Vic government to invest $1.5 million towards AI accelerator

The Victorian Government has announced it would contribute $1.5
million to the establishment of Australia’s first multimillion-dollar
accelerator and investment fund for Artificial Intelligence (AI)
scaleups.

The new accelerator program will establish an AI
internship program, run community-focused AI events and create over 75
new jobs through Boab AI and participating AI scaleups over four years.

Backed
by LaunchVic, Victoria’s startup agency, Boab AI in partnership with
Artesian, Victorian universities and Artesian’s international partner
programs will unlock millions of dollars of private sector capital to
help high growth AI scaleups.

Artificial Intelligence uses data to build systems that simulate human intelligence processes.

Minister
for Innovation, Medical Research and the Digital Economy Jaala Pulford
said the investment will help position Victoria as a leading destination
for AI technology in the Asia-Pacific region.

There are more than
300 AI startups in Australia – including 65 in Victoria – applying AI
in sectors ranging from health care and medicine to transport,
agriculture, recruitment and construction.

Melbourne start-up
Helfie.AI has developed a low-cost skin cancer check which applies data
to an image sent from a smart phone to calculate a risk profile and
prepare the picture for a doctor’s diagnosis.

Another company,
Bundoora-based OutOfBox Solutions, developped cloud-based Alfie tool
provides automated image analysis that can be used in the agriculture
sector to help control feral animals and protect native species.

As
part of the new accelerator and investment program, set to be rolled
out by the end of the year, Artesian will invest a minimum of $8 million
of private sector capital in 32 AI scaleups – with a minimum of
$300,000 for each scaleup that graduates from the Boab AI program.

Artesian
will also establish and raise a new venture capital (VC) fund with a
target of $50 million to provide ongoing investment support for AI
scaleups.

LaunchVic chief executive Dr Kate Cornick said Victoria
has the strong foundations to support a growing AI ecosystem with many
of our dominant tech sectors providing a great opportunity for AI
integration.

“Overall there is a lack of general awareness as to
the huge potential this sector presents in terms of problem solving to
the broader community. The new program will ensure Victoria is
competitive and forward looking,” she said.

Artificial
Intelligence is projected to become a major global market, adding $15
trillion of value to the world economy by 2030 and generating 161,000
new jobs.

Leave a Reply