Maxa, a Montreal-based startup that offers an AI-enabled cloud-based financial analysis application, won the Snowflake Startup Challenge, a competition for startups that create innovative applications and products powered by Snowflake’s Data Cloud. Maxa was the first ever Canadian company to reach the finals of this competition, where it faced Germany’s Semantha.ai and Israel’s Honeydew.
In addition to various marketing and mentorship opportunities, the first prize comes with a potential investment of US$500,000.
The Snowflake Startup Challenge is organized by Snowflake, a cloud-based data hosting company from San-Mateo, California, founded in 2012. It offers a cloud-based data storage and analytics service based on the “data warehouse-as-a-service” model, which allows companies to store and analyze data using decentralized hardware and software in the cloud.
Maxa’s goal is to automate financial and operational information extremely quickly and without requiring any special skills. The company leverages the breadth of the Snowflake platform to absorb billions of rows of data and transform them into a unified model to feed the operator’s user interface.
As Raphaël Steinman, co-founder and co-chief executive officer (CEO) of Maxa along with his brother Alex, the other co-founder and co-CEO, explained in an interview earlier this week with Direction informatique, IT World Canada’s French sister publication, “Maxa is a company that automates the process of transforming raw data into answers and delivering them on the doorstep of its customers.
“Our customers need to be able to see the big picture from ten thousand feet up while still being able to zoom in and analyze every minute detail, and they want to be able to do that on a self-service basis. That’s what Maxa offers them.”
When asked before the final event about the Snowflake challenge and Maxa’s chances of winning it, Raphaël Steinman was optimistic. “We want to stand out and show that we bring something fundamentally different: A caliber of solution, customers and revenue that is far beyond what could be expected from a startup of our age.”
Considering their victory, it seems that Maxa has succeeded.