Murf.ai, an AI-enabled voice-over startup, has raised $1.5 million in seed funding led by Elevation Capital. Angel investors who participated in this funding round include Vidit Aatrey (CEO, Meesho), Sanjeev Barnwal (CTO, Meesho), Kashyap Deorahe (CEO, Hypertrack), and Ashish Goel (CEO, Urban Ladder).
The funding will be used for hiring AI research talent for R&D and product innovation, building a superior voice synthesis technology and driving expansion across EMEA and the Americas.
Founded in in October 2020 by IIT-Kharagpur batchmates Sneha Roy, Ankur Edkie, and Divyanshu Pandey, Murf.ai is an AI-enabled SaaS tool that allows users to generate 'human-like' voice-overs for videos and slideshows—without hiring a voice artist or using any complex recording equipment. Their aim is to make high-quality voice-overs accessible by placing a simple yet powerful online voice studio in the hands of every content creator.
Videos popular on internet
With videos taking over the internet, the need to create audio and video content at scale is bigger than ever. Most content and marketing teams typically end up outsourcing voice-overs, which are expensive, time-consuming and cumbersome to produce.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also driven people across the world to reinvent the way they communicate with voice gaining more prominence. Further, while Text-to-Speech technology is readily available and accessible, it has not been used extensively for commercial purposes as the audio output does not sound “natural”.
Voice cloning technology
Ankur Edkie, CEO & CTO, Murf.ai says, “In the last few years, the advances in speech synthesis technology have brought the quality at par with natural human speech. At Murf.ai, our AI-based voice cloning technology will also allow users to create custom clones of their voices using just a few minutes of recorded audio.”
In the last year, the founders had faced significant challenges in creating voice-overs for product demos and updating existing files with feature launches. They realized there was a gap in the market and set out to build the Murf.ai platform.
Commenting on the funding, Mukul Arora, Partner, Elevation Capital said, "We believe that the (Murf.ai) team has identified a latent but deep unmet need for making voice-overs easy. Given their strong tech and business capabilities, we are confident that Sneha, Ankur and Divyanshu would be able to democratize voice overs and scale Murf.ai to great success."
Voice is a large market with the audiobook and podcast segments valued at $1.2 billion and $9 billion respectively, both growing at 20 percent+ CAGR. The founders are looking to tap into this opportunity by simplifying voice technology and making high-quality, natural-sounding voice overs accessible to enterprises, SMBs and content creators globally.
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