The platform is a collection of Large Language Models (LLMs), which will have multimodal, higher-level capabilities, as well as numerous other technical inference enhancements, such as Krutrim basic and Krutrim Pro.
Following the start of its funding round, Krutrim, an artificial intelligence (AI) firm co-founded by Bhavish Aggarwal of Ola, revealed on Friday that it had attained unicorn status, a word used to identify startups valued at $1 billion or above. At a $1 billion valuation, the round attracted significant investors including Matrix Partners India and raised $50 million in equity contributions.
With this, Krutrim claimed that it was the fastest unicorn in India as well as the first AI business to achieve unicorn status. In April 2023, Aggarwal and Krishnamurthy Venugopala Tenneti—a board member of ANI Technologies, the company that controls Ola and Ola Electric-launched Krutrim, which means “artificial” in Sanskrit.
The AI startup, together with the electric vehicle maker Ola Electric and the transportation provider Ola, is the third enterprise led by Aggarwal to reach a $1 billion value.
The company’s “mission to transform the AI landscape, foster innovation, and extend its global footprint” will be hastened with the help of the money raised.
Aggarwal stated in a statement, “India needs to build its own AI, and we at Krutrim are fully committed to creating the nation’s first comprehensive AI computing stack.”
The investment round “underlines investors’ confidence in our ability to effect meaningful change out of India for the world, as well as validates the potential of Krutrim’s innovative AI solutions.”
Leading the investment in Krutrim, Matrix Partners India was an early investor in Ola Cabs and the soon-to-be-IPO Ola Electric. Matrix Partners India’s founder and MD, Avnish Bajaj, praised Aggarwal for “continuously bringing cutting-edge tech innovation to India at scale… to power the journey of ‘Viksit Bharat’ digitally.”
Aggarwal released the foundational Large Language Model (LLM) for Krutrim in December 2023. He has joined the AI competition that is very competitive and is dominated by companies like Microsoft, Google, and OpenAI. It powers generative AI applications for all Indian languages, having been trained on the greatest representation of Indian data.
This model was trained by a group of computer scientists from Bengaluru and San Francisco, and according to the business, it will also power Krutrim’s conversational AI assistant, which is multilingual and can understand and speak several Indian languages.
The company claims that the platform’s model can speak and understand multiple languages with ease, and it can be used to discuss a wide range of complex topics from Bengali poetry to Bollywood films and creative masala dosa recipes. Consumers will be able to access the beta version of Krutrim in February 2024. In addition, it will be accessible as an API (application programming interface) for developers and businesses looking to build artificial intelligence applications. The business is also developing AI infrastructure in order to create local data centers and, in the future, server, edge, and supercomputer computing.
The announcement of OpenHathi, the first major language model in Hindi, by Indian generative AI firm Sarvam AI aligns with Krutrim’s investment. In a recent Series A round headed by Lightspeed and backed by Peak XV Partners and Khosla Ventures, Sarvam raised $41 million. Sarvam is creating a “full-stack” solution that can be utilized as an enterprise-grade platform or for training unique AI models. According to the company, a full-stack strategy will accelerate the adoption of GenAI in India, where businesses are aware of the technology’s promise but are having difficulty putting it to use.
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) received a draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) from Aggarwal’s Ola Electric last month. The EV manufacturer, who was just two years old at the time, raised $250 million from SoftBank and became a unicorn in July 2019. According to analytics company Tracxn, it has raised $998 million and is currently valued at $5.4 billion.
One of the few Indian internet companies to reach this milestone, Aggarwal’s Ola said earlier this week that its India mobility division turned Ebitda (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) positive in FY23. Revenue from operations and other income for the combined firm increased to Rs 3,000 crore in FY23 from Rs 2,120 crore in FY22. With stopped operations excluded, the combined entity’s Ebitda loss decreased to Rs 29 crore in FY23 from Rs 291 crore in FY22.