Thursday 18 July 2024

Mark Patterson

Cisco launches $1 billion global AI investment fund

DUBAI, June 10, 2024

Cisco Investments, the global corporate venture investment arm of Cisco, has launched a $1 billion AI investment fund to bolster the startup ecosystem and expand the development of secure and reliable AI solutions.

As part of the new AI fund, Cisco is making strategic investments in Cohere, Mistral AI and Scale AI among others to advance customers’ AI readiness and complement Cisco’s AI innovation strategy. Cisco has already committed nearly $200 million of the $1 billion investment fund to date.

AI is reshaping every industry and the world at an unprecedented pace, putting greater emphasis on how businesses globally interact and rely on technology. Recent research from IDC (2023) indicates that the global AI market is expected to double in size to over $500 billion in the next three years.

Enterprises, including Cisco, have an opportunity to leverage Gen AI to significantly enhance their products and services and better serve their customers and end users. 

"For more than 30 years, Cisco Investments has invested and partnered with hundreds of companies to drive innovation both within Cisco's core markets and in new strategic areas," said Mark Patterson, Chief Strategy Officer, Cisco.

"Our recent investments in generative AI companies align perfectly with this long-standing strategy.

"At Cisco, we believe we are well positioned to be the best strategic partner for our customers in the AI era as they look to build, secure, and power AI. In addition to building essential technology to connect, secure and advance AI, Cisco is committed to investing in the broader AI ecosystem to more effectively meet our customers' needs."

Over the past several years, Cisco has made over 20 AI-focused acquisitions and investments, furthering GenAI and Machine Learning capabilities and integration of AI across the Cisco portfolio.

These strategic investments and partnerships with world-class AI platforms across software and infrastructure build upon Cisco’s holistic strategy to connect and protect the AI era.

In addition to these investments, Cisco will also be working with AI companies on product collaborations that allow Cisco to co-innovate, while also being an agnostic provider and platform player in AI, offering options and coverage for Cisco’s global customer base.

The committed investments in the new AI fund include:

• Cohere: Headquartered in Toronto and San Francisco, Cohere provides security-focused frontier large language models (LLMs) and industry-leading Retrieval-Augmented Generation (RAG) capabilities tailored to meet the needs of enterprises.

• Mistral AI: Mistral AI is a global company headquartered in Paris specialising in generative artificial intelligence. The company develops new models of generative artificial intelligence for businesses, combining scientific excellence, an open approach and a responsible vision of technology.

• Scale AI: Based in the US, Scale AI provides a data-centric, end-to-end platform providing training and validation for AI applications. Cisco recently participated in Scale AI’s Series F funding as the round’s largest strategic investor.

“The establishment of our $1 billion AI investment fund is a testament to our commitment to the transformative power of artificial intelligence and its potential to redefine industries globally,” said Derek Idemoto, SVP, Corporate Development and Cisco Investments.

“This fund represents our unwavering commitment to AI and innovation, and to the entrepreneurs and visionaries who are defining the next wave of technology.”

Cisco has a rich history of delivering innovation through R&D, Investments, M&A, and strategic partnerships — using a multipronged build, buy, partner, invest and co-develop strategy.

Today’s announcement builds on the momentum of Cisco’s investments and product innovations in AI, while reinforcing that Cisco is well-positioned to help enterprises harness the power of secure, reliable and trustworthy AI on a global scale. – TradeArabia News Service




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