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Wipro’s $100 Million Investment Arm, Wipro Ventures Bets On AI And Big Data Startups Outside India

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Wipro, India’s third largest software exporter has today announced (via ETthat it has made investments in two new tech startups. The companies which received Wipro’s backing through its $100 million corporate venture arm Wipro Ventures are Vicarious, a startup working with AI and Talena, an early-stage big data analytics startup.

The company disclosed these two investments in its earning results for the quarter ending on June 30, 2015. However the size and terms of the latest investments were not disclosed.

Vicarious is a San Francisco based AI startup which, already has a long list of notable investors including Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Peter Thiel, Vinod Khosla, Ashton Kutcher, Dustin Moskovitz, Aaron Levie, Sam Altman, Formation 8 and Swiss automation giant ABB. The total funding raised by the company is almost $70 million until now.

Vicarious is in many ways, trying to code the human brain. The tech startup has been on headlines of many news services for a while now, since it was founded back in 2010 by D. Scott Phoenix, CEO of Frogmetrics, Entrepreneur in Residence at Founders Fund, CXO at OnlySecure and MarchingOrder, and Dr. Dileep George, CTO of Numenta which was another AI company.

The company is building new methods to concoct unified algorithms to reach the human level of intelligence in vision, language, and motor control on a silicon chip. The current focuses of the company are visual perception problems, like recognition, segmentation, and scene parsing.

Moving on, Talena, based in Milpitas, California, is a company which has big plans in providing big data services. The company was started and is currently lead former EMC executive Nitin Donde and Hortonworks executive Hari Mankude. The aims of this company include providing state-of-the-art big data management services.

The company is currently operating in stealth mode and is backed by Canaan Partners.

Wipro’s investments are strategic. At a later stage perhaps, the Indian IT company might look into incorporating the AI and Big data tech from these foreign startups, into its own softwares. This becomes all the more important, considering the recent heat which Indian IT giants have been facing, largely due to their sheer failure at innovating and complete focus on churning out consultancy jobs


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