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The Hollywood-inspired start-up with business tools that don't need coding

Joyeeta Das, Co-founder and CEO, Gyana
Last week, London-based data science firm Gyana raised a pre-series A funding of $3.9 million led by Fuel Adventures, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone, Green Shores Capital and U+I.                       

Started in 2015 by serial entrepreneur Joyeeta Das, the CEO and David Kell, the chief technology officer, Gyana's inception has a Hollywood connect. 

While Das and Kell were studying at Oxford University, they discussed how, in the Steven Spielberg-directed Minority Report, Tom Cruise did all the advanced analysis without coding a word. 

The idea behind setting up Gyana, or knowledge in Sanskrit, was to create advanced business tools that help users access 'techie powers' without coding a word. 

The start-up works on what is called the NOCODE movement that started few years ago. 

"It basically means you can create many things for yourselves without being a techie, simply by using GUI (graphic user interface) or conversational tools. We aim to make data science accessible even to the non-tech professionals," said Das. 

NOCODE platforms provide a visual software interface that allows users to create applications with easy-to-use features such as drag-and-drop modules, picklist selection boxes, spreadsheet imports and so on. 

The firm works with global customers such as Vodafone, Barclays, UK Ministry of Defence and Pret-A-Manger. 

Gyana's artificial intelligence and big data tool, Neera, harvests information from more than 80 anonymised data points. Neera helps Gyana's clients do geospatial analytics without hiring techies or buying data.

Neera has up to 15 years worth of client contracts secured and has generated a turnover in excess of £1 million.

Similarly, its other product, Vayu, is a NOCODE tool designed to be a 'citizen data scientist' without actually being trained as a data scientist. "'Just imagine being able to do all that data scientists do at a single click' is the idea on which it was based," said Das. 

A crucial part of the emerging NOCODE market, Vayu addresses major pain points for both data scientists and companies that don't have the resource to hire a full-time data scientist. Vayu is offered in a limited free format to the public and as a paid-for business package.  

At present, Gyana outsources non-core functions such as transactional sales, data mining and so on. It has 22 core people with delivery partners and extended teams in Ukraine, Sweden and Johannesburg.

"We want to be more like Apple (with gewer but amazing people) and less like Microsoft (hundreds of people with many managers)," said Das. 

Although Gyana competes with established players, it insists the user experience on its own platform is better. 

The question one might ask here is this: Given the rising recognition of data protection and privacy concerns around the world, how does Gyana intend to collect and process data?

"Data science will be more in-house, local, secure, done by users themselves. It will not be a separate division inside a company but (something) like Amazon or Deliveroo. Every single division will be empowered by data science. It will be pervasive and a data driven world," said Das. 

The firm is now looking to expand further into the UK, parts of the European Union, the United States and plans to launch operations in India at some point soon. 

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