Failed ICO, Token Sale Project SNIPs Acquired by Sonos for $37.5 Million

Snips, an edge-based voice platform that allows enterprises and builders to create Non-public by Design voice assistants, has been acquired by Sonos for $37.5 million. The acquisition worth is effectively under the valuation of $50 million assessed in its earlier funding spherical in June 2017. nevertheless it does surpass the reported $18.5 million invested within the firm so far.

Based in 2013 and primarily based in Paris, France, the Snips group, comprised of over 50 gifted engineering, machine studying and product improvement professionals, has constructed a number one platform and instruments for creating tailor-made voice experiences. Its full-stack resolution is constructed with proprietary know-how permitting for voice processing on the gadget. This localized processing maximizes accuracy, effectivity and privateness whereas minimizing footprint and cloud dependency. Snips’ voice assistants are custom-built for particular duties and designed to run alongside different general-purpose voice assistants at present on the Sonos platform.

In a letter to shareholders, Sonos CEO Patrick Spence wrote the acquisition was motivated by bettering the voice person expertise on its units however that it doesn’t plan to compete instantly with “large tech” and their “ask something voice companies” however as an alternative will deal with gadget management options and music.

“As we speak we introduced the acquisition of Snips SAS for roughly $37.5 million in money. That is our first acquisition as a public firm and we’re happy to convey on a gifted group that may help what we do finest — making the Sonos expertise higher for our prospects. Snips is an AI voice platform for related units that gives private-by-design voice know-how, and the Snips group will convey experience and strategic IP that may make the voice expertise on Sonos even higher. We don’t plan to duplicate the large tech ‘ask something voice companies’ however anticipate this acquisition will add to our prospects’ ease of use and management as we proceed to distinguish an end-to-end Sonos expertise for our prospects. This tailor-made expertise aligns with exterior analysis exhibiting that the most well-liked use for voice assistants is to entry music.”

He additionally famous in a press launch:

“Tens of millions of individuals have come to benefit from the ease of controlling music with their voice. As we speak’s announcement offers us the added expertise and know-how to create an much more differentiated and immersive expertise for prospects, each inside and outdoors of the house,” mentioned Patrick Spence, CEO of Sonos. “We’re excited to welcome an unimaginable Snips group to the Sonos household to assist convey this imaginative and prescient to life.”

Dr. Rand Hindi, co-founder and CEO, mentioned:

“I’m extraordinarily pleased with the group and the work we now have completed over the past 5 years. The know-how we now have created has been validated by one of many leaders in client electronics. I’m thrilled that, becoming a member of a global firm, Snips will proceed its operations in France, serving to French applied sciences succeed at a global degree.”

Snips tried and cancelled a token sale in 2018 which was documented by co-founder Rand Hindi at their Medium weblog in a submit coined “5 Classes from a Failed Token Sale”.

“The explanation we bought into blockchain at Snips was not for fundraising. Somewhat, we discovered it to be a sublime resolution to a problem we confronted as an organization: how can we incentivize our builders and customers to self-organize with a view to create a vibrant voice ecosystem? To us, a token had nothing to do with forex or fundraising; moderately, it was a product function that enabled us to run our app retailer as a DAO.”

“With that definition in thoughts, we are able to separate the idea of a token from that of an ICO. If a token is an merchandise that may be bought, then an ICO is only a approach to pre-sell these tokens. However theoretically, we don’t want an ICO to promote tokens, and we might simply as effectively have listed the token on an alternate to be bought over time.”

Additionally it is necessary to know why ICOs had been created within the first place. Again within the early days of blockchain, initiatives had been principally open-source and structured round a basis. As such, founders couldn’t elevate enterprise cash (they didn’t have an organization from which to promote shares!) and thus had no different approach to finance the event of their challenge than to do a crowdfunding marketing campaign, aka an ICO. However at Snips, issues are totally different: we’re a venture-backed firm, with over €22M raised so far and a Collection B underway. We really don’t want the cash upfront to construct the token, as a result of we now have cash within the financial institution already. This implies we additionally by no means wanted to do an ICO within the first place.”

Snips was co-founded by three Ph.D.s – Rand Hindi, Michael Fester, and Maël Primet in 2013. The corporate, a graduate of the 500 Startups accelerator, kicked off with $6 million in funding led by Eniac Ventures, adopted by $1.7 million from undisclosed traders, and in June 2017 a bigger $13.45 million spherical led by Korelya Capital and MAIF Avenir. 

Based on author Bret Kinsella from, SNIP maintained a excessive profile as an answer for on-device voice management that didn’t require cloud entry which contrasted with Amazon and Google the place each voice assistant dialog is processed within the cloud and there are important privateness dangers. 

“Snips completed its native voice navigation by deploying small speech dictionaries on the units themselves. This meant the Snips pure language processing (NLP) couldn’t perceive all speech and even all kinds of speech however moderately specialised in a slim dictionary the place it might excel. For instance, voice controls for a espresso maker or for extra advanced duties like music search had been enabled as demonstrated within the movies under.”


Sonos (Nasdaq: SONO) is likely one of the world’s main sound expertise manufacturers. Because the inventor of multi-room wi-fi dwelling audio, Sonos innovation helps the world hear higher by giving individuals entry to the content material they love and permitting them to regulate it nevertheless they select. Recognized for delivering an unparalleled sound expertise, considerate dwelling design aesthetic, simplicity of use and an open platform, Sonos makes the breadth of audio content material accessible to anybody. Sonos is headquartered in Santa Barbara, California. Study extra at

About Richard Kastelein

Founder and writer of trade publication Blockchain Information (EST 2015), a accomplice at ICO companies collective Token.Company ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of schooling firm Blockchain Companions (Oracle Companion) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning writer, innovation government and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain know-how and startups at Blockchain Information and has additionally printed pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Enterprise Evaluate and Venturebeat. Irish Tech Information put him within the high 10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Advert Honorem – Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China’s first Blockchain College in Nanchang on the Jiangxi Forward Institute of Software program and Expertise. In 2018 he was invited to and attended College of Oxford’s Saïd Enterprise College for Enterprise Automation programme.  Over a half a decade expertise judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation initiatives as an EU knowledgeable for the European Fee’s SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup decide for the UK authorities’s Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain know-how in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.

He’s a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing profession has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He is written sometimes for Harvard Enterprise Evaluate, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and, and his work and concepts have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French. A journalist by commerce, an entrepreneur and adventurer at coronary heart, Kastelein’s skilled profession has ranged from political publishing to TV know-how, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to advertising and marketing and extra as he is travelled for almost 30 years as a Canadian expatriate dwelling world wide. In his 20s, he sailed world wide on small yachts and wrote a collection of journey articles referred to as, ‘The Hitchhiker’s Information to the Seas’ travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in main journey and yachting publications. He at present lives in Groningen, Netherlands the place he is elevating three teenage daughters together with his spouse and crusing accomplice, Wieke Beenen.

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