Prezent’s Weekly AI Round-Up: Breaking News, Funding and Communication Trends

Get the latest breaking news, funding updates, and communication trends shaping the future of Artificial Intelligence.

By 

Emily Branch

Storytelling

AI graph

Storytelling

By 

Emily Branch

Here at Prezent, we’re always sharing stories about the latest happenings across the world of AI. In the last week of March, these two things really caught our eye: news dropped of a planned AI supercomputer that would cost more than the annual GDP of Bulgaria, and an inveterate tech CEO publicly poked fun at an AI-powered toothbrush that sells for about $140.

But the AI “hype cycle” alluded to by the CEO doesn’t seem anywhere near its peak yet. And in any case, viewing this as just a typical financial bubble might not be an accurate way to frame things.

If, like another seasoned tech executive, you think AI may be a more meaningful invention than fire, you’re likely in favor of keeping the funding floodgates open.

Seems you’re in luck.

As of last week, Amazon and Microsoft have reportedly committed at least a combined $15 billion to competing generative AI startups. The CEO of one of those startups may yet try to raise as much as $7 trillion more (that’s not a typo), to make the precious chips needed to train models for AI systems more abundant.

Venture capital investors have lavishly funded a pipeline of additional upstarts; eight of the most prominent were recently valued at an average of 83 times their projected annual revenue in the process.

According to Crunchbase, 10% of all startup funding in the first month of Q1, 2024 went to the AI sector, with a particular focus on ventures related to customer experience, voice synthesis,  robotics and AI architectures. 

The public sector is also getting in on the action. Saudi Arabia was recently reported to be forming a $40 billion AI initiative, to invest in everything from chipmaking to data centers. It would be a singular vote of confidence in the technology from one of the world's biggest sovereign wealth funds.

Clearly, AI is here to stay. At Prezent, we’ve seen first-hand how much impact AI has already had on enterprise communications, and the journey is just getting started. But this is far from the only area that AI is disrupting. 

AI is changing how products are being developed and how decisions are being made worldwide. To help you keep your finger on the pulse of AI technology, here’s a round-up of 5 of the biggest announcements from this past week. 

The five AI announcements we’re watching

1. Los Angeles-based FloQast, a finance and accounting operations platform, closed a $100 million Series E led by Iconiq Growth at a post-money valuation of $1.6 billion. Founded in 2013, the company has raised nearly $303 million, per Crunchbase

Its accounting software integrates AI into daily accounting operations, empowering accountants everywhere.

2. Guesty, the property management platform for short-term rental businesses, has raised $130 million in series F funding. 

AI is continuing to make an impact on the real estate industry, which is estimated to grow to $6.13 trillion by 2030.

3. Neysa, the second venture of data center services provider Netmagic founder Sharad Sanghi, a Mumbai-based artificial intelligence (AI) cloud and platform-as-a-service startup, raised $20 million. 

We’re increasingly seeing AI companies being founded and developed out of India, which last year became the most populous country in the world. 

4. Sprinto, a risk and compliance automation platform for businesses, raised $20 million in an equity funding round led by Accel.

Many don’t know that the enterprise governance, risk and compliance market is expected to reach $18.72 billion in 2024.

5. Tech company Multiverse also acquired Searchlight, a talent intelligence and skills assessment platform that uses AI to help companies close their skills gaps. California-based Searchlight was founded in 2018 by twins Anna Wang and Kerry Wang. The Stanford graduates both began their entrepreneurial journey at Y Combinator. 

The company earlier received investment from top venture capital firms including Founders Fund and Accel. This is just the start of a wave of acquisitions we should see in AI.

With the continuous improvement of AI, research shows that the technology has the power to double yearly economic growth rates by 2035 and improve how we work and communicate.

With tools like ASTRID, we’re using AI to help enterprises work faster and smarter than ever. But even with all its power, it can’t replace human judgment.

It’s a tool that makes us better at what we do— and finding the right balance is key. We’ve found AI is incredible for finding patterns in data, coming up with first drafts and ideas, and creating multiple iterations of something quickly. 

But it’s up to humans to choose the best path forward, use creativity and empathy to make the most of what AI gives us, and add the final 20%. And it’s that final part where we can add the unique spin that makes an idea stand out.

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