AWS Pours $230 Million into Generative AI Startups

Amazon Web Services offers $1M credits, mentorship to startups building AI applications.

Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS), an, Inc. company announced a $230 million commitment for startups around the world to accelerate the creation of generative AI applications. This will provide startups, especially early-stage companies, with AWS credits, mentorship, and education to further their use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies. Part of the new commitment will fund the second cohort of the AWS Generative AI Accelerator, a program that provides hands-on expertise and up to $1 million in credits to each of the top 80 early-stage startups that are using generative AI to solve complex challenges. Applications for the AWS Generative AI Accelerator open today and will be accepted until July 19.

For more than 18 years, AWS has helped more startups to build, launch, and scale their business than any other cloud provider—it’s no coincidence that 96% of all AI/ML unicorns run on AWS. With this new effort, we will help startups launch and scale world-class businesses, providing the building blocks they need to unleash new AI applications that will impact all facets of how the world learns, connects, and does business.

Matt Wood, vice president, Artificial Intelligence Products, AWS

Startups can use AWS credits to access AWS compute, storage, and database technologies, as well as AWS Trainium and AWS Inferentia2, energy-efficient AI chips that offer high performance at the lowest cost. These credits can also be used on Amazon SageMaker, a fully managed service that helps companies build and train their own FMs, as well as to access models and tools to easily and securely build generative AI applications through Amazon Bedrock.

The AWS Generative AI Accelerator identifies top early-stage startups that are using generative AI to solve complex challenges in areas such as financial services, healthcare and life sciences, media and entertainment, business, and climate change, among others. Participants will access sessions on ML performance enhancement, stack optimization, and go-to-market strategies. The 10-week program will match participants with both business and technical mentors based on industry vertical. Startups will receive up to $1 million each in AWS credits to help them build, train, test, and launch their generative AI solutions. They will also have access to industry experts, technology, and technical sessions from NVIDIA, the program’s presenting partner, and be invited to join the NVIDIA Inception program, designed to nurture cutting-edge startups.

AWS will announce selected startups for the second cohort on September 10, and the program will kick off on October 1 with in-person sessions at Amazon’s Seattle campus. All 80 participating startups will be invited to attend and showcase their solutions to potential investors, customers, partners, and AWS leaders in December at re:Invent 2024 in Las Vegas.

AWS has been instrumental in enabling us to scale our generative AI platform to meet the rapidly growing demand from our global user community. Their robust generative AI infrastructure helped us reduce inferencing costs by 60% and accelerate our language model inference speeds by up to 35%. The accelerator was also an incredible experience for us. The business and technical mentorship we received and the connections we made played a crucial role in shaping our product and strategy.

Jachin Bhasme, co-founder and COO, Leonardo.AI

AWS has the right combination of technology, network of partners, and potential customers in the life sciences space that made it the best fit to support our vision of building the next generation of AI models for drug discovery. Participating in the AWS Generative AI Accelerator program provided us with valuable opportunities to tap into this community and to leverage AWS’s infrastructure and expertise in scaling model training and development.

Nima Alidoust, Ph.D., CEO and co-founder, Vevo Therapeutics

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