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Amazon Goes All-in on Robotic Fulfillment, Expert.ai Adds New Features & More News

5 minute read
Stephanie Vaughn avatar
Amazon announces a new robotic fulfillment center. Expert.ai adds new features to its NL API, Outreach launches 3 new products and more news.

Shreveport, La. is the latest site for the construction of a new Amazon robotics fulfillment center, according to a recent announcement. The 650,000 square-foot site is the first of its kind in the state of Louisiana, and is expected to create 800 construction jobs and 1,000 full-time warehouse jobs starting at $15/hour. The facility, will be responsible for smaller customer items such as books, toys, electronics and other household items, using robots to assist employees with tasks like carrying shelves of products from worker to worker across massive warehouse spaces, reading barcodes on the ground for directions along the way to travel in place of workers that would have walked an equivalent of 10 miles per day. For context, the facility in Shreveport will be the largest of seven operating Amazon facilities.

“Amazon may be a global business, but it’s made up of small businesses and communities. From the local jobs we bring, to the local people we employ, train, and upskill — our business is made up of people from communities like Shreveport,” said William Hicks, Regional Director of Operations at Amazon in a press release statement. “We’re thrilled to be able to expand our operations in Northwest Louisiana and we look forward to becoming part of the fabric of the local community.”

Expert.ai Adds New Features To Its Natural Language API

The natural language (NL) API developed by Expert.ai, an artificial intelligence platform for language understanding, boasts new advancements of features for its analysis capabilities according to a recent press release. Extracting emotions on a large-scale and identifying stylometric — meaning the application of the study of linguistic style — data that propels a complete fingerprint of content remains among the biggest challenges of AI developers within the NL ecosystem.

Leveraging the analysis of emotional and behavioral traits plays a critical role in advancing the development of intelligent NL apps. Providing insight into the state of mind, developers and data scientists can go beyond the surface-level positive or negative ratings of a sentiment analysis to identify the emotions of a text. This is aimed at providing insight that will enable organizations to create applications that apply the full potential of their data.

Outreach Announces AI-Powered Conversation Intelligence, Buyer Sentiment Insights, and Success Plans at Unleash 2021

Outreach, a sales engagement provider, has announced three new products that support sellers across the entire revenue cycle.

"In a world that has changed so dramatically, it's what you do now that matters," said Manny Medina, CEO and co-founder of Outreach in a press statement. "That's why we built real-time conversation and made revenue intelligence actionable. Because we must empower revenue organizations to continuously evolve so they can thrive in this new environment. We're living up to our vision of reimagining the category and paving the way for a new buyer and seller engagement model."

At Unleash 2021, Outreach premiered Outreach Kaia, Outreach Insights, and Outreach Success Plans, all designed to support sales reps, managers, and leaders:

Learning Opportunities

  1. Outreach Kaia aims to provides sellers with in-the-moment coaching.
  2. Outreach Insights helps sellers better understand the level of interest a prospect or customer has with engaging in a sales conversation.
  3. Outreach Success Plans should allow sellers and buyers to collaborate on the Outreach platform.

Breadcrumbs Bakes Up $5.4M Seed To Help Companies Grow Revenue

San Francisco-based Breadcrumbs closed a $5.4 million seed round, led by Blue Canyon, with participation from Active Capital, Primo Ventures, Hustle Fund, Stormbreaker and several angel investors.

Breadcrumbs publicly launched just six months ago and has about a half dozen B2B SaaS customers. The 15-person company will use the new money to build out integration on large sales and marketing platforms, as well try to educate revenue departments about the emerging space. The company — which was founded just as the pandemic lockdowns began last year — sits at the intersection of sales and marketing. Its “lead scoring” platform ingests a variety of data points to help companies rate and score current and potential customers — helping drive customer acquisition, retention and upselling, said CEO Armando Biondi to CrunchBase.

Demand For Interactive CTV Ads Surge 4X

BrightLine, a company that specializes in connected TV (CTV) ad solutions, reported 4x growth in programmatic demand for its advertising formats. BrightLine emerged with a one-stop, programmatic marketplace for interactive CTV ads in 2016, and over the past year the continued scale of its partnerships intersected with demand among leading programmatic players to usher in programmatic CTV growth.

Last year, as demand began accelerating, BrightLine expanded, working with CTV SSP Magnite to create a supply-side programmatic offering of interactive and dynamic ad units. "We're excited to see interactive CTV gain momentum and BrightLine has laid the groundwork for it to take off," said Adam Lowy, Head of North American CTV Demand Sales and Strategy at Magnite in a press statement. "Streaming TV's ease of use and minimal ad load combined with a technically-savvy and engaged audience are the perfect combination that will enable interactive CTV to be successful."