According to PitchBook, Anthropic announced on Tuesday that it had raised $450 million in a Series C funding round led by Spark Capital, making it the largest AI funding round this year following Microsoft’s investment in OpenAI in January. Former OpenAI research executives formed AI startup Anthropic in 2021.
In the most recent funding round for Anthropic, together with Salesforce Ventures, Zoom Ventures, and Spark Capital, Google is one of the leading investors. Two months ago, Anthropic received $300 million in capital at $4.1 billion valuation before making the announcement.
A month earlier, Google contributed $300 million and acquired a 10% share in the business. Notably, Google is identified as the investor and not GV or CapitalG, one of Alphabet’s investment divisions.
Anthropic is the startup behind Claude, an alternative chatbot to OpenAI’s ChatGPT. Dario Amodei, a former vice president of research at OpenAI, and his sister Daniela Amodei, a former vice president of safety and policy at the company, founded the startup. The founding staff of Anthropic included a number of additional OpenAI research alumni.
“This is definitely a big deal in the generative AI space,” said Ali Javaheri, a PitchBook associate research analyst. “It shows that OpenAI is not the only player in the game, that it’s still a very competitive space.”
Anthropic was one of four businesses invited to a meeting with Vice President Kamala Harris earlier this month to talk about ethical AI development. The other tech names were Microsoft, OpenAI, and Alphabet, the parent company of Google.