Golden is announcing that it has raised $14.5 million in Series A funding. The round was led by previous investor Andreessen Horowitz, with the firm’s co-founder Marc Andreessen joining the startup’s board of directors.
When Golden launched last year, founder and CEO Jude Gomila told me that his goal was to create a knowledge base focused on areas where Wikipedia’s coverage is often spotty, particularly emerging technology and startups.
Gomila told me this week that “companies, technologies and the people involved in them” remain Golden’s strength. In that sense, you could see it as a competitor to Crunchbase, but with a much bigger emphasis on explaining and “clustering” information on big topics like quantum computing and COVID-19, rather than just aggregating key data about companies and people. (By the way, both TechCrunch and the author of this post have their own profile pages, though the latter is woefully empty.)
In contrast to Wikipedia, which relies on community editors, Gomila said most of the data in Golden is gathered using artificial intelligence and natural language processing: “We’re using AI to extract information from the news, from websites, from public databases.
This is supplemented by Golden staff (former TechCrunch copy editor Holden Page leads the startup’s research team), while the larger community can also pitch in by flagging things that are incorrect or need to be updated. (As one example of this “human in the loop” editing process, Gomila showed me a tool where someone could paste in an article link and Golden would automatically summarize it.)
“The ultimate aim is to try and automate as much of this as possible,” Gomila said. “[For now,] this hybrid is the most effective method.”
Golden has also started working with paying customers including private equity firms, hedge funds, VCs, biotechnology companies, corporate innovation offices and government agencies — in fact, it says it signed a $1 million contract with the U.S. Air Force this year. These customers are paying for access to Golden’s research engine, which includes the company’s Query Tool and the ability to request that the startup prepare research on a particular topic.
Golden has now raised a total of $19.5 million. Other investors in the new funding include DCVC, Harpoon Ventures and Gigafund .
“Golden’s knowledge base and research engine aggregates information about emerging technologies and the companies, investors, and the builders behind them,” Andreessen said in a statement. “Human and machine intelligence, working together on Golden’s platform, results in knowledge which gives people the edge in making decisions and navigating uncertainty.”
Golden unveils a Wikipedia alternative focused on emerging tech and startups