Intel Capital Bets Big—$117M Investment in 14 Tech Startups

Intel Capital has added 14 tech startups to its portfolio of investments in areas such as health care, communications and manufacturing. The record $117 million in funding was announced at Intel’s annual investor conference.

Intel Capital

PHOENIX—Intel continues to bet big on new technologies, specifically tech startups funded by its venture capital arm, Intel Capital. On April 1 at its annual Intel Capital Global Summit conference here, the company announced that it’s invested $117 million in 14 tech startups. Since its founding in 1991, Intel Capital has invested $12.4 billion in 1,544 companies.

The 14 startups all offer disruptive solutions in one of four areas: artificial intelligence, communications, health care and manufacturing.

AI startups include SambaNova Systems, a Palo Alto, Calif.,-based company building what it says is the industry’s most advanced systems platform to run AI applications. The company’s stated mission is to bring AI innovations discovered by deep research in academic circles and elsewhere to enterprises and organizations across a range of industries. “We are bringing together a solution that goes from silicon to algorithms that runs on a general-purpose computing platform,” said Rodrigo Liang, CEO and co-founder of SambaNova Systems.

Untether AI out of Toronto, Canada, is developing ultra-efficient, high performance AI chips designed to be the foundation for the next wave of innovation in AI. Its chip architecture is designed to move data a thousand times faster than traditional architectures. “We give the highest efficiency and most operations per watt. We run the fastest, and that’s what really matters in AI,” said Martin Snelgrove, the company’s co-founder and CEO. He explained that Untether AI builds its processor on top of the memory—bypassing the bus, thus making the transfer of data more efficient. “We make nifty software so the data is where it needs to be,” said Snelgrove.

On the manufacturing side, startup OnScale said it has the first on-demand, scalable platform for engineering in the cloud.

“We’re giving access to every engineer to tackle the toughest challenges, including driverless cars and IoT, more easily and at a reduced cost,” said Ian Campbell (pictured), CEO of Cupertino, Calif.-based OnScale.

The other 11 startups getting funded include:

Cloudpick out of Shangai, is a provider of “smart retail technology,” with proprietary computer vision, deep learning, sensor fusion and edge computing technologies to enable highly digitized, intelligent, cashier-free stores.

Eeasy Technology based in Zhuhai, China, is an AI system-on-a-chip (SoC) design house and total solution provider. Its offerings include AI acceleration, image and graphic processing, video encoding and decoding, and mixed-signal ULSI design capabilities. Its AI SoCs targeting digital surveillance, automotive and smart devices are set to enter mass production in late 2019.

Communications investments include Mighty Networks, the Palo Alto-based provider of “experiential commerce.” The company operates as a kind of one-stop shop of services such as community, content, online courses and subscription commerce for brands and businesses.

Pixeom offers enterprises a new way to manage hybrid cloud resources via its edge computing software platform that re-creates and orchestrates cloud functionality on-premises. The Santa Clara, Calif., firm said its solution makes it easier for companies to deploy and manage large-scale, geographically distributed infrastructure and workloads.

Polystream is a UK-based company that is changing how video games and demanding 3D applications are delivered via the cloud. Polystream’s Software Defined Imaging technology enables interactive graphics content to be streamed at “unprecedented scale,” with global reach.

Tibit Communications is a Petaluma, Calif.,-based company that’s developing  next-generation devices that offer a broadband onramp to the home, office or cell site, managed virtually from the cloud to the user. Tibit replaces dedicated hardware boxes in carrier and enterprise networks with a small module connected to a standard Ethernet switch—providing significant savings of cost, power and space.

Two ‘Disruptive’ Health Care Startups

Medical Informatics is a software-based monitoring and analytics company based in Houston. The company’s Sickbay platform archives, aggregates and transforms otherwise not-recorded, high-resolution waveform data across disparate devices to enable anywhere, anytime remote monitoring across the continuum of care. The same platform can then be leveraged to use machine learning and AI to deploy real-time, predictive, critical care analytics that get ahead of deterioration and risk and enable data-driven medicine and patient-centered care.

Reveal Biosciences is a San Diego-based company using a new generation of data-powered pathology to improve global health care. ImageDx, a proprietary deep-learning platform, delivers to pathologists and scientists a novel class of actionable, quantitative data to accelerate research and enhance patient care.

Disruptive Manufacturing

Landing AI, based in Palo Alto, offers AI-powered SaaS solutions and corporate-level AI transformation programs designed to turn enterprises into AI companies. The Landing AI team enables companies in industries including manufacturing and agriculture to develop and execute cohesive AI strategies.

proteanTecs develops what it says is revolutionary Universal Chip Telemetry for electronic systems throughout their entire lifecycle, increasing their performance and reliability. By applying machine learning to novel data created by embedded agents, Israel-based proteanTecs provides meaningful insights unattainable until today, leading to new levels of quality, reliability and scale.

Qolibri, of Roseville, Calif., is a creative technical company developing breakthrough proprietary solutions that address problems in semiconductor subfabs. Qolibri said its technologies will change the landscape of the subfab, leading to substantially reduced chip manufacturing costs with positive environmental impact.

David Needle

David Needle

Based in Silicon Valley, veteran technology reporter David Needle covers mobile, bi g data, and social media among other topics. He was formerly News Editor at Infoworld, Editor of Computer Currents...