SoftBank-backed Findability needs 100k citizen data scientists from India

Peerzada Abrar/Bengaluru 05 Jan 20 | 08:08 PM

Findability Sciences, Boston’s artificial intelligence company backed by SoftBank, might soon come looking for “100,000 citizen data scientists”.

Founder and CEO Anand Mahurkar said the company is expanding its operations in India and aiming to attract citizen data scientists to build various applications on the AI platform.

Mahurkar said the platform would provide an opportunity to the growing community of Indian AI developers to offer their services to enterprise customers worldwide. 

“It is like a kitchen, where corporate houses can create their own recipes of AI. They can come on this platform and execute their AI projects without any hassle,” said Mahurkar. “Also, if I need just three days of support for my AI project, I may not be able to find the talent.”

The company plans to tap industries such as insurance, banking, retail, manufacturing as well as IT services firms like Infosys, Wipro and TCS. 

“While India is a big developer of AI and companies such as Infosys, TCS, and Wipro are going towards that direction, nobody is actually catering to the Indian market,” Mahurkar said. “Our (AI) technologies can be used by corporate houses without deploying too many of the resources, which are scarcely available and are expensive. Indian corporate houses need help on the use of AI and that is where our technology is going to be of immense use.”

To cater to India and address the AI adoption gap, Findability has formed a joint venture with New York-headquartered Qlytics, which specialises in scaling enterprise-wide analytics and AI development. 

Qlytics provides technology to enable enterprise-grade governance and management of talent, data, tools and cloud resources. It allows organisations to effectively track AI development projects through integrated APIs (application programming interfaces) from platforms such as Jira, Slack and Github. The solution comes pre-built with AI applications that allow users to both build their own models and/or deploy a pre-trained one.

Mahurkar said his company was also looking to build its facilities in tier-2 and tier-3 towns and cities such as in Nashik and Hubli. “The (metro) cities are overcrowded. We are looking at secondary and tertiary cities to create new technologies using the resources there,” said Mahurkar, who completed his engineering in Aurangabad in 1990 before moving to the US in 2003. The firm has already formed a development centre in Aurangabad.

AI has the potential to add $957 billion to India’s economy by 2035, according to consulting firm Accenture. According to industry sources, there has been a 30 per cent year-on-year increase in the number of Indian firms setting up dedicated AI teams. However, despite such encouraging statistics, India accounts for less than 8 per cent of analytics firms globally, indicating the need for a broad-scale adoption of AI and machine learning within organisations.

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