investment


Building vs. Buying: Which AI Approach is Best?

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Over 80% of executives believe failing to get on board with artificial intelligence (AI) now will cost their organization for the next decade, according to Vanson Bourne. AI is driving revolutionary capabilities across the enterprise with departments like sales, marketing, HR and finance leveraging the technology for some of their most essential functions. As a result, organizations have increased their investment in AI by 23% over the last 12 months. But how are they investing? There are two paths to AI investment: building solutions in-house or buying from a third-party vendor.


British Startup Graphcore Hits $2 Billion Valuation

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Graphcore Ltd., the British semiconductor firm whose chips are used to run artificial intelligence programs, has raised $150 million, bringing its valuation to $1.95 billion. The company now has $300 million in cash, which it will use to invest in research and development and global expansion, Bristol, England-based Graphcore said in a statement on Tuesday. After it raised $200 million in 2018, Graphcore was approached by additional investors who wanted to put money into the company, Chief Executive Officer Nigel Toon said in an interview. While the company has no immediate plans for an initial public offering, several of its investors, such as Baillie Gifford, have experience investing in publicly traded technology companies and are the types of shareholders the company would try to target if it were to go public at some point in the future, Toon said. "Having this additional capital on hand allows us to accelerate our investment and allows us to be in a position to support the really large customers who we're building business with," Toon said.


Autonomous driving startup Pony.ai raises $462 million in Toyota-led funding

The Japan Times

HONG KONG/BEIJING – Autonomous driving firm Pony.ai said it raised $462 million in its latest funding round, led by an investment by Toyota Motor Corp. Toyota invested around $400 million (¥44.2 billion) in the round, Pony.ai said in a statement Wednesday, marking its biggest investment in an autonomous driving company with a Chinese background. The latest fund raising values the three-year-old firm, already backed by Sequoia Capital China and Beijing Kunlun Tech Co., at slightly more than $3 billion. The investment by Japan's largest automaker comes at a time when global carmakers, technology firms, start-ups and investors -- including Tesla, Alphabet Inc.'s Waymo and Uber -- are pouring capital into developing self-driving vehicles. Over the past two years, 323 deals related to autonomous cars raised a total of $14.6 billion worldwide, according to data provider PitchBook, even amid concerns about the technology given its high cost and complexity. The Silicon Valley-based startup Pony.ai -- co-founded by CEO James Peng, a former executive at China's Baidu, and chief technology officer Lou Tiancheng, a former Google and Baidu engineer -- is already testing autonomous vehicles in California, Beijing and Guangzhou.


The Potential of AI in the Healthcare Supply Chain

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Grand View Research estimates the global AI market will grow at a compound annual rate of 57% between 2017 and 2025, reaching $36 billion. Forrester predicts that 2020 is the year executives will focus on how to drive and measure the value of their investments in AI. A recent survey of healthcare executives conducted by Optum found that not only is use of AI on the rise, but also that most executives expect a faster return on their investments than first anticipated. What's missing from these lofty projections are more substantive discussions about what's required to ensure that AI can deliver on its promise, such as the importance of data governance and management. There are also fewer conversations about the role AI and machine learning can play in the healthcare supply chain, compared with other areas, such as improved disease diagnosis and drug development.


Specialized AI Chipmaker Graphcore Extends Series D Round With $150M, Valued At $1.95B

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The challenge is that the math behind it is somewhat complicated, and that it has to be run, over and over, across vast quantities of data to suss out the statistical weights and biases of a particular system. The work will get done; it might just take a long time. Data scientists and machine learning researchers have long used graphics processing units (GPUs) because of their highly parallelized architecture and relatively abundant on-chip memory available. But as industry and research groups alike seek more efficiency and need to accommodate ever-larger quantities of information, more specialized computing hardware is required for the task. Headquartered in Bristol, U.K., Graphcore is in the business of producing silicon purpose-built for munching through machine-learning math at high rates of speed and using less electricity than GPUs.


Autonomous driving startup Pony.ai raises $462 million in Toyota-led funding

The Japan Times

HONG KONG/BEIJING – Autonomous driving firm Pony.ai said on Wednesday it has raised $462 million in its latest funding round, led by an investment by Japan's largest automaker Toyota Motor Corp. Toyota invested around $400 million (¥44.2 billion) in the round, Pony.ai said in a statement, marking its biggest investment in an autonomous driving company with a Chinese background. The latest fund raising values the three-year-old firm, already backed by Sequoia Capital China and Beijing Kunlun Tech Co, at slightly more than $3 billion. The investment by Toyota comes at a time when global car makers, technology firms, start-ups and investors -- including Tesla, Alphabet Inc's Waymo and Uber -- are pouring capital into developing self-driving vehicles. Over the past two years, 323 deals related to autonomous cars raised a total of $14.6 billion worldwide, according to data provider PitchBook, even amid concerns about the technology given its high cost and complexity. The Silicon Valley-based startup Pony.ai -- co-founded by CEO James Peng, a former executive at China's Baidu, and chief technology officer Lou Tiancheng, a former Google and Baidu engineer -- is already testing autonomous vehicles in California, Beijing and Guangzhou.


The Artificial Intelligence Masterclass ETMasterclass

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Anil is Founder and Managing Partner at Unicorn India Ventures an leading Venture Capital Fund focusing on early stage investments in tech focused companies. He has been one of the pioneers of angel investments in India as head of operations and President at Mumbai Angels and Bangalore Angels, leading Angel Investment forums in India. Anil's experience includes corporate management functions in medium and large organizations, early stage investment in start-ups, project management, joint ventures and business development. Anil has helped close over 100 venture-financing deals. Anil serves on the Board of 5 companies and is involved with various incubation centres as mentor in India as well as internationally.


Benefits of Business Automation Growing with SMB's Use of AI and Machine Learning

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Automation is turning into a catchphrase for the technology-driven business landscape of modern times. While large companies are increasingly reaping the benefits of natural language processing, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, their small and medium scale peers are also slowly catching the bug. Today we are going to take a look at the biggest benefits of investing in automation by small and medium scale business houses. Here's how they use it to strategically grow their businesses. Streamlined sales processes bring in twice as much revenue in comparison to traditional modes.


Artificial Intelligence Marketing is the AIM of Advertisers in 2020

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Artificial Intelligence Marketing (AIM) provides superior solutions to bridge the gap between analytics and execution. It is the process of going through massive piles of data to originate positive results. As per the courtesy of Forbes, retailers invested around 5.9 billion US dollars on AIM. North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific are mainly using this type of digital marketing and advertising. Likewise, remote health monitoring, wearable AR, IoT kitchen appliances, and brain-sensing gadgets lie under the game-changing innovations.


This AI Researcher Thinks We Have It All Wrong

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Luis Perez-Breva is a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) professor and the faculty director of innovation teams at the MIT School or Engineering. He is also an entrepreneur and part of The Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship. Luis works to see how we can use technology to make our lives better and also on how we can work to get new technology out into the world. On an episode of the AI Today podcast, Professor Perez-Breva managed to get us to think deeply into our understanding of both artificial intelligence and machine learning. Are we too focused on data?