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Artificial intelligence – a video to promote Montréal around the world

December 6, 2017

Montréal International used the opportunity of the 31st Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS) Conference, which had over 25,000 attendees this week in California, to launch a video promoting Greater Montréal as a world leader in AI, before all the international talent and investors at the conference.

The video is titled Montréal, an Artificial Intelligence Powerhouse, and features several headliners in the industry, including Yoshua Bengio (Université de Montréal), Doina Precup (McGill University), Hugo Larochelle (Google Brain), Yann LeClun (Facebook), as well as the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau. The video highlights all of Montréal’s advantages and the deep collaboration between research chairs, laboratories and entrepreneurs.

“Home to over 250 leading researchers and a one-of-a-kind collaborative ecosystem, Greater Montréal has become one of the world’s most attractive AI hubs in less than two years,” said Hubert Bolduc, President and CEO of Montréal International. “Last year, an impressive 20% of the investments we facilitated were in the AI sector, which continues to draw influential top players,” added Mr. Bolduc.

In recent months, a number of multinationals such as Google, Microsoft, Samsung, Facebook, DeepMind and Thales have opted to open laboratories in Montréal.

To watch the video:

Produced by TCB Médias, the video was made by Montréal International, in partnership with DeepMind, Element AI, Imagia, Facebook, Google, Maluuba, MILA, McGill University and Université de Montréal.

2017 AI highlights in Greater Montréal:

  • January 13: Microsoft acquires startup Maluuba.
  • January 18: Microsoft announces it will hire 40 AI specialists and award grants of CAN$6 million to Université de Montréal and CAN$1 million to McGill University.
  • March 22: The Government of Canada announces $125 million in funding for a Pan-Canadian Artificial Intelligence Strategy, including $40 million for Montréal.
  • April 20: Multinational IBM announces the opening of a lab in Montréal to strengthen its collaborative ties with the Montréal Institute for Learning Algorithms (MILA), headed by professor Yoshua Bengio.
  • March 13: Google Cloud, Google’s cloud service, comes to Montréal.
  • May 15: The Government of Québec announces $100 million in funding over the next five years for the creation and development of an AI cluster.
  • June 14: Element AI raises $137.5 million, the largest Series A funding round for an AI company.
  • September 15: Facebook announces the creation of an AI lab in Montréal.
  • September 26: Samsung opens an AI lab in Montréal.
  • October 6: DeepMind opens a lab.
  • October 10: Thales picks Montréal for its global AI hub.
  • November 21: BMO Financial Group, Royal Bank of Canada and Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) – Montréal announce a new partnership to support emerging companies.
  • Let’s not forget that in 2016, Montréal received most of the funding from the Canada First Research Excellence Fund, including $93.5 million to IVADO for AI research.

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