AI 100: The Artificial Intelligence Startups Redefining Industries


The 100 startups on our list have raised $11.7B in aggregate funding across 367 deals.

Today, CB Insights unveiled the second annual AI 100 —  a list of 100 of the most promising private companies applying artificial intelligence algorithms across 25+ industries, from healthcare to cybersecurity — at the A-Ha! conference in San Francisco.

The companies were selected from a pool of 2,000+ startups based on several criteria, including investor profile, tech innovation, team strength, patent activity, mosaic score, funding history, valuation, and business model.

The market map below categorizes the AI 100 companies based on their industry focus.


In aggregate, the AI 100 companies have raised $11.7B in equity funding across 367 deals.

Some of the startups are specializing in specific use cases within the industries. For instance, AiCure specializes in medication adherence, Gong on caller analytics for sales teams, and Zest Finance on credit underwriting.

The startups are in various stages of research and funding, from seed/angel (Mobalytics, Text IQ, Merlon Intelligence) to Series E+ (Affirm, C3IoT, and InsideSales).

  • Most well-funded: China-based ByteDance (known as Toutiao) has raised $3.1B so far. It uses artificial intelligence for personalized news recommendations.
  • Geographic distribution: Startups from 9 different countries – including France, Israel, Spain, Canada, Taiwan, Japan, and United Kingdom — made it on to AI 100 this year. Majority of the companies, 76%, were from 13 states in the United States. China’s AI startup scene has been buzzing with activity. Five of the 8 companies from China are unicorns, with 4 of them reaching $1B+ valuations just this year.
  • Active investors in the 100: Data Collective has backed 14 startups on the list, including Vicarious SystemsTrifacta, and Recursion Pharmaceuticals. Intel Capital has invested in 20 of the startups, followed by GV, which backed 8 companies. Other top investors include The SoftBank Group and Lux Capital.



The recent string of high profile cyber-attacks – including the Equifax breach that compromised personal information of over 143 million Americans – has resulted in an increased interest in AI-based solutions.

From healthcare institutions and government agencies to insurance companies and retail stores, the client base of the AI 100 cybersecurity companies spans across various industries.

11 of the AI-100 companies are focused on aspects of different cybersecurity, from anomaly detection to web security.

  • Unicorn: Accel Partners-backed CrowdStrike reached a $1B valuation in Q’17. The startup is focused on end point detection and response, and has applied for 24 patents since 2012.
  • Boston-based Cybereason is close to reaching Unicorn status. It recently raised $10B from SoftBank Group, and is valued at over $900M.


With applications across imaging and diagnostics, virtual assistants, remote monitoring, in-hospital care, and more — the AI healthcare space has seen a record rate of new companies entering the space every quarter.

Eight of the AI 100 companies are developing AI solutions for the healthcare industry.

  • Unicorn: Flatiron Health, which uses human-assisted machine learning to mine health data, entered the unicorn club in early 2016 when it was valued at $1.2B after raising a $175M Series C.
  • Niche applications in pharma: AI startups have started playing a role in the clinical trial and drug formulation process, and big pharma companies are taking note. Insilico Medicine entered into a partnership with GlaxoSmithKlein to speed up the drug discovery process. Another startup, New York-based mobile SaaS platform AiCure, uses image and facial recognition algorithms to confirm medication ingestion. It address the issue of medication non-adherence, currently a pain point in the trial process.


Eight of the AI-100 companies are developing AI applications for the enterprise in a market largely dominated by big tech companies like Amazon.

  • Element AI,  co-founded by Yoshua Bengio, is one of the pioneering companies in the field of deep learning. The company raised $102M in Q2’17 from the likes Data Collective, Intel Capital, Microsoft Ventures, NVIDIA GPU Ventures, Real Ventures, and Tencent Holdings.
  • Japan-based LeapMind, is developing both deep learning edge software for enterprises, as well as venturing into the hardware side for frugal computing environments.


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