Top Well-Funded AI Startups To Watch In 2018

Mechanical baristas, self-driving cars, robo-advisors, and state-run facial recognition campaigns. Artificial intelligence, in its many forms, will likely continue to redefine how individuals think about government, school, work, and daily life. And startups that are not leveraging AI are beginning to fall behind the rest of the pack.

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“AI will be a true differentiator for companies in the future. The companies that have mastered it will take off, those who haven’t will dwindle (just like companies choosing to embrace software and the internet early on),” Scott Stephenson, founder and CEO of Deepgram, an automatic speech recognition company, told Crunchbase News in an email.

And in a world where supergiant rounds are now quite common, AI startups have brought in some significant capital. SenseTime, the most well-funded AI startup to date, has brought in a total of $1.6 billion. Most recently, the company raised $620 million in a Series C+ round led by Tiger Global Management and Fidelity International. The round raised the company’s valuation to more than $4.5 billion, making it the most highly valued artificial intelligence company in history, according to TechNode.

[bctt tweet=”“The Intelligence Revolution is a next necessary step in evolution that scales out our ability to reason and solve more problems.”” via=”no”]

Co-Founder and CTO of Skyline AI, an artificial intelligence company in the commercial real estate industry, believes that we’ve reached a renaissance age in AI.

“The most significant difference is that AI is now much easier to implement due to vast efforts by open source communities and the large cloud vendors,” Co-Founder and CTO of Skyline AI Or Hiltch told Crunchbase News in an email. “The result is that many more companies are using AI today compared to just five years ago.”

With more corporate VCs and others looking to cash in on the hype surrounding AI, more early-stage companies will likely hop onto the fundraising bandwagon. In the meantime, Crunchbase News decided to demystify the artificial intelligence space by taking a look at the leading players in the industry.

We considered companies in the “artificial intelligence” and adjacent categories. Included on the list are active startups that have raised at least one venture capital round since January 1, 2016. The list includes companies that are working specifically on artificial intelligence technologies. The startups are ranked based on known total funds raised.

Notably, according to Crunchbase, 40 percent of the 30 most funded AI startups that have raised since 2016 are based in China. As the Chinese government aims to become a leading nation in the development of artificial intelligence technologies, Chinese startups have reaped the benefits of the current innovation-focused state of the industry in the country.

Companies in the chart range from the facial recognition company mentioned above to biotech-focused AI company iCarbonX, audio processing company SoundHound, and enterprise AI company WorkFusion.

Organization NameHeadquarters LocationTotal Equity Funding Amount
SenseTimeBeijing, Beijing, China$1,630M
UBTech RoboticsShenzhen, Guangdong, China$940M
Megvii TechnologyBeijing, Beijing, China$607M
DataminrNew York, New York, United States$577M
CrowdStrikeSunnyvale, California, United States$481M
Yitu TechnologyShanghai, Shanghai, China$355.1M
UnisoundBeijing, Beijing, China$301.4M
MobvoiBeijing, Beijing, China$251.6M
InsideSales.comProvo, Utah, United States$251.2M
Pony.aiFremont, California, United States$214M
Cambricon TechnologiesBeijing, Beijing, China$200M
iCarbonXShenzhen, Guangdong, China$199.3M
MiningLampBeijing, Beijing, China$189.3M
DarktraceCambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom$179.5M
Sentient TechnologiesSan Francisco, California, United States$174.4M
RokidHangzhou, Zhejiang, China$158.3M
AnkiSan Francisco, California, United States$157.5M
ROOBOChaoyang, Liaoning, China$153M
Brain CorporationSan Diego, California, United States$125M
AfinitiWashington, District of Columbia, United States$122.2M
VicariousSan Francisco, California, United States$122M
WorkFusionNew York, New York, United States$121.3M
Wave ComputingCampbell, California, United States$117.3M
SoundHound Inc.Santa Clara, California, United States$215M
DataRobotBoston, Massachusetts, United States$111.4M
GraphcoreBristol, Bristol, City of, United Kingdom$110M
PetuumPittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States$108M
Element AIMontréal, Quebec, Canada$102M
BlipparLondon, England, United Kingdom$99M
CloudWalk TechnologyBeijing, Beijing, China$75.4M

Editorial Note: Crunchbase News will continue to update this article to reflect future developments in artificial intelligence. For the previous list of AI startups to watch, go here.

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