Just a week after its acquisition of Maluuba, a Montreal-based natural language deep learning startup, Microsoft announced today at Davos that it will make the company the home of its new AI research and development organization in the Canadian city. Over the next two years, the Redmond giant plans to double the size of its new AI center to leverage Montreal's "burgeoning AI ecosystem."
Additionally, the company will also support the local academic community by providing $6 million and $1 million AI research gifts, respectively, to the University of Montreal and McGill University over the next five years. Yoshua Bengio, heads of the Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms who served as an advisor to Maluuba before its acquisition will also continue his role at Microsoft, the company explained.
Last month, we reported that Microsoft Ventures announced a new investment in Element AI, a Montreal-based incubator that helps organizations embrace an AI-first strategy. Thanks to these "newly-formed connections in Montreal", the company added that it's now "well positioned to advance our strategy to democratize AI, bringing powerful new insights and capabilities to every person and organization on the planet."