VC Deals: Intel Backs Explainable AI Platform

|
Includes: AIRB, INTC, LYFT, SFBTF, SFTBY, UBER, V
by: VCDeals

Welcome to Seeking Alpha's Venture Capital Deals of the Week. Follow this account and turn on the email alert to receive VCDeals in your inbox on Friday afternoons.

Intel Capital (NASDAQ:INTC) led a $20M Series B for AI startup Kyndi, which says it’s building the first Explainable AI platform. UL Ventures and PivotNorth Capital were among the other backers. Intel Capital’s Sunil Sanghavi will join Kyndi’s board.

Kyndi will use the new infusion to expand its engineering and sales teams to meet demand in the government, financial services, and life sciences industries.

Kyndi’s solution differs from the traditional “black box” AI offerings by scoring the provenance and origin of each processed document to help customers find difficult-to-locate info from within collections of documents. The software doesn’t require large, labeled data sets for training and can work with robotic process automation tools to analyze text and automate workflows.

"Solutions like Kyndi's, which remove some of the mystery of AI technology, will continue to gain importance, and we look forward to helping them accelerate AI adoption and address the need for explainability," says Intel Capital Senior Managing Director Nick Washburn.

Other top deals of the week:

  • Seeking: Electric scooter operator and Lyft (NASDAQ:LYFT) competitor Bird is seeking $300M in financing after spending down to about $100M in cash, according to The Information sources. The startup raised over $700M in the last year and a half, and Bird hopes to attract new backers with its double-digit revenue growth every month since February.
  • SoftBank (OTCPK:SFTBF,OTCPK:SFTBY) and its Vision Fund co-led a $231M round in Brazilian lending platform Creditas at a $750M valuation. The funds will help expand further into Latin America starting in Mexico, where Creditas will offer asset-backed credit. The startup will also expand its product portfolio including the addition of payroll loans, improve its tech, and increase its headcount.
  • Airbnb (AIRB) competitor Sonder confirmed a $225M investment at an over $1B valuation. Valor Equity, Westcap, and Tao Capital Partners co-led the round. Sonder says it tripled its rentable units last year to more than 8,500 spaces in 20 cities. The serviced-apartment rental startup expects a revenue run rate of $400M by the end of 2019, up 4x Y/Y.
  • Uber (NYSE:UBER) rival Bolt closed a $67M round at an over $1B valuation. The Estonian ride-hail startup operates across Europe, including a new launch in London, plus a number of emerging markets. The infusion was the first tranche of a Series C that could exceed the hundred million range. Backers included Swedish fund Nordic Ninjas, Naya Capital, and G Squared.
  • Visa (NYSE:V) joined a $40M Series C for Anchorage, maker of a no-password blockchain security system. Anchorage verifies a crypto withdrawal with a client’s other employees then uses humans and AI to analyze biometrics for the transaction, while also providing end-to-end insurance coverage. Blockchain Capital led and Andreessen Horowitz joined the round.