Intel Capital, the global investment arm of global chip maker, announced at the Intel Capital Global Summit on Wednesday, that is has invested $72 million in 12 technology startups including three Chinese AI, cloud, and IoT focussed firms.
With this new funding, Intel Capital’s year-to-date investments have reached more than $115 million. The companies joining Intel Capital’s portfolio are driving innovations that will shape the future of compute over the next decade. Those include AI-based conversational computing to speed the design of virtual assistants; a context-aware app improving the way people experience stadiums, theme parks, hotels and hospitals; and new processors that bring the power of machine learning to mobile devices.
“These innovative companies reflect Intel’s strategic focus as a data leader,” said Wendell Brooks, Intel's SVP and president of Intel Capital. “They’re helping shape the future of artificial intelligence, the future of the cloud and the Internet of Things, and the future of silicon. These are critical areas of technology as the world becomes increasingly connected and smart.”
The NBA and Intel Capital also announced a sports and entertainment technology innovation collaboration called the “NBA + Intel Capital Emerging Technology Initiative.” The multiyear collaboration will foster the identification, formation and growth of tech companies that have the potential to impact the future of the NBA, sports and entertainment.
Additionally, Intel Capital announced it has surpassed – two and a half years ahead of schedule – its 2015 goal to invest $125 million in startups run by women and underrepresented minorities such as the LGBTQ community and U.S. military veterans, reflecting Intel’s worldwide commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Also unveiled was a new “Champions of Change” strategy launched by 15 technology companies to advance gender equality by enabling women’s careers to thrive in the global tech industry.
Here’s a summary of Intel’s investments based predominantly around Silicon Valley:
Avaamo is a deep learning software company that specialises in conversational interfaces to solve specific, high-impact problems in the enterprise – developing key AI technology across neural networks, speech synthesis and deep learning to make conversational computing for the enterprise a reality.
Fictiv is democratising access to manufacturing, transforming how hardware teams design, develop and deliver physical products.
Gamalon from Cambridge, MA is leading the next wave in machine learning with an AI platform that teaches computers actual ideas.
Reconova is Xiamen-based Chinese AI company providing cutting-edge visual perception solutions - dedicated to the research of innovative computer vision and machine learning technologies.
Syntiant from Irvine, CA is an AI semiconductor company that is accelerating the transition of machine learning from the cloud to edge devices.
Alauda is Beijing-based Chinese container-based cloud services provider empowering enterprise IT with its enterprise platform - delivering cloud-native capabilities and DevOps best practices.
CloudGenix from San Jose, CA is a software-defined wide-area network (SD-WAN) leader, transforming legacy hardware WANs into a software-based, application-defined fabric.
Espressif Systems is yet another Shanghai-based Chinese fabless semiconductor company that leverages wireless computing to create high-performance IoT solutions that are more intelligent, versatile and cost-effective. The company’s all-in-one SoCs provide dual-mode connectivity (Wi-Fi+BT/BLE) to IoT products.
VenueNext from Santa Clara, CA transforms the way guests experience every kind of venue, from arenas and concert halls to hotels and hospitals.
Lyncean Technologies from Fremont, CA developS the Compact Light Source (CLS), a miniature synchrotron X-ray source. Enabling a reduction in scale by a factor of 200, the CLS shrinks a machine capable of synchrotron quality experiments from stadium-sized to room-sized.
Movellus from San Jose, CA develops semiconductor technologies that enable digital tools to automatically create and implement functionality previously achievable only with custom analog design.
SiFive from San Mateo, CA is the leading provider of market-ready processor core IP based on the RISC-V instruction set architecture.
Taken as a whole, Brooks said, these 12 new companies will help Intel change the future of compute. “We are planting seeds,” he said, “that will grow for decades.”