“Boosting Sales Efficiency: Raisinghani’s SaaS Entrepreneurship Secures $5.5M for Innovative AI Venture”

SiftHub’s AI assistant is built on open-source large language models (LLMs), and is supported by retrieval augmented generation (RAG) technology, which uses additional data sources to fine-tune the quality of content generated by AI. All that eventually brought her focus to sales and presales teams. “Sales teams have a shadow team — a presales team or solutions engineers — and they are usually the unsung heroes of the organization. Sales and presales teams lack the necessary tooling to handle this new selling environment. We are excited to back the SiftHub team and be a part of their ambitious journey,” said Sanjay Nath, a partner at Blume Ventures.

SiftHub: The Revolutionary AI Assistant for Sales and Presales Teams

SiftHub, an AI startup founded by the former CTO and co-founder of LogiNext, Manisha Raisinghani, has raised $5.5 million in seed funding to build out its AI assistant, which is aimed at helping sales and presales teams focus more on building relationships and less on grunt work.

The company’s strong focus on improving the efficiency of sales and presales teams sets it apart from other AI startups in the market. According to Raisinghani, SiftHub’s generative AI assistant is designed to handle non-sales activities such as data entry, proposal filing, customer research, and presentation building. By integrating with popular platforms such as Google Drive, Slack, Zendesk, HubSpot, and Salesforce, SiftHub allows teams to simply speak to the AI assistant to complete a wide range of tasks. What’s even more impressive is the AI assistant’s support for 10 languages, including Spanish and German.

“When salespeople are selling to businesses, they should be spending more time building relationships, which has a direct impact on the top line,” Raisinghani told TechCrunch. “When you don’t have to hire so many presales people to do the deep technical work for you, you’re saving time and that impacts your bottom line,” she added.

SiftHub’s AI assistant is powered by open-source large language models (LLMs) and retrieval augmented generation (RAG) technology. This unique combination ensures that the generated content is of the highest quality by using additional data sources to fine-tune the results. RAG also helps SiftHub address common issues of generative AI, such as hallucinations, where the system may generate incorrect or misleading results. Additionally, the startup leverages cross-encoders to prevent the platform from selecting incorrect information from a given knowledge base. By analyzing two queries simultaneously, rather than separately, cross-encoders provide more accurate answers and reduce the chances of giving the wrong response.

“We would rather not give an answer rather than give the wrong answer,” Raisinghani said, emphasizing the importance of accuracy for SiftHub. The founder also mentioned that while the AI assistant may provide 5% fewer answers, she is confident that at least 75% of the responses will be correct.

In addition to its advanced AI technology, SiftHub also uses a smart search algorithm that considers the recency of documents or knowledge sources. This ensures that the most relevant and recent information is surfaced for the user, making the search process more efficient.

After spending over 10 years at LogiNext, Raisinghani realized the need for a solution like SiftHub while advising blockchain startup Polygon Labs in 2022. She discovered that finding information about Polygon was a time-consuming task, as data was scattered across multiple platforms and channels. This issue is not limited to just Polygon, as sales and presales teams often struggle to gather all the necessary information about their company and its operations when reaching out to potential customers. SiftHub aims to streamline this process by consolidating information from various sources, including Slack channels and other documentation, in a single platform.

Speaking with about 200 users, Raisinghani gained a better understanding of the problem and categorized their responses into different use cases. This ultimately led her to focus on sales and presales teams, as they are often the unsung heroes of an organization and perform crucial tasks such as filing proposals and finding answers to customers’ questions.

“Sales teams have a shadow team — a presales team or solutions engineers — and they are usually the unsung heroes of the organization. They do a lot of the technical work, right from filing RFPs (request for proposals) to finding answers to customers’ questions,” Raisinghani explained. “If you’re saving time for both sales and presales, salespeople will automatically be able to spend more time on relationship building.”

The market for AI startups focused on sales and presales operations has seen significant growth in the past year with the rise of generative AI technology. Companies like Salesforce, Zoom, and Google, as well as startups like Quilt, People.ai, and Darwin AI, have all developed GenAI-powered tools to simplify sales-related tasks. However, Raisinghani believes that SiftHub has a unique advantage as it integrates deeper into customers’ business workflows and can solve the entire sales response problem, rather than acting as a “wrapper” around existing AI technology.

The startup’s team of 15, which includes ex-entrepreneurs, also sets it apart. With over a decade of entrepreneurial experience, Raisinghani has first-hand knowledge of scaling startups. She believes in the potential of SiftHub and plans to devote the next decade of her life to building the company.

The recent $5.5 million seed funding, co-led by Matrix Partners India and Blume Ventures, with participation from Neon Fund and executives and founders from Superhuman, Cloudflare, DevRev, RazorPay, and SuperOps, will be used to hire more product R&D staff and enhance the platform. SiftHub’s headquarters are in the U.S., while its R&D team is based in Mumbai, India.

SiftHub’s initial target market includes B2B companies selling to mid-market and enterprise customers with revenues between $50 million and $500 million. The AI assistant is currently available to a small group of users for early feedback, with plans for a full launch later this year.

“Buyers have become smarter and engage sales later in the buying journey, with more advanced questions. As a result, the expectation from sales teams has changed — they need to know advanced product, technical, and legal information to get the win. Sales and presales teams lack the necessary tooling to handle this new selling environment. We are excited by SiftHub’s vision to use AI to manage product knowledge so that sales can focus on relationships,” said Pranay Desai, a partner at Matrix Partners India, in a prepared statement.

Sanjay Nath, a partner at Blume Ventures, also expressed his excitement for SiftHub, saying, “SiftHub is Manisha’s second venture in the SaaS space. Armed with over a decade of entrepreneurial experience and an impressive track record, Manisha and her team are building a game-changing AI platform to transform the entire sales and presales process. We are excited to back the SiftHub team and be a part of their ambitious journey.”

SiftHub is a game-changer in the AI space, and its unique focus on improving the efficiency of sales and presales teams makes it a standout among its competitors. With a dedicated team and recent funding, SiftHub is well-equipped to revolutionize the sales process and help businesses build better relationships with their customers.

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Zara Khan

Zara Khan is a seasoned investigative journalist with a focus on social justice issues. She has won numerous awards for her groundbreaking reporting and has a reputation for fearlessly exposing wrongdoing.

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