DeepL Sets New Translation Tech Benchmark with USD 300m Funding at 2bn Valuation

DeepL Sets Translation Tech Benchmark with USD 300m Funding at 2bn Valuation

Machine translation and language AI specialist DeepL has raised USD 300m in a funding round that valued the company at USD 2bn, The Wall Street Journal reported on May 22, 2024.

The round, arguably the largest ever for any translation-focused tech company, was led by Index Ventures with participation from ICONIQ Growth, Teachers’ Venture Growth, plus existing investors VP, Atomico, and WiL.

“This funding shows how much interest there is in AI models like ours that focus on specific functions, like translation,” DeepL CMO Steve Rotter, who recently joined the company, noted in a LinkedIn post celebrating the announcement. 

The news also cements DeepL’s unicorn status, initially achieved in a January 2023 funding round that valued the company at over USD 1bn. 

Indeed, DeepL’s fast-tracked success since its 2017 founding corresponds to a rising demand for translation coupled with developments in neural networks, large language models, and AI. 

The German company currently has 900 employees and, in addition to its Cologne headquarters, has offices in the Netherlands, Poland, the UK, Japan, and the US (opened in Austin, Texas in early 2024).

According to DeepL’s own press release, the US is now the company’s third-largest market. Expansion into the US and other markets will be one initiative supported in part by the funds raised. Other funds will go toward R&D for AI communication tools, as well as recruitment for multiple divisions of the business. 

DeepL reportedly serves more than 100,000 customers, including household names such as Coursera and Zendesk, and now operates in 32 languages. The company also introduced an AI-powered writing assistant, DeepL Write Pro, in April 2024, signaling an expansion of language-related offerings beyond translation.