The biggest AI startup deals of 2018

Venture-backed artificial intelligence companies have secure more than $.19 billion in the first quarter of 2018. Some of the biggest checks went to robotic process automation, autonomous vehicles, and predictive analytics.

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The biggest AI startup deals of 2018

Total investments in U.S. venture-capital backed artificial intelligence companies topped $2.3 billion in the second quarter of 2018, higher even than the first quarter’s record $1.9 billion, although the number of deals stayed flat at 124. Some of the biggest checks were written for security services, robotic process automation, and predictive analytics, according to the MoneyTree report by PricewaterhouseCoopers and CB Insights. Here are eleven well-funded companies that will be bringing you the next wave of AI technology.

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Dataminr

By sifting through vast quantities of data from public social media feeds, Dataminr learns how to spot the signals that can warn enterprises of events that threaten their staff, premises or reputation; help first responders react; and help finance professionals get ahead of market movements. In June the New York startup landed $392 million in additional funding.

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CrowdStrike

A lightweight software agent is the key to CrowdStrike’s cloud-based security service. By learning from what’s going on at millions of network endpoints around the world, it aims to provide protection against even previously unseen threats. CrowdStrike even offers a $1 million warranty in case of a breach of a customer’s protected environment. It raised $200 million from investors, including General Atlantic, Accel and IVP in June.

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Tanium

Tanium is another company continuously monitoring network endpoints to deliver network-level behavior analytics and anomaly detection. It uses natural language processing to allow security staff to interrogate a database of devices discovered on a corporate network. The company has raised a further $175 million from TPG Growth, among others, according to PwC/CB Insights.

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Getty / UiPath

UiPath

UiPath makes an enterprise robotic process automation (RPA) software platform, including tools for robot licensing, provisioning, scheduling, monitoring and alerting. It has built computer vision and natural language processing into its platform, and integrates with third-party cognitive services from Google, IBM, Microsoft and ABBY. It recently received a $153 million investment from Accel Partners, CapitalG (formerly Google Capital) and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, among others.

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Cylance

Yet another endpoint protection company, Cylance focuses on antivirus and malware detection. Its easily installed software agent uses machine learning to help distinguish threats from harmless software. Blackstone Group was one of the investors in Cylance’s latest $120 million funding round, which it says will allow it to expand its product portfolio and geographical reach.

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AutoLab AI

This mysterious company, founded in early 2018 and still in stealth mode, plans to be “the future of autonomous manufacturing” according to one of its board members. Founded by former Autodesk employees as a spin-off from electronics manufacturing giant Flex, the company has already raised $113 million from Eclipse Ventures. Its trademark registration covers business categories such as robots and software as a service.

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Getty / PONY.ai

Pony.ai

Pony.ai develops software for self-driving cars: It rolled out its first autonomous testing vehicle in April 2017, and a few months later competed its first fully autonomous driving demo. In January 2018, it landed $112 million in funding from Comcast Ventures, Legend Capital and Sequoia Capital China, among others. It now operates a self-driving ride-sharing fleet in Guangzhou, China, working with local auto maker GAC.

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Getty / C3 IoT

C3 IoT

C3 IoT develops internet of things (IoT) software and services around its C3 Type System, an object-centric data abstraction layer. Among the applications it has developed are tools for predictive maintenance, inventory optimization and fraud detection, all running on its C3 IoT Platform. In January 2018 it raised $100 million from investors including TPG Growth, Sutter Hill Ventures and its founder and CEO Tom Siebel, formerly of Siebel Systems. Microsoft recently began reselling C3 IoT’s platform-as-a-service, which now runs in the Azure cloud.

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Nuro

Nuro makes self-driving electric delivery trucks about the size of a motorcycle that it hopes will revolutionize deliveries for local companies. Its founders, Dave Feruson and Jiajun Zhu, previously worked on Google’s self-driving car project, Waymo. The company recently received $92 million from investors Banyan Capital and Greylock Partners.

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Tempus Labs

Chicago-based Tempus Labs is applying machine learning to cancer diagnostics through tumor genome sequencing and the use of natural language processing and image recognition technology to collect, cleanse and analyze unstructured data. CEO Eric Lefkosky wants to stop the health care system letting data go to waste. In March 2018 Tempus raised an additional $80 million in funding from New Enterprise Associates, Revolution Growth, and T. Rowe Price Associates to scale its clinical and molecular analytic platform.

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Stem

Stem helps organizations automate energy cost savings by using AI to determine when to fill up energy storage systems, and when to draw on them. This helps reduce the load on the electricity grid at peak times. The company recently raised $80 million from Activate Capital, Temasek Holdings and Ontario Teacher’s Pension Plan Board.