Bengaluru-based iMerit Technology Services Pvt. Ltd, which is focused on data annotation and enrichment, has raised $20 million in a Series B funding led by CDC Group Plc, the UK government’s development finance institution, per an announcement.
iMerit’s existing investors also participated in the financing.
In a statement, CDC said that the investment will help to expand its advanced workforce to 10,000 employees globally by 2023. Currently, the company employs 3,000 workers, over half of whom are women, across India, Bhutan and the USA. The new funds will also be used to continue innovation for the company’s proprietary AI platform, it added.
“Our investment in iMerit underlines our commitment to back companies that are creating skilled jobs, particularly for women, in countries where they are most needed,” CDC Group CEO, Nick O’Donohoe said. “The technology sector has an incredibly important role to play in supporting the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and in that regard iMerit is a true pioneer.”
iMerit was founded in 2012 with the vision of bringing a diverse talent pool from underserved backgrounds into the digital workforce. The company is engaged in data annotation, a process by which information is made usable for machine learning, and data enrichment that refines and improves raw data for future use.
The company’s data annotation and enrichment specialists work across nine secure centres globally providing solutions across multiple markets including automotive, healthcare, e-commerce, finance, media and entertainment, and government, the statement said.
iMerit has been cash positive for the last two years, it added. The startup also counts Omidyar Network, Michael and Susan Dell Foundation, and Khosla Impact among its list of backers.
“This new funding will enable iMerit to continue to provide enterprise-scale and quality to a large client base in a fast-growing and evolving market,” iMerit CEO and founder Radha R. Basu said.
CDC has been investing in India for over 30 years now. Its India portfolio currently stands at $1.7 billion across direct investments into companies and investments in private equity and venture capital funds. CDC plans to double its exposure to India with investments of up to $3-3.5 billion by 2021, Mint reported in July last year.
CDC said it will invest over $1.5 billion in companies in Africa and Asia this year with a focus on fighting climate change, empowering women and creating new jobs and opportunities for millions of people.