– Sydney-based startup Leonardo.Ai has raised $31 million USD in funding from investors including Blackbird, Side Stage Ventures, Smash Capital, TIRTA Ventures, Gaorong Capital, and Samsung Next.
– Leonardo.Ai is an AI art production platform that has gained seven million users since December, generating over 700 million images.
– The startup recently launched an enterprise version with collaboration tools, private cloud hosting, and APIs for building tech infrastructure.
– Leonardo.Ai targets creative industries such as gaming, advertising, fashion, and architecture, allowing users to save, edit, and build assets in the same style for reuse.
– Use cases include storyboards for video production and mockups for gaming characters.
– The platform gives users a high level of control, allowing them to enter text prompts and make quick sketches to generate photorealistic images in real-time.
– The funding will be used to hire more sales, marketing, and engineering team members as the company expands its enterprise product.
Sydney, Australia-based Leonardo.Ai is the one of the latest generative AI startups to raise funding. Today, the AI art production platform for consumers and enterprise users announced a $31 million USD round from investors including Blackbird, Side Stage Ventures, Smash Capital, TIRTA Ventures, Gaorong Capital and Samsung Next.
Founded last year, Leonardo.Ai’s founders say that since December, it has hit seven million users, who have generated over 700 million images in total. It recently launched its enterprise version, which includes collaboration tools and allows hosting on a private cloud. Enterprise users also get access to APIs so they can build their own tech infrastructure on top of Leonard.Ai’s platform, starting with its production API.
Aimed at people in creative industries including gaming, advertising, fashion and architecture, Leonardo.Ai lets users save, edit and build multiple assets in the same style so they can be reused. They can also build and train their own models for image generation.
Some use cases include storyboards for people in video production, or mockups of gaming characters. CEO and co-founder J.J. Fiasson became interested in generative AI when Google Deep Dream launched, and continued to explore generative AI at his last startup, gaming studio Raini Studios.
“We started to think about the potential application of generative AI within the framework of content creation. It was still early days, in 2021, but we went down the rabbit hole playing with a lot of the generative AI tools that are out there, the open source ones that are out there, and I fell into that community and met a couple of passionate AI researchers who are now the co-founders of the company,” he tells TechCrunch.
Leonardo.Ai was originally meant to focus on game asset content creation, but then its team decided to build out the platform to meet more scenarios. “There’s a lot of different vertical use cases of the platform and we’ve built it in a way, and continue to build it in a way, that supports multiple use cases,” Fiasson says. “Part of our strategy moving into the future is expanding the B2B aspects of our platform.”
Leonardo.Ai’s AI was built on open source technologies and then trained using synthetic data and data from Creative Commons. Fiasson says Leonardo.Ai differentiates from other generative AI art platforms like Adobe Firefly, BlueWillow and Midjourney by the amount of control that it gives users. For example, its Live Canvas feature enables users to enter a text prompt and then make a quick sketch of what they want the end result to look like. As the user sketches, Leonardo.Ai creates a photorealistic image based on both text and sketch prompts in real time.
“We think control means utility,” says Fiasson. “If you don’t have as much control, you’re just making pretty pictures, so that’s key to us.”
Leonardo.Ai’s new funding will allow it to hire more sales and marketing team members as it scales out its enterprise product. It also plans to build its engineering team.
AI Eclipse TLDR:
Leonardo.Ai, a generative AI startup based in Sydney, Australia, has raised $31 million in funding. The AI art production platform, aimed at consumers and enterprise users in creative industries such as gaming, advertising, fashion, and architecture, has garnered seven million users who have generated over 700 million images since December. Leonardo.Ai recently launched its enterprise version, which includes collaboration tools and allows hosting on a private cloud. Users can save, edit, and build multiple assets in the same style for reuse, as well as build and train their own models for image generation. The platform differentiates itself by providing users with a high level of control, allowing them to create photorealistic images based on text and sketch prompts in real time. The funding will be used to expand Leonardo.Ai’s sales, marketing, and engineering teams as it continues to scale its enterprise product.