Cambridge-based Nara Logics, a company that uses artificial intelligence to integrate its understanding of how the brain works with data that can help businesses, announced this morning that they have raised $6 million in what they are calling a Series A-2.
In addition to the funding, which brings Nara Logics total investment to date to $13 million, Nara also announced today that it has added MIT neuroscientist Mriganka Sur to the company’s advisory board.
Nara Logics was founded in 2010 by Thomas Copeman and built under the leadership of noted MIT neuro-computer scientist, Dr. Nathan Wilson. The company created what it calls its “Nara Neural Network” to gather big data and the large amounts of other information available on the Web.
Nara uses the information about the behavior of people and companies to inform a recommendation engine that can identify, for now, which restaurants and hotels a customer might prefer based on their history online. Offering the AI as a platform-as-a-service, Nara believes that its technology can be applied to a number of other industries beyond hotels and restaurants.
The new funding follows the September announcement that Jana Eggers would be joining Nara as the company’s president. Eggers said that at its core, Nara’s mission is to make “information more accessible.”
“With the growth of the Web, so much information is out there,” she said, “and people are working way too hard to get at it.” By applying neuroscience and its understanding of how the brain works to the gathering and analysis of online data, Eggers believes that Nara is on the cusp of breakthroughs that could benefit a wide array of industries.
Eggers added that the company is very excited to have Sur, who is a world-renowned neuroscientist, join its advisory board.
“It’s a very big deal for us,” she said. “It doesn’t happen very often where a researcher, who is at his level, will give his time to come in and help mentor a startup.”
“He is the best in the world,” Eggers added, “and has done things to understand how nerves work with each other that no one else has done…He’s taken the field much further than people thought could be done.”
The investment round was led by the group of previous investors, including Peter de Roetth and other angels, and new investors led by .406 Ventures.