Paris-based AI lab Mistral has emerged from stealth mode with a groundbreaking announcement. Led by US VC Lightspeed, Mistral has secured €105M in seed funding to fuel its mission of building a European rival to OpenAI. Founded by industry veterans with extensive experience at Meta and Deepmind, Mistral aims to develop large language models (LLMs) to empower businesses across R&D, customer care, marketing, and AI-driven product development.
Mistral, backed by prominent investors including French billionaire Xavier Niel and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, aims to differentiate itself through its open-source approach to generative AI. By making its work accessible to safety researchers and collaborating with customers to build secure and bespoke models, Mistral sets itself apart from OpenAI's centralized safety efforts.
What sets Mistral apart from other European players in the LLM space is its deep expertise and focus on efficiency. The team's pioneering work in LLM technology allows them to develop highly efficient systems, making significant strides in the field. Their commitment to being at the forefront of core technology training positions them for long-term success, despite the initially higher costs associated with training their own models.
A substantial portion of the seed funding will be allocated to renting compute power for training Mistral's first model, expected to be ready in early 2024. By having full control over the models they deploy, Mistral gains the advantage of continuous improvement and the ability to develop specialized products based on customer data and feedback.
Mistral's remarkable €105M seed round and the exceptional credentials of its founders signal a promising future for cutting-edge AI projects in Europe. As Mistral challenges OpenAI's dominance, it showcases the appetite and available capital to foster innovation on this side of the Atlantic. With a strong focus on efficiency, open-source collaboration, and customer-centric solutions, Mistral aims to carve its own path in the rapidly evolving AI landscape. As we eagerly await Mistral's first model in 2024, the stage is set for a new era of AI-driven advancements with European ingenuity at the helm.