Appen is a global leader in speech and search technology services. With expertise in more than 150 languages, Appen partners with leading technology and ecommerce companies as they develop new offerings and expand them to global markets. Their solutions help companies create engaging products with accurate speech interfaces and relevant content ranging from web sites, to maps, images, and merchandise.
Appen was founded in Sydney in 1996 by linguist Dr. Julie Vonwiller and she was later joined by her engineer husband, Chris Vonwiller. Motivated by their passion for language and technology, the Vonwillers saw an opportunity to develop linguistic technologies to support product innovation in new markets around the world.
In 2011, Appen merged with the Butler Hill Group, which was based in Ridgefield, Connecticut and Seattle, Washington and founded by Lisa Braden-Harder in 1993. Lisa was a member of the pioneering team in grammar checking technology at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center before starting a linguistic consulting practice. After the merger, the combined business became Appen Butler Hill and expanded its business scope to include language resources, search and text.
As the social web became an increasingly bigger part of people’s lives, Appen looked to grow its combined services and capacity in global crowd- sourcing and social media technology to empower people to connect and share across the internet. In 2012, Appen acquired Wikman Remer, a firm based in San Rafael, California, which developed tools and platforms for employee engagement, online moderation and curation.