The ad- and tracking-free search engine launched in the UK, France and Germany recently.
Neeva has 600,000 users in the US, where it launched last year.
Creator Sridhar Ramaswamy, who worked at Google for 16 years running its advertising business, told BBC News that the tech sector has started to “exploit” people’s data, something he no longer wants to be a part of.
Trackers share information about online activity, mostly to target ads.
Neeva raised $77.5m (£68m) from investors.
It offers free search with additional features such as access to a password manager and a virtual private network (VPN) service that will be available on a subscription basis.
Users are asked to create an account and create a subscription later.
And the UK price is likely to be about £5 a month, Mr Ramaswamy said.
“We felt that traditional search engines had become about advertising and advertisers – and not really about serving users,” he said.
“Google has a dominant position in the market – and the incentive to really innovate, to really create disruptive experiences, isn’t really there. And then also as a company they feel obligated to show their shareholders more and more revenue and profit, so they just keep increasing the number of ads.”
The brand difference is more pronounced.
When “BMW” is searched, both search engines lead with links to the automaker’s site and the Wikipedia entry.
But while Google follows with a map, social media and links to used car dealers, Neeva sticks to BMW’s various official sites.
Google certainly has more variety – but it also shamelessly pushes me to buy a car.
Neeva’s Chrome browser extension lists the trackers installed on the websites you visit.
But in the end, none of Neeva’s other rivals disrupted Google’s search dominance.
“To Bing” or “to Duckduckgo”—another privacy-focused service—are not verbs like “to google.”
And asked if Mr. Ramaswamy could ever topple his former employer, Steph Liu, a privacy and search analyst at Forrester, said: “Not realistically.
“It’s kind of a David and Goliath story. Google has too many users, too much revenue.”
“The ultimate goal is to offer an alternative for a consumer base that is concerned about their privacy and doesn’t want Google to siphon their data and target ads based on their search history.”