“Above the Trend Line” – Your Industry Rumor Central for 5/22/2023

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Above the Trend Line: your industry rumor central is a recurring feature of insideAI News. In this column, we present a variety of short time-critical news items grouped by category such as M&A activity, people movements, funding news, industry partnerships, customer wins, rumors and general scuttlebutt floating around the big data, data science and machine learning industries including behind-the-scenes anecdotes and curious buzz. Our intent is to provide you a one-stop source of late-breaking news to help you keep abreast of this fast-paced ecosystem. We’re working hard on your behalf with our extensive vendor network to give you all the latest happenings. Heard of something yourself? Tell us! Just e-mail me at: daniel@insideAINews.com.

Let’s get started with some new funding news … Adarga, the London-based AI software leader, announced that it has secured $20 million in new funding for its market-defining information intelligence platform. Adarga’s technology is delivering decision advantage to a wide and growing global customer base. The latest funding round will support Adarga’s rapidly accelerating growth as it addresses the integral need for defense, national security and commercial organizations to interpret fast-proliferating, worldwide information sources at breakneck speed. In today’s increasingly complex geopolitical environment, this is a vital capability if they are to understand emerging threats, mitigate risk and remain competitive … Datanomix a leading production intelligence platform for precision manufacturers, announced it has raised $12M in new growth capital. The round was led by MK Capital and Joint Effects, with investment participation from Hub Angels, multiple Datanomix customers, and previous investors Gutbrain Ventures, PBJ Capital, and CEAS Investments. Mark Koulogeorge of MK Capital will be joining the company’s Board of Directors … Lucem Health, a leading provider of transformational clinical AI technology and solutions, announced that it has closed a Series A funding round of $7.7 million. Led by Mayo Clinic, Granger Management and Mercy (St Louis), this round builds on Lucem Health’s seed funding and includes financing from existing investor Rally Ventures … Immuta, a leader in data security, announced a new strategic investment from Databricks Ventures, the investment arm of the data and AI company and pioneer of the lakehouse. The investment builds on a longstanding partnership between the two companies and positions Immuta as one of Databricks’ trusted partners of choice for data security and access control. The investment will go towards product innovation to strengthen the integration between both platforms and new go-to-market initiatives to increase enterprise adoption … DataMilk, the provider of AI algorithms for commerce companies, announced the successful completion of its Series A funding round, raising $8 million. RTP Global led the funding round with participation from Angel Invest, Big Bets, TLF Ventures and others. The funding will be used to further develop algorithms and scale the customer base. DataMilk privacy first AI algorithms combine user behavior data with latest AI models such as GPT to enable commerce companies to make real time UX decisions to maximize revenue. The company’s founder and CEO Peter Szalontay spent 5 years as a product manager on Google Search and harnessed the power of behavioral data and AI at Google to drive revenue increase for Alphabet … Pinecone, the vector database company providing long-term memory for AI, announced it has raised $100M in Series B funding at a $750M valuation. The funding round was led by Andreessen Horowitz, with participation from ICONIQ Growth and previous investors Menlo Ventures and Wing Venture Capital. Since introducing the vector database in 2021, Pinecone’s innovative technology and explosive growth have disrupted the $9B search infrastructure market and made Pinecone a critical component of the fast-growing $110B Generative AI market. Its vector database lets engineers work with data generated and consumed by Large Language Models (LLMs) and other AI models, making it an essential infrastructure technology for building commercial AI products that are scalable, reliable, and accurate … Axoni, a provider of data synchronization technology and financial market infrastructure, announced the close of a $20 million equity financing round led by EJF Ventures, with participation from Laurion Capital Management, Communitas Capital, and existing investors. Axoni has raised more than $110 million since inception … Innovate UK, the UK’s national innovation agency, has unveiled BridgeAI, a new programme which aims to drive growth and competitiveness in the UK economy through the adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).  The £100m investment comes partly from Innovate UK & the Technologies Mission Fund (TMF), launched by HMG/UKRI on 6 March 2023, and will bring together businesses from priority sectors with AI experts and developers, to foster an AI innovation network in the UK … Weaviate.io, developer of the AI-native Weaviate vector database, announced a $50M round of funding led by Index Ventures with participation from Battery Ventures. Weaviate’s existing investors, including NEA, Cortical Ventures, Zetta Venture Partners, and ING Ventures also joined this round. The capital will be used to expand the Weaviate team and accelerate the development of its popular open source database and new Weaviate Cloud Service to satisfy the rapidly growing AI application development market.

In M&A activity we have … Qlik® announced it has closed its acquisition of Talend, expanding the company’s best-in-class capabilities for modern enterprises to access, transform, trust, analyze, and take action with data. The combined entity is led by CEO Mike Capone, completing the latest chapter in the company’s strategic vision to deliver best-in-class data integration, data quality, and analytics solutions … MultiPlan Corporation (NYSE: MPLN), a leading provider of technology and data-enabled cost management, payment, and revenue integrity solutions to the U.S. healthcare industry, announced that it has acquired Benefits Science LLC, a next generation data and advanced analytics company that combines modern data science, including machine learning and artificial intelligence (“AI”), with deep expertise in healthcare to deliver solutions that reduce the cost of care and improve health outcomes … Hammerspace, a leader in data orchestration of enterprise file data to any compute, application, or user anywhere, announced the acquisition of Rozo Systems. Rozo Systems is the creator of the Mojette Transform, the patented erasure coding technology which, as part of the Hammerspace Data Orchestration System, enables users to maximize performance in any location, expand to hyperscale capacity, and adapt to virtually any workload as it spans from the edge, to data centers, and the cloud … Anaconda, the popular data science platform, announced its acquisition of EduBlocks, a free platform bringing fundamental coding skills to K-12 students and beginner professionals. Through the acquisition, EduBlocks will further Anaconda’s mission to democratize data and Python skills (two of the most in-demand job proficiencies) for the future workforce … data.world, the data catalog platform, announced the acquisition of the Mighty Canary technology and its incorporation into a new DataOps application. The application uses automations to surface contextual insights and real-time data quality updates directly to the BI, communications, and collaboration tools that data consumers use. The DataOps application provides a seamless way for data teams to update data consumers on the health of their data, communicate important information, and receive feedback – increasing the use of high-quality data.  

We also learned of some new partnerships, alignments and collaborations … SambaNova Systems, the company that offers domain-specific, pre-trained foundation models to underpin generative AI, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), announce that they’re scaling up their collaboration to bring SambaNova spatial data flow accelerator into LLNL’s Computing Center. This solution upgrades LLNL’s cognitive simulation program by improving the speed and accuracy of scientific research … EOS Data Analytics (EOSDA), a global provider of AI-powered satellite imagery analytics, has partnered with Geosat, a Colombia-based company in geographic information systems, to help it deliver its solutions to The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and accelerate the adoption of agritech solutions in Latin America … Weights & Biases and Lambda announced a strategic partnership to bring the infrastructure and MLOps tools required for AI and deep learning workloads to enterprises of all sizes. The Weights & Biases MLOps platform integrates with NVIDIA-accelerated systems provided by Lambda, including compatibility with Lambda’s Cloud powered by NVIDIA GPUs, laptops, workstations, servers, and clusters. This combination is leveraged by enterprises developing cutting-edge computer vision and natural language processing algorithms … ServiceNow and NVIDIA announced a partnership to develop powerful, enterprise-grade generative AI capabilities that can transform business processes with faster, more intelligent workflow automation. Using NVIDIA software, services and accelerated infrastructure, ServiceNow is developing custom large language models trained on data specifically for its ServiceNow Platform, the intelligent platform for end-to-end digital transformation …  Infosys (NSE, BSE, NYSE: INFY), a global leader in next-generation digital services and consulting and bp, a global integrated energy company, announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on May 10 to demonstrate their intent for Infosys to be bp’s primary partner for end-to-end application services, including development, modernization, management and maintenance. This strategic engagement further strengthens the long-standing relationship, spanning over two decades, between the two companies … Crisp, the open-data retail platform for the consumer goods industry, announced a new partnership with Seek, the leading data analytics platform for consumer packaged goods (CPG) brands, and Snowflake, the Data Cloud company, to offer CPG brands real-time insights from their retailer data to address key business challenges such as out-of-stock (OOS) and forecasting. The data collaboration between Crisp, Seek, and Snowflake enables brands to efficiently monitor inventory and proactively avoid stock outs, which can cost brands over $120B annually in lost revenue and compliance fines … ​Intel Corporation and Boston Consulting Group (BCG) announced a strategic collaboration to enable generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) using end-to-end Intel AI hardware and software. The GenAI solution delivers fully custom and proprietary solutions to enterprise clients while keeping private data in the isolation of their trusted environments … Cognizant (NASDAQ: CTSH), a leading global professional services company, and Google Cloud, a leading provider of enterprise cloud computing, announced an expanded partnership to accelerate the adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) by businesses around the world. This effort will help clients create, migrate, and modernize their AI journeys, meeting them where they are … Aisera, a leading provider of Generative AI solutions for organizations, providing innovative service experiences for employees (EX), customers (CX) and Operations (OX), is partnering with Microsoft to deliver an AI copilot for enterprise service experiences. The announcement is the extension of Aisera’s collaboration with Microsoft, having integrated the latest ChatGPT and generative AI capabilities from the Microsoft Azure OpenAI Service into Aisera’s AI Service Experience Platform (AISX). Enterprises can now benefit from Aisera’s verticalized domain-specific large language models (LLMs), generative AI, unsupervised AI, AI workflows, and orchestration bot engine to save costs, improve user productivity, and boost revenue … CallMiner, a leading provider of conversation intelligence to drive business performance improvement, announced it has expanded its use of Microsoft Azure artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning as a Microsoft partner. CallMiner has validated its deep knowledge, extensive experience and proven success in enabling customer adoption of AI and implementing Azure solutions. Through this collaboration, CallMiner is able to augment its AI capabilities with Azure Cognitive Services, part of Azure AI, to more quickly and securely scale, meeting the demands of customers … GitLab Inc., the comprehensive, scalable enterprise DevSecOps platform for software innovation, and Google Cloud announced an extension of its strategic partnership to deliver secure, privacy-first AI offerings to the enterprise. GitLab is leveraging Google Cloud’s customizable foundation models and open generative AI infrastructure , which will provide customers with AI-assisted features directly within GitLab’s enterprise DevSecOps … Vultr, the privately-held cloud computing company, and Domino Data Lab, provider of the leading Enterprise MLOps platform trusted by over 20% of the Fortune 100, announced the integration of Domino Nexus with Vultr’s Kubernetes Engine. This new integration helps businesses achieve competitive advantage in the era of generative AI by accelerating innovation while balancing compute cost, performance, and availability with seamless bursting of cutting-edge AI workloads to GPU-accelerated compute clusters across cloud and on-premises environments.

In people movement news, we heard … Alcatraz AI, a global leader in autonomous access control solutions, announced the appointment of Dean Geribo, Vice President, Corporate Security at Moderna, to its advisory board. The expansion of Alcatraz AI’s  team arrives at a pivotal moment in Alcatraz AI’s growth trajectory, as the company aims to revolutionize access control using the power of the human face … Alation Inc., a leader in enterprise data intelligence solutions, announced the appointment of Jill Woodworth as Chief Financial Officer and David Chao as Chief Marketing Officer. The executive hires will build on the company’s momentum and growing customer base, which includes more than 35% of Fortune 100 companies. Woodworth and Chao will play critical roles in scaling Alation’s global growth following recent office openings in Chennai and London to meet the surging demand for data intelligence … Precisely, a leader in data integrity, announced that Jason Smith has joined the company as CFO. Smith brings to Precisely more than 25 years of finance experience with public and private equity backed companies across multiple industries … Zilliant, the software platform for price and revenue optimization and management, announced that Kylie Fuentes, formerly senior vice president and head of product for Salesforce Revenue Cloud, has joined Zilliant as chief product officer … TDengine™, the popular open-source time-series data platform, appointed Adam Garson as vice president of marketing. With nearly 15 years of marketing experience, Garson will lead global brand management and demand generation for TDengine. Garson has vast experience spearheading marketing initiatives for technology companies and building brands for startups, which he will bring to his role at TDengine. He will be responsible for building the marketing team, leading demand generation, revamping the brand messaging, and managing partner agencies … Sisense, a platform that provides thousands of companies, including Nasdaq, ZoomInfo and Air Canada, with the ability to build and embed analytics into customer facing data products, announced the promotion of Ariel Katz to Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Kristina Agassi to Chief Operations Officer (COO), leading internal operations, finance and legal. Former CEO and Chairman Amir Orad will serve as Executive Chairman of the Board and will continue working with the company on key strategic initiatives … Appen, a leader in data for the AI lifecycle, announced Helen Johnson as the company’s new Chief Financial Officer (CFO). Helen joins Appen after more than 25 years of experience leading finance organizations across a variety of industries, including privately held IT Managed Service providers, medium sized public healthcare and financial services companies, and Fortune 500 ranked publicly traded corporations in the IT industry … Percona, a leader in enterprise-grade open source database software and services, announced the appointment of John Breitenfeld as its new chief revenue officer (CRO), effective immediately. With the appointment, Percona aims to double-down on its recent growth trajectory and continue to expand its market share.     

In the customer wins category we learned … TruEra, which provides the first suite of AI Quality management solutions for managing model performance, explainability, and societal impact, announced that Harver, the industry leading hiring solution helping organizations optimize their talent decisions, is implementing TruEra to help optimize the performance of Harver’s behavioral assessment solutions and ensure compliance with the imminent City of New York AI regulations for HR applications …  DDN®, a leader in artificial intelligence (AI) and multi-cloud data management solutions, announced Helmholtz Munich has selected DDN to accelerate its AI-driven discoveries. As part of the Helmholtz Association, Germany’s largest research organization, Helmholtz Munich is one of 19 research centers that develops solutions and technologies for the world of tomorrow. The research integrates AI methodologies and spans multiple data-intensive computational applications like decoding plant genomes, tissue sample testing or creature and epidemiology cohort studies …  InWith Corporation announced that it selected IBM Watson technology for its large language model as a way to bring reliable AI to its users.    

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