logo-cognitive-scaleCognitive Scale launched Wednesday in Austin.

The startup, founded 18 months ago, has operated in stealth mode until now. Cognitive Scale has created a “cognitive” cloud platform that can mine huge databases and understand natural language to present data in an easy to understand format. The cognitive cloud simulates the human thought processes and mimics how a brain works.

Matt Sanchez, formerly the leader of IBM Watson Labs, founded the company and serves as its chief technology officer. The Entrepreneurs’ Fund, a venture fund for early stage cognitive computing companies started by Manoj Saxena, former general manager of IBM Watson and chairman of Cognitive Scale, is funding the startup.

“There are three jaw-dropping facts that limit the capabilities of Big Data. First is 55 percent of big data initiatives fail. Second is 70 to 80 percent of the world’s data is trapped in silos within and outside company walls with no secure and reliable way to access it. Third, valuable insights are lost because 80 percent of data is not machine readable; this is commonly referred to as “dark data,” Matt Sanchez, founder and chief technology officer, Cognitive Scale said in a news release. “We address these gaps through cognitive computing to help customers improve decision making, personalize consumer experiences and create more profitable relationships.”

The cognitive computing market is expected to grow from $1 billion today to more than than $50 billion by 2018, according to Deloitte.

Cognitive Scale’s cloud platform securely extracts insights from a company’s existing data and makes it easily accessible and understandable. Its technology also understands natural language. The company allows its customers “to create a cognitive cloud in 10 seconds, deliver your cognitive app in 10 hours, and customize it with your data within 10 days using any infrastructure including IBM Bluemix, Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud.” The company’s first applications are being built for the travel, healthcare, retail, and financial services industries.

“Given the massive amounts of data that accumulate every day, especially unstructured data, it’s clear that the ability to go beyond traditional Big Data analytics to solve real business issues remains both a challenge and a top priority for organizations today,” Sue Feldman, CEO of industry analyst firm Synthexis said in a news release. “We need better methods to address complex problems that draw on multiple types of data at scale from both inside and outside the organization. But the combination of advanced technology and industry knowledge that is necessary is scarce. If we are to solve the most critical problems in customer care, healthcare, in finance, in fraud or intelligence, we need platforms that can do the heavy lifting for the rest of us without having to develop them ourselves. That’s what Cognitive Scale has done. For this reason, we see Cognitive Scale as a front-runner in the emerging cognitive computing marketplace.“