A|I: The AI Times – PitchBook says VC is done for 2023, but AI startups continue to raise

Plus: OpenAI's personal assistant plans may spark a rivalry with benefactor Microsoft.

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Vector Institute, Ontario Centre of Innovation secure combined $77-million provincial funding (BETAKIT)

The Ontario government is providing a $27 million investment into the Vector Institute for AI through the Critical Technology Initiatives program, which supports non-profit organizations focused on advancing innovation made in Ontario.

The province said this will make it easier for Ontario companies to develop AI applications, while also encouraging collaboration and new partnerships.

Inflection AI, The Year-Old Startup Behind Chatbot Pi, Raises $1.3 Billion (FORBES)

Less than two months after the launch of their first chatbot Pi, artificial intelligence startup Inflection AI and CEO Mustafa Suleyman have raised $1.3 billion in new funding.

The round significantly deepens Inflection’s ties with Microsoft and Nvidia, two key partners in the AI race. Microsoft, also a major investor in OpenAI, is Inflection’s cloud computing partner.

Harvest Venture Builders adopts AI focus with new climate and energy vertical (BETAKIT)

Calgary-based venture studio Harvest Venture Builders is adopting an artificial intelligence focus for its new climate and energy vertical.

Harvest said the new vertical will focus on the implementation of AI operations for energy infrastructure, with the aim of positioning Calgary as a global hub for “energy AI.”

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Databricks Strikes $1.3 Billion Deal for Generative AI Startup MosaicML (THE WALL STREET JOURNAL)

Databricks has agreed to acquire generative artificial-intelligence startup MosaicML in a deal valued at roughly $1.3 billion, a move aimed at capturing the fast-growing demand from businesses to build their own ChatGPT-like tools.

AWS, NVIDIA launch global FinTech accelerator for seed-stage startups (BETAKIT)

Amazon Web Services (AWS) in partnership with NVIDIA, a major supplier of artificial intelligence hardware and software, has set up a new global FinTech accelerator for seed-stage startups.

The accelerator aims to help FinTech companies using AI and machine learning in financial services.

Runway, a startup building generative AI for content creators, raises $141M (TECHCRUNCH)

Runway, a startup building generative AI tools for multimedia content creators, announced a $141 million extension to its Series C round that will help scale its in-house research efforts and expand Runway’s headcount.

Canadian startups Oncoustics, OneCup AI join Google cloud accelerator (BETAKIT)

Google has unveiled that Vancouver's OneCup AI will be among the cohort of 12 startups participating in the first installation of its cloud accelerator for startups in North America.

OneCup AI uses computer vision AI for its tracking and monitoring solutions for livestock. By joining Google’s cloud accelerator, the startup hopes to refine its algorithms and optimize its infrastructure built on Google’s suite of cloud-computing services.

AI startup Typeface valued at $1 billion after Salesforce-led fundraise (REUTERS)

Typeface, a generative AI platform for enterprise content creation, said on Thursday that it was valued at $1 billion after an oversubscribed Series B funding round led by Salesforce's global investment arm, bringing the total capital raised to $165 million.

PitchBook analysts say 2023 VC funding is "pretty much shot," long-term recovery appears likely (BETAKIT)

As the economy has deteriorated, non-traditional investors have pulled back from the venture capital space and the IPO market has cooled.

Despite some positive signs recently indicating that the state of play is on its way toward improving, PitchBook analysts believe that it will still take some time for the overall VC market to rebound—let alone reach its previous highs.

Thomson Reuters buys Casetext, an AI legal tech startup, for $650M in cash (TECHCRUNCH)

Thomson Reuters has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Casetext, a Y Combinator–backed legal tech startup, in a deal valued at $650 million in cash.

For Thomson Reuters, the acquisition is part of a long-term strategy to embed generative AI into its major business verticals — legal, tax, accounting and news.

Is artificial intelligence a threat to humanity? Many of Canada’s AI leaders think that’s ‘outlandish’ (THE LOGIC)

Amid rapid advancements in AI capabilities, some of the sector’s most respected names are framing the technology as a possible threat to human existence. Beyond the headlines, a second contingent has taken a decidedly softer tone on the subject, saying fear-based claims only hinder the introduction of necessary AI oversights.

Immigration Minister details strategy for attracting foreign tech talent, digital nomads (BETAKIT)

Canada is in a global race for the worldwide tech talent pool, according to Immigration Minister Sean Fraser. In a bid to stay ahead of competition, Fraser introduced what he called the country’s first strategy focused on attracting foreign tech workers.

European companies sound alarm over draft AI law (FINANCIAL TIMES)

An open letter signed by more than 150 executives in Europe’s largest companies, including Germany’s Siemens and France’s Airbus, speaks out against the proposed EU artificial intelligence regulation, saying the rules risk harming competitiveness yet fail to deal with potential challenges.

OpenAI Plans ChatGPT ‘Personal Assistant for Work,’ Setting Up Microsoft Rivalry (THE INFORMATION)

CEO Sam Altman privately told some developers OpenAI wants to turn its chatbot into a “supersmart personal assistant for work.”

The assistant features could put OpenAI on a collision course with Microsoft, its primary business partner, investor and cloud provider, among other firms that also want to use OpenAI’s software to build AI “copilots” for people to use at work.

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Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at alexriehl.com or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

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