Samsung launches new fund for early-stage AI investments

Samsung is diving deeper into artificial intelligence after it announced a new fund focused on AI technologies and startups.

The Korean firm’s ‘Samsung NEXT Q Fund’ is targeted at seed and Series A deals for startups that are “solving AI problems, as well as those using AI to solve computer science problems.” In particular, the announcement revealing the new fund mentioned areas that include learning in simulation, scene understanding, problem learning programs and human computer interaction.

The fund itself doesn’t have a dedicated kitty, it instead invests from Samsung’s $150 million U.S. Next Fund, which was announced last year and is focused on early-stage companies in emerging tech verticals.

The Q fund has already cut checks, though. To date it has backed a number of companies, one of which is Covariant.AI — a startup that teaches skills to robots.

“For the past ten years, we’ve watched software eat the world. Now, it’s AI’s turn to eat software. We’re launching Q Fund to support the next generation of AI startups who look to scratch beyond the surface of what we know today,” said Samsung NEXT Ventures’ Vincent Tang in a statement.


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