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  • Forbes' Top 50 Most Promising AI firms Include Two Millennium Portfolio Companies

    September 17, 2019

    PRESS RELEASE – Aificial intelligence is infiltrating every industry, allowing vehicles to navigate without drivers, assisting doctors with medical diagnoses, and mimicking the way humans speak. But for all the authentic and exciting ways it’s transforming the tasks computers can perform, there’s a lot of hype, too.

    The inherently broad term gets bandied about so often that it can start to feel meaningless and can be trotted out by companies to gussy up even simple data analysis. To help cut through the noise, Forbes and data partner Meritech Capital put together a list of private, U.S.-based companies that are wielding some subset of artificial intelligence in a meaningful way and demonstrating real business potential from doing so. One makes robots that can whir around shoppers to help workers restock shelves. Another scans recruiting pitches for unconscious bias. A third analyzes massive data sets to make street-by-street weather predictions.

    To be included on the list, companies needed techniques like machine learning (where systems learn from data to improve on tasks), natural language processing (which enables programs to “understand” written or spoken language), or computer vision (which relates to how machines “see”) to be a core part of their business model and future success.

    Millennium’s Portfolio Companies:

    2 | Aurora Innovation
    Headquarters: Palo Alto
    Founders: Chris Urmson (CEO), Sterling Anderson, Drew Bagnell
    Funding: $696 million, via Pitchbook
    Valuation: $2.57 billion, via Pitchbook
    A trifecta of autonomy and transportation experts from Tesla, Uber, and Google came together to build Aurora, a self-driving car company that plans to sell its system to automakers instead of operating its own fleet (it currently has a deal with Hyundai to provide software for its future Kia models). A recent round of funding from Sequoia Capital, Amazon, and T. Rowe Price makes it one of the best-funded players in an increasingly crowded space.

    45 | May Mobility
    Headquarters: Ann Arbor, MI
    Founders: Edwin Olson (CEO), Alisyn Malek, Steve Vozar
    Funding: $33 million
    Valuation: $61.9 million, via Pitchbook
    May Mobility is taking on the self-driving challenge with form factor that’s more predictable than cars: autonomous shuttles. The company’s software has powered shuttle services in Providence, Rhode Island, and Columbus, Ohio, where passengers get scenic tours of the city.

    Click here for the full press release.


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