Intel acquires Israeli chipmaker Habana Labs for $2 billion

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American technology giant Intel Corp. has acquired Israeli AI processor developer Habana Labs in a deal worth approximately $2 billion, the companies announced on Monday.Founded by David Dahan and Ran Halutz in 2016, Tel Aviv-headquartered Habana Labs is the developer of powerful artificial intelligence processors, optimized for training deep neural networks and artificial intelligence systems, and for deployment in production environments.Intel said the acquisition, the company's second largest in Israel to date, will strengthen its artificial intelligence portfolio and accelerate its efforts in the fast-growing AI silicon market, expected to be worth more than $25b. Chairman Avigdor Willenz will serve as a senior advisor to both the business unit and to Intel.The company currently employs 150 people worldwide at its offices in Tel Aviv, Caesarea, California, Beijing and Gdańsk."We We are excited to partner with Intel to accelerate and scale our business. Together, we will deliver our customers more AI innovation, faster."Prior to the acquisition, in November 2018, Intel Capital - the strategic investment arm of the Santa Clara-headquartered chipmaker - led a $75 million Series B round of fundraising for Habana.The purchase of Habana represents Intel's second largest in Israel to date and the latest in a long line of investments in the country. In August 2017, Intel purchased Jerusalem-based vision technology company Mobileye for a record $15.3b., the largest sale or "exit" of an Israeli company yet.Intel, which has been active in Israel since 1974, employs nearly 13,000 workers in the country, exporting products worth $3.9b. in 2018 and procuring local materials and services worth $1.7b., primarily from peripheral areas.In January, Intel announced plans to invest approximately $10.9b. in the company's Israel-based operations to construct a vast production facility in Kiryat Gat.


Hailo launches its newest deep learning chip – TechCrunch

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Hailo, a Tel Aviv-based AI chipmaker, today announced that it is now sampling its Hailo -8 chips, the first of its deep learning processors. The new chip promises up to 26 tera operations per second (TOPS), and the company is now testing it with a number of select customers, mostly in the automotive industry. Hailo first appeared on the radar last year, when it raised a $12.5 million Series A round. At the time, the company was still waiting for the first samples of its chips. Now, the company says that the Hailo-8 will outperform all other edge processors and do so at a smaller size and with fewer memory requirements.


SecBI network security firm raises 5m to tap US, European market

ZDNet

SecBI has raised 5 million in a Series A funding intended to fund the firm's debut into the US and European cybersecurity markets. On Tuesday, the Beer Sheva, Israel-based firm said the 5 million funding round has now closed. Investors include Orange Digital Ventures, Connecticut Innovations, Amichai Shulman and existing investor Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP). SecBI says the proceeds of the investment round will be used to launch SecBI's debut product, a software solution which automates threat detection and incident investigation. SecBI harnesses machine learning technology to monitor and analyze network log data, identify interesting patterns and hidden threats, and the compile a "comprehensive incident storyline" which will help IT professionals mitigate cyberattacks quickly.


Real estate industry getting smart about working with artificial intelligence Real Estate Weekly

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Traces of automation can be found throughout the residential real estate market: listings, price estimates and home loans are available at the press of a button. In China, buyers can even consult robot Realtors. Commercial real estate, on the other hand, with its higher stakes and more complex deals, has been less susceptible to digital disruption. However, firms are still turning to artificial intelligence for a tech edge. Greystone is the latest real estate firm to dive into computer automation, partnering with Skyline AI, a New York- and Tel Aviv-based startup that specializes in data aggregation and benchmarking in the commercial investment market.


Machine Learning being used by over half of top insurers globally, new research shows

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Tel Aviv, Israel, Thursday 1 June 2017 – Earnix, a leading provider of analytics solutions for the financial services industry, today announced the results of a global survey of insurance executives, which shows wide adoption of Machine Learning across the globe, and the expectation that ML will bring "significant" change to the industry over the next 3-5 years. Over half (54%) of the almost 200 insurance executives surveyed said that their organization was using Machine Learning for predictive analytical modelling. Of those deploying the technology, 70% said they were using it for risk modelling; followed by demand models (45%) and fraud detection (36%). Although nascent, most companies using Machine Learning have realized measurable benefits. Over half of the respondents (57%) said that Machine Learning has made their analytical models far more accurate, which has led to better risk assessments, and ultimately better decisions.