SambaNova Systems Announces $150M Series B From Intel Capital And GV To Advance Its Breakthrough AI Platform
Series B Funding Expands SambaNova’s Product Roadmap and Scope of Product Capabilities
Palo Alto, Calif., April 1, 2019 – SambaNova Systems, the company building the industry’s most advanced systems platform to run artificial intelligence applications (AI) from the datacenter to the edge, announced today a $150M Series B funding round. The round was led by Intel Capital, with additional participation from existing investors GV (formerly Google Ventures), Walden International, Atlantic Bridge Ventures, and Redline Capital. The financing will be used to extend SambaNova’s product roadmap, and to continue to expand the software capabilities of its products to bolster their lead in AI software in pursuit of additional markets.
“It’s an exciting time to be able to partner with industry powerhouses in semiconductors and AI software to help revolutionize the AI market,” says Rodrigo Liang, co-founder and CEO, SambaNova Systems. “With this round of funding and with our investors’ support, SambaNova is poised to accelerate the next generation of AI applications with a radically new systems architecture to empower forward-moving organizations to strategically deploy AI at scale.”
SambaNova Systems was founded in 2017 by Stanford Professors Kunle Olukotun and Chris Ré. Olukotun is known as the “father of the multi-core processor” and the leader of the Stanford Hydra Chip Multiprocessor (CMP) research project. Ré is an associate professor in the Department of Computer Science at Stanford University in the InfoLab. Ré is a MacArthur Genius Award recipient, is affiliated with the Statistical Machine Learning Group, Pervasive Parallelism Lab, and Stanford AI Lab. Co-Founder and CEO Rodrigo Liang, former senior vice president of processor development at Oracle Corporation, leads SambaNova.
While traditional AI Infrastructure companies have focused on delivering a single technology component, SambaNova developed a systems architecture that is flexible, efficient, scalable, and optimized for dataflow from algorithms to silicon. This software-defined hardware strategy enables software and algorithms to define the processing power and dataflow requirements of SambaNova’s AI solution.
“Artificial intelligence technology is rapidly developing, and Intel sees the potential to address many of the world’s biggest challenges as AI matures,” said Wendell Brooks, senior vice president of Intel Corp. and president of Intel Capital. “The SambaNova team has the enterprise expertise and proven ability to bring systems to market. Our continued investments in AI leaders reflect our confidence in the technology’s ability to usher in a new era of computing.”
“Moore’s Law famously set the pace for the semiconductor industry for nearly four decades as chip processing speed ramped in step with sequential hardware advancements. Today, large-scale chip players are under pressure from their most sophisticated customers to power compute-hungry tasks like artificial intelligence, while simultaneously crashing into the limitations of both physics and economics,” said Dave Munichiello, General Partner at GV. “SambaNova’s ‘software-defined hardware’ approach incorporates current thinking from respected AI hubs, that constantly-evolving software advances (like artificial intelligence, neural nets, and deep learning) can be leveraged in real time to further maximize hardware performance. We’re incredibly excited about SambaNova’s early results and this company’s potential to be an important platform driving the next step function in performance for the world’s most sophisticated and demanding enterprises.”
Lip-Bu Tan, Chairman of Walden International and CEO of Cadence Design Systems (NASDAQ: CDNS) said, “SambaNova is at the core of the AI computing paradigm that we are experiencing today. The company has top technical talent, scalable systems design expertise and an experienced leadership team to develop a complete hardware and software solution purpose-built from the ground up for AI. No other company could have assembled a more impressive group of industry luminaries to expand the community growth around their unique technology.”
About Intel Capital
Intel Capital invests in innovative startups targeting artificial intelligence, autonomous technology, data center and cloud, 5G, next-generation compute, and a wide range of other disruptive technologies. Since 1991, Intel Capital has invested US$12.4 billion in 1,554 companies worldwide, and 670 portfolio companies have gone public or participated in a merger or acquisition. Intel Capital curates thousands of business development introductions each year between its portfolio companies and the Global 2000. For more information on what makes Intel Capital one of the world’s most powerful venture capital firms, visit www.intelcapital.com or follow @Intelcapital.