Subscribe to our newsletter and stay informed

Check out our list of top companies

Check out our carefully compiled lists of the most relevant and impactful companies within their fields.

Check out our list of top unicorns

Read and learn about the biggest companies that various countries have produced, how they made it, and what the future looks like for them.

SoftBank to Invest $1 Billion in AI with Nvidia

SoftBank is gearing up to create a cutting-edge Japanese-language-specific with AI, the company will invest $960 million
April 23, 2024

SoftBank, the Japanese tech conglomerate, is set to revolutionize the landscape of artificial intelligence (AI) with its ambitious plan to develop a "world-class" Japanese-language-specific generative AI model. According to a recent report by Nikkei, SoftBank plans to invest a staggering $960 million over the next two years to enhance its computing facilities for this purpose.

The training of large language models (LLMs) like OpenAI's ChatGPT demands advanced graphics processing units, which SoftBank intends to procure from U.S. chip giant Nvidia.

The investment, totaling 150 billion yen ($960 million), will be distributed over the years 2024 and 2025, supplementing the 20 billion yen SoftBank allocated for computing infrastructure last year.

Once completed, this investment is expected to be the largest of its kind by any Japanese company, potentially granting SoftBank the most powerful computing capabilities in the country.

Japan has seen a surge in interest in AI technology, yet it lacks private companies with the high-performance supercomputers required for building LLMsr.

SoftBank's substantial investments are poised to change this, providing Japan with a significant domestic player in the generative AI arena at a time when international competitors are eyeing the market.

In fiscal year 2024, SoftBank aims to unveil its first model with 390 billion parameters, indicating the complexity of LLMs. Furthermore, the company plans to commence the development of a higher-performance model with 1 trillion parameters as early as 2025.

Local players like Japanese telecommunications company NTT have also announced their intentions to develop an LLM within this fiscal year, with plans to invest 8 trillion yen ($51.7 billion) in growth areas such as data centers and AI over the next five years.

According to Statista Market Insights, Japan's AI market is projected to reach approximately $13 billion by 2030, a significant increase from its size in 2023.

SoftBank's strategic shift towards AI has been reflected in its stock performance, with a positive trend of around 20% year-to-date. As the majority owner of chip company Arm, SoftBank is expected to benefit from the surge in demand for AI-related technologies.

The company is also actively working on establishing AI data centers across Japan and has recently joined a project to construct a 65 billion yen center in Hokkaido.

More about:  | |

Last related articles

chevron-down linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram