SambaNova System, a startup that builds artificial intelligence (AI) acceleration hardware and software, secured $250 million in Series C funding. As a result, the three-year-old firm now has a $2.5 billion valuation. In a press release, CEO Rodrigo Liang said his firm would use its new capital to “further extend our market leadership in enterprise computing.”
SambaNova Systems’ Innovative Approach to AI
While some startups dedicated to advancing AI capabilities focus on software or hardware solutions, SambaNova Systems takes a hybrid approach.
The firm, which is made up of Stanford University graduates, Sun Microsystems, and Oracle veterans has developed a platform that optimizes the function of AI and other data-intensive applications. Because the company’s staff has expertise in chip and algorithm design, its solutions are holistic. The startup has deployed its technology to improve throughput between edge computing systems and datacenter environments.
SambaNova Systems has made its mission to democratize AI. As such, the firm has developed reconfigurable hardware architecture that allows for optimal data flow between silicon components and algorithms. The startup takes the position that the limitations of fixed hardware shouldn’t restrict operational efficiency.
Given the success the company has had in its short life, its paradigm-shifting goals seem eminently achievable.
Making Waves in the AI Chip Sector
Based in Palo Alto, California and Austin, Texas, SambaNova Systems has done very well for itself since its founding in 2017. To date, the corporation has received $456 million in outside capital. The startup hasn’t had its coffers filled by investors looking to make a quick buck in the emerging AI chip sector. The company has received financial support from organizations with technology industry experience that want to foster its development.
Asset management group BlackRock (Uber) led the firm’s latest funding round, but Intel and Redline (BlueData) also contributed. The startup’s innovative chip and software AI acceleration stack has previously allowed it to secure capital from Micron and Samsung.
Presently, the firm is keeping the exact nature of its software-driven devices and client list under wraps. But with its new cash injection, SambaNova Systems will be able to continue developing its innovative AI optimizing technology. As such, it won’t be long before the unicorn startup’s next-generation solutions become industry standard.
It’s worth noting that the AI chip sector is capturing the imagination of tech-focused venture capital firms at the moment. Earlier this month, The Burn-In reported Israeli deep learning processor company Hailo landed $60 million in Series B funding. Similarly, British Intelligent Processor Unit manufacture Graphcore secured $150 million in series D funding last month.