SingularityNET, a startup developing a decentralized artificial intelligence (AI) network, has announced a partnership with Ping An, the world’s largest and most valuable insurer and one of the biggest investment and asset management companies.
The partnership will begin with a focus on three main areas: optical character recognition (OCR), cross validation (CV), and model training, where SingularityNET’s ecosystem could be applied for commercial purposes.
“Ping An Technology and SingularityNET have reached the intention to collaborate in the field of AI, possible future directions for collaboration include (but are not limited to) OCR and model training,” said Bai Meng, AI lead for Ping An and the firm’s commercial division.
Ping An is currently experimenting and testing application of new technologies to the areas of AI, blockchain and finance. In the past decade, the firm has invested more than RMB 50 billion in technology development, gathered more than 23,000 research and development (R&D) personnel, 500 big data experts and established six research institutes.
Ping An’s tech subsidiary, Ping An Technology, has birthed several fintech and insurtech unicorns including peer-to-peer lender Lufax, healthcare portal Ping An Good Doctor, and hospital visits booking mobile app Ping An Healthcare and Technology.
“The scale of Ping An provides considerable opportunities to showcase the benefits of AI application,” said Dr Ben Goertzel, CEO at SingularityNET.
“We are currently discussing how to integrate SingularityNET infrastructure with Ping An’s IT infrastructure in order to analyze the different types of data available.”
The partnership could evolve into further collaborations across multiple industries and initiatives in the future, SingularityNET said on Wednesday.
SingularityNET is developing an open source ecosystem for AI services built on the Ethereum network. The startup aims to democratize access to AI by providing a marketplace for users to buy and sell advanced solutions in a decentralized manner, providing them with access to algorithms that have traditionally been the preserve of Silicon Valley giants.
SingularityNET is overseen by the SingularityNET Foundation, a non-profit incorporated in the Netherlands responsible for building, supervising and accelerating the growth of the network and marketplace. It raised US$36 million in an initial coin offering (ICO) in 2017 to fund the development of the project.
SingularityNET’s collaboration with Ping An was announced at the Token2049 event held in Hong Kong earlier this week, and follows the launch of the startup’s beta marketplace in February.
The global AI market size is expected to grow to roughly US$90 billion in 2025.