Sarvam AI, a Mumbai-based startup, has secured US $41 million in a series A funding round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners, with support from Peak XV Partners and Khosla Ventures.
Founded by Vivek Raghavan and Pratyush Kumar, the Generative AI startup sought this funding to develop the “full-stack” for Generative AI ranging from research-led innovations in training custom AI models to an enterprise-grade platform for authoring and deployment.
“The approach will accelerate the adoption of GenAI in India, especially given that enterprises see the potential of GenAI but are grappling with how to leverage it for their business. Sarvam AI will focus on India’s unique needs. This includes training AI models to support the diverse set of Indian languages and voice-first interfaces. The company will also work with Indian enterprises to co-build domain-specific AI models on their data. Finally, the company aims to create population-scale impact layering GenAI on top of the highly successful India stack specifically for public-good applications,” as stated in an official statement.
Hemant Mohapatra, Partner at Lightspeed, said, “Having backed some of the most influential names in GenAI globally, we are excited by Sarvam AI’s unique approach in combining model innovation and application development to build population-scale solutions for India. Lightspeed will be close partners and contribute with our deep capital stack and learnings from our global platform.”
Vivek, with over 10 years of experience in building digital public infrastructure including Aadhaar, highlighted, “I have seen first hand the enormous value in innovating at foundational layers and deploying at population scale. India has demonstrated that it can harness technology differently, and with GenAI we have an opportunity to reimagine how this technology can add value to people’s lives.”
Vinod Khosla, an Indian-American businessman and venture capitalist, emphasized the strategic importance of sovereign efforts to build GenAI models in various countries. He underscored the need for companies like Sarvam AI to develop deep expertise in building AI for India. Adding, “We see several countries having sovereign efforts to build GenAI models given its strategic importance. We need companies like Sarvam AI to develop deep expertise for building AI in and for India.”
Pratyush underlined attracting the brightest minds to tackle foundational research challenges in India, saying, “The race towards ever more powerful AI is both an exciting and divisive one. We named our company Sarvam, which in Sanskrit means ‘all,’ as we are intentionally invested in technical and ecosystem innovations that make this technology accessible to all.”