AXA Strategic Ventures has made a $1 million investment in the French tech startup company Evercontact, a cloud service that extracts contact information in emails and shares and updates them automatically.

With more than 100,000 users, Evercontact is the only fully automated cloud service “that accurately and effortlessly finds and updates contact information,” using a “big data” approach, AXA Strategic Ventures said, noting that the company thus far has analyzed over 1 billion emails and created and updated more than 300 million user contacts.

The value is clear for a professional’s individual use or even more importantly as a collaborative tool to share contact info in a team’s address book or leads and accounts within a customer relationship management (CRM) platform, AXA said.

The $1 million investment in Paris-based Evercontact is designed to “support a technology with the power to improve AXA’s customer experience” and accelerate its entry in the U.S. marketplace, AXA said in a statement.

“Contact management is obviously a major issue for insurance companies, especially when optimizing their sales relationships,” according to Minh Q. Tran, general partner of AXA Strategic Ventures.

Investing in technology related to big data is a priority for AXA Strategic Ventures, Tran said, noting that Evercontact, as an innovator in this market, “has a potential for international expansion that influenced our decision to provide support for its growth.”

International Expansion

This investment will allow Evercontact to finance its technical and commercial development with the goal of boosting its international presence, particularly in the U.S., a crucial market which already accounts for 80 percent of the company’s revenues, AXA said.

The startup aims to substantially increase sales in the coming months, and to maximize U.S. business by opening an office in San Francisco in 3Q 2015. Evercontact has 10 employees and plans to double that by the end of the year.

“The funds will enable us to shift into high gear, and particularly to expand our reach in the worldwide marketplace,” stated Philippe Laval, CEO of Evercontact. “Our service is already successful with U.S.-based companies but our continued growth there requires a local presence, made possible by this support from AXA Strategic Ventures.”

Launched in February 2015, AXA Strategic Ventures is a €200 million ($216.6 million) venture capital fund dedicated to emerging strategic innovations in insurance and financial services with customer-focused solutions. AXA Strategic Ventures invests in startups via seed funding and also provides venture capital for more established companies. The fund currently has six offices: San Francisco, New York, London, Paris, Zurich and Berlin, with a local presence in Asia coming in 2015.

Source: AXA Strategic Ventures