Two LLM startups, A 21 Labs and Imbue AI, raise hundreds of millions to develop new foundational language models.
Imbue AI (formerly Generally Intelligent) raised $200 million in a Series B funding round. Investors include Astera Institute, Nvidia, Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt, and Notion co-founder Simon Last. In total, the company has raised $220 million since inception and is valued at $1 billion.
Imbue’s goal is to create everyday AI agents with robust decision-making capabilities. To achieve this, Imbue plans to develop language models that are designed to reason. The company plans to start with AI agents for code generation.
The assumption is that working with code promotes reasoning and is essential for AI agents to interact effectively with computers. The code agents are not the product, but the foundation for more powerful and general AI agents.
With a full-stack approach, Imbue is concerned with training foundational models, building experimental agents and interfaces, building robust tools and infrastructure, and understanding the theoretical underpinnings of model learning.
AI21 Labs reaches billion-dollar valuation
AI21 Labs recently announced the closing of a $155 million Series C funding round, valuing the company at $1.4 billion.
Investors in this round include Google and Nvidia, as well as Walden Catalyst, Pitango, SCB10X, b2venture, Samsung Next and Prof. Amnon Shashua. With this latest round of funding, AI21 Labs has raised a total of $283 million, making it one of the best-funded AI startups in the world.
Founded in 2017 by Amnon Shashua, Ori Goshen, and Yoav Shoham, AI21 Labs focuses on building large-scale language models that can understand and generate language combined with “neurosymbolic systems.”
The Israeli company released the Jurassic-1 Jumbo AI language model with 178 billion parameters in August 2021. AI21 offers customers access to its AI models via AI21 Studio or an API for services such as chatbots, summaries, and ad copy. The target audience is enterprises.