Amit Singhal, who recently retired as Head of Search at Google and master behind ‘ranking algorithm’ has now joined the board of directors at Fitness-tracker startup Goqii.
Singhal has worked over 15 years at Google. He was leading Google’s core search quality department. In 2001, he rewrote the search engine and was named a “Google Fellow”. He is known as the master who wrote the formulas that decide which web pages best answer each user’s question.
Completing his degree from IIT Roorkee, MS in Computer Science from University of Minnesota and a PhD in Computer Science from Cornell University, Singhal joined AT&T Labs in 1996 and joined Google in 2000.
Amit Singhal talking about his excitement to join Goqii said,
“The idea that is most intriguing about GOQii is having a human being working with artificial intelligence to motivate the user.
It is not just some bit of learning… but there will be a lot of artificial intelligence going in the background. The interface to these things has not evolved to a point where a human being is fully comfortable with it, especially in an area like health and wellness… so a lot of science has to be worked upon. The world needs good health and it needs to be motivated about it.”
GOQii is a Menlo Park, California-based fitness technology venture that offers a wearable fitness band paired with remote personalized coaching.
Vishal Gondal founded the company after selling his former startup, Indiagames, to Disney in 2011 for approximately $100M. After closing its beta Beta program in April 2014, GOQii became commercially available in India in August 2014.
In January 2015, the company launched a limited US beta only open to 500 initial customers in the U.S. Selected applicants receive 12 months of personal training through unlimited chat and monthly video calls over the company’s mobile app.
With operations across countries such as Singapore, India, Malaysia, Dubai, Abhu- Dabi,US GOQii already has an existing user base of under 50,000 customers in India, integrating with 35 major fitness bands including Jawbone, Fitbit, Garmin, Moov, Misfit and Sony.
Last year, GOQii Technologies has received $13.4 million in Series A funding from New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and China-based Cheetah Mobile. The startup received an investment from Edelweiss at a valuation of $45-60 million.
Previously, the startup had received an undisclosed investment amount from Paytm founder and CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma.