Nearly 140 private companies working to advance artificial intelligence technologies have been acquired since 2011, with over 40 acquisitions taking place in 2016 alone (as of 10/7/2016). Corporate giants like Google, IBM, Yahoo, Intel, Apple and Salesforce, are competing in the race to acquire private AI companies, with Samsung emerging as a new entrant this month with its acquisition of startup Viv Labs, which is developing a Siri-like AI assistant.
Earlier this month, Aaron Levie, CEO of Box teased of new growth at the end of 2018 and some small acquisitions in the future. He mentioned that the company had plans to invest more into core technologies, like artificial intelligence, security and workflow. "We might make small acquisitions ourselves in terms of growing that technology. We are very confident in the position we occupy and just want to expand that from there," and so they did! With the recent acquisition of Butter.ai, a startup that helps customers search for content across all business applications powered by machine learning.
Salesforce has joined hands with the artificial intelligence startup, MetaMind. In a wise move, Salesforce has managed to integrate deep learning with its data science capabilities, beating other leading companies in their pursuit of machine learning and artificial intelligence. Salesforce acquires Palo-Alto-based deep learning company, MetaMind, the companies announced on April 4. Launched in July 2014, MetaMind specializes in artificial intelligence (AI) techniques of data crunching to help businesses arrive at better decisions. While the terms of the deal still remain undisclosed, the AI startup will shut down services on May 4 for their unpaid users, and on June 4 for the monthly recurring users. "[R]eal AI solutions with breakthrough capabilities that further automate and personalize customer support, marketing automation, and many other business processes," says MetaMind CEO Richard Socher, who added that he is "thrilled" with the integration.