AI chip startup Axelera reels in USD 27 million in Series A funding

By Ayushi Garg  | Date: 2022-10-26

AI chip startup Axelera reels in USD 27 million in Series A funding

Netherlands-based Axelera AI B.V. has reportedly raised USD 27 million in a Series A funding round led by Innovation Industries, a European venture capital company, including Belgium-based Federal Holding and Investment Company, and Imec.xpand, Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre (IMEC)s venture arm.

Additionally, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy requested a USD 6.7 million loan from the Netherland Enterprise Agency, which was granted to Axelera AI.

For the record, IMEC, a Belgian nanotechnology lab, and Fabrizio Del Maffeo collaborated with Evangelos Eleftheriou and a group of IBM Zurich Lab researchers to create a computer chip. During that time, they raised money from VCs, notably Imecs venture arm after establishing Axelera AI to market their chip technology within the blockchain corporation Bitfury Group.

Contrary to traditional chips, Del Maffeo and the rest of the team believed that most offline, at-the-edge computing hardware was ineffective and expensive, thus theirs was intended for devices at the edge, especially those doing AI workloads.

Notably, Axelera is trying to produce AI acceleration cards and systems for use cases including security, retail, and robotics that it wants to market through partners in the business-to-business edge computing and Internet of Things (IoT) sectors. Moreover, the Axelera Thetis Core processor, which uses in-memory computing to conduct calculations in RAM to lessen the delay provided by storage media, is built into the cards and systems.

According to Del Maffeo, Axelera is also developing software to control its chip, which will be "completely integrated" with prominent AI frameworks, such as PyTorch and TensorFlow, when it is released. However, there is still a long way to go before AI chip is widely available among consumers.

It is worth mentioning that Axelera's first testbench chip was built by the company in December 2021, and it wont likely start shipping to customers until sometime in the first half of 2023.

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Ayushi Garg

Ayushi Garg

Currently working as an associate content writer, Ayushi pens down insightful articles for several websites. She began her profession by taking classes in digital marketing to broaden her skills. Given her passion for writing, she took up several freelancing projects ...

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