Founders Factory, the corporate accelerator vehicle set up by Brent Hoberman’s Founder’s Forum umbrella, has today announced the first two startups selected for their AI accelerator programme in conjunction with CSC Group. The idea is to co-create two new AI businesses within the incubator programme every year, for five years. Terms were not disclosed.
CSC Group invested in Founders Factory (co-founded with Henry Lane Fox) in October 2016. CSC is one of China’s biggest tech investors – they put $400m into Angelist 18 months ago. Their idea is to provide a ‘bridge’ for these startups to later enter the Chinese market.
The first two startups being announced for the AI accelerator programme are Iris.ai. The AI-driven research assistant helps users to search and map over 60 million open access research papers, doubling the productivity of research teams. Founded by Anita Schjøll Brede (CEO), Maria Ritoia (CMO) and Jacobo Elosua (CFO) in 2015, Iris.ai launched at TechCrunch Disrupt in London last year.
The second is illumr. Founded by Jason Lee (CEO) in 2013, and with a decade of research behind it, this helps organisations better understand and predict patterns of behaviour that affect them. illumr “turns complex datasets into understandable 3D patterns to reveal insights that all other analytical tools and methodologies may miss.” So far, illumr has worked with government departments, large financial institutions and housing organisations.