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Flipkart Founder Preps AI-as-a-Service Startup

AI services

Flipkart’s billionaire founder is reportedly launching an artificial intelligence (AI) startup.

Binny Bansal, who launched the Indian eCommerce firm before selling it to Walmart, has been hiring experts for a company that will offer a range of AI services and products, Bloomberg News reported Tuesday (Nov. 7), citing sources familiar with the matter.

This venture, the sources said, will be similar to the model of outsourcing companies like Tata Consultancy Services and Infosys. The company is in stealth mode in Singapore, where it is headquartered, with plans to launch officially in months and perhaps expand to the U.S., sources told Bloomberg.

Although it’s not yet clear what products this startup would provide, one of the sources said Bansal will first target the legal and eCommerce sectors, while also offering services in the financial services, data science and analytics fields.

The report notes that the recent boom in AI investments — sparked by OpenAI’s ChatGPT tool — has triggered an immense demand for specialists in the field.

Bansal, Bloomberg says, hopes to use the large number of young, English-speaking workers in India to create a new generation of experts in new types of AI services.

This is happening at a time when 84% of business leaders say that generative AI will make a positive impact on the workforce, according to recent PYMNTS Intelligence.

But despite the varied benefits of AI, there are several challenges that are preventing widespread implementation, PYMNTS wrote last month.

“The systems require high-caliber training data from which their algorithms can learn. But preparing this data is a time-consuming obstacle for businesses,” the report said.

“Data integration is another expensive hurdle. With most companies still relying on technologically outdated legacy systems, establishing the infrastructure needed to accommodate AI systems can be a tall task for many businesses.”

And with these obstacles in mind, most companies will avoid creating their own large language models (LLMs) for generative AI.

“Most B2B software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies will use ready-made foundational models,” PYMNTS wrote. “Still, the data fed to these models must align with data privacy and transparency compliance and ethical concerns.”