Contxto – Andrew Ng is a Chinese-American computer science professor at Standford encouraging businesses to adopt AI solutions over their platforms. As the brain-power behind deeplearning.ai, Landing AI and the AI Fund, he recently established new headquarters in Medellin, Colombia for these ventures.
This education program assists partners in developing sophisticated Deep Learning-powered algorithms, concepts and applications. According to Ng, this branch of AI is a superpower, allowing technology to mimic human behavior and thinking processes.
More than 400,000 students have enrolled in its Deep Learning Specialization course. Additionally, over 150,000 have participated in the group’s non-technical course, AI for Everyone. It also intends to release Spanish-language courses in the near future.
Building AI startups from the ground up is how the AI Fund introduces itself, a “startup studio” where everything is created internally. With this, Ng’s in-house project allows clients to generate startup ideas, pursue market validation, produce prototypes, etc.
To accomplish this, the AI Fund has an endowment of US$175 million to incubate startups. It also introduces local talent to international companies within Colombia. Currently, it’s training its first cohort of engineers after receiving over 400 applications.
AI-powered solutions are also easily available with this undertaking, especially when it comes to aiding companies in improving their performance. Services include strategic customized engagement, proprietary tools and IP, as well as consolidated industry data.
Specifically, Landing.ai collaborates with Latin American manufacturing entities. This way, they can learn to implement computer vision technology to optimize operations as well as boost business.
Colombia’s second-largest city has certainly transformed over the years. Today, it’s home to a number of universities as well as incubators, such as Ruta N. This way, it’s progressively becoming more of a startup hub for entrepreneurs.
Ng chose to launch operations in Medellin due to its talent pool, education system and business ecosystem.
“I see early signs of momentum for Colombia being a talent magnet both regionally and globally,” said Ng, who isn’t only the former chief scientist at Baidu but also the founder of Google Brain Project and former CEO of Coursera.
Adding to the equation is the Colombian government’s recent promotion for tech innovation. For example, the Colombian Ministry of IT and Communication recently launched a program to teach machine learning, Python, deep learning and other AI subjects to over 4,400 students.
In Ng’s opinion, it’s crucial that AI hubs expand out of Silicon Valley and China to gain different perspectives.
“We are able to share our AI ecosystem and Silicon Valley know-how with Medellín,” said Ng. “We’re equally thrilled for our Silicon Valley team to be learning from the Medellín community. Local knowledge and innovation shared with a global community is what will catapult the technology forward.”
What does the future look like?
Moving forward, the Medellin-based office will also include team members from four stealth portfolio companies. They are four early-stage AI startups allegedly exploring innovations in the healthcare, education and customer support industries.
For Ng, he also hopes to develop specialized products and components that verticals can utilize.
So far, the Medellin team has members from Poland, Bangladesh, Egypt and Chile, just under 50 people. The number of employees will reportedly grow between 150 and 200 over the next two years.