Intel joins GenAI throng with Articul8 AI

Ray Le Maistre
By Ray Le Maistre

Jan 4, 2024

  • Intel and DigitalBridge have formed a standalone generative AI company 
  • Articul8 AI has been developed by Intel and partners over the past two years 
  • It focuses on the needs of enterprises that want to use GenAI solutions for their own internal operations
  • Now it has been spun out of Intel as a standalone company and developed to meet the specific needs of companies in multiple sectors, including telecom
  • Zain Group is one of the new company’s investors

Intel has joined the growing number of companies seeking to become the primary provider of generative AI (GenAI) capabilities to companies around the world by forming a new company, Articul8 AI, in partnership with technology investor DigitalBridge Group. 

According to Intel,  the Articul8 AI platform uses intellectual property (IP) and technology developed by the chip giant, is designed to “keep customer data, training and inference within the enterprise security perimeter” and can run on cloud, hybrid or on-premises compute and storage stacks. As you might expect, though, the Articul8 AI stack has been launched and optimised on Intel hardware (Xeon Scalable processors and Gaudi accelerators) but “will support a range of hybrid infrastructure alternatives,” noted Intel. 

And according to the website of the new company, the design philosophy behind its GenAI stack is founded on four key pillars: Speed (of deployment), scalability, security, and sustainable cost.

“With its deep AI and HPC [high-performance computing] domain knowledge and enterprise-grade GenAI deployments, Articul8 is well positioned to deliver tangible business outcomes for Intel and our broader ecosystem of customers and partners,” boasted Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger. “As Intel accelerates AI everywhere, we look forward to our continued collaboration with Articul8,” he added.

And collaboration, rather than control, is the nature of the relationship between Intel and Articul8 AI, as the semiconductor firm does not have a majority stake in the new firm, though Arun Subramaniyan, until very recently the VP and general manager at Intel’s Data Center and AI Group, is the CEO of the GenAI firm.

Instead, DigitalBridge Ventures, the venture capital arm of DigitalBridge, is the lead investor, while Intel, as well as Fin Capital, Mindset Ventures, Communitas Capital, GiantLeap Capital, GS Futures and Middle East telco Zain Group, are minority stakeholders. The companies did not reveal the size of their investments or the initial enterprise valuation of the new company.  

While the GenAI sector is still in its infancy, Articul8 AI faces broad competition to capture the hearts, minds and wallets of enterprise users wanting to benefit from GenAI, with OpenAI (which launched ChatGPT Enterprise last August), Amazon (with its Bedrock offer), Google (with its Gemini platform), Microsoft (Bing Chat Enterprise), Meta (Lama 2), Hugging Face and many others all vying for consideration. 

And enterprises are very keen to exploit GenAI’s potential: According to research firm IDC, business users around the world were on course to spend nearly $16bn on GenAI solutions in 2023 and are expected to be investing as much as $143bn per year by 2027. 

“Every global enterprise today is challenged to integrate GenAI capabilities into their workflows. Articul8 has built a scalable and easy-to-deploy GenAI software platform that is already enabling enterprises to unlock value from their proprietary data. We see GenAI as a pivotal force driving digital infrastructure, and we are pleased to collaborate with Intel to support Articul8’s growth,” said Marc Ganzi, DigitalBridge CEO.

But Articul8 AI is not starting from a standing still position: It has already been deployed by Intel’s GenAI collaborator Boston Consulting Group and, based on that experience, further developed and scaled to meet the security and specialised domain knowledge needs of potential users in the telecom, financial services, aerospace, semiconductors and multiple other sectors.  

“GenAI is at the forefront of our clients’ business strategy and needs. Our collaboration began nearly two years ago while the venture was still in the incubation stage at Intel. Since then, we have deployed Articul8 products for multiple clients seeking production-ready platforms with rapid time to market,” stated Rich Lesser, global chair of BCG.

- Ray Le Maistre, Editorial Director, TelecomTV

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