SK Telecom, Hyundai Motor Company, Hanwha & Element AI Create $45M USD Global AI Fund

16-Nov-2017 Intellasia | BusinessWire | 8:00 AM Print This Post

Unique alliance amongst major Korean companies aims to accelerate
open AI innovation in Korea, support global AI startups, and reinforce
the Element AI mission of fostering worldwide transfer learning

SEOUL, South Korea & MONTREAL–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Element AI, an artificial intelligence company that delivers
groundbreaking AI solutions, today announced it has established a joint
$45M fund with Korean conglomerates SK Telecom, Hyundai Motor Company,
and Hanwha. The new fund leverages each partner’s unique value and
targets the most promising sectors of commercial AI applications and
infrastructure, specifically emerging AI-based technologies including
autonomous vehicles, household robots, manufacturing, drones, and
hardware.

The $45M fund will be actively managed by the three Korean companies
with investment advisory by Element AI. Capital will be deployed to
leading AI companies over the next 36 months. The fund is designed to
use Element AI’s extensive domain knowledge, cutting edge research and
proprietary pipeline to source, assess, and invest in startups focused
on applying AI in advanced technologies. SK Telecom, Hyundai Motor
Company and Hanwha’s data and deep industry expertise combined with
Element AI’s artificial intelligence knowledge will both differentiate
the fund in the market and add immense value to portfolio companies.

“Infusing large companies with artificial intelligence capabilities is
the future of global industrialization,” said Element AI CEO
Jean-François Gagné. “Our position in the marketplace gives us
extraordinary access to the most cutting-edge technologies being
developed today — all we need are partners and capital commitment to
seed the future and that’s what we’re achieving today with this
announcement. SK Telecom, Hyundai, and Hanwha share our passion for
investment and building the future; I’m excited we can now work together
to create a new global, industrial reality that will serve our local
communities well.”

“SK Telecom is striving to create a ‘New ICT industrial ecosystem’ that
shares various technologies, services and infrastructures such as AI and
autonomous driving to create new value,” said Ryu Young-Sang, Executive
Vice President and Head of Strategy and Planning Division at SK Telecom.
“SK Telecom is leading the Korean AI industry by launching NUGU, the
first AI speaker service in Korea, and by introducing the world’s first
5G Connected Car. Last month, we launched the ‘Around Alliance’, an
alliance of industry-academia and collegiate autonomous vehicles, to
secure autonomous driving technology. We hope that the joint investment
from different fields will lead to the growth engine of New ICT.”

“No single company holds the key to the future and this why Hyundai
Motor is pursuing such an alliance under the ‘open innovation’
philosophy,” said Dr. Youngcho Chi, the Chief Innovation Officer and the
Head of Strategy & Technology Division of Hyundai Motor. “We are pleased
to join this great collaboration project with passionate partners who
know their space. We look forward to contributing to the building of an
ecosystem for the promising startups within the AI and autonomous
driving industry,” added Dr. Chi.

Hanwha Asset Management is a comprehensive asset manager with US$ 82bn
in AUM in Hanwha Group. Through this partnership, Hanwha will look to
create synergies for its portfolio companies, increase the firm’s
footprint among global start-ups, and strengthen the firm’s internal
capabilities in assessing innovative technologies and originating new
investments. Moreover, this partnership will allow Hanwha Asset
Management to closely evaluate the latest Fintech innovations, and grow
as a leading asset manager in Asia.

About SK Telecom

Established in 1984, SK Telecom is the largest mobile operator in Korea
by both revenue and number of subscribers. The company holds around 50
percent of the market, and has reached KRW 17.092 trillion in revenue in
2016. SK Telecom has led the advancement of mobile technologies ranging
from 2G to 4G, and is currently setting important milestones in its
journey to 5G. The company is not only leading innovation in the field
of mobile network, but also providing IoT, AI, automotive, media, home
and platform services. SK Telecom is determined to play a significant
role in the Fourth Industrial Revolution by achieving innovations and
promoting shared growth with other players in the industry. For more
information, please contact [email protected]
or www.globalskt.com

About Hyundai Motor

Established in 1967, Hyundai Motor Company is committed to becoming a
lifetime partner in automobiles and beyond. The company leads the
Hyundai Motor Group, an innovative business structure capable of
circulating resources from molten iron to finished cars. Hyundai Motor
has eight manufacturing bases and seven design & technical centers
worldwide and in 2016 sold 4.86 million vehicles globally. With more
than 110,000 employees worldwide, Hyundai Motor continues to enhance its
product line-up with localized models and strives to strengthen its
leadership in clean technology, starting with the world’s first
mass-produced hydrogen-powered vehicle, ix35 Fuel Cell and IONIQ, the
world’s first model with three electrified powertrains in a single body
type.

More information about Hyundai Motor and its products can be found at:

http://worldwide.hyundai.com
or http://globalpr.hyundai.com

About Hanwha

Hanwha Group, founded in 1952, is one of the Top-Ten business
enterprises in South Korea and a “FORTUNE Global 500” company. Hanwha
Group has 56 domestic affiliates and 226 global networks in three major
sectors: manufacturing and construction, finance, and services and
leisure. With more than 60 years track record of industrial leadership,
Hanwha’s manufacturing and construction businesses encompass a broad
range of fields from chemicals & materials, aerospace & mechatronics,
total solar energy solutions, and global construction. The finance
network, covering insurance, asset management and securities, is the
second largest non-bank financial group in South Korea. The services and
leisure sector offers premium lifestyle services with retail and resort
businesses. For more information, visit: www.hanwha.com

About Element AI

Element AI delivers groundbreaking artificial intelligence solutions to
enterprise companies, bringing together the best AI experts and top
entrepreneurs to produce next generation AI capabilities for any
organization. Element AI is headquartered in Montreal, Quebec and is
funded by leading investors including BDC Capital, Data Collective,
Fidelity Investments Canada, Hanwha Investment, Intel Capital, Microsoft
Ventures, National Bank, NVIDIA GPU Ventures, Real Ventures, and
Tencent. http://www.elementai.com

Contacts

Media Contact for Element AI in Canada, Europe, and APAC
Caroline
Bourbonnière, 514-261-4740
[email protected]
or
Media
Contact for Element AI in the United States:

Gregg Delman,
415-935-1804
[email protected]

 


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