Founded in 2012, Israeli startup Beyond Verbal has taken in $10.1 million in 4 rounds of funding to develop a technology that "analyzes emotions from vocal intonations". Like CrowdEmotion, nViso's technology tracks the movement of 43 facial muscles using a simple webcam and then uses AI to interpret your emotions. The Company uses a branch of artificial intelligence called Natural Language Processing (NLP) techniques to capture people's emotions, social concerns, thinking styles, psychology, and even their use of parts of speech. The startup developed a technique to "read" human emotional state called Transdermal Optical Imaging (TOI) using a conventional video camera to extract information from the blood flow underneath the human face.
Last year, Intel Corp. acquired neural-network hardware maker Nervana and built Nervana's chip, integrating it with Intel's own on-processor deep-learning and artificial-intelligence (AI) capabilities. This month, Intel Capital invested in AI startups CognitiveScale, Aeye Inc., and Element AI. Intel is investing in AI startups, acquiring others, and blending the mix with its own AI expertise to ensure a leadership position in machine learning, deep learning, and brainlike neural networks based on its AI hardware and software. Element AI's new world Perhaps the most enigmatic of the AI startups in which Intel Capital has invested is Element AI, which claims to be conjuring an "AI-First World" that "elevates collective wisdom."
Though its biggest business is still PC graphics and gaming, Nvidia sells AI processors to internet and tech companies engaged in cloud computing. They include enterprise software providers like Salesforce.com (CRM), internet giant Facebook, tech consultancy Accenture (ACN), Alphabet's (GOOGL) Google, Microsoft and lesser known names like Splunk (SPLK). Steven Milunovich, analyst at UBS, says web-connected devices, generally called the "Internet of Things," will require AI to process real-world data gathered from sensor networks, suggesting a very large market. Salesforce.com is in the early stages of embedding AI tools in existing cloud products to make them more predictive, analysts say.
The companies in the AI 100 are accelerating research, improving efficiency, and making many game-changing advancements that will be felt for decades to come," CB Insights CEO Anand Sanwal said in a press release. The startups have raised $3.8B in aggregate funding across 263 deals since 2012, and include startups at different investment stages of development, from seed/angel companies to well-funded unicorns. The market map below categorizes the AI 100 companies based on their industry focus. Startups are using AI algorithms to transform industries.
The company disclosed today that it has created a new venture fund dedicated to investing in AI and machine learning companies. And the fund's existence and lead role in Algorithmia's latest round fit with what you might call Google's shovel strategy for artificial intelligence: The company believes there are piles of money to be made by giving other companies the tools to strike gold using the technology. IBM and Amazon have also created AI-related funds--IBM's for startups building on top of the Watson suite of developer tools and Amazon's for the Alexa voice operated assistant. But just because a large company throws money at an emerging new technology doesn't guarantee that such companies will stay ahead of the curve.
The company disclosed today that it has created a new venture fund dedicated to investing in AI and machine learning companies. But its existence and taking the lead in Algorithmia's lastest round fit with what you might call Google's shovel strategy for artificial intelligence: The company believes there are piles of money to be made by giving other companies the tools to strike gold using the technology. IBM and Amazon have also created AI-related funds--IBM's for startups building on top of the Watson suite of developer tools and Amazon's for the Alexa voice operated assistant. But just because a large company throws money at an emerging new technology doesn't guarantee that such companies will stay ahead of the curve.
In the interest of fixing this problem at the source, I reached out to some of the advisors and investors in the Dreamit Edtech network to get their "lemon lists" of concepts, statements, and business models that edtech entrepreneurs may want to think twice--or thrice--about. To be clear, it is not any specific dollar amount that concerns us; it's the ratio of customer acquisition cost (CAC) to the lifetime value (LTV) of the customer. Invariably, they start backtracking, hemming and hawing, and eventually admit that there either are channels that cannot absorb more marketing spend (e.g., they were bidding on rare search terms that just don't come up that often) or that CAC starts to rise as others spend more (e.g., startup bidding on more competitive search terms). That means the acquisition cost per paying customer is very hard to recoup.
An excellent example of this is the company Frank, an AI based advertising firm for startups. Overall, while Wall Street recognizes Artificial Intelligence's potential impact in the creative world, it's safe to say when it comes to telling a story, that human touch will never go away. Perhaps one of the most underrated things about AI is its potential to eliminate practices altogether. While before B2B sales could rely on either targeted ads or sales teams to bring clients in, software like Leadcrunch's is eliminating those processes altogether.
Like many artificial intelligence companies in Canada, PeopleAnalytics.ai was happy to see the federal government's launch of its Pan-Canadian Artificial lntelligence Strategy for research and talent as part of the federal budget this year. The $125-million that the Liberals are committing to the project, to be administered through the Canadian Institute For Advanced Research (CIFAR), is expected to help to attract and retain top academic talent in this country. Canada placed fourth in total funded AI startups (45 total) in 2016, versus nine other nations with significant AI infrastructures. On top of talent acquisition, he says Canada needs to continue to provide access to capital for companies like PeopleAnalytics.ai, He points to AI programs such as those launched by Royal Bank of Canada, in conjunction with the Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute, and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, which is increasing spending on developing financial technologies, as leaders in this space.
Well, here's how: They are brilliant because they hit on the biggest pain for AI in the coming 10 years -- the need for business executives in low-tech companies to access AI in an easy-to-use way that still gives them customized solutions from tier-1 technologies and the world's best AI-talent. Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Facebook have acquired over 200 of the world's leading AI technologies in recent years. Take for instance Apple's acquisition of Lattice Data, a dark data company, for $200 million. The company's strategy of creating an ecosystem of technologies and talent combined with handholding AI-strategy consulting for business people is the solution to the three challenges mentioned above.