Uizard, the Copenhagen-based startup that is using “machine intelligence” to quickly turn app sketches into prototypes, has raised $2.8 million in seed funding.
The round is led by Nordic VC firm byFounders, with participation from LDV Capital, av8 Ventures, and New York Venture Partners. A number of individuals are also investing, including Scott Kurnit, Julia Qiu, Lars Houbak, and Alex Spiro.
Aiming to accelerate the ideation phase of website and app design, Uizard says it legerages “advanced” machine learning and computer vision to turn a simple sketch into a basic prototype for almost immediate testing.
Sketched can be drawn with pen and paper, photographed, and then uploaded to Uizard for the AI to do its work. “Imagine hand-sketching wireframes on your notebook during a meeting and being able to present a functional prototype from these ideas only seconds after,” reads the company’s pitch.
“Anyone who ever visited the product team office at any tech company would have noticed the thousands of sketches and wireframes covering the whiteboards, sticky notes, and notebooks,” Uizard co-founder and CEO Tony Beltramelli tells me.
“Designers are constantly scribbling their latest ideas but it literally takes days to implement them into testable prototypes”.
Beltramelli says that Uizard enables product teams to go from sketches to working code in as little time as possible. “The value of our product is all about speed of execution,” he adds.
Typical users of the product, which is currently operating as a free to use beta, are UX design teams in enterprises, agencies, and startups.
Beltramelli claims Uizard doesn’t yet have direct competitors and the closest so far has been Airbnb and Microsoft who have showed interest in developing their own non-commercial “sketch2code” technologies.
“UX design teams currently rely on traditional design studios to create interactive prototypes such as Figma, Sketch, Adobe XD, and InVision,” he tells me.
On that note, Uizard is also announcing that it has hired Rizwan Khan, formerly sales executive and first international business hire at InVision, as its Chief Commercial Officer. Notably, Benjamin Wilkins, lead designer of Airbnb’s Sketch2code, has also joined the Uizard product advisory board.