Perplexity AI Raised $73 Million from Jeff Bezos, Nvidia and more Investors

Updated on January 10 2024
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Perplexity, an AI tech startup, also known as the “Google Killer”, is an AI chatbot just like Bard, ChatGPT, Claude AI, Copilot, etc. Perplexity AI recently completed a Series B funding round, raising $73.6 million. This series B funding round was led by Institutional Venture Partners LLC (IVP) with additional investments from Databricks Ventures, former Twitter VP Elad Gil, former GitHub CEO Nat Friedman, Shopify CEO Tobi Lutke and participation from Nvidia and Jeff Bezos. This funding round boosted the company’s valuation to $520 million.

IVP previously invested $50 Million in Perplexity in October 2023. However, this funding round came into limelight because Nvidia and Jeff Bezos were involved in it.

Let’s see why they are interested in Perplexity AI so much and the company’s plan to use this funding.

What is Perplexity?

Using Perplexity AI
Using Perplexity AI

Perplexity is an AI-powered search engine specializing in advanced search that provides instant answers with sources and citations. It was founded in August 2022 and has experienced rapid growth, with its website and mobile web receiving 45 million visits in December 2023. Perplexity AI aims to rival Google and is determined to carve out its niche in the market dominated by the tech giant. 

Perplexity AI website traffic in december 2023
Perplexity AI website traffic in December 2023

Who are the Founders of Perplexity AI?

Perplexity AI founders -
Perplexity AI Founder – Aravind Srinivas, Denis Yatars, Jonny Ho

Perplexity AI was founded in August 2022 by Aravind Srinivas, Denis Yarats, Johnny Ho, and Andy Konwinski. These founders have backgrounds in back-end systems, AI, and machine learning. Aravind Sriniva interned at DeepMind and Google and later joined OpenAI as an AI researcher while Denis Yarats was a staff machine learning engineer at Quora for several years before joining Meta as an AI AI research scientist. Johnny Ho also worked at Quora as an engineer and then became a quantitative trader on Wall Street.Konwinski was among the founding team at Databricks.

Why are Nvidia and Jeff Bezos investing in Perplexity?

Perplexity AI has an innovative approach and potential to challenge the dominance of traditional search engines like Google. Perplexity AI provides instant and reliable answers to questions with sources and citations. This has attracted a lot of investors including Nvidia and Bezos. Nvidia is heavily involved in AI revolution. Its DGX Cloud has been fulfilling AI companies’ cloud needs and it even supplies tech for Amazon’s AI warehouse robots. Hence, it is clear that Nvidia wants a piece of anything that can challenge Google’s dominance. 

On the other hand, Bezos and his company, Amazon has been investing in a lot of AI companies lately. For example, Amazon invested in Anthropic so that they can have access to Claud AI’s technology which they plan to use in AWS. I think Jeff just does not want to miss on the AI opportunities and so investing in every big opportunity he sees in the market. 

Moreover, Jeff Bezos understands that AI is the future:

“It is a renaissance, it is a golden age. We are now solving problems with machine learning and artificial intelligence that were … in the realm of science fiction for the last several decades. And natural language understanding, machine vision problems, it really is an amazing renaissance.” – Jeff Bezos

How will Perplexity AI use the $73 Million funding??

Perplexity plans to use the $73.6 million Series B funding to support its expansion, including team growth from 38 to approximately 60 employees, further product development, customer adoption, and global expansion efforts. The company’s CEO, Aravind Srinivas, has emphasized the funding will help fine-tune various top-performing AI models and execute its consumer adoption and expansion plans. The funding will also be used to strengthen its position in the market and continue its rapid growth, as the company has already reached 10 million monthly active users and served over 500 million queries.

Perplexity AI Total Funding

Date of AnnouncementTransaction NameNumber of InvestorsMoney Raised
Lead Investors
4th JanuarySeries B15$73.6MJeff Bezos, Nvidia, IVP
24th October 2023Pre Speed Round2IVP
28th May 2023Series A9$25.6M
New Enterprise Associates
1st September 2023Speed Round9$3.1MElad Gill

Conclusion

Perplexity AI has recently made headlines with its successful Series B funding round, securing an impressive $73.6 million. Founded in August 2022 by a team with diverse backgrounds in AI, machine learning, and technology, Perplexity AI has rapidly grown, challenging the dominance of traditional search engines by offering instant, reliable answers complete with sources and citations.

Nvidia’s involvement underscores its commitment to the AI revolution, seeking opportunities that challenge Google’s dominance. Similarly, Jeff Bezos, recognizing the transformative potential of AI, continues to invest in promising ventures, ensuring that Amazon remains at the forefront of technological advancements. As Perplexity AI boasts 10 million monthly active users and has handled over 500 million queries, the funding sets the stage for continued growth and success in the evolving landscape of artificial intelligence. The company remains poised to make significant strides, shaping the future of AI-powered search engines.