Intel to buy SigOpt to scale AI models

By Paddy Smith
Intel has announced it will buy SigOpt, a San Francisco-based provider of a leading platform for the optimisation of AI software models at scale...

Intel has announced it will acquire SigOpt in order to improve deep learning, machine learning and data analytics.

The chipmaker hopes SigOpt’s AI software will deliver productivity and performance gains across hardware and software parameters, improving its AI offering to customers – data scientists and developers.

Although costs have not been disclosed, the deal is expected to go through before the end of the year, with SigOpt’s founders – Scott Clark (who is also its CEO) and Patrick Hayes – joining the machine learning performance team at Intel’s architecture, graphics and software division (IAGS).

SigOpts existing customers include Fortune 500 companies, research institutions and universities. Intel, which believes the AI silicon market will be worth more than $25 billion by 2024, hopes to drive AI adoption by combining the company’s software with its hardware.

'Needs of the future'

Raja Koduri, Intel senior vice president, chief architect and general manager of IAGS, said, “In the new intelligence era, AI is driving the compute needs of the future. It is even more important for software to automatically extract the best compute performance while scaling AI models. SigOpt’s AI software platform and data science talent will augment Intel software, architecture, product offerings and teams, and provide us with valuable customer insights. We welcome the SigOpt team and its customers to the Intel family.”

Clark said, “We are excited to join Intel and supercharge our mission to accelerate and amplify the impact of modellers everywhere. By combining our AI optimisation software with Intel’s decades-long leadership in AI computing and machine learning performance, we will be able to unlock entirely new AI capabilities for modellers.”

Intel’s AI solutions delivered more than $3.8 billion in 2019.

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