This week, a European startup raised a record 105 million euros ($113.5 million) in its initial round, thanks in large part to the A.I. buzz surrounding the startup.
According to data compiled by Dealroom.co, which monitors private investments in companies, Mistral’s seed round was the largest ever reported in Europe.
Read More: Adobe will pay legal fees for Its AI Tool
The amount of funding that AI startup Mistral secured
According to the Financial Times, Mistral was able to secure funding from investors despite the fact that the company has yet to launch a product and its first workers have only recently begun working for the company.
The Financial Times reports that in the early years of 2024, Mistral will release a huge language model that will be very comparable to the generative A.I. technology that powers OpenAI’s chatbot craze, ChatGPT.
LinkedIn claims the company is still looking for new employees. Mistral advertised for new employees not so long ago, calling itself “an ambitious company operating in the space of generative artificial intelligence” and claiming to have a staff of 12 at the moment.
The company’s mission, according to the advertisement, is to “make A.I. the engine of tomorrow’s internet and tomorrow’s software” and “become” a technological leader in the field of A.I. from a European HQ. To quote one of its early workers: “Its founders and early employees are among the most influential technology makers in the young field of generative models.”
On Tuesday night, Arthur Mensch, CEO of Paris-based AI startup Mistral AI, posted to LinkedIn to declare the company had achieved what he called “a major milestone.”
He and his fellow cofounders, Guillaume Lample and Timothée Lacroix, the company’s chief scientist and chief technology officer, had previously worked for Facebook and DeepMind, which is owned by Alphabet.
On Tuesday, Mensch said that Mistral had secured investment from “a consortium of top tier international investors,” which would provide the company with “the resources and network we need to start rolling out a new model of generative artificial intelligence.”
Xavier Niel, a French entrepreneur, and the French advertising firm JCDecaux are among Mistral’s investors.
According to the Financial Times, the French government-backed investment bank Bpifrance also invested in the startup, a move that represents France’s aspirations to become a leading technology powerhouse. When news of Mistral’s successful seed round spread, France’s minister for digital transformation, Jean-Nol Barrot, tweeted his congratulations.
La France a toutes les cartes pour faire émerger des champions de l'intelligence artificielle. Bravo à la startup Mistral AI qui lève 105M€ seulement un mois après sa création : un record !https://t.co/8J6VRv4e8B— Jean-Noël Barrot (@jnbarrot) June 13, 2023
When Fortune reached out to the founders of Mistral, they declined to comment.
Nonetheless, Mensch assured listeners of his Tuesday announcement that Mistral would “combine scientific excellence, an open-source approach, and a socially responsible vision of technology” in its efforts.
“Our training as A.I. researchers, combined with our respective professional experiences within the world’s leading technology companies, has convinced us that there is a way forward for an alternative, innovative project that will enable us to responsibly disseminate the most promising technology of our generation as widely as possible,” said Mensch. To quote the authors, “We are proud to initiate this global project from France, our home country, and to contribute, at our level, to the emergence of a credible new player in generative artificial intelligence from Europe.”
Many market observers are optimistic about A.I., but others are skeptical of the hype. Recently, senior investor and Chief Investment Officer at TAM Asset Management James Penny expressed concern that the AI euphoria was beginning to “smell like the dotcom era,” referring to the period when investors foolishly put money into internet-focused companies and saw massive losses.
Mistral is an AI company that helps businesses automate their workflows. The company was founded in January 2023 by a team of experienced AI and software engineers. Mistral’s platform uses machine learning to understand and automate repetitive tasks, freeing up employees to focus on more strategic work.
Mistral plans to use the funding to expand its team, invest in research and development, and grow its customer base. The company also plans to launch new products and features that will make it even easier for businesses to automate their workflows.