UK-Based Bitfount Raises $5M Seed to Streamline Collaboration Between Organisations Working with Sensitive Datasets

12 May, 2022

Bitfount is helping solve some of the world’s biggest problems by making hard-to-access data interactable while easing the burden on IT and legal teams. The company’s federated analytics and machine learning platform enables secure, fast and easy data collaboration without any data needing to be shared or even moved.

London, 12th May 2022, 9AM: Bitfount, the federated analytics and machine learning platform, today announced that it has raised a $5M seed round as it continues to accelerate its product development and expand its engineering and design teams with key hires. The round, led by Ahren and Speedinvest, reflects the growing global demand for machine learning and analytics in every industry, alongside increased public and regulatory awareness of data privacy concerns, and the rise of the data-centric AI movement.

Bitfount was founded by Blaise Thomson and Naaman Tammuz. Thomson’s previous company, VocalIQ, was acquired by Apple where he subsequently served as Chief Architect for Siri Understanding, and Tammuz was previously CPTO for B2B business insights platform DueDil. The Bitfount platform makes it possible for data scientists, researchers, business analysts and data custodians to share, access and collaborate on datasets without disclosing any of the sensitive, underlying data.

“Where traditionally the legal process behind sharing raw data between parties can take months or even years, Bitfount’s secure network instead allows algorithms to travel to datasets rather than the other way around, which means there needn’t be any disclosure of sensitive information. This new paradigm unlocks opportunities for both analysis and machine learning that were previously impossible – either because they required sharing of sensitive raw data, or because the contractual agreements were prohibitively complex.” explains Thomson.

Bitfount’s product utilises a zero-trust security model and a novel message-based architecture that makes it much easier and faster for IT teams to deploy than other federated solutions. They operate a hybrid open-source/SaaS model, with a developer-friendly, extensible SDK backed by a powerful web-based platform. The platform provides a suite of functionality including a catalogue for dataset discovery, flexible and granular role-based access controls, full audit history, support for custom models, algorithms and data sources, and cryptographic tools such as differential privacy and secure multi-party computation (SMPC) for additional privacy guarantees.

Bitfount is seeing demand across multiple industries, however the company is initially focused on applications in healthcare, where typical data collaborations can currently take years to negotiate and finalise. Example problems being tackled include transforming patient identification for clinical trials (86% of which fail to meet their recruitment targets), digital biomarker development (projected to be a $10Bn market by 2027), drug development, AI/ML model evaluation for regulatory and benchmarking purposes, improving data diversity and representation for better healthcare outcomes, and many others.

The company already has contracts with pharmaceutical companies, research institutions, hospitals and major financial services firms, and is currently accepting waitlist sign-ups for its public Beta launch. It also recently announced that Matt Seigel, who led the team behind Apple’s federated learning platform which is deployed on hundreds of millions of iOS devices globally, has joined as the company’s Head of Engineering.

Alice Newcombe-Ellis, Founding and General Partner of Ahren, said “Access to data is increasingly vital for businesses, but in today’s world requires zero trust approaches to data governance. Bitfount enables user-based access control with a product that cuts through the complexity of data collaboration, to help ensure organisations stay ahead from a security, regulatory and commercial perspective. We are proud to be supporting this proven team.”

Rick Hao, Partner at Speedinvest, adds “Bitfount is strategically placed to create an ecosystem in which dataset owners can safely be analysed by external users. It is democratising the technology to fully unlock the power of data, and we are certain that many different industries will look to adopt their best-in-class product.”


About Bitfount

Bitfount is on a mission to give data collaboration superpowers to any organisation working with sensitive datasets. The company’s federated analytics and machine learning platform sends algorithms to data instead of the other way around, so that data scientists, researchers and information governance teams can focus on insights instead of bureaucracy. Bitfount is based in London, UK. Learn more and sign up for access at

Press Contacts: Tom Lawrence, Ben Heath

About Ahren

Ahren is a deep tech and deep science investment firm set up by Alice Newcombe-Ellis alongside co-founding Science Partners that have founded companies and/or technologies that are today valued in excess of $100BN combined. The firm was established from first principles with a mission to be disruptive as an investment institution, with a new model – genuine partnership between the creators of deep technology and deep science, and commercially active, long-term capital, to harness tremendous global talent and build and exponentially accelerate the next generation of great enterprises. Ahren’s Portfolio companies include Graphcore, Zapata Computing, ZOE, Phaidra, Heirloom Carbon, and Bicycle Therapeutics among others. Ahren has >$550M AuM and has team members in Cambridge (UK), London, and Boston. Learn more at

About Speedinvest

Speedinvest is a leading early-stage venture capital firm with more than €600m AuM and 40 investors based in Berlin, London, Munich, Paris, and Vienna. Our dedicated sector-focused teams are the first to fund Europe’s most innovative technology startups and our in-house operational experts are on-hand to offer founders ongoing support with growth, HR, US market expansion, and more. Wefox, Bitpanda, TIER Mobility, GoStudent, Wayflyer, CoachHub, Schüttflix, TourRadar, Adverity, and Twaice are among our portfolio of 250+ companies. Learn more at


This press release does not constitute an offer of interests in any Ahren fund. Any offer of an Ahren fund will be made through separate offering documents and in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. This press release may contain forward looking statements. These statements include, but are not limited to, discussions related to Ahren’s expectations regarding the performance of its business, its liquidity and capital resources and the other statements contained herein. These forward-looking statements are based on management’s beliefs, as well as assumptions made by, and information currently available to, management. When used in this press release, the words “believe,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Although management believes that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that these expectations will prove to have been correct. These statements are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Ahren gives no undertaking or assumes any obligation to publicly update or review any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, except as required by applicable law.
Ahren believes that selected case studies should be considered as a reflection of Ahren’s investment process, and references to these particular portfolio companies should not be considered as recommendations of any particular security, investment or portfolio company. The information provided about these portfolio companies is intended to be illustrative, and is not intended to be used as an indication of the current or future performance of the portfolio companies of the fund that Ahren manages.
prev page Ahren Leads $30mn Funding Round in Cambridge Epigenetix next page OxDX Raises £2.6M Pre-Seed Funding to Develop AI Powered Rapid Diagnostic Technology

We use cookies to give you the best experience on our website. Learn more.