The artificial intelligence (AI) subsidiary of MTS, Russia’s largest telecoms operator, has launched a US$ 100 million venture capital fund to accelerate investments in startups.
MTS, which is dual-listed on the New York Stock Exchange and the Moscow Exchange, said that the VC fund and accelerator platform, Intelligent Machines (Intema), will focus on supporting artificial intelligence start-ups with smart money: financial support, deep technical and business expertise, access to computing power and networking, leveraging its world-class AI experts and the established position of its parent company MTS, a leading multinational with expertise in telecoms, fintech, cloud technology, Big Data, and AI.
MTS’s AI Center will invest up to $20m in individual projects and companies and run a startup accelerator that will invest up to $100,000 per project.
Alexey Posternak, Chief Financial and Investment Officer, member of the BoD MTS AI Center, said: “The guiding vision for MTS Artificial Intelligence Center is to establish itself as an AI institute, with deep technical expertise, boosting the capabilities of its investee firms to bring new products to the market. The field of AI services has huge, transformative potential and our full-cycle platform will enhance our position in this dynamic global market by fostering innovation and seeding a diverse network of cutting-edge AI businesses. We are ready to support the rapid growth of promising teams and invest in both early-stage projects and more mature start-ups.”
The Russian wireless carrier is controlled by Russian billionaire Vladimir Yevtushenkov’s Sistema conglomerate.
Meanwhile, Plug and Play the largest global innovation platform in the field of Artificial Intelligence, and Intema, have commenced a partnership that will see Intema and Plug and Play's global ecosystem development, leveraging the platform to support its comprehensive digital transformation strategy in the field of Artificial Intelligence.