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AI Text-to-Speech Company WellSaid Labs Announces $10M Funding Round

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Artificial intelligence (AI) text-to-speech technology company WellSaid Labs has announced a $10 million Series A round. The round was led by FUSE, along with previous investor Voyager, Qualcomm Ventures LLC, and GoodFriends.

According to WellSaid, the funds will be used to further advance AI and product innovation, scale go-to-market functions,  and grow the company’s team. 

The company aims to offer businesses and brands with top Text-to-Speech (TTS) services, and it empowers content creators and product teams to develop engaging voice content for various uses, such as streaming services, radio, programmatic advertising, digital marketing, and corporate training content. 

According to the company’s press release, WellSaid “has architected TTS to resolve business’ toughest content development problems and deliver a fast way for content creators – big or small – to develop all their desired content in one consistent voice that represents their brand.”

WellSaid Labs has a Voice Avatar library that offers access to multiple styles and tones, and brands can develop their own AI Voice Avatars with their own likeness, style, and uniqueness. 

Cameron Borumand is General Partner at FUSE. 

“Plain and simple, WellSaid is the future of content creation for voice. This is why thousands of customers love using the product daily with off-the-charts bottom-up adoption. Matt and Michael have assembled a world-class team and we couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of the WellSaid journey,” said Borumand.

Natural-Sounding Speech From Text

One of the top challenges in the field of AI is the development of natural-sounding speech from text, which researchers have been working on for decades. WellSaid Labs has been developing their own over the last three years, making breakthroughs in quality, speed, and reliability. 

The company announced in June 2020 that their text-to-speech became the first to achieve human parity for naturalness on short audio clips across multiple voices. 

Matt Hocking is CEO of WellSaid Labs. 

“We’ve added AI Voice to the toolkit of thousands of content creators and their teams,” said Hocking. “Our human-parity AI voice can be produced faster than real-time, and updated on-demand. Opening up new and exciting opportunities to “add voice” where never before perceived possible. AI voice easily ensures every production can be created and updated efficiently at scale.”

Investors’ Words

James Newell is part of the team at Voyager Capital. 

“Content creators or product experience designers were previously faced with difficult tradeoffs between quality and scalability when using TTS tools or human voiceover. WellSaid’s incredible voices, which are accessible through a studio application or a scalable API, removes the need to choose whether you want natural, lifelike speech or infinitely scalable and easily editable voice content. WellSaid provides both and delivers it however your team would like to consume it,” said Newell. “Creative teams have found it to be extremely useful when they need to produce multiple pieces of high-quality content in a consistent voice in hours instead of weeks.”

Carlos Kokron is Vice President at Qualcomm Ventures Americas.

“Recent developments in TTS technology using generative AI have enabled synthetic voices to sound very human-like, finding exciting new applications for voice including e-learning, advertising and news readers,” said Kokron. “WellSaid Labs provides an industry leading product that generates highly accurate human-like voices. We look forward to working with WellSaid Labs to help fuel the creator economy with human-parity AI voices across mobile and IoT.” 

Dave Gilboa is part of the team at Good Friends and co-CEO of Warby Parker. 

“WellSaid’s team has applied deep technical expertise to build a platform that enables easy creation and editing of incredibly life-like audio. We see meaningful growth potential in the use of high-quality audio in giving brands the ability to communicate with customers and creators the ability to engage with audiences,” said Gilboa.

Product developers can access WellSaid Labs’ core AI engine via real time API’s, which enables them to power up digital experiences with scalable voice infrastructure. Creatives can overcome the various barriers and complexities found in traditional text-to-speech technologies. 

Learn more about WellSaid Labs and hear the company’s various AI voices here.

Alex McFarland is a historian and journalist covering the newest developments in artificial intelligence.