Koios, a London-based hrtech startup has today emerged from stealth and announced a $550,000 pre-seed funding raise. The company is employing voice-driven AI algorithms to offer personality insights, thereby enabling managers and teams to work together more effectively, both in terms of time and cost.
The pre-seed round was led by Seedcamp and saw the participation of Evolvient Capital and several undisclosed angel investors. Koios says that the capital will be used to launch in September as it continues to develop the platform.
Spotify, Snap Inc., and QuantCo
Founded by former Spotify and Snap Inc. recruiter Tom Sherwood, Seedcamp talent manager Alex Lewis, and QuantCo research data scientist Martin Lukac, Koios is the result of firsthand experience in the lack of technology and tools available to support managers and teams. At least in the realm of coaching and personnel development.
“Tom and I had been helping companies across the Big Tech, start-up, and the scale-up world for years and one of the biggest buzzwords and blockers to hiring at the time was “culture fit”, which we despised as it had connotations of an individual having to “fit in” rather than a company enabling the success of each employee.
As managers and leaders, we’d been through personality assessments over the years and we recognised that there were some useful insights in the more “robust” assessments, and questioned why there wasn’t greater adoption across the industry below leadership level (93% of the market wasn’t being served).
After speaking with industry leaders, they made it clear that if friction from self-assessment could be removed and a more cost-effective model be put in place, then there was a great opportunity for mass adoption.”
In Greek mythology, Coeus (/ˈsiːəs/; Ancient Greek: Κοῖος, Koios, "query, questioning" or "intelligence"), also called Polus, was one of the Titans, one of the three groups of children born to Uranus (Sky) and Gaia (Earth). - via Wikipedia
While the HR portion of the equation had started to formulate, it wasn’t until Lukac stepped aboard that the vision of Koios began to take shape. Leveraging his experience in data science, Koios developed and applied state-of-the-art audio deep-learning models using original data collection to understand personalities through voice.
How it works
After collecting a minimum of 90 seconds of an employee's or candidate's active speech, Koios goes to work, ultimately providing a customised set of personality and management insights. These insights provide managers and organisations with custom-tailored ways to communicate, motivate and develop each employee.
On the investment, Seedcamp managing partner Carlos Espinal MBE adds:
“Having worked closely together with Alex in his previous role as Seedcamp’s Head of Talent, I’ve admired his dedication and passion for nurturing talent across our portfolio and empowering them to thrive., Designed as an enablement tool, the platform helps find a better fit between employers and employees, thus facilitating a successful and productive, long-term collaboration”
Lead image: Pawel Czerwinski