Born in a data science lab at MIT, a new startup focused on automating complex workflows that require human intervention recently received a seed round of financing that will accelerate its work. Ikigai (which, translated from Japanese, means “your purpose”) said it has raised $13 million.
According to Co-Founder and CEO Vinayak Ramesh, Ikigai will focus on solutions that enable organizations to automate more complex workflows that RPA might not adequately address.
“There are more than 30 million data biz operators running mission-critical business operations using data,” Ramesh wrote in a recent blog post. “All of them experience pain across functions such as accounts payables, accounts receivables, inventory management, claims auditing, and more. Organizations typically address it by throwing talented human resources at it. However, these users are still primarily stuck managing mission-critical business operations in spreadsheets today. This is because, as physical operations are digitized, data operators are plagued with the typical problems of working with data.”
Ramesh says traditional automation tools don’t allow for human decision making and that at various points non-technical operators must be able to use analytics to make informed, data-driven decisions. They need drag and drop workflows involving disparate data sources, building in steps where humans can make decisions and view the results.
The funding round that will help achieve this vision was led by Foundation Capital, 8VC, Underscore VC and other angel investors.