Intuit, the business and financial tools company best known for its TurboTax software, made news last week for its acquisition of Mailchimp, and is now announcing a corporate venture capital arm, Intuit Ventures, to identify growth opportunities and trends beneficial for its key customers -- small businesses and consumers. The company is the latest to get into corporate venture, joining a group that includes WorkDay, Salesforce and Zoom. CEO Sasan Goodarzi spoke exclusively with TechCrunch about the new venture, which will focus its initial investments in the areas of fintech, e-commerce infrastructure, platforms and enablement, virtual experts/digital advice and AI/ML. The initial idea for the venture arm came about a year ago, when Goodarzi and Intuit's chief corporate strategy and development officer Anton Hanebrink were discussing the acceleration of internal and external company pipelines and how to align those with the company's mission and identify big opportunities. The VC arm is one of the ways they would do this, which would enable the company to accelerate innovation while also learning from companies, Goodarzi said.
Would you like to be in the aviation business right now? For most people, this would be one of the worst places they could be in. For FLYR Labs CEO and Founder Alex Mans, crisis equals opportunity. FLYR Labs, makers of the data and AI-driven Revenue Operating System for airlines, travel, and transportation, today announced it has secured $150 million in Series C. ZDNet caught up with Mans to find out more about the investment and FLYR's product and growth. "Growth" and "airlines" are hard to use in the same sentence these days.
Shelf Engine's mission to eliminate food waste in grocery retailers now has some additional celebrity backers. The company brought in a $2 million extension to its $41 million Series B announced in March. Ellen DeGeneres, Portia de Rossi, Shaun White and Shawn Mendes are the new backers, who came in through a strategic round of funding alongside PLUS Capital to bring the Seattle-based company's total funding to $60 million since the company's inception in 2016. This includes a $12 million Series A from 2020. Shelf Engine's grocery order automation technology applies advanced statistical models and artificial intelligence to deliver accurate food order volume so that customers can reduce their food waste by as much as 32% while increasing gross margins and sales of more than 50%.
How can femtech enhance women's special journey to delivery? How can it help them start that journey when they're having difficulties in conceiving? A common understatement that you may hear these days is that the world has been affected by the Pandemic. Let's get something straight, the world has not merely been "affected" by the Pandemic, it has completely transformed, or let's say, tele-transformed. The Pandemic has had an obscene amount of negative consequences on the world, yet, dare we say it, there are a few players that have somewhat benefitted from the situation, players that encourage and believe in virtual, digitally-powered transactions.
Deep Vision, a company known for developing AI processors as well as software suites for edge computing applications, has announced that it has raised $35 million through the investment fund Tiger Global. This second round of funding will primarily help the company expand the capabilities of its processor as well as its software. In addition to Tiger Global, Exfinity Venture Partners, Silicon Motion, and Western Digital also participated in the round. In 2021, the edge computing market reached 6.29 billion dollars against 4.68 billion dollars in 2020 according to a report by Grand View Research. A sector in which Deep Vision is involved since 2014.
Edge AI chip startup Deep Vision has raised $35 million in a series B round of funding led by Tiger Global, joined by existing investors Exfinity Venture Partners, Silicon Motion and Western Digital. The company began shipping its first-generation chip last year. ARA-1 is designed for power-efficient, low-latency edge AI processing in applications like smart retail, smart city and robotics. While the company's name suggests a focus on convolutional neural networks, ARA-1 can also accelerate natural language processing with support for complex networks such as long short-term memory (LSTMs) and recurrent neural networks (RNNs). A second-generation chip, ARA-2 with additional features for accelerating LSTMs and RNNs will launch next year.
The Transform Technology Summits start October 13th with Low-Code/No Code: Enabling Enterprise Agility. Constructor, a San Francisco, California-based ecommerce personalization startup, today announced that it raised $55 million in a series A round led by Silversmith Capital Partners. The funding, which brings the company's total raised to $61.5 million, will be put toward product development, hiring, and go-to-market efforts, according to CEO Eli Finkelshteyn. Online commerce conversions are well behind in-store -- the average online shop sees less than 3% in conversions. But even though $4.2 trillion was spent on ecommerce platforms in 2020 alone, few ecommerce retailers have invested in a digital merchandising strategy.
When working with their clients Accenture under Tricarico's guidance focuses on "on guiding (their) clients to more safely scale their use of AI, and build a culture of confidence within their organizations." Not all companies have an established north star of AI use. Companies and partners like Accenture are vital to these companies and their proper and ethical use of the technology.
Deepcell, a life science company pioneering AI-powered cell classification and isolation for cell biology and translational research, today announced the appointment of Kevin Jacobs as the Vice President of Bioinformatics. Jacobs will be responsible for the company's bioinformatics strategy, implementation and its integration with other areas and into the company's offerings. This appointment is the latest addition to Deepcell's rapidly expanding team of scientists, engineers and computer science experts. Deepcell had acquired $20 million in Series A funding last year. Currently, Deepcell is helping to advance precision medicine by combining advances in AI, cell classification and capture, and single-cell analysis to deliver novel insights through an unprecedented view of cell biology.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is transforming the way we live, work, travel, and do business. The expertise of British AI companies, some of the world's most innovative, contributes significantly to this increase in global economic growth and productivity. Recently, Tech Nation, the leading growth platform for UK tech companies, released data on the growth of the AI tech ecosystem in the UK. According to this new data, the UK is now home to over 1,300 AI companies, up from 180 companies in 2011, representing a 600% increase. AI companies are scaling across all regions of the UK, with 50% of the top scaling AI companies being outside of London with Cambridge and Edinburgh being major hubs. Furthermore, Venture Capital investment into UK AI companies also rocketed from $120 million in 2010 to $3.4 billion in 2020.