NY VC Activity, 2018-2023

AI and machine learning (ML) companies fall into four categories:

  1. Vertical applications: These companies bake AI into their core products, building on top of language models such as ChatGPT.
  2. AI model development: This core group is enabling the AI revolution by developing the principal technology of algorithms and language models, such as OpenAI’s ChatGPT-3.
  3. Autonomous machines: Factory robots and self-driving vehicles make up the lion’s share of this group, which is applying computer vision algorithms to improve manufacturing and transportation.
  4. Computing infrastructure: Hardware companies are reinventing computing infrastructure for the massive new scale that AI computing demands with graphics processing units (GPUs) and semiconductors.

Current and former venture-backed AI companies

• In 2024, New York state unveiled plans to establish itself as an AI hub through a $400M public-private partnership: the Empire AI consortium.

The consortium consists of seven universities (Columbia, Cornell, New York University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), the State University of New York (SUNY), the City University of New York (CUNY) and the Flatiron Institute) in collaboration with NVIDIA.

•  In 2023, Columbia University received a $20M grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to spearhead the AI Institute for Artificial and Natural Intelligence (ARNI).

• The global headquarters of IBM Research, for example, is located just outside the city where many of IBM’s breakthroughs in AI and semiconductors have taken place.

• Amazon, Google, Notion, and Meta (including Chief AI Scientist, is Yann Lecun) all have AI research talent in New York.

Select 2023 AI/ML VC Deals

Prominent VC companies investing in AI in New York are today Lux Capital Investment, FirstMark Capital, Greycroft, Primary Venture Partners, and Wing.

New York Headquartered AI Unicorns