ThirdAI, a cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence startup building tools to speed up deep learning without the need for specialized hardware, announced that they have raised a $6 million seed round. The round was co-led by Cervin Ventures and Neotribe Ventures, with participation from Firebolt Ventures. ThirdAI will use the funds to hire additional employees and invest in computing resources.
Why We Invested
As enterprises continue to generate enormous amounts of data, they want to use this data to drive quantitative decision-making using machine learning and deep learning technologies. The models supporting ML and deep learning are trained by using a large amount of data and the accuracy of the models improves as the amount of data and the parameters of the model increase.
However, training deep learning models involves complex computations, and current training algorithms execute too slowly on general purpose CPUs to be useful. Thus, enterprises use GPUs for model training. These GPUs are expensive and power-hungry, which limits the amount of data that can be used to train models and hence limits their accuracy. This is one of the main reasons that Nvidia’s market capitalization ($500B) is significantly more than Intel ($217B) and AMD ($134B) combined.
At the same time, Intel has launched its set of GPU’s, and Nvidia, along with its purchase of ARM, has also announced its set of CPU’s. As the datacenter wars heat up and AI workloads continue to ramp up rapidly, the installed base of x86 processors must be upgraded to work efficiently with these new workloads. Enter ThirdAI.
ThirdAI has developed a breakthrough approach to train deep learning models with a large number of parameters that run efficiently on general purpose CPUs. This technology has the potential to result in a gigantic leap forward in the accuracy of deep learning models. The founder and CEO, Anshu Shrivastava, and his team are uniquely qualified to bring these technologies to market. Our investment in ThirdAI was a no-brainer and we are fortunate to have had the opportunity to invest. The company is already engaged with several design partners and customers.
We are excited to have the opportunity to partner with the founders of ThirdAI and are excited to see what the future has in store for them. We welcome ThirdAI to the Cervin family.