World’s largest tech giants have acquired over 50 AI startups since 2010, pointing out another front in the nonstop war among the giants for AI talent.
The acquisition of AI startups and small companies by biggest tech powers reflects a scarcity of AI expertise, as it has been previously reported in the past from various sources. But it also allows tech companies to reinforce their advantage over the upstarts, each time they make it harder for a new entrant to compete in the market.
“Several of the tops AI researchers and most popular products introduced by leading tech organizations came from acquisitions,” according to data compiled by CB Insights. For instance, in 2010, Apple acquired Siri, the digital assistant that is now being consisted of its phones, tablets, computers, and speakers; then in 2013, Amazon purchased British Tech Company Evi, which significantly contribute to its market-leading Alexa assistant; in 2014, Google bought up DeepMind, the pioneering research firm behind the computers that beat humans at Go. And later in 2013, it brought Geoffrey Hinton, the father of deep learning.
The facts show how tech companies are on the hunt for purchasing emerging AI startups. Moreover, the more these companies buy up AI talent and software, the larger they expand into the market and keep the competition high. Moreover, the acquisitions are certainly consistent with the theory that Big Tech companies are associating to expand their reach, enhance in-house talent and revenues.
Acquisitions and recruitment of AI and tech startups have just started heating up in the market, says Deepashri Varadharajan, lead analyst at CB Insights. “Big Tech companies that are worth trillion-dollar have an advantage here.” Further, these companies haven’t absorbed up the whole AI startups because there are still plenty of startups with smart people and innovative products ruling the world. In December, CB Insights reported that 10% of the world’s AI talent works at 10 tech giants.