ZenCity, an Israeli startup that uses AI to help cities make data-smart decisions, announced that it raised a Series A funding round of $6 million, led by venture capital firm Vertex Ventures, with participation from M12, Microsoft’s venture fund, and existing investor Canaan Partners Israel (CPI).
The company, founded in June 2015 by Eyal Feder-Levy and Ido Ivri, uses artificial intelligence to analyze data conversations on social media, city hotlines, and other channels to search for trends that help municipalities make decisions.
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ZenCity says it enables “local governments to collect and incorporate real, citizen-backed data into decision making,” by “continuously aggregating and analyzing resident-generated data points.”
“Unlike traditional tools available for gathering resident feedback, such as surveys and town hall meetings, ZenCity’s solution helps close the gap between the city and its citizens, enabling local governments to collect and incorporate real, citizen-backed data into decision making,” according to the company.
ZenCity works in Israel, having launched a US presence last year. It now works across eight states in cities such as San Antonio, Fort Lauderdale and West Sacramento.
Feder-Levy said in a statement that “ZenCity’s rapid growth in the US is a testament to the commitment that cities have to connecting with and understanding their citizens. It also reflects an increasing demand by US cities to be
more data-driven.” Feder-Levy added that, “as more and more cities get on board with our solution, the exciting potential of AI in local government becomes even more evident.”
ZenCity says it will use its recent funding round to expand the data analytics capabilities of its tool and “push the boundaries of its technology offerings.”
In May, the startup was among two winners of the first Innovative.AI competition hosted by M12.