2019 Global Top 100 AI Startup Companies’ Annual List

Yesterday, CB Insights released the 2019 Global Top 100 AI startup companies’ annual list.

The number of companies nominated and applied for the list has reached a new high compared with the previous one (more than 2,000). More than 3,000 AI startups have participated in the election, and finally, 100 AI startups with prospects for development were selected.

Top 100 AI startups

There are also some changes in the list selection criteria compared to last year. Last year’s selection criteria were: investor profile, technology innovation, team strength, and patent activity, Mosaic scores, financing history, valuation, and business model. Now, the aforementioned list has changed to a number of patents, investor profile, team strength, market potential, partnerships, competitive environment, and innovation.

Note: Mosaic is a set of algorithms invented by CB Insights, specifically for measuring the overall development and growth potential of unlisted companies.

The 100 artificial intelligence companies are disrupting 12 core industries, including healthcare, telecommunications, semiconductors, government, retail, and finance, as well as the broader enterprise tech stack.

The 100 companies on the list are in different rounds, ranging from seed rounds to angel rounds to E+ rounds.

Top 100 AI startups

As can be seen from the above figure, the number of companies in the seed round/angel round is gradually decreasing, while the number of companies above the C round is gradually increasing. However, the number of unicorn companies with a valuation of more than $1 billion has not changed from last year, and there are still 11 companies.

The following is a complete list of 11 unicorn companies:

Top 100 AI startups

Among the 11 unicorn companies, 5 are Chinese companies, accounting for almost half of the total. But it is worth noting that there are only 6 Chinese companies on the list, except for the above five unicorns. The sixth is Horizon Robotics.

The last seven Chinese companies that were shortlisted for the Top 100 AI companies’ list were: SenseTime, YITU Technology, 4Paradigm, Face++, and Momenta.

Most well-funded companies

The top three AI companies with the most annual financing were from China. SenseTime topped the list with annual financing of $1.63 billion. Face++ was ranked second with $608 million in financing, and the third place was Zymergen (2018) with annual financing of $574 million. The company was founded in 2013 to reorganize the genetic structure of microbes using machine learning and other technologies that have been utilized in industrial processes including generic drug manufacturing.

Top 100 AI startups

Most active investors

More than 680 independent investors have provided funding for these companies, including corporations, corporate venture capitalists (CVCs), venture capital firms (VCs), and angel investors. The following is the list of the most active investors:

Geographical distribution

Of the 100 AI startups on the list, 77 are located in the US, 23 are outside the US, 6 in China, 6 in Israel, 6 in the UK, and the rest in Canada, Germany, Sweden, and Japan. And there is only one AI startup from India.

Industrial Distribution

As shown in the above figure, the top 100 AI startups are the most distributed in the enterprise AI field, with a total of 33; followed by medical health, the number is 14; the third is automatic driving, there are 11 companies. The number of AI startups in the media, real estate, agriculture, and telecommunications sectors is scarce.

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