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In a world of deepfakes, this billion-dollar startup wants you to trust AI-powered ID checks

ZDNet

Digital identity is a crowded marketplace, but Veriff believes its AI tech sets it apart. Veriff is an AI-assisted identity verification and know your customer (KYC) platform used by companies around the world to ensure their customers are who they claim to be. Most of the company's biggest customers are in global fintech, where it faces competition from the likes of authentication and verification services Jumio and Fido. SEE: What is digital transformation? Today, Veriff is valued at $1.5 billion, joining the ranks of Skype, Playtech, Wise, Pipedrive and Bolt in Estonia's ever-growing lineup of tech startup darlings.


Global Big Data Conference

#artificialintelligence

Even as economies struggle with the chaos of the pandemic, the AI startup space continues to grow stronger with increased investments and M&A deals. According to the latest State of AI report from CB Insights, the global funding in the segment has seen a significant surge, growing from $16.6 billion across 588 deals in Q2 2021 (figures show $20B due to the inclusion of two public subsidiary fundings) to $17.9 billion across 841 deals in the third quarter. Throughout the year (which is yet to end), AI startups around the world raised $50 billion across 2000 deals with 138 mega-rounds of 100 million. As much as $8.5 billion of the total investment went into healthcare AI, $3.1 billion went into fintech AI, while $2.6 billion went into retail AI. The findings show how AI has become a driving force across nearly every industry and is drawing significant attention from VCs, CVCs, and other investors.


Report: AI startup funding hits record high of $17.9B in Q3

#artificialintelligence

Even as economies struggle with the chaos of the pandemic, the AI startup space continues to grow stronger with increased investments and M&A deals. According to the latest State of AI report from CB Insights, the global funding in the segment has seen a significant surge, growing from $16.6 billion across 588 deals in Q2 2021 (figures show $20B due to the inclusion of two public subsidiary fundings) to $17.9 billion across 841 deals in the third quarter. Throughout the year (which is yet to end), AI startups around the world raised $50 billion across 2000 deals with 138 mega-rounds of 100 million. As much as $8.5 billion of the total investment went into healthcare AI, $3.1 billion went into fintech AI, while $2.6 billion went into retail AI. The findings show how AI has become a driving force across nearly every industry and is drawing significant attention from VCs, CVCs, and other investors.


SEC To Monitor DeFi With Artificial Intelligence

#artificialintelligence

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) signed a deal with blockchain analytics firm AnChain.AI to help its efforts in monitoring the decentralized finance (DeFi) space. What Happened: According to a Forbes report, AnChain.AI CEO and Co-Founder Victor Fang explained that the collaboration started because "the SEC is very keen on understanding what is happening in the world of smart contract-based digital assets," and the firm can help with that. The company's service focuses on tracking illicit activity across crypto exchanges, DeFi protocols, and traditional financial institutions. The contract between the blockchain analysis firm and the SEC started in May and probably played a role in AnChain.AI securing a $10 million Series A round led by Susquehanna Group affiliate SIG Asia Investments LLP. Why It Matters: The regulator is seemingly leveraging the contractor to monitor the DeFi ecosystem more closely, as expected after recent remarks by SEC Chairman Gary Gensler.


Israel's 10 'Hottest' Startups In 2021, According To WIRED

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Israel's tech and innovation ecosystem has had a monumental year so far in 2021, breaking funding records and yielding 10 new unicorns – private companies valued at $1 billion or more -- just in the first three months of the year, more than any country in Europe. Israeli high-tech activity on public markets also increased significantly this year, a trend reflected in the number of IPOs, SPAC (special-purpose acquisition company) transactions, and follow-on offerings. "Year in and year out, Tel Aviv's startup community has proven that it can achieve more than whole countries within its 52km2, thanks to investment in world-class research facilities, robust government support, and an ever-reliable influx of investment," writes WIRED UK Contributor Allyssia Alleyne in a new post this week highlighting 10 "hottest startups from Tel Aviv as part of the UK edition of the American tech publication's annual round-up (except in 2020) of Europe's 100 hottest startups. They include startups and companies from London, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Barcelona, Dublin, Helsinki, Berlin, Paris, and Lisbon. These 100 companies "are a cohort like no other," says Greg Williams, the deputy global editorial director of WIRED. "They survived an unprecedented year, embodying what entrepreneurial spirit is all about." The companies, featured in the September/October issue on newsstands this month, are not necessarily "the largest, best-known or most-funded," but they "are generating buzz" and they are organizations "people are talking about and inspired by," added Williams. The Tel Aviv entry is a mix of established companies with prominent backers, high-flying unicorns, and determined startups. Many operate in the deep tech sector. "Tel Aviv has long been known as a place where founders have built innovative companies in verticals such as fintech and cybersecurity.


Weekly Top 10 Automation Articles

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This Week Top Automation Articles highlights the potential of a low-code/no-code platform in Business and why Kate Crawford, writing in his book that technology experts are misunderstanding the concept of Artificial Intelligence. The introduction of the new Apple card family is really an exciting thing and why big brands like Gucci are not realizing the worth of Cryptocurrency. There is much more to explore. Let's dive into the Automation World! The potential for low-code/no-code platforms is enormous.


MioTech Raises Undisclosed Sum from Li Ka-shing's VC Horizons

#artificialintelligence

Fintech startup MioTech on Monday announced the closure of its Series A funding round, which was led by Horizons Ventures. The venture firm is the private investment arm of Hong Kong-based businessman and billionaire Li Ka-shing and is an existing investor in the startup. In 2017, Horizons Ventures invested in the Series A round of the artificial intelligence (AI) platform, which was closed after raising $7 million. Though the company did not disclose the amount it received in the fresh funding round, the proceeds will be utilized in hiring talents and R&D. "The financing will be used to recruit more talents and invest in R&D. It will further strengthen MioTech's data and technology edge, and help MioTech become the industry acknowledged platform for Green Finance and Sustainable Investment in Asia," Jason Tu, co-founder and CEO of the company, said.


Adyen using AI to prevent fraud shows the impact the tech can have on FinTech

#artificialintelligence

Global payments unicorn Adyen is looking into how artificial intelligence can boost its payments offering, highlighting how the tech can boost the industry as a whole. The Dutch FinTech company went public last year after having raised a massive $250m Series B round in 2014, the biggest deal raised by a FinTech company in the Netherlands between 2014 and the third quarter of 2019. But more is to come and it seems as if AI will play a big role in Adyen's future. "The benefits of AI are real," Pieter van der Does, CEP of Adyen, told VentureBeat at the Slush technology conference in Helsinki. However, initially the tech leader was cautious about using AI.



EU launches €2bn AI and blockchain fund Sifted

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The European Commission and European Investment Fund (EIF) are launching a €2bn fund to invest in fundamental technologies amid fears that the US and China are pulling ahead in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain. The fund is expected to invest around €300-€400m in these areas in 2020, with €100m of that money coming from the EU and EIF and the rest from independent venture capital funds. From 2021 the plan is to scale up the fund to €1bn to €2bn under the InvestEU Programme. This is an attempt to help Europe catch up with investment in the US and China. The EU pulled in a record $34bn in venture capital funding this year, but this is still only half the amount invested in Asian companies and a third of US investment.