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Sarvam AI Secures $41M for Rapid Development of Full-Stack Generative AI in India

Sarvam AI, a burgeoning Indian startup that has rapidly emerged from stealth mode, has secured a substantial $41 million in funding, spanning both seed and Series A financing rounds. The Series A round was led by Lightspeed, with Peak XV Partners co-leading the seed round and participating in the Series A alongside Khosla Ventures.

Founded just five months ago in Bengaluru, Sarvam AI is making significant strides in developing a comprehensive suite of generative AI solutions tailored for the unique demands of the world’s most populous nation. The startup, currently employing around 18 professionals, is spearheading the creation of large language models (LLMs) that specifically cater to Indian languages. Vivek Raghavan, the founder of Sarvam AI and a former tech contributor at AI4Bharat of IIT Madras, revealed that the company is also constructing a versatile platform allowing businesses to seamlessly build and deploy applications using these language models.

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An integral aspect of Sarvam AI’s strategy involves adopting voice as the default interface in India, coupled with a dedicated focus on supporting local languages. Raghavan explained that this entails reshaping the architecture of existing open models and training them in custom ways to comprehend and generate Indian languages more efficiently than current LLMs.

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Raghavan, who boasts over a decade of experience at UIDAI overseeing the Indian identity system Aadhaar, emphasized the transformative potential of innovating at foundational layers and deploying solutions at a massive scale. He sees the opportunity to revolutionize how technology can enhance people’s lives, particularly in a country like India that has showcased its ability to harness technology uniquely.

Venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, founder of Khosla Ventures and an early investor in OpenAI, recognizes the strategic significance of Sarvam AI’s efforts, stating, “We see several countries having sovereign efforts to build GenAI models given its strategic importance. We need companies like Sarvam AI to develop deep expertise for building AI in and for India.”

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Lightspeed partner Hemant Mohapatra praised Sarvam AI for its “unique approach” in integrating model innovation and application development to create solutions at a population scale for India. He expressed confidence in a close partnership, offering support from Lightspeed’s extensive capital stack and global platform insights to further propel Sarvam AI’s mission.

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