Blaize closes $71 million Series D financing

Our Bureau Hyderabad | Updated on July 28, 2021

Franklin Templeton and Temasek lead the funding round

Blaize, an AI computing and automotive computing solutions provider, closed a $71 million Series D funding round with Franklin Templeton, a new investor, and Temasek, an existing investor, leading the round, along with participation from DENSO and other investors.

To accelerate the product roadmap and scale the business with this funding, the company plans to expand its Hyderabad operations in the next 12-18 months.

“Blaize has demonstrated the capability to enable value creation for organisations tapping the power of AI for edge computing,” said JP Scandalios, Senior Vice-President and Portfolio Manager, Franklin Templeton. “We are excited to invest as Blaize leadership takes strides to realise their vision. Automotive, and numerous edge AI markets, such as retail and metro, hold tremendous potential for Blaize to expand on their early market position as the adoption of AI at the edge accelerates, creating a new wave of industrial systems,” he added.

Khen Nam Lee, Deputy Chairman, Vertex Venture Holdings, said, “The prospects are substantial. Today, Blaize is delivering to customers a distinct fusion of AI hardware and AI Studio end-to-end software platform that leads the industry in productisation of high-value knowledge-drives edge computing solutions.”

“Blaize System on Chip for automotive edge and central compute functions are accelerating electric vehicles and future architectural ambitions of automotive OEMs,” said Tony Cannestra, Director of Corporate Ventures, DENSO. “With substantial power advantages making EVs more efficient and economical, Blaize SoCs offer best in class performance with lower power across in-cabin, out of vehicle, and autonomous operations, enabling a streamlined architectural evolution to centralise compute,” he added.

Dinakar Munagala, CEO, Blaize, said, “We are well positioned to accelerate our next generation products and sustain our lead in delivering integrated hardware and software offerings that enable true value-creation for our customers.”

Acceleration of product roadmap

The funding will support acceleration of the product roadmap to meet growing demand for higher performance, lower power, lower cost AI hardware and transformational AI software solutions in automotive, smart retail, smart city and industrial markets.

In 2020, Blaize released and built a multi-year pipeline for the first generation Blaize AI edge computing hardware and software products. In India, expansive potential exists for Blaize to play a role in the AI-based transformational progress in agriculture, healthcare, smart city, and other initiatives.

Blaize plans to strengthen its talent base in India by hiring engineers and AI technology experts across functions including hardware design, software development, verification, research and customer services.

Published on July 28, 2021

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