CrowdFlower, a startup that helps businesses outsource mundane or repetitive tasks to the cloud, has raised $5 million in Series A funding led by Trinity Ventures and Bessemer Venture Partners. Previous Investors from CrowdFlower’s first angel round of $1.2 million also participated, including The Founders Fund, Travis Kalanick, Marcus Ogawa, Manu Kumar, Gary Kremen, and Lorenzo Thione. CrowdFlower, which launched at TechCrunch50 in 2009 and is a product of Dolores Labs, will use the new funding to further product development and expand its services globally.
CrowdFlower’s web offering price tasks and jobs based on the amount of time it takes to perform the assignment per unit (the user does the sample task). The startup mainly focuses on helping businesses complete tasks relating to data collection, content moderation and product search relevance. The startup will break the task into units that can be performed by a single person and price the task accordingly. CrowdFlower then lets you choose the channels of work ranging from Amazon’s Mechanical Turk to their own labor force to even a Facebook application where people perform task to earn virtual currencies. Once the task is finished, CrowdFlower will perform a quality control check and show the user the results of the task. The startup will indicate which workers were most productive and accurate. CrowdFlower will continue to employ workers who have high ratings. On the client end, businesses will only pay for task completed to a specified quality level.
And the service is seeing success in its cloud-based labor offering. Since its launch last year, Crowdflower has completed more than eight million tasks, managed 125,000 unique works and has grown revenue by over 750 percent. The startup recently partnered with virtual currency platform Gambit to allow casual games on social networks to offer bite-sized chunks of cloud-based labor to users. Instead of paying for virtual currency, Gambit Tasks gives gamers an alternative to receive virtual currencies.