Tunis-born AI firm raises US$100 mln

Artificial intelligence firm InstaDeep, created on two laptops in Tunisia in 2014, has raised $100 million from investors including Google and BioNTech, the company said on Tuesday.

InstaDeep will use the funding to develop its infrastructure, hire experts and speed up launching AI projects in “biotech, logistics, transportation and electronics manufacturing”, it said in a statement.

AI is a branch of computing that builds machines capable of tasks that would normally need human-like intelligence, in everything from virology to transport.

InstaDeep said it had worked with German pharma firm BioNTech to create an immunotherapy lab making use of AI, as well as an AI-powered early warning system for detecting high-risk coronavirus variants.

The firm has also applied AI to complex train scheduling challenges for German railway firm Deutsche Bahn.

InstaDeep chief Karim Beguir said the firm saw “wide-ranging opportunities to deploy our AI products to tackle complex real-world problems”.

According to US news channel CNBC, a survey of technology executives found that 81 percent believed artificial intelligence would be very or critically important to their companies in 2022.