Shoosmiths’ Corporate Team Advises on Another Artificial Intelligence Investment

January, 2017 - Birmingham, England

National law firm Shoosmiths has advised Cambridge-based speech technology company, Speechmatics, on investments received from a range of investors to accelerate the commercial roll-out of its speech recognition products.

Founded by chief technology officer Tony Robinson, the firm received investment from several sources, including technology venture capitalist IQ Capital; AI/machine learning specialist and technology investors Amadeus Capital Partners; and a number of technology investors including Laurence Garrett (Highland Capital Europe), Cambridge professor Ted Briscoe, a specialist in Natural Language Processing as well as co-founders of CSR, and former executive chairman at SwiftKey Richard Gibson.

Shoosmiths corporate partner, Alastair Peet and associate Alistair Hammerton advised the company on all corporate aspects of the deal. Shoosmiths has recently acted on other artificial intelligence investment deals, advising another client, venture capital firm Octopus Ventures on the sale of Swiftkey to Microsoft, amongst other AI exits.

In 2016, Speechmatics launched its new AI framework, Auto-Auto, which enables the company to add almost any language automatically. Since building the framework, Speechmatics has released a new language every two weeks, including most European languages, and Greek, Russian and Arabic.

Benedikt von Thüngen, chief executive of Speechmatics, said: ‘Shoosmiths has provided us with exemplary legal advice and the addition of these highly-experienced investors as advisors to the business will help accelerate the on-going commercialisation of our technology and place speech recognition technology at the heart of all communications.’

Shoosmiths’ Alastair Peet, commented: ‘It’s a truly exciting time for tech businesses at the moment and artificial intelligence platforms are of particular interest to investors.

‘Speechmatics’ speech recognition technology is truly cutting-edge and it is exciting to be involved in an investment deal that I am sure will develop this technology even further.’

Shoosmiths' national venture and growth capital team advises investors on investments into start-ups, growing companies and scaling businesses. The team also advise entrepreneurs and management teams through the business life cycle working with businesses from start-up and first round finance through to later stage development funding, mergers and acquisitions, MBO and MBI transactions, and on exits, by way of sale, listing, or private equity investment. Shoosmiths also provides market-leading VCT, EIS and SEIS tax advice to both businesses and investors.