Mistral AI Raises $640 Million in Series B Funding Round

Mistral AI, a Paris-based AI startup, has successfully closed its highly anticipated Series B funding round, securing €600 million (approximately $640 million at today’s exchange rate) through a combination of equity and debt. The round was led by General Catalyst, with participation from other international investors, including Sanabil Investments. Following this funding round, Mistral AI’s valuation has soared to $6 billion, as previously reported by TechCrunch.

Founded about a year ago, Mistral AI is a relatively new player in the AI industry, having initially raised an impressive $112 million in seed funding. This early investment was aimed at establishing a European competitor to AI giants like OpenAI and Anthropic.

The company was co-founded by former employees of Meta and Google’s DeepMind, who are focused on developing foundational AI models to compete with the top-performing models today, such as OpenAI’s GPT-4, Anthropic’s Claude 3, and Meta’s Llama 3.

Mistral AI has made strides in the AI community by releasing pre-trained and fine-tuned models under an open-source license with open weights. Notable releases include Mistral 7B, Mistral 8x7B, and Mistral 8x22B, all available under the Apache 2.0 license, which allows for unrestricted use and reproduction with proper attribution.

In addition to its open-source models, Mistral AI has developed advanced proprietary models, such as Mistral Large, designed to be repackaged as API-first products. The company’s first generative AI model for code, Codestral, comes with a restrictive license that prohibits commercial use of its outputs.

Businesses can access Mistral Large through a paid API, which charges based on usage. Mistral AI also offers a chat assistant named Le Chat, which is currently available for free. Furthermore, the company has established distribution partnerships with cloud providers like Microsoft Azure, and Microsoft holds a minor stake in Mistral AI.

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