Toronto-based artificial intelligence (AI) hardware startup Untether AI has closed an additional $9.4 million CAD ($7 million USD) in financing as it looks to bring its AI chips to market this year. This funding brings Untether AI’s total raised to date to $36.6 million CAD ($27 million USD).
In addition to the new financing, Untether has added two new senior executives to its team.
The company said this additional funding is part of its Series A round, which now sits at approximately $35 million CAD. The $9.4 million was led by Radical Ventures, with participation by Intel Capital, which are both previous investors in Untether AI. The startup the new capital will allow it to start the production of its AI hardware chips.
“The continued support of our investors signifies the strength of our technology and progress towards production,” said Arun Iyengar, president and CEO of Untether AI. “This funding enables us to go to market this year with our groundbreaking AI chip.”
Untether AI claims to have developed what it calls a “chip architecture for neural net inference.” The startup says its technology can reduce the distance data must travel to the absolute minimum. The chip apparently eliminates the cost of moving data to processors, which traditionally dominates energy consumption. Founded in 2018, Untether AI raised $26 million CAD ($20 million USD) for its Series A round in 2019.
Bob Beachler, vice president of product at Untether AI, told BetaKit because this recent funding was raised from existing investors, the raise process took place over a short period of time, and officially closed last week.
When asked why Untether raised financing so soon after closing $26 million in its Series A round, Beachler said the raise “was not about having to raise money,” noting, rather, that the additional capital allows Untether to “bolster its rollout plans going forward and [ensure] a cash position during customer ramp-up.”
“We will be sampling our products this year and are just beginning our customer engagements [and] ramp,” Beachler told BetaKit, adding that this funding ensures the startup has enough runway to support these efforts.
In addition to the new financing, Untether has added two new senior executives to its managing team. Beachler will serve as the company’s vice president of product and Alex Grbic has been tapped for vice president of software engineering.
Beachler, who was most recently he was a senior executive in charge of marketing and business development at Analog Inference and Brainchip, will assist Untether AI in its go-to-market plans.
Grbic, who was most recently the CTO of Deloitte’s AI practice in Canada, will help Untether with its AI acceleration efforts, particularly in ensuring the startup’s software design can optimize neural networks for Untether AI’s underlying chip architecture.
Image source Untether AI.