Israeli start up Link-IT has raised $5.3 million in a round led by Draper Fisher Jurvetson and its Israeli counterpart- DFJ Tamir Fishman. According to a source in the Israeli media, the investment was made based on a valuation of $11.7 million.
Link-IT developed technology that enables recognizing objects in an image, in a way that will facilitate “Visual Search” on the net. The company has also renamed itself to Superfish (probably a good idea – try to search for link it and you’ll see why).
Superfish started its way in July 2006 as an incubator company. Co-founders Michael Chertok and Adi Pinhas had received seed funding from Xenia Ventures to develop algorithms and internet platforms that enable object recognition in images which can be matched to similar objects on the web. If they get it to work properly the implications of this technology could be extensive: from related search e-commerce to finding similar people to ones taste on a dating site. The platform was built with scalability in mind and it can manage tens of millions of images in catalogs and social networks.
The original product in the company’s first incarnation was a bit different – a mobile search technology that enabled browsing the web by taking a picture of an object through the mobile camera. Link-IT’s technology would then identify the object and retrieve information from the web. The patent pending technology takes into account 2D/3D viewpoints, lighting, lack of focus, distances, resolutions and compression techniques.