July 24, 2024
Announcing the finalists for the 6th annual VentureBeat AI Innovations Awards

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As enterprise decision-makers get ready for VentureBeat’s flagship enterprise AI event, VB Transform next week, we are excited to announce the finalists for the sixth annual VB AI Innovation Awards.

The winners will be announced during an awards ceremony on the main stage of Transform on July 10, 4-5 p.m. in San Francisco. 

Transform, the premier event for enterprise technical decision-makers focused on mastering generative AI applications, is set to take place from July 9 to 11. This exclusive three-day in-person gathering offers a unique opportunity to explore the impact of gen AI across crucial sectors including health, finance, and software. Attendees will gain valuable insights from a diverse lineup of speakers, featuring tech leaders from Fortune 500 firms including Wells Fargo, Walmart and Kaiser Permanente, and innovative and disruptive companies like Brex, Pinterest and Airbnb.

On July 10, VentureBeat will recognize and award various forms of excellence in AI through our sixth annual VB AI Innovation Awards. The winners will be in nine categories including the following categories: Generative AI Innovator of the Year, Best Enterprise Implementation of Generative AI, Most Promising Generative AI Startup, Generative AI Visionary, Generative AI Diversity, Fairness and Inclusion and Generative AI Open Source Contribution.


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The nominees are drawn from our daily editorial coverage and the expertise, knowledge and experience of our nominating committee members. Prepare to witness the trailblazers and game-changers in the realm of generative AI take center stage as we recognize their outstanding contributions.

Thank you to our nominating committee members for their guidance, insights and recommendations: 

  • Jonathan Frankel, Chief Scientist for neural networks at Databricks
  • Diya Wynn, Responsible AI lead at AWS
  • Tonya Custis, Senior Director of AI research at Autodesk
  • Prem Natarajan, Chief Scientist and head of enterprise AI at Capital One
  • Kalyan Veeramachaneni, Principal Research Scientist at MIT College of Computing

Here are the nominees for each category:

Generative AI Innovator of the Year

This award will go to the company that has pushed the boundaries of gen AI the furthest in the past year and demonstrated the most innovative use of the technology. The winner will have created an application, platform or service that showcases the vast potential of gen AI in a creative, impactful way.

OpenAI

  • OpenAI has quickly claimed the center of attention in the tech world, captivating both industry insiders and the general public with its groundbreaking AI innovations. From the viral success of ChatGPT to the anticipation surrounding each new model release, OpenAI has masterfully kept the spotlight on generative AI. Their rapid-fire advancements, including GPT-3, GPT-4, and DALL-E, have not only showcased the potential of AI but have also sparked global conversations about its implications. With the recent announcement of GPT-4o (GPT-4 Omni), OpenAI continues to command headlines and steer the narrative of AI’s future, cementing its role as the company everyone’s watching in the AI revolution.

Mistral

  • Mistral AI has quickly become a prominent player in the AI space since it was founded in 2023. The company aims to “democratize” AI through open-source innovation. At the end of May, the company marked its entry into the programming and development space with the launch of Codestral, its first-ever code-centric LLM. A few weeks later Mistral announced it had secured $640 million in a series B funding that brings its valuation to $6 billion.

Google

  • Google has developed a wide range of AI-powered tools and features in the Google ecosystem, from Gmail to Google Search, not to mention the work of Google’s Deepmind unit. In February Google unveiled Gemini 1.5, the latest iteration of its conversational AI system, which offers better efficiency, performance and reasoning capabilities. In June Google made the latest two variations of Gemini 1.5 Flash and Pro publicly accessible

ElevenLabs

  • ElevenLabs specializes in using machine learning (ML) for voice cloning and synthesis in different languages. In January, just two years after its inception the company announced an $80 million series B funding round, growing its valuation to $1.1 billion. It also announced a bunch of new features, including a tool for dubbing full-length movies and a new marketplace where users can sell their cloned voices for money. In May the company announced a new text-to-sound AI offering called Sound Effects. In June, the company released an iOS app focused on converting text files or links from the web into audio narration that the user can listen to while on the go. Just this week the company released its first major consumer-centric product-a Reader app. This week the company also announced it is expanding its library of voices and accents.

Amazon

  • Amazon has developed a wide range of AI-powered products and tools in the Amazon ecosystem. In February Amazon announced Rufus, a new generative AI-powered conversational shopping experience. In April, AWS announced a major update to Amazon Bedrock, a platform that aims to make it easier for developers to build and deploy gen AI models. The update brought new models and improved security. In June, Amazon SageMaker, another service on AWS, expanded it’s capabilities with the general availability of the managed MLflow on SagMaker. Also In June, Q, Amazon’s conversational AI assistant for enterprises got an update for call center employees: real-time, step-by-step guides tailored to solve whatever issues a customer is calling about. (Disclosure: One of our nominating committee members works for AWS)

Best Enterprise Implementation of Generative AI

This award will highlight the top enterprise company that has implemented gen AI in a truly transformative way.

Microsoft

  • Microsoft has been working on incorporating generative AI into its Microsoft Dynamics and Power platforms to enable enterprise applications with the power of generative AI. The company has also deployed its Copilot generative AI assistant across the Microsoft 365 suite of business productivity and collaboration apps. In May, the company announced that Microsoft Copilot Studio will let developers build AI bots that act like agents. In June, the company’s Azure AI team dropped a new vision model called Florence-2 on Hugging Face.

GitHub

  • GitHub is the widely used platform for version control and collaborative software development. GitHub’s Copilot is an AI-powered coding assistant developed by GitHub in collaboration with OpenAI. In May, GitHub debuted CoPilot Extensions, plugin support connecting third-party apps with Copilot Chat.

Klarna

  • Klarna, the Swedish fintech company known for its “buy now, pay later” services, has implemented AI extensively across its operations, both in customer service and internal processes. This includes an AI assistant for customer service, internal AI assistant (Kiki) and widespread adoption of AI by employees.

Cohere

  • Cohere offers an enterprise platform for generative AI, search, and advanced retrieval. In 2024, the company made significant strides: In February, its nonprofit research lab unveiled Aya, an open-source LLM supporting 101 languages. March saw the release of Command-R, a powerful enterprise-focused language model, amid a major fundraising round. In April, Cohere launched a toolkit to accelerate enterprise generative AI app development. Finally, in May, the company released Aya 23, an open-weights model supporting 23 languages.

Salesforce

  • Salesforce, a leading cloud-based based software company focused on customer relationship management (CRM) solutions in February launched the public beta release of Einstein Copilot. Salesforce is also integrating with OpenAI to deliver AI-generated content. The company rolled out expanded availability of the copilot in April. Also in April, Salesforce’s Tableau division detailed the next wave of AI-powered analytics for the platform.  

Best Enterprise Implementation of Generative AI (Finance)

Visa

  • Visa is a pioneer in AI-driven fraud protection and has embraced the transformative potential of generative AI. The company has been using AI to protect payments since 1993. The companies recent moves have included launching a secure instance of GPT-4 for developers and investing $100 million in a gen AI ventures initiative. In May the company added to it’s arsenal of attack intelligence tools with the addition of a new gen AI-powered VAAI Score to identify and score enumeration attacks.

FinTool

  • FinTool is an AI-powered financial analysis tool designed primarily for institutional investors and equity research professionals. It’s described as an “AI Equity Research Copilot” that analyzes SEC filings, earnings calls and conference transcripts to provide insights and answer complex financial questions.

Patronus AI

  • Patronus AI is focused on AI evaluation and security, particularly for LLMs. As more tech companies release models capable of seeing, hearing and injecting emotion into interactions, it makes it difficult to keep up with accuracy, privacy and auditing needs. Patronus AI aims to address these challenges has launched “FinanceBench” benchmarks, datasets and diagnostics to help in areas like detecting personally identifiable information (PII) in bot information. In May, the company raised $17 million in a series A funding, bringing its total funding to $20 million.

ING Bank

Bloomberg

  • Bloomberg the global financial news and media company has been integrating AI across its operations, including in news productions, data analysis and financial tools. In March 2023, Bloomberg introduced BloombergGPT, an LLM specifically trained on financial data.

Best Enterprise Implementation of Generative AI (Health)

Abridge

  • Abridge is an AI-powered platform built for medical conversations and improving clinical documentation. The company’s technology transforms patient-clinician conversations into structured clinical notes in real-time with deep electronic medical records integrations. In February the company announced a $150 million series C round, just four months after a $30 million series B round. The company also announced a new enterprise agreement with Yale New Haven Health System, to reduce the mental load of clinical documentation to focus on patient care.

Cradle

  • Cradle is a web-based software that makes protein engineering faster. The company’s gen AI tool is trained on a proprietary dataset of billions of sequences and can design novel, high-performing proteins for various industries. In 2023, the company raised a $23 million series A round.

Viz.ai

  • Viz.ai uses AI to analyze medical imaging data, including CT scans, to provide real-time insights and automated assessments to accelerate the diagnosis and treatment of potentially life-threatening diseases such as stroke. The company was valued at $1.2 billion in the last funding round in 2022. 

Nabla

  • Nabla is the developer of Nabla Copilot, which generates clinical notes, AI-enabled medical coding identification and electronic health record integrations. Since its launch in 2018, Nabla has raised a total of $43 million. In March the company announced the launch of Nabla Copilot’s new Magic Edit feature, which allows for personalization within automated clinical documentation. 

Amazon

  • Amazon has been expanding its presence in the healthcare sector through various initiatives and acquisitions including Amazon Care, Amazon Pharmacy, Amazon Clinic, acquiring One Medical, AWS for Health, Alexa Health and Wellness and Amazon Halo. Amazon pharmacy has doubled the number of customers it serves in the last year. The company utilizes AI and machine learning to manage inventory, help customers find the best price, real-time insurance estimates on prescription medications. (Disclosure: One of our nominating committee members works for AWS)

Best Enterprise Implementation of Generative AI (Software)

Cognition Labs

  • Cognition Labs emerged from stealth in February to announce a full autonomous AI software engineer called “Devin.” The announcement of Devin marks a significant shift in the AI-assisted development space, giving engineers a full-fledged AI worker for their projects, rather than a copilot that could merely write barebones code or suggest snippets. Just months later, the company is seeking a valuation of $2 billion.

Replit

  • Replit, is a startup that provides a cloud-based platform for software development. The company is aggressively pivoting towards AI to power its coding tools. Central to that plan is an AI-powered code completion tool called Ghostwriter, which Replit made available to all users and rebranded simply as “Replit AI.”

ServiceNow and Hugging Face

Cohere

  • In March the company announced the release of a major new language model, Command-R, amid a heated fundraising round. In April, the company released a toolkit to accelerate generative AI app development in the enterprise. In May the company launched open weights AI model Aya 23 with support for nearly two dozen languages.

Airtable

  • Airtable is a low-code platform that helps users build applications. Airtable AI allows users to directly deploy AI into critical workflows. In March, the company launched Airtable AI to GA alongside extended capabilities. The power of AI in Airtable is its ability to develop new assets in the context of existing data and insights, and then supercharge the execution of the work within an enterprise workflow. 

Most promising generative AI startup

This award will go to the most promising startup that has developed an innovative gen AI application and demonstrated high growth potential and has raised less than $30 million in funding.

Viggle.AI

  • Viggle.AI has emerged as an innovative and powerful creative AI tool in the realm of controllable video generation. Viggle.AI is powered by JST-1, a sophisticated video-3D foundation model. This advanced AI system forms the backbone of Viggle’s capabilities, enabling it to generate and manipulate video content with unprecedented control and flexibility.

Create Labs

  • Create Labs focuses its efforts on the AI and metaverse design space. The company offers customized AI application development services to its clients. In addition to its tech offerings, Create Labs has initiated programs aimed at providing skills training, resources, and networking opportunities to underserved populations.

DataCebo

  • DataCebo, launched an open-source library called Synthetic Data Vault (SDV) the co-founders created at MIT. They took this and decided to take it to enterprises. The company uses relational and tabular databases to create synthetic data. (Disclosure: One of our nominating committee members is a co-founder of this company)

​​Midjourney

  • Midjourney is an independent research lab. Midjourney generates images from natural language descriptions called “prompts” similar to OpenAI’s DALL·E and Stable Diffusion. Midjourney stands out because the AI bot can only be accessed via the voice-over-internet protocol, instant messaging social platform Discord — rather than via its website or mobile app. 

Lamini

  • Lamini, a startup offering a platform for AI model development and deployment, recently announced findings that its fine-tuning reduces hallucinations by 90%. The company founded in 2022, aims to simplify the process of creating, fine-tuning and deploying custom LLMs for businesses. Lamini’s platform focuses on enabling model training on proprietary data while addressing privacy concerns and computational efficiency.

Generative AI Visionary

This award will go to an individual who has made significant contributions to the field of gen AI through their thought leadership, research or work building foundational technologies. The winner would be judged based on the novelty and influence of their contributions, as evidenced by publications, patents or products developed.

Clement Delangue

  • Clem Delangue is the CEO and co-founder of Hugging Face. His mission is to democratize good machine learning and promote transparency, openness and distribution of power in AI capabilities. He was recognized in Time’s 100 Most Influential People in AI for 2023.

Yann LeCun

  • Yann LeCun is the Chief AI Scientist for Facebook AI Research (FAIR) and is known for his pivotal work in machine learning, computer vision and deep learning. 

John Pasmore

  • John Pasmore is the founder and CEO of Latimer. Latimer is an LLM designed with deep empathy and a commitment to reducing bias. Latimer understands the nuances of diverse voices and narratives and leverages a Retrieval-Augmented Generation (RAG) model architecture to ensure every response is grounded in the most accurate and comprehensive data available.

Luke Zettlemoyer

  • Luke Zettlemoyer is a professor at the University of Washington and a researcher at Facebook AI Research (FAIR). He is a prolific scientist and has been involved in a vast number of important papers that affect the way LLMs are created today (multimodal models released today by Meta, quantization through the BitsAndBytes library and Qlora, Toolformer for establishing tool use as an important area of LLM research, the OLMo project at AI2, several important methods for LLM data selection, the OPT project at Meta etc.)

Joelle Pineau

  • Joelle Pineau is VP of AI Research at Meta. She has overseen a vast portfolio of impactful AI research at Meta for many years and has championed better reproducibility in the field of AI as a whole (through reproducibility checklists and the machine learning reproducibility challenge).

The Generative AI Diversity, Fairness and Inclusion Award

This award will recognize the company, organization or individual that has done the most to promote diversity and inclusion in the gen AI field. This could include advancing AI ethics, making AI technologies more accessible, providing opportunities and support for underrepresented groups or using AI in a way that reduces bias and promotes social justice.

Fei-Fei Li

  • Fei-Fei Li is the Sequoia Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University and co-director of Stanford’s Human-Centered AI Institute. Li has been leading the development of cognitively inspired AI, machine learning, deep learning, computer vision and AI+healthcare, especially ambient intelligent systems for healthcare delivery. Li has also been a national leading voice for advocating diversity in STEM and AI. She is co-founder and chairperson of the national non-profit AI4ALL aimed at increasing inclusion and diversity in AI education. She has also been working with policymakers nationally and locally to ensure the responsible use of generative AI, such as testifying before Congress, serving on the California Future of Work Commission, and being a member of the National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource Task Force.

Stella Biderman

  • Stella Biderman is a prominent researcher in the field of artificial intelligence and machine learning. She is particularly known for her work on large language models and AI ethics. Biderman is a co-founder of EleutherAI, a collective of researchers working on open-source AI projects. She has contributed significantly to the development and understanding of language models.

Maryam Rezapoor

  • Maryam Rezapoor works on product development for Amazon AGI. She built the AWS AI and ML Scholarship, in collaboration with Intel and Udacity, from concept to creation to provide high school and college students from underserved and underrepresented communities with resources to start their career in AI and ML globally. (Disclosure: One of our nominating committee members works for AWS)

Rosanne Liu

  • Rosanne Liu is a research scientist at Google Deepmind, she is also the co-founder and executive director of the ML Collective. ML collective is a decentralized, massively scaled, openly collaborative lab for those looking to research AI and ML at home.

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)

  • DARPA is a research arm of the U.S. Department of Defense working on the development of emerging tech that can be used for the military. 

Generative AI Open Source Contribution

This award highlights the person, team or company that has made the most significant contribution to open-source tools, datasets or other resources to help advance gen AI.

Hugging Face

  • Hugging Face is a leading AI company and platform that provides a comprehensive ecosystem for machine learning practitioners, researchers, and developers. The company is renowned for its significant open-source contributions to the machine learning community, particularly in advancing NLP and CV technologies. Hugging Face’s platform has become a go-to resource for AI practitioners, fostering innovation and knowledge sharing in the field.

Mistral AI

  • Mistral AI is a French company founded in 2023 that offers some of the most popular open-source large language models, positioning itself as a European alternative to major AI firms like OpenAI and Google.

PyTorch

  • PyTorch is an open-source machine learning framework primarily developed by Facebook’s AI Research lab. It is widely used for applications such as computer vision and natural language processing. PyTorch is known for its ease of use, flexibility in model design, and strong community support, making it a popular choice among researchers and developers in the field of artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Meta-LLaMA

  • Meta has made significant strides in open-source generative AI technology with the release of LLaMA-3. This latest iteration of their LLaMA series is designed to be more accessible and resource-efficient compared to larger proprietary models. By releasing LLaMA-3 as an open-source model, Meta is fostering innovation and collaboration within the AI community. The model’s smaller size makes it more practical for a wider range of users to experiment with and build upon, potentially accelerating progress in the field of generative AI.

Toyota Research Institute 

  • Toyota Research Institute is a research and development enterprise, whose mission is to create new tools and capabilities focused on improving the human condition. TRI has been at the forefront of developing gen AI models with their open-source repository.

Counting down to the AI Innovation Awards

We look forward to sharing the winners of the AI Innovation Awards next week. Awards will be presented at VentureBeat’s in-person event at VB Transform on July 10 in San Francisco. Stay tuned!



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