New Crimson Hexagon CEO Looking to Expand Analytics Services to Mobile, Target Life Sciences and Financial Services Clients

2/28/11Follow @xconomy

Cambridge, MA-based Crimson Hexagon is looking to new leadership to find additional markets for its sentiment analysis technology, which is designed to help companies get a better understanding of what’s being said about them in real-time on the Web.

On Wednesday, the 15-person company announced it had brought on a new president and CEO, Patricia Gottesman, less than a year after the former CEO Scott Centurino joined the company. (The announcement of his hire last April coincided with news that the company had raised $2 million in a second tranche of its Series A round.)

Centurino “left the company for personal and professional reasons,” says Crimson Hexagon senior director of marketing Wayne St. Amand. Gottesman, Crimson Hexagon’s third CEO in four years, is a veteran in the cable services industry and most recently a technology and media consultant. She first came to the company as a board member in December, because of her media expertise, she says.

“I was invited to join the company on the board and then in this new role, because the company was looking for someone who had the domain expertise to be able to set Crimson Hexagon on an aggressive growth course,” she says.

The company, which uses statistical techniques to monitor and analyze social media conversations about companies and even specific products, has Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, CNN, and The Wall Street Journal on its client roster, Greg wrote last October.

But it’s looking to make a splash in the life sciences and financial services markets, Gottesman says. She says Crimson Hexagon wants to market its analytics to healthcare firms and professionals to give them a better understanding of patient views on illness and recovery. And she says financial firms, particularly hedge funds, could use the technology to get a more accurate, real-time understanding of consumer sentiments of world markets to enable them to better navigate and leverage that volatility while investing.

To follow another hot tech trend, Crimson Hexagon also wants to make its technology available to existing clients on their mobile phones. “Business clients want to be able in real time look at the results of our reporting and we want to be able to deliver it through a mobile application,” Gottesman says.

Crimson Hexagon was founded in 2007 by Harvard political scientist and government professor Gary King, an expert in statistical analysis of public opinion. The company has raised money from Golden Seeds, Beacon Angels, New York Angels, CT Angel Investor Forum, and Zelkova Ventures. Original CEO Candace Fleming departed in 2010, also for “personal and professional reasons,” according to a company statement at the time.

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