The surplus of growth at international technology company Babel Street has resulted in the opening of its new innovation center located on the top two floors of 301 East Main St. in Starkville on Thursday.
Babel Street has offices in New Zealand, Australia and London. Tech developers say government agencies, non-profit organizations and others are able to use Babel Street as a tool to identify social trends and threats while decoding data to enhance a clients’ ability to take action quicker than ever.
Through a partnership with the Mississippi State University Research and Technology Corporation, Babel Street and its employees will be housed in a newly renovated and purchased property downtown. Previously located in the Thad Cochran Research, Technology and Economic Development Park for about four years, Babel Street CEO Jeffrey Chapman said this new space will continue to promote innovation and interpretation of data in over 200 languages.
Chapman said the partnership with MSU will give MSU students and graduates the opportunity to take part in the revolutionary data analysis of clients’ brands, products and services taking place at Babel Street.
“The amount of talent that’s turning out of the university is really great for businesses like us,” Chapman said.
Chapman said the company's internship program has progressed over the years and several interns have gained full-time employment at Babel Street. He said the internship program is a great opportunity to learn for both current employees and interns.
“It’s a give and take,” Chapman said.
Chapman said the work that interns take part in at Babel Street is nothing short of impactful and serves as useful job experience for those looking to pursue a career in this field.
“We’re going to put them in a real-world environment in which the work that they do is going to be unlike most internships,” Chapman said. “It’s going to be meaningful.”
Shon Myatt, chief technology officer and co-founder of Babel Street, emphasized the amount of growth Babel Street has seen since its start roughly seven years ago. Founded in 2013, the era in which social media was in its infancy, Myatt said Babel Street was founded to analyze brands' progression of their products and services online.
“As things progressed, we saw a need to allow companies to monitor their brand, sentiment and emotions around the products and services they provide,” Myatt said.
Myatt said this was especially important for companies who were known around the world and wanted to know how their business was accepted online. He said Babel Street began to consider factors such as language and culture to help better assess clients’ brand feedback.
Bryan O’Neil, vice president of Technical Operations at Babel Street, said Babel Street is not only a tech company, but an organization that appreciates their ability to give back to Starkville. Starkville is considered home to over 70% of developers at Babel Street. Many grew up here and others attended MSU and will always consider themselves Bulldogs.
O’Neil said Babel Street takes pride in its internship program and has experienced students’ success first-hand.
“The quality of students and graduates at MSU is second to none,” O’Neil said.
Although the internship is highly competitive, O’Neil said students gain real-world experience and meet developers from across the nation. He said this internship goes beyond ideas learned in the classroom and leaves students with knowledge of how a software company actually works.
“Here, you’re treated like a part of the team,” O’Neil said.
Babel Street has grown exponentially over the past years, and O’Neil said they have no plans of slowing down.
“We’re growing like crazy,” O’Neil said.