The CloudFactory, a startup in Durham, is getting $2 million in capital from the Rockefeller Foundation with the funding to be used to expand its Kenya-based SpeakerText service operations.

CloudFactory bases its sales and marketing operations in Durham.

  • More details: Why did Rockefeller Foundation back CloudFactory?

The company plans to expand its Kenya-based workforce which focuses on technology tha integrates and provides video and audio transcription. CloudFactory says the service, which it bought in 2012, is “fast and accurate.”

The Rockefeller Foundation is making the investment as part of a seven-year $100 million “Digital Jobs Africa” commitment to provide jobs and training for some one million youth in Africa.

CouldFactory bases its SpeakerText team in Kenya due to an abundance of skilled workers with strong English skills and as part of its own mission to create more, sustainable jobs around the world. 

Rockefeller is making its investment as part of its Digital Jobs Africa program, which it describes as “a seven-year, $100 million effort to improve a million lives by connecting high-potential but disadvantaged youth in Africa to sustainable digital employment opportunities and skills training.” CloudFactory is using the funding to expand its SpeakerText video and audio transcription service, which relies on skilled workers in Kenya.

CloudFactory raised $3 million in traditional venture capital funding last October. 

 “After we bought SpeakerText and upgraded the technology, we searched the world to find the best untapped talent,” said CloudFactory Founder and CEO Mark Sears in a statement. “We identified Kenya as the hottest up-and-coming location in the world to build a transcription team, because of Kenya’s abundant supply of talented workers with strong English skills.”

Transcription customers include ESPN, consulting firm Deloitte and the University of North Carolina, according to the company.

“Using CloudFactory’s leading-edge technology to tap into Kenya’s highly-skilled workforce creates a win-win scenario that will greatly improve the lives of Kenyan youth who have limited access to alternative employment,” said Mamadou Biteye, managing director of the Rockefeller Foundation’s Africa Regional Office. “CloudFactory is gaining reliable, high-performing workers to meet its customer demand, while Kenya’s workers are joining the global digital economy.”