MALMÖ, Sweden -- Polar Rose AB, a company uniquely combining automatic facial recognition with 3D modeling for visual search applications, today announced it has received initial Series A funding. A total of $5.1 m (4 m, SEK 37 m) was raised from Nordic Venture Partners (Copenhagen), the Nordic region's largest IT venture company. Polar Rose was founded with unique expertise in automatic 3D modeling and pattern recognition pioneered by the companys founder and CTO, Dr. Jan Erik Solem.
Polar Rose, which is also the name of a flower-shaped mathematical curve used as a logo mark by the company, plans to officially announce services based on its Bloom technology later this year.
At this stage, the company is disclosing that its face matching technology Bloom will not be the single central functionality for its service under development, even as the technology outperforms current online face recognition attempts. Bloom will be a component in Polar Rose's forthcoming product release, which will sort and add context to the Web of photos.
However, unlike all the major image search engines (Google®, Yahoo!®, MSN®), Polar Rose harnesses collective intelligence to improve on what can be done with algorithms alone. "We make the machine work for the user and the user work for the machine, thus going beyond what Artificial Intelligence can achieve on its own. In essence, we're creating bionic software," said Dr. Solem.
Further details on the technology and product will be disclosed by the end of the year, with an open beta trial available in Q1 2007.
Polar Rose is interesting because the idea is unique and has great potential, said Claus Højbjerg Andersen of Nordic Venture Partners.
Bloom is a disruptive technology in the best sense of the word - we believe Bloom enables a revolution in how people sort and find photos of friends, celebrities or family, said Nikolaj Nyholm, CEO of Polar Rose. We have taken some of the most advanced mathematical and 3D technologies anywhere and created a product that is easy to use and interact with. Bloom goes beyond anything people have seen before and we are looking forward to our open beta test in early 2007.