Sarvam AI has secured $41M funding led by Lightspeed. It aims to utilise Gen AI tool to fulfill India's huge requirements. (Bloomberg)AI 

Sarvam AI secures funding from Khosla Ventures and others to tackle India’s distinct requirements

Sarvam AI, a rising AI startup focused on catering to India’s specific needs, has achieved a successful Series A funding round, securing $41 million. This milestone marks a significant achievement for an Indian AI startup, as it is the largest early-stage fundraising effort to date. The investment round was led by Lightspeed, with participation from Peak XV Partners and Vinod Khosla’s Khosla Ventures.

Co-founded by Vivek Raghavan and Pratyush Kumar, Sarvam AI aims to pioneer a holistic approach to generative AI development. Their strategic vision spans the full spectrum of generative AI, from pioneering research initiatives in custom model training to creating an enterprise-level platform for model creation and deployment. This holistic approach is expected to catalyze the adoption of Gen AI across India, especially as companies seek to tap into its potential but face challenges in implementing it, according to a Business Standard report.

Linguistic Diversity of India

Sarvam AI is keenly focused on serving India’s diverse language landscape and favoring voice-enabled user interfaces. He plans to train AI models to suit different Indian languages and dialects. The company intends to develop domain-specific artificial intelligence models in close cooperation with local companies using domestic datasets. Sarvam AI ultimately aims to achieve broad societal impact by integrating Gen AI solutions into India’s existing infrastructure and prioritizing applications that serve the public good.

Sarvam AI, operating from India, is ready to contribute significantly to the country’s strategic goals in the field of artificial intelligence. Vinod Khosla, known for his pioneering investments in AI ventures in Silicon Valley, including early support of OpenAI, emphasized the importance of specialized expertise in AI development tailored to India. Khosla Ventures, an early OpenAI investor, has shown a keen eye for strategic investments in the sector, Techcrunch reports.

Strategic partnership with Microsoft

In addition, Microsoft has recently announced a collaboration with Sarvam AI to support the development of voice-based generative AI applications. This collaboration was unveiled during Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s visit to India, highlighting the company’s commitment to expanding its presence in India’s fast-growing market. As part of the partnership, Sarvam AI will leverage Microsoft’s cloud services, including Azure OpenAI Service, to further enhance AI solutions tailored to the Indian context, according to a Reuters report.

Nadella’s visit also included the announcement of an initiative that aims to provide AI skills opportunities to two million Indians by 2025, underscoring Microsoft’s broader commitment to promoting digital literacy and innovation in the country. Sarvam AI is focused on developing next-generation AI models for Indian languages, which seamlessly aligns with Microsoft’s goals, signifying a promising collaboration poised to drive innovation and societal progress in India’s AI world.

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