Chris Vonwiller from Appen, crossing language barriers

Apen’s Chris Vonwiller

Exporting since 1998, Apen’s key markets include North/South America, Europe, Asia and Africa.

Appen provide speech and language processing technology in products such as speech recognition and phonetic transcription devices. Clients include big guns such as IBM, Microsoft, Sony, and Telstra, as well as Australian and US government and defence organisations. While made up of a core team of around 50 staff, the company draws from a pool of over 300 native speakers to assist on individual projects, and according to director Chris Vonwiller, Sydney provides a great source of well-educated, computer literate native speakers in a variety of languages, including Peruvian Spanish and Taiwanese Mandarin.

As large IT companies make up most of their clientele, the company does a lot of business in North America, Europe and Japan, with exporting accounting for 95 percent of the company’s revenue. Appen was named ICT Exporter of the Year at the 2005 Export Awards.

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