Israeli AI chip startup NeuReality has raised seed funding of $8 million to work on its data center AI inference chip and system solution. The company plans to offer an AI platform which enables data centers to easily scale their compute to meet growing AI workloads, while cutting costs, energy bills and footprint.
Details are scarce on what exactly the company is working on, but a company spokesperson told EE Times that NeuReality is “re-architecting the system solution, hence innovating on all three layers: the chip level, system hardware level and software level.” Targeting hyperscalers, solution providers and OEMs means the company must provide solutions at different levels, including the chip level.
The spokesperson did confirm that the company is working on an AI accelerator chip, but declined to say anything further other than the accelerator would be “nothing close to a deep learning accelerator as we know it today in terms of the system architecture and its place in the system.”
Scalability challenges are distributed both in the cloud and closer to the edge, so their software may also reside on the client side for a further boost in efficiency, they said.
NeuReality also announced it has appointed Naveen Rao to its board of directors. Rao was formerly general manager of Intel’s AI products group and CEO of data center AI chip startup Nervana, which was acquired by Intel in 2016.
“After seeing so many AI companies focusing on deep learning accelerators at the device level, NeuReality intrigued me with their refreshing view of overall AI deployment barriers and their unique system-level approach that will eclipse today’s outdated data center architecture,” Rao said, in a statement. “NeuReality’s innovative design solves AI scalability and cost challenges.”
NeuReality was founded in 2019 by CEO Moshe Tanach, vice president of operations Tzvika Shmueli and vice president of VLSI Yossi Kasus. Tanach was previously with Marvell and Intel, while Shmueli was with Mellanox and before that, vice president of engineering at Israeli data center AI chip company Habana Labs, which was acquired by Intel in 2019. Kasus was previously with Mellanox and EZChip.
The company spokesperson said NeuReality had made a lot of progress prior to the seed round by “boot strapping,” or building the company with personal resources. The company intends to launch its first AI platform for ultra-scale AI inference “early this year.”