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We are the robots: AI technology shifts into the mainstream

We are the robots: AI technology shifts into the mainstream

Once the preserve of futurists, artificial intelligence technology is to set to become a routine part of everyday business operations, according to a report from venture capital firm MMC Ventures, in association with Barclays Bank.

The State of AI report shows that corporate adoption of the technology has tripled in the last 12 months and is now operative within one in seven large companies. Over the next 24 months, fully two thirds of large companies expect to have live AI initiatives running.

The uptick in corporate adoption is mirrored in the startup world, with one in 12 new startups now identified as an AI company, compared to just one in 50 in 2013.

The UK is the powerhouse of European AI, with nearly 500 startups - a third of Europe’s total and twice as many as any other country. Germany and France are flourishing AI ecosystems with high quality talent, increasing investment and a growing roster of breakout AI companies. Spain’s contribution to European AI exceeds its size. Despite a population half the size of Germany, it has almost as many AI startups.

Steven Roberts, managing director of Barclays UK Ventures, comments: “AI has grown rapidly over the past few years and already we’ve seen the impact on our everyday lives, from facial recognition to the recommendations we’re served up. As the technology becomes more prevalent and complex, however, it’s important to remember any AI proposition must meet two criteria: to solve a real-life problem for people, businesses and society, and to do so in a responsible and inclusive way.

“These two priorities are at the heart of the work we’ve done in the space, whether that be supporting start-ups and scale-ups, hosting events to demystify the technology, or connecting larger businesses to the most exciting entrepreneurs in the space. We believe that collaboration is key to ensuring AI is a force for good and we’re excited to continue playing our part in this hugely innovative environment, bringing together people, ideas and funding.”

Finextra’s NextGen Banking London 2019 conference on 16 May will bring together practitioners from across the financial services industry to explore what the AI revolution means for banks - and what financial institutions need to do in the short, medium and longer terms to benefit from AI, and ensure their customers do so as well.

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