Paris-based Mistral AI, an emerging competitor to OpenAI, is nearing a significant funding milestone, poised to close €450M from investors, including Nvidia Corp and Salesforce, at an impressive $2B valuation.
The funding deal, as reported by Bloomberg, includes over €325M in equity from investors, with Andreessen Horowitz spearheading the investment talks with a proposed €200M funding. Additionally, Nvidia and Salesforce have agreed to invest an additional €120M in convertible debt. However, some details of the deal are still subject to change.
Co-Founders and Advisors Selling Equity
The funding agreement involves the company’s three co-founders, Arthur Mensch, Timothée Lacroix, and Guillaume Lample, selling more than €1M worth of equity each. The sale also includes equity from Mistral AI’s chief advisor, former French minister Cedric O.
Mistral AI’s Technological Advancements
A couple of months prior to this funding announcement, the A.I firm released Mistral 7B, its first large language model (LLM) under the open-source Apache 2.0 licence. Mistral-7B is a foundational model based on customized training, tuning, and data processing methods, optimized for knowledge compression and deep reasoning capacities despite having fewer parameters. These advancements are expected to enhance sustainability and efficiency in AI by reducing training time, cost, energy consumption, and environmental impact.
Mistral AI’s Mission and Growth
The company focuses on developing generative AI models and specializes in open-source software for chatbots and generative AI tools. The startup, launched in May, was valued at $259M in June following a record $113M in seed funding, the largest-ever seed round recorded in Europe.
A New Era in AI Development
Mistral AI’s upcoming funding round marks a significant step in the AI industry, positioning the French company as a formidable rival to OpenAI. With its focus on open-source software and generative AI tools, Mistral AI is set to play a pivotal role in advancing AI technology and its applications.