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4 Headlines That Tell the Story of AI in San Diego
San Diego-based founders and investors search for opportunity in artificial intelligence
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So much is happening in artificial intelligence (AI) space. Here are some of the biggest stories happening in San Diego’s AI scene right now:
There was a pitch competition for eight fast-growing AI startups last week
AI is impacting biotech and founders are working in stealth mode
New organizations have popped up to serve the growing AI community
Universities are integrating AI courses and some faculty are optimistic
With the support of Pankaj Kedia — a technology executive who led teams at Intel, Qualcomm, and now invests in startups through his venture capital firm.
Here’s 4 headlines to capture the impact artificial intelligence is having on the greater San Diego region including pitch competitions, biotech gatherings, and hackathons.
Eight AI Startups Compete at Pitch Competition
Eight startups including Los Angeles and San Francisco-based founders pitched in front of the packed-house audience and competition judges last week.
LA’s iCardio.ai, a company that develops machine learning and deep learning algorithms for the analysis of heart ultrasounds, took first place at the competition.
Personal.ai, a San Diego-based startup working to provide AI personal assistants, received the People’s Choice Award.
“We accomplished our goal to spotlight the best of the best startups at the intersection of AI and high potential segments,” said Pankaj Kedia, founder and managing partner of 2468 Ventures.
He noted that companies Lenovo, Microsoft, Sharp, and Qualcomm, showcased their artificial intelligence innovations at the event.
“San Diego is known for phones, drones and genomes. AI will impact every industry, and will impact small and big companies over the next decade,” said Kedia.
Startups Build at the Edge of AI and Bio
The tight-knit group has around 15 founders, many building in “stealth mode” at the edge of biotech and artificial intelligence.
Sources familiar with the matter told me that past attendees include venture capital firm Insight Partners and Vertex Pharmaceuticals who are scouting for investments and future mergers-and-acquisitions.
Thomas Miller, chief executive at Iambic Therapeutics, an early-stage biotech startup leveraging AI recently raised $100 million Series B funding — from San Diego-based Illumina Ventures, Bill Rastetter, and others — is also a part of the group.
Blooma, a local software startup, has provided its office for the group. Founders Corner VC, which has new lab space in Del Mar, also offers up its space at its office for the monthly meet-ups, owned by Greg Bisconti, managing partner at JLL.
Community Builder Hosts AI Hackathon at UC San Diego
The goal: encourage AI founders to come together and build promising Generative AI solutions together in sponsorship with Qualcomm, OpenAI and Keshif Ventures.
“Opening the door to community collaboration is a great step forward to empowering our local San Diego startup ecosystem,” said Lohrli. “We look forward to continuing our collaborations to empower the next generation of AI developers.”
In addition to hosting a successful AI hackathon, SDx also launched its “Hacker Club” where it partners with fast-growing startups including Comma AI.
Top MBA Program to Offer AI Course in 2024
Across the country and in San Diego, top business schools are starting to implement courses to help MBA students prepare for changes in the workforce as it relates to AI.
In October, the UC San Diego Rady School of Management, which ranked as having the No. 2 for Entrepreneurship in the U.S., recently announced integrating generative artificial intelligence into its graduate business curriculum.
“Our redesigned curriculum will integrate generative AI to accelerate how students learn both data science and business principles,” said Vincent Nijs, an associate professor at the Rady School of Management.
The course is taught by Vincent Nijs, associate professor of marketing, and focuses on teaching students how to use AI responsibly. The program is betting more occupations will require workers who are experienced in working with AI.
“As a result, our graduates will be able to use these new technologies to impact business outcomes faster and at scale,” said Nijis.
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