The 10 most innovative companies in data science for 2022

Explore the full 2022 list of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, 528 organizations whose efforts are reshaping their businesses, industries and broader culture. We selected the companies that are making the most impact with their initiatives in 52 categories, including the most innovative media, design and AI companies.

Today, almost all companies are using data science to improve their business and products. But the most innovative are harnessing data to advance their industries and developing solutions to some of the most pressing social, scientific and technical problems. Unleashing the power of artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies, these companies have found new applications for data and are making progress across industries.

This year’s list of the most innovative companies in data science includes Microsoft, which uses data about how we work to inform new features for its teams and work products that offer a more human approach to hybrid working. UrbanFootprint has a sophisticated data platform that can identify households facing food insecurity or eviction, and help institutions direct their aid more effectively and efficiently. and Sema4, meanwhile, put their data analysis skills to use in delivering better healthcare to patients. And Smarter Sorting uses the data to determine the toxicity of products without having to test on animals.

Other companies use the data for more fun purposes: first leaf the wine subscription club pioneered a way to leverage artificial intelligence to analyze over 2,000 attributes for each bottle it offers and manage shipments to each member’s personal palate. Here’s a rundown of the best data science apps in 2022.


To use data about how we work to create new product features

Microsoft uses data about how we work to inform product development of its work applications. In March, the company released its annual Labor Trends Index, a collection of key trends shaping working life today, compiled from a study of more than 30,000 people in 31 countries, data from Microsoft 365 and LinkedIn, and brain research from Microsoft’s Human Factors Lab. . Based on the index results, Microsoft has refined its work apps with new features, including an Outlook meeting delay tool that encourages breaks between meetings, a virtual commute experience to help remote workers being more intentional in setting up and relaxing for the day, and a together mode that puts everyone in a virtual space so speakers can make eye contact with their team as if they were watching an auditorium. In July 2021, Teams had 250 million monthly active users (against 145 million in April of the same year). In October 2021, Microsoft reported that 138 organizations had more than 100,000 Teams users and more than 3,000 organizations had more than 10,000 users.

Microsoft is No. 8 on Fast Company’s list of the 50 most innovative companies in the world in 2022.

To identify patients with rare diseases

Using its artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies, insights-as-a-service provider identifies undiagnosed or misdiagnosed patients with rare diseases to help them get the care they need need. Part of the global healthcare innovation company Real Chemistry, offers data analysis of over 300 million anonymous patient journeys, 65 billion social determinants of health signals, and multiple sources of scientific research, to create models that identify patients in need of specific care. The company recently launched a product that both locates medically eligible patients for rare disease trials and helps optimize study design and protocol development. During its three years of operation, has grown by 100% each year and has identified thousands of patients with rare and sometimes fatal diseases.


To develop predictive technology for holistic health trajectories

Sema4 uses patient outcome data to improve predictive health trajectory technology. In September, the company launched Sema4 Elements, a portfolio of data-driven genomics solutions to help providers holistically treat patients during reproduction and pregnancy. Portfolio information includes the optimal time for a pregnant woman to have a non-invasive prenatal test (NIPT), predicted risk of preeclampsia, identification of molecular ancestry, and a pregnancy tool with weekly updates based on on individual patient health records. In 2021, Sema4 increased its number of patient records by approximately 100%, reaching almost 20 million at the end of the second quarter.

4. Urban Footprint

To use the data to direct aid to people facing food insecurity or eviction

With the spotlight on social inequality this year, companies using data to drive real change stand out amid empty statements and acknowledgments. UrbanFootprint has developed a community resilience data platform that provides insights to help urban transformation projects. In 2021, the company launched two new products, Eviction Risk Insights (ERI) and Food Security Insights (FSI), the first data tools to track food insecurity and the eviction crisis in the United States. Using these tools, UrbanFootprint can identify households facing eviction or food insecurity, down to the block group level, and highlight others at risk. With multiple six-figure contracts with state and local agencies across the United States, UrbanFootprint has helped direct aid to millions of at-risk households.

5. TigerGraph

To create the first graph database as a service

TigerGraph is the first company to offer a distributed native graph database as a service, giving customers a holistic view and understanding of their businesses. With the largest and most scalable graphing platform in the world, TigerGraph is able to run deep link queries and produce results in less than a minute. The software company connects numerous datasets and pipelines to create 360 ​​customer solutions and analyze connected data, helping customers optimize supply chain time, block fraudulent activity on mobile networks and train AI-based customer platforms. In 2021, TigerGraph saw a 300% increase in user adoption and revenue.

6. Data bricks

For launching the first open data sharing protocol

Databricks operates an open-source platform that serves as a data tool for businesses. In May 2021, the software company released a number of new machine learning features, including the world’s first open protocol designed to securely share data between organizations in real time, dubbed Delta Sharing. Databricks has received significant investment from major cloud providers AWS, Microsoft and Google, which along with other industry leaders have expressed support for the company’s new data protocol. Today, nearly half of the world’s top 500 companies use Databricks for data engineering and collaborative data science.

7. Smarter sorting

To prevent animal cruelty by eliminating toxic product testing

Smarter Sorting helps prevent animal cruelty by using data calculations to determine a product’s toxicity without having to test on animals. After gathering all the available data on a product, Smarter Sorting identifies the chemical ingredients and uses a library of toxicology data to determine the toxic level of each. The company then uses an acute toxicity estimation formula to calculate the product’s toxicity, running thousands of computer-generated scenarios, in just seconds, to validate the estimate. As of 2021, Smarter Sorting’s Product Intelligence platform has been adopted by over 1,200 suppliers and 24 major retailers like Costco, Wegmans and Albertsons. The company’s revenue, meanwhile, was on track for 600% year-over-year growth in 2021.

8. Agricultural Business Network

To bring transparency to agriculture

Farmers Business Network (FBN) uses its data-driven commerce platform to drive the profitability and sustainability of family farms, leveraging insights from a network of more than 32,000 farmers in the United States, Canada and in Australia. In 2021, the company introduced FBN Price Transparency to its online store, using more than 79,000 global prices to give farmers the ability to compare the costs of agricultural products often sold at very different prices. Farmers Business Network has also built price transparency into its FBN Seed Finder, mining over 43,000 seed invoices. The increased transparency of the FBN platform will help family farms save money and stay afloat in a market dominated by factory farms.

9. Saildrone

To provide large-scale information about the world’s oceans

Across the world’s oceans, Saildrone’s autonomous surface vehicles collect information for mapping, military and climate applications. The company’s vehicles have spent more than 15,000 days at sea, sailing more than 500,000 nautical miles to collect high-resolution data. With sophisticated sensors, cameras and scientific instruments, Saildrone has compiled tens of millions of maritime images which have been used to train the company’s artificial intelligence technologies to enable real-time intelligence over the oceans. of the world. Saildrone’s large-scale datasets have provided more detail about our oceans than any other company before.

10. First leaf

To create a wine subscription that knows your tastes better than you do

Firstleaf performs more than a septillion calculations a day to curate a personalized selection of wines for its wine club members. The experience begins with a nine-question quiz to determine each customer’s taste profile, which is then further developed through a scoring system that leverages machine learning to learn and refine the member’s preferences. For every wine produced by Firstleaf, an internal chemical analysis is performed, which is leveraged by an artificial intelligence platform that analyzes over 2,000 attributes per wine to arrange a shipment. There are over 82 million possible wine box combinations, and 98% of monthly curations are unique bottle combinations.

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