Los Angeles-based venture capital firm Sound Ventures has closed its new Sound Ventures AI Fund at nearly $240 million.
Sound Ventures, led by actor Ashton Kutcher, talent manager Guy Oseary and Effie Epstein, plans to invest in what it calls “category-defining” artificial intelligence businesses.
Its first three investments were in Anthropic, StabilityAI and ChatGPT developer OpenAI.
Los Angeles-based Sound Ventures is among the venture capital firms that are upbeat on foundation models and other similar natural language processing technologies capable of generating human-like responses to natural language inputs.
Foundation models focus on the GPT family of text-to-text foundation models (GPT-3, GPT-3.5, GPT-4 and ChatGPT).
Creating these models can cost millions of dollars as they contain hundreds of billions of hyperparameters that have been trained with hundreds of gigabytes of data, according to Techopedia.
Guy Oseary, General Partner at Sound Ventures, said that Sound Ventures expects AI to play an “impactful role” in everything including entertainment.
“The companies we are backing will be at the forefront of this powerful innovation, and Sound Ventures is excited to bring our distinct experiences and connectivity to responsibly support these AI foundational platforms,” Oseary added.
In addition to Oseary, Sound Ventures says its team has deep experience in technology and entertainment, two industries “at the heart of generative AI.”
“We have been investing in artificial intelligence for the past decade, and we believe that this moment in history will dictate the trajectory of this technology,” said Effie Epstein, another General Partner at Sound Ventures.
“Our team is well-positioned to continue investing in, and supporting, exceptional founders that are thoughtfully shaping the future through artificial intelligence,” Epstein continued.
“The companies we are backing will be at the forefront of this powerful innovation, and Sound Ventures is excited to bring our distinct experiences and connectivity to responsibly support these AI foundational platforms.”
Sound Ventures already manages more than $1 billion in assets. Its prior investments include Airbnb, Uber, Flexport, Brex, GitLab, Airtable, Affirm, Forethought and You.com.
In September 2021, Sound Ventures took part in a $5 million funding round for blockchain streaming service, Audius.
“We believe this is potentially the most significant technology we will experience since the advent of the internet,” said Kutcher, who also is a General Partner at Sound Ventures.
“The foundation model layer companies are defining the category, and, in our view, they have the power to transform businesses and everyday life. That is a conversation we want to be in.”
In July 2021, Kutcher participated in a $100 million funding round for NFT marketplace OpenSea.
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