Labs works on AI in the context ofÂ vision and speech, conversation, and context recognition, while it goes after customers in areas that includeÂ manufacturing, customer operations, device interaction, and consumer marketing.
The startup doesn’t disclose customers, but it previously told TechCrunch that its vision is to bring its machine learning technology to daily life and schedules. Possible examples of that might be could include “intelligent virtual assistant technology that can be widely applied to various areas including smart speakers, smartphones, home appliances, automobiles and wearable devices.”
Golden Gate is one of Southeast Asia’s longest runningÂ tech VC firms. This deal is part of its recently announced third fund, which is $100 million in size.
In a statement, Skelter Labs CEO Cho paid tribute to the VC’s strong footprint in Southeast Asia that he said could open doors for the company. Startups in Golden Gate’s portfolio that might be of particular interest could include mobile listings startup Carousell, autoÂ portal Carro, fashion commerce site Grana and online furnishings seller Hipvan.
Note: The original version of this article has been corrected. Skelter Labs has announced an extension to its previous round not a new round. Apologies for any confusion caused.
Source: Techcrunch Disrupt