Nothing like having your former teammates learn from you, defect, and then try to kill you. Valley It-company “Cuill” (pronounced COOL) has grabbed another $25 million to fund the development of its “new approach to search.”
Would-be Google-killing search engines are a dime a dozen, of course, and nine out of 10 of them don’t end up killing anything. But if I worked at Google, the amount of dollars Cuill has raised and the bios of the senior team would at least make me sniff around to figure out what the company is up to:
Anna Patterson, President and Founder
Anna was the architect of Google’s large search index, TeraGoogle, that launched in early 2006. While at Google, Anna was the technical lead of one of the two Web ranking groups at Google, in charge of GoogleBase, and the manager for the core piece of Google’s ad-matching technology. She joined Google in 2004 after designing, writing and selling Recall – the largest search engine in existence at the time at 12 billion pages. Anna has a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Russell Power, Founder
Russell was technical lead for the serving part of TeraGoogle. While at Google, he spent two years working on Web ranking and on the automatic Spam detection project. Russell attended the University of Washington and is on leave there as a PhD candidate in computer science.
Louis Monier, VP of Products
Louis joined Cuill from Google, where he led the design of a faceted search engine. Previously, he led the design of a new search experience at eBay, rebuilding the company’s search engine and serving as the first eBay Fellow and director of its Advanced Technology Lab. Prior to eBay, Louis was the founding CTO of AltaVista and launched BabelFish, the first machine translation site. He has also led various algorithms and research projects at Digital WRL, Xerox PARC and Carnegie-Mellon University. Louis has a PhD in Mathematics and Computer Science from Paris Orsay University.
Google and its shareholders needn’t quiver in fear: If any search start-up does end up producing the quantum leap in user experience necessary to win converts from Google (a very high hurdle, in my opinion), Google will probably just buy it.
Cuill, a stealth start-up with a new approach to search, announced today that the company has secured a second round of equity financing of $25 million, led by Madrone Capital Partners. The Series B investment follows a previous $8 million funding round from Tugboat Ventures and Greylock Partners.
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