AI Accelerator Offers Startups Free Use of Nvidia GPU Server

Northern Data’s announcement comes at a time when the European tech ecosystem is witnessing a surge in AI activity
Northern Data, one of the largest partners to Nvidia, has launched its inaugural AI Accelerator program to help startups develop their AI offerings

Northern Data, one of the largest partners to Nvidia, has announced the launch of its inaugural AI Accelerator program. 

This initiative aims to fast-track AI innovation by providing selected startups with complimentary access to state-of-the-art NVIDIA HGX H100 GPU servers.

Northern Data Group, a High-Performance Computing (HPC) solutions provider, will power the endeavour by 100% carbon-free energy supported by expert engineers from its ranks.

Additionally, selected startups will receive mentoring and workshops with industry leaders, including NVIDIA, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Supermicro.

The AI Accelerator program is designed to empower startups to rapidly establish or scale a proof of concept for their AI concepts, harnessing cutting-edge solutions like fine-tuning, quantisation, and retrieval-augmented generation techniques. 

Free access to NVIDIA's HGX H100 GPU servers can provide them with unprecedented processing power - working up to 9x faster and have 30x faster inference - to help them train any large AI models and cut production time, and the mentoring can provide valuable insights on next steps that many startups often crave.

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Cultivating an ecosystem

Northern Data has stated it believes that AI only in the hands of the big tech companies will stunt the world’s growth in AI development, so wants to give startups the opportunity to harness state-of-the-art hardware.

For such a disruptive technology that has everyone from Microsoft to Google getting on board to implement, the AI boom underway has largely been spearheaded by startups. OpenAI, Anthropic, Synthesia all paved the way before getting attention from the big tech titans for their AI development.

Indeed, Northern Data’s announcement comes at a time when the European tech ecosystem is witnessing a surge in AI activity.

AI investment

A recent report by tech advisory and investment firm GP Bullhound highlights the resilience and burgeoning potential of Europe's tech sector, driven by the rapid advancement of AI technologies. 

The report underscores the continent's readiness for unprecedented growth, setting the stage for a future where AI-powered solutions reshape industries and propel Europe to the forefront of global innovation.

European AI companies received over €11 billion in funding last year alone. Remarkably, 36% of new unicorns emerged from the AI/ML sector.

The UK, in particular, has emerged as the third-largest AI market in the world, with a UK startup securing Europe's biggest-ever AI investment of US$1.05 billion in funding to develop autonomous car solutions.

This trend is further exemplified by the UK and France leading the startup arena with three unicorns each, with the UK's unicorns valued at US$3.4 billion, including contributions from AI leaders like Synthesia and Builder.ai, while France's trio reached a collective valuation of US$7 billion, highlighted by innovators such as Mistral AI.

Accelerating AI 

Against the backdrop of the boom in AI, Northern Data's AI Accelerator program lends itself as a catalyst for further growth. 

By democratising access to AI-capable HPC solutions and industry mentorship, the program aims to unlock the full potential of emerging ideas in the AI sphere, and thus, expand the potential offerings in the AI market. 

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