Forward-thinking AI and Machine Learning (ML) organisation, Third Foundation, has appointed a former YouGov director to become its chief operating officer.

Shirelle Grant was director of client management at YouGov and prior to that director at award-winning B2B marketing automation agency Stein IAS – responsible for the China division based in Shanghai.

Her high-profile appointment comes on the back of Third Foundation announcing some substantial client wins, and the release of a trio of new products – with more set to be unveiled.

Commenting on her arrival, Shirelle said: “It’s such a pivotal – and exciting – time to be involved with Third Foundation’s vast development. Knowing the team’s capabilities and its impressive growth plans, I was eager to be a part of an organisation that’s leading the charge in helping businesses to utilise data correctly.”

“With the power of our automation, we’ll be able to transform how various departments react to their new level of insight previously untapped. A huge factor in this is how Third Foundation’s technology can truly pinpoint ‘what if’ scenarios, enabling organisations to plan – and react positively in a challenging marketplace.

“We have a huge role to play in how we communicate with modern-day marketers, so that they know exactly how to plug in smart automation to transform how they measure the metrics that matter – and which ultimately dictate commercial success.”

CEO, Michael Ward, commented: “Shirelle brings a vast array of leadership qualities and experience to our team – she’s highly motivating, encouraging and inspiring for our organisation.

“Her ambitions match ours in how we want to help clients strategically – and sustainably – grow their businesses and continue to deliver critical data that transforms both performance and how people think.”

Established last summer, Third Foundation integrates AI into the heart of businesses to augment their current thinking, and extract critical, real-time insight to identify company pain points, understand – and analyse – multi-channel performance and accurately forecast scenarios that are likely to impact an ever-changing business landscape.

Based at the Leeming Building in Leeds city centre, the Yorkshire firm is the brainchild of AI and marketing specialist Phillip Midwinter – who has spent 15 years working with technology to drive the strategic use of data within business.

Additionally, in less than a year since it was first formed, Third Foundation has already secured Google Cloud partner status – and completed a purpose-built platform called Prime Radiant alongside its cookieless, cloud-based, fully data compliant, hit-level tracking technology called Galaxia.