Get your own VC-in-a-Box! (Voice Assistant)

If I ask you to name an important stakeholder that is often an overlooked key component of business operations, I’m sure “assistants” are not the first thing popping up in your mind. But if you look closely, regardless of their title, it’s hard to overstate their contribution to any company’s productivity by helping management staying focused on most important tasks.

As technology has advanced, the skill sets of assistants have continued to evolve to keep apace. The arrival of chatbots and better speech recognition is already drastically changing the landscape by allowing for the automation of many data intensive tasks. It is now possible for many to become their own globally-connected assistant, at a fraction of the cost of hiring a human assistant for such tasks that are better suited for software.

The latest advances in the field of Artificial Intelligence and voice recognition technology is slowly redefining our relationship to our electronic devices. Human-computer interactions are becoming more human-like and the promise of naturally conversing with your devices is just around the corner. The first wave of Voice Assistants lead by the Amazon Echo and its Alexa software appeared late 2014 and their adoption rate has shown no signs of slowing down. After conquering our homes, the battlefield has now moved to businesses as they aim to supercharge the productivity of workplace teams. Acting as task-oriented assistants, are fast becoming tomorrow’s colleagues-in-a-box.

With PreSeries we make it easy for anyone to predict the future of startups. But when fully concentrated in your work, opening the PreSeries Dashboard to get some insights can disrupt your workflow. Simply asking your question out loud, as you would with a colleague or an assistant, feels more natural and allows you to remain focused. Therefore, we built our own PreSeries for Alexa skill in order to bring startup intelligence to devices belonging to the Amazon Echo family. Main features are the scoring of startups in real-time and getting aggregate or detailed information about startups, technology areas, investors, patents, rounds of financing, and IPOs.

Once the skill is enabled, you can use your brand new VC-in-a-Box to discover all kinds of information regarding startups. Below is an example session.

You: “Alexa, ask PreSeries how many startups were founded in the US in 2016”

PreSeries: “The number of startups founded in the US in 2016 is 3857.”

You: “Alexa, ask PreSeries what is the highest scoring startup in the US in Education”

PreSeries: “The highest scoring startup in the category of education is AcmEd”

Check out our introduction video below!

Click here to add the skill to your Alexa powered device and don’t forget to check out our documentation for a complete overview of the questions you can ask your VC-in-a-box.

Spotlight Feature: Investor Rankings

Whether it’s keeping tabs on peer’s syndicates, strategies, portfolios, or raising fresh funds from investors; both investors and entrepreneurs need a simple yet powerful way to filter data about investing entities. If you’re an investor think of our Top Investors section as your go-to-feature to quantitatively compare yourself to the competition and quickly establish meaningful benchmarks.

If you’re an entrepreneur lucky enough to see some traction, you might be considering raising funds to support your growth. From seed to late stage, the time you need to allocate to look for funds will never stop to increase. The life of a startup is very demanding and time spent researching investors means less time spent on your product. We believe you should spend time talking to investors instead of searching for them in an ad-hoc manner, so we built the PreSeries Top Investor section with that in mind. It basically allows you to filter investors using your own criteria to help you focus on the ones most likely to invest in your startup.

PreSeries currently lists over 40k+ investors ranging from seed-focused VCs to corporate investors leaning towards late stage deals. In order to easily search among all the profiles in our database, we invite you to use the filter options available at the top. You can filter investors by name, by location (country and city), by development stage (concept, seed, product development, market development, and steady), by industry area (700+ to choose from), and investment period.

The default view of the Top Investors section offers quick insights on the investing entities ranked by total amount invested (just click on a column to change the ranking criteria). For every investor, you are able to see what some of the drivers behind their investment decisions are. We show the preferred country and city of investment along with the number of deals for each. You also have access to information about the preferred investment stage (i.e, concept, seed, product development, market development, or steady), and the main investment area including the corresponding number of deals. On the right hand side are the total number of companies, deals and amount invested by each entity. The last column shows the overall PreSeries score of each investor (from 0 to 100). This score represents the general performance of the investor, meaning if the Return On Investment over their entire portfolio was significant enough.

By choosing the histogram view, you can easily see the distribution of investments with the green bar representing the preferred country, city, stage, and area. Hovering your cursor over bars on the bar charts will give you additional information, as seen on the image above. To facilitate comparison among the investors listed on the page you can switch between relative or absolute values, and use the same or a different scale.

That’s it for Investor Search & Rankings. Make sure to check our other Spotlight Feature blogposts for a complete lowdown!