AI startup Hugging Face is reportedly seeking $200 million in funding led by Salesforce, a move that could double the company’s valuation from $2 billion to $4 billion. The funding is expected to come from Salesforce Ventures, as well as other unnamed investors who are eager to get a stake in Hugging Face’s innovative platform.
Hugging Face’s platform serves as a hub for AI software, similar to the way GitHub hosts code for software developers. The platform currently houses over 100,000 open-source AI models, which developers can use as the foundation for their own AI applications. Additionally, developers can submit their own neural networks to the platform, fostering collaboration and knowledge sharing within the AI community.
The New York-based startup operates several projects, including the BigScience research initiative, which boasts the world’s largest open-source natural language processing model. Hugging Face also offers paid functionality, such as AutoTrain, which automates the training of AI models, and Inference API, which enables developers to host neural networks without the hassle of managing the underlying infrastructure. Their Infinity offering further enhances the speed at which neural networks process data in live production.
With more than $160 million in previous funding, including a $100 million round earlier this year, Hugging Face has already gained traction in the market. The company has attracted over 100,000 companies to its platform, which showcases the widespread adoption and trust in their services.
The proposed funding round, led by Salesforce, signifies the growing interest in AI and its potential. This year, there has been an explosion of interest in AI, thanks in part to OpenAI’s popular ChatGPT. Many AI startups have successfully secured substantial funding rounds, as businesses across various industries recognize the value of incorporating AI into their operations.
Salesforce, known for its AI capabilities with Einstein, has invested heavily in AI in recent years. The company continues to enhance its offerings, introducing new AI features in its Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud, and Commerce Cloud applications. Salesforce’s collaboration with Hugging Face reinforces its commitment to remaining at the forefront of AI innovation.
The timing for Hugging Face to raise new funds couldn’t be better, given the current AI boom. As technology companies strive to remain relevant and capitalize on AI’s potential, Hugging Face’s platform presents an enticing opportunity for developers and businesses looking to leverage AI capabilities.
As this funding round progresses, it will be interesting to see how Hugging Face’s valuation evolves and how the additional capital will further fuel the growth of this promising AI startup.