Sarvam AI, an Indian Generative AI Startup, Raises $41 Million
A combination seed and Series A funding round totaling $41 million has been raised by the Indian generative AI startup Sarvam AI. Peak XV Partners and Lightspeed co-led the seed round and led the Series A. Sarvam AI is developing generative AI tools and large language models (LLMs) for use with Indian languages.
The goal of Sarvam AI’s model training is to support multiple Indian languages. This covers both voice and text interfaces, which might end up being the standard for applications made using Sarvam’s models. The Bengaluru-based startup intends to collaborate with charitable organizations and other Indian businesses to create generative AI solutions that are specific to their data and industry. Sarvam also wants to make India a center for innovation and research in AI.
“I have seen firsthand the enormous value in innovating at foundational layers and deploying at population scale, Sarvam AI co-founder Vivek Raghavan said in a statement. “India has demonstrated that it can harness technology differently, and with GenAI we have an opportunity to reimagine how this technology can add value to people’s lives.”
Before launching Sarvam five months ago, Raghavan and co-founder Pratyush Kumar were involved in the open-source Indian language AI project called AI4Bharat. With the global generative AI industry exploding, they aim to make India an even more important hub. India has the potential to emerge as a key player in this market, but for now, the focus has primarily been on American and Chinese models, with a few Asian and European outliers. In recent years, the nation has embraced AI for government and business with great speed. Large numbers of people used the conversational AI chatbot developed by Haptik for WhatsApp, which is used by the Indian supermarket chain JioMart. Meanwhile, the national government provided funding for the development of an AI voice assistant to assist citizens with tasks.
“Our aim is to establish Sarvam AI as a beacon for AI innovation, attracting the brightest minds to tackle foundational research challenges right here in India,” Kumar said. “The race towards ever more powerful AI is both an exciting and divisive one. We named our company Sarvam, which in Sanskrit means ‘all’, as we are intentionally invested in technical and ecosystem innovations that make this technology accessible to all.”
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