Samsung To Establish Massive AI Research Facility In France

Samsung and Fujitsu are to establish substantial research centres for artificial intelligence (AI) in France, the companies announced ahead of the launch of a government AI initiative set for Thursday.

Samsung’s French AI base is to be its largest after those in South Korea and the US, the company said.

The announcement followed a meeting between French president Emmanuel Macron and Samsung strategy chief Young Sohn in Paris.

“Great progress on artificial intelligence is happening in France,” Macron said in an English-language Twitter message. “Samsung chooses France to locate its new research center on artificial intelligence, creating more than 100 jobs. Thank you Young Sohn for taking the leap.”

AI expansion

The Samsung centre currently employs a team of 15 people in the Paris area. It plans to expand that to 50 scientists by the end of 2018, and eventually to more than 100 experts, according to local media reports.

The larger facility is to be based either in Paris or in Saclay, in the capital’s south-west outskirts.

Japan’s Fujitsu also said it would expand a team of 15 AI experts that is currently based in the elite Polytechnique engineering academy near Paris.

“The group, after a review that lasted more than a year, found that France stood out from the crowd in the field of artificial intelligence,” said Fujitsu France managing director Benjamin Revcolevschi, according to Reuters.

Macron’s Thursday announcement is expected to include a state investment designed to build on France’s position in AI, which is in turn based on the country’s strengths in mathematics.

France and the UK are competing to attract talent and start-up investment capital in areas including AI and financial technology as Britain prepares to depart from the European Union.

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Matthew Broersma

Matt Broersma is a long standing tech freelance, who has worked for Ziff-Davis, ZDnet and other leading publications

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