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GroupSolver announced its recent completion of a $1 million financing round, led by Tech Coast Angels’ San Diego network, with $700,000 of new money raised. The deal received robust interest and was fully subscribed at the $1M ceiling.

GroupSolver is unique among online consumer research companies in being able to provide deeper insights through a technological breakthrough that allows for open-ended answers to be quantified. It captures natural language feedback from a group of relevant online consumers, rather than collecting the typical multiple-choice responses that “lead” consumers to a pre-determined answer. This method captures explicit information and reactions, and consumer input is more candid and specific. GroupSolver’s clients include some of the world’s largest brands, many of which are repeat buyers.

“We address that elusive ‘why’ that keeps marketers and managers awake at night: why are the customers not loving our new product? What do people see our brand to be? How can we improve our service? The fact is that our customers don’t see their problems as “surveys” in their heads, but they rather see a set of business questions that need to be answered in order to make a fact-based decision,” said Rastislav (Rasto) Ivanic, founder and CEO of GroupSolver. “Our novel approach is allowing these ‘why’ questions to be asked and answered in natural language dialogue, and backed up with real statistics.”

“While I was impressed with GroupSolver’s product and market traction, I was even more impressed with its leadership,” said Dean Rosenberg, deal lead and vice president at Tech Coast Angels San Diego. “Rasto has a ‘big company’ background working for some of the best, largest consulting practices in consumer research, and yet he also has the productivity and agility of a startup guy. This culture is evident across the company, from sales to product development.”

The recent financing round will be used to expand the product’s platform and to increase their sales and marketing capabilities. GroupSolver will be adding features and improving ease of use and its algorithm, increasing the company and product profile and driving inbound traffic—and it will be consolidating its R&D team in San Diego in early 2018.

“We first got our start here in San Diego, had applied to TCA but we were too early in our development,” continued Ivanic. “We raised an initial angel round that allowed us to build a dedicated product team in Slovakia and a sales team in Utah. When it came time to raise a seed round, we reapplied with TCA and were accepted. Most of the members in TCA San Diego have been with early stage companies, they understand entrepreneurship and what’s required to make a startup successful—and we just clicked. It is wonderful to be bringing R&D, an important part of our team, back to where we started in San Diego.”