Japan’s Wacul snags $2.5M to enhance AI-powered traffic analytics tool for websites



See the original story in Japanese.

Tokyo-based startup Wacul, which offers website improvement consulting, announced last month that it has fundraised about 3 million yen (about $2.5 million) from Japanese VC firm Jafco (TSE: 8595). Wacul launched a product called AI Analyst in April 2015, which is an access analytics tool for websites which automatically suggests improvement plans.

Acquiring traffic data from Google Analytics, AI Analyst analyzes a large volume of data, difficult for humans to aggregate, and lets one spot problems within the website automatically.

When comparing data with various attributes such as local devices or upon referring to pages, landing pages or visitors flow for a website that have more than 200 pages, the combinations of data can become enormous. The Wacul team aims to replace human power with artificial intelligence to process such high-volume data.


Many website owners are incapable of analyzing access traffic sufficiently, even while implementing tools like Google Analytics for data acquisition. Since AI Analyst links with data of these tools, one can start using it easily. Once implemented, AI Analyst starts learning the characteristics of a website, past analysis reports or business trends from each vertical, so that its accuracy is improved.

AI Analyst costs 30,000 yen (about $250) for a month but one will be charged only in the month one requires the report, not every month. Therefore, it is possible to check the report once a quarter, for example.

Wacul CEO Hirofumi Otsu explained that AI Analyst is at the stage of learning judgment by human consultant and of trying to recreate that. The team is going to improve accuracy by joint research with Prof. Yutaka Matsuo’s lab in the University of Tokyo from now on, in order to develop a superior artificial intelligence level with accuracy exceeding human judgments.

Some Japanese companies have begun employing staff in charge of website or web marketing teams. That is quite obvious outside Japan, but not the case domestically. As the division works well within the company, cost consciousness will appear there. We hope that AI Analyst will meet such demand as a tool with high cost performance. Also, we want small startups that cannot afford sufficient web analytics to utilize it.

Spread of access analysis tools has made it possible for many players to acquire data. Accordingly, various services that provide methods for checking these acquired data has been multiplying. AI Analyst being usable at 30,000 yen a month seems to be widely acceptable.

The Wacul team will use the latest funds to enhance human resources and promotion. When data accumulated has been introduced widely and as Wacul’s technical ability improves, we wonder what kind of improvement plans AI Analyst can suggest to us?

Translated by Taijiro Takeda
Edited by “Tex” Pomeroy