An estimated $60 million has been raised for David Ferrucci’s new artificial intelligence company, Elemental Cognition. Ferrucci is a well-known name in the area and formerly oversaw the team that developed IBM Watson. According to a recent regulatory filing, the business has successfully sold shares worth $59.95 million to 17 investors and intends to raise an additional $5.75 million.
The Helmsley Building in New York is home to Elemental Cognition, which wants to be the first artificial intelligence to communicate before it has thought. The business offers two corporate chatbot systems, Cogent and Cora, which are designed for different circumstances. Financial services, interactive trip planning, and the automation of research discoveries in the life sciences industry are all areas where these applications are useful.
Ferrucci, who oversaw IBM Watson from 2006 to 2012, a period in which the AI system memorably won the game show “Jeopardy!” supervised AI research at Bridgewater Associates, one of the biggest hedge funds in the world. Ferrucci, who has a Ph.D. in computer science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, is still a well-known name in the field of artificial intelligence.
David Shepler, a former senior executive from IBM and Bridgewater, is the CEO of Elemental. Other executives with ties to IBM are on the company’s leadership team, including vice presidents Mike Barborak and Eric Brown.
Elemental is connected to prominent personalities in the financial and tech sectors. Sam Palmisano, the former CEO of IBM, and Jim Breyer, the founder and CEO of Breyer Capital and an early investor in Facebook, are listed as investors and advisers. Additionally included in this group are Geoff Yang of Redpoint Ventures and Greg Jensen, co-chief investment officer of Bridgewater.
In conversation with CNBC, Ferrucci acknowledged the fresh financing, reiterating the company’s dedication to building trustworthy reasoning and openness in the AI business.
Elemental Cognition’s emphasis veers significantly away from the generative AI limelight, even though AI companies have attracted more attention this year because to OpenAI’s ChatGPT, which highlights the possibilities of AI chatbots. Though the company’s website doesn’t specifically mention generative AI, its LinkedIn profile emphasizes that it offers a “revolutionary Generative AI platform” that enables research and expert problem-solving apps.
The core idea behind Elemental is its hybrid AI platform, which stands out by fusing large language models (LLMs) with an AI-driven reasoning engine. Compared to only relying on LLMs, this hybrid method hopes to provide replies that better fit with established criteria.
Watson, IBM’s foray into artificial intelligence, ran into difficulties and failed to become consistently profitable. IBM sold its Watson Health division to private equity company Francisco Partners in early 2022 for an unknown price. A development studio called WatsonX, which IBM introduced most recently, enables businesses to train and use machine learning models.