California: While most of the tech industry stumbles under the weight of rising interest rates, it’s boom times for artificial intelligence startups. Take Stability AI, the company that popularized the Stable Diffusion image generator, and which has been in talks to raise money at a $4 billion valuation.
Stability AI’s deal talks follow a $10 billion infusion for OpenAI, and a spate of other major financing rounds this month. The sky-high dollar values have prompted the question: Is the AI industry in a bubble? Stability AI CEO Emad Mostaque answered that question at a conference on Thursday. “Of course not,” he said. “This is bigger than 5G or self-driving cars.”
Mostaque appeared at the Cerebral Valley Summit, hosted by the tech news Substack Newcomer and the startup Volley Inc. The conference’s name refers to the nickname of the Hayes Valley neighborhood of San Francisco, which houses several AI startups and some of their employees.
On Thursday, Mostaque was dressed casually in a green T-shirt and Asics sneakers. He spoke enthusiastically about recent AI products “- and specifically OpenAI’s latest model, GPT-4, which is the follow-up to the AI model that originally underpinned its massively popular ChatGPT chatbot. “I use GPT-4 every day,” he said. “It’s the best therapist.” (He didn’t elaborate on what he talks to it about.)
The CEO also touted the future of Stabilty AI as it continues to develop Stable Diffusion. “I’m going to IPO,” he said. “I’m going to build one of the biggest, best companies in the world.”