- Salesforce purchased artificial intelligence startup MetaMind, the companies announced on Monday.
- MetaMind uses deep learning to analyze enterprise customers' data to help them make better business decisions. Salesforce will work to incorporate the startup's AI capabilities to "further automate and personalize customer support," according to the announcement.
- The companies did not reveal the terms of the deal. MetaMind will shut down service for unpaid web users and monthly recurring users on May 4 and June 4, respectively.
Artificial intelligence is becoming a buzz word among technology companies, and rather than growing services internally, enterprises are acquiring startups and other companies with expertise in the field.
Several of the tech industry’s biggest players have been investing in AI in recent months, extolling the potential of AI to help scientists process large data sets and understand cause and effect relationships. In October, for example, Apple purchased VocalIQ, a United Kingdom-based startup that worked to improve the way computers understand natural language.
Salesforce has made a number of AI-related purchases recently. In March, it acquired PredictionIO and before that, it bought RelateIQ and smart calendar app Tempo AI.
For MetaMind, the purchase allows it to offer its services on a larger scale, tapping into Salesforce's large enterprise customer base. Salesforce, on the other hand, gets a new offering it can incubate and later offer to its customers.
Many industries—from law and education to manufacturing and medicine—are already employing AI technologies, according to a recent AI forecast from Tractica. Tractica predicts the "market for AI systems for enterprise applications will increase from $202.5 million in 2015 to $11.1 billion by 2024."