February 16, 2022 | Alumni
Alumni AI language processing startup Cohere raises US$125 million: The Globe and Mail
Cohere Inc., an AI startup founded by University of Toronto alumni that uses natural language processing to improve human-machine interactions, has raised US$125 million as it looks to open a new office in Silicon Valley, the Globe and Mail reports.
The latest financing round, led by New York-based Tiger Global Management, comes only five months after Cohere secured $US40 million in venture capital financing, according to the Globe.
Cohere’s software platform helps companies infuse natural language processing capabilities into their business using tools like chatbots, without requiring AI expertise of their own. The company originated in a 2017 paper co-authored by CEO Aidan Gomez (BSc 2018 UC), who interned at the Google Brain lab of deep learning pioneer and University Professor Emeritus Geoffrey Hinton (Hon DSc 2021), a Cohere investor. Cohere’s other co-founders are alumnus Nick Frosst (BSc 2016 WDW), who also worked with Hinton at Google, and Ivan Zhang, a former U of T computer science student.
“For the first time, we've brought to market an effective NLP solution that is practical, accessible, and safe,” Gomez said in a statement. “With the opening of our new Palo Alto office, we're continuing to scale in all directions, bringing aboard new talent and rapidly increasing our compute capacity to train our next generation large language models (LLMs).”
The Globe report notes Cohere is one of several U of T AI startups to raise substantial sums of money in the past year, with the others including self-driving tech startup Waabi, biotech firm Deep Genomics and semiconductor company Untether AI.