IBM is participating in a significant Series D funding round worth $235 million for Hugging Face, an AI unicorn valued at $4.5 billion.
Hugging Face, headquartered in New York, is renowned for its widely used collection of open-source machine learning models, which has significantly contributed to the recent surge in the technology's popularity.
Starting from May, Hugging Face and IBM have been collaboratively developing an array of AI tools. In the most recent developments, IBM has added over 200 open models and datasets to the Hugging Face platform. Notably, one of the models shared by IBM on Hugging Face resulted from a joint effort with NASA, marking a groundbreaking open-source AI model from the space agency.
Additionally, IBM has revealed its partnership with Hugging Face in the context of the watsonxai suite of AI tools. IBM's watsonxai serves as a studio that aids other companies in creating a range of AI-powered products tailored to their specific business needs.
IBM holds a bullish perspective on the inevitable integration of AI across virtually every industry. Arvind Krishna, the CEO of IBM, has expressed his anticipation that AI and machine learning will streamline and automate numerous back-office processes that are widespread in workplaces. Krishna cited an example wherein IBM's human resources department accomplished tasks that had previously required hundreds of HR managers with just 50 individuals through the utilization of AI.
Acknowledging the transformative impact of AI over the coming five years, the CEO prudently recommended a hiring freeze for approximately 7,800 positions at the company. This strategic decision reflects IBM's preparedness for the anticipated changes brought about by AI.