Zhipu AI Completes A New Round of Financing

Beijing Zhipu Huazhang Technology Co., Ltd. (referred to as ‘Zhipu AI‘ below) has completed a new round of financing at the beginning of this year, with participation from the Beijing Artificial Intelligence Industry Investment Fund.

This round of financing will continue to be used for the further research and development of the base large model, cooperate with leading companies in various industries, jointly create a thriving ecosystem of large models in all walks of life, empower the implementation of municipal government industrial strategies together, help build Beijing into an international science and technology innovation center, and accelerate towards the era of general artificial intelligence.

Zhipu AI is the first artificial intelligence large model company invested by this fund since its establishment – to add a point, the Beijing Artificial Intelligence Industry Investment Fund is committed to accelerating the high-quality development of Beijing’s artificial intelligence industry, supporting breakthroughs in key core technologies at the grassroots level, promoting major innovative achievements suitable for landing and industrialization in Beijing according to the positioning of the capital city, and creating an innovative ecosystem for the artificial intelligence industry.

Established in 2019, Zhipu AI is one of the earliest companies in China to enter the field of large-scale models. It is also one of the leading domestic manufacturers of large models. In March 2023, Zhipu AI launched the billion-scale conversational model ChatGLM and completed four upgrades in the past year. Based on its self-developed large-scale model capabilities, Zhipu AI has also built an AIGC model product matrix, including high-efficiency code model CodeGeeX, multimodal understanding model CogVLM, and text-image understanding model CogView.

It is worth mentioning that on March 14th, the first anniversary of ChatGLM’s release, Zhang Peng, CEO of Zhipu AI, revealed that by 2023, Zhipu AI has already had over 2,000 ecological partners and over 1,000 large-scale applications of models. In addition, more than 200 companies have engaged in deep co-creation with Zhipu AI covering multiple top enterprises in various segmented scenarios including media, consulting, consumption, finance, new energy, internet and smart office.

Zhang Peng said, ‘We are truly and subtly changing the business and efficiency of every client, even deeply transforming their business paradigms and organizational structures. This is what we hope to see.’

Zhang Peng frankly stated that as an enterprise emerging from universities, the technical research and development capabilities of Zhipu AI are visible to everyone. However, in the past period of time, there has been a great interest from the outside world in Zhipu AI’s commercialization capabilities, or rather a deep-seated doubt. ‘Because what is needed for technology in the laboratory to be applied in the market is different, and so is the process.’

Regarding this point, Zhang Peng further pointed out that the core reason why Zhipu AI has achieved relatively good commercial results in the past year is that Zhipu AI did not start building large models only in 2023.

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“The accumulation of time is needed for large-scale technology, as well as cognitive accumulation. In fact, the ability to commercialize large models also requires accumulated time. When the market for large models was not yet so hot, we were already engaged in some enterprise collaborations and deliveries based on our model,” Zhang Peng added. “Of course, there were many problems in the early stages. We simply felt our way forward with our partners and this market, encountering some stumbling blocks along the way. Fortunately, we found a way that truly adds value to industrial applications of large models in the Chinese market. By the time large models really came before everyone, when we started delivering on a large scale to enterprises, we had already encountered many pitfalls during this process. With our own understanding and solutions developed through experience, we can now pass on these lessons to our customers and partners.”

“Today, I feel that Zhipu AI is undergoing a process of qualitative change from quantitative change, especially in terms of the emergence of large models. Standing at this juncture, whether looking forward or backward, I feel that our team is quite fortunate. The market has given us hard workers many opportunities and chances. Although the road of independent innovation research and development will be difficult, we are still persevering. In addition, the development of artificial intelligence will focus more on our general artificial intelligence (AGI), achieving super cognitive intelligence beyond human level, realizing AI’s self-explanation, self-assessment, self-supervision. At the same time, to ensure that the model’s performance aligns with human values and safety standards, a super alignment technology is also under development with the goal of achieving machine automatic alignment with human intelligence and human values to enable model self-reflection and control. As a company specializing in large models,”Zhang Peng stated.