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Cisco launches £782m fund for AI startups

Written by Thu 6 Jun 2024

Cisco has launched a £782 million ($1 billion) artificial intelligence (AI) fund to invest in AI startups.

The company, through its investment division, is investing in Cohere, Mistral AI, and Scale AI. It has already committed nearly £156 million ($200 million) from its fund to these and possibly other ventures.

AI data startup Scale AI is valued at nearly £10 billion ($14 billion). Meanwhile, foundation model developers Cohere and Mistral are reportedly in talks to raise funds at a £3.9 billion ($5 billion) valuation each.

Cisco has made over 20 AI-focused acquisitions and investments in the last few years to deepen its generative AI and machine learning integration across its portfolio.

In February, a report by global consultancy Kearney and leadership advisory firm Egon Zehnder titled ‘Leadership in the Age of AI’ found 73% of business leaders feel ill-equipped for AI transformation due to constraints like limited time, people, and funds.

Despite this, 85% view AI as an opportunity for their organisations, with more than 90 percent seeing it as an opportunity for them personally within their roles.

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Written by Thu 6 Jun 2024

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