Salesforce has today announced that it will be growing its Generative AI Fund. The fund is part of the company’s Salesforce Ventures VC off-shoot, which is Salesforce’s capital arm. The company announced the fund will increase funding for startups developing “responsible generative AI” from $250 million in size to $500 million.
Salesforce Ventures managing partner Paul Drews said that the expansion would enable Salesforce to “work with even more entrepreneurs … accelerating the development of transformative AI solutions for the enterprise.”
“We’re already seeing AI change the way the world works, and we’re excited to build on the momentum of our Generative AI fund,” Drews continued. “We’re excited to support the next generation of innovative founders.”
Launched in March, the Generative AI Fund has already invested in many firms revolutionising generative AI tech, including Cohere, Anthropic, You.com, Hearth.AI and newer additions Humane and Tribble.
While it’s not the only fund investing primarily in generative AI, it does prioritise “ethical” AI tech. This is not just limited to digital products. Humane, for instance – one of the fund’s latest investments – is creating a wearable, screenless AI assistant, while You.com hosts an AI-powered search engine with generative art and text tools.
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According to Yahoo, the Generative AI Fund is among the VC arm’s largest tranches to date; previous funds ranged from $50 million to $125 million.
“AI for Impact aims to close the AI access gap by providing flexible funding, pro-bono expertise and technology to purpose-driven organizations, empowering them to accelerate generative AI-based solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges,” Salesforce said in a press release. “AI for Impact [is a] philanthropic initiative to help purpose-driven organizations gain equitable access to trusted generative AI technologies.”
Generative AI — assuming it lives up to the hype — could be a massive market opportunity. Grand View Research predicts that the sector could be worth roughly $109 billion by 2030.
According to a recent KPMG survey, almost two-thirds (65%) of execs believe that generative AI will have a “high” or “extremely high”” impact on their organization in the next three to five years — far above every other emerging technology.
Beyond the Generative AI Fund and AI for Impact, Salesforce is investing in generative AI technologies internally, piloting tools like EinsteinGPT (which lets Salesforce customers ask questions about Salesforce’s content and services) and SlackGPT (which answers natural language questions about Slack content).