SenseTime debuts in Singapore by signing MOU with local giants NTU, NSCC and Singtel
SenseTime, an industry-leading artificial intelligence (AI) company, signed memoranda of understanding (MOU) with three leading Singaporean organizations, namely Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), National Supercomputing Centre of Singapore (NSCC), and Singapore Telecommunications Limited (Singtel). The signing ceremony was held 29 June 2018 at Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), attended by SenseTime Founder Professor Xiao'ou Tang, Mr. Kiren Kumar, Assistant Managing Director of EDB, Mr. Peter Ho, Chairman of NSCC Steering Committee, Professor Lam Khin Yong, Vice President (Research) of NTU, and Mr. Arthur Lang, CEO of Singtel International. The parties aim to collaborate broadly, leveraging strengths and customer base of each other, to advance AI research, accelerate digitalization for both established corporates and SMEs, and develop AI-based solutions catering to industrial and institutional needs, both in Singapore and Asia.
As Singapore has strong commitment in advancing AI research and applications, SenseTime views its footprint in Singapore a critical step to the company's international expansion. With the recent launch of the Singapore operations, SenseTime aims to join hands with government, academia, research, and industry. Martin Huang, Managing Director of SenseTime Singapore, described these MOU as a key milestone, "NTU, NSCC and Singtel are all leaders in their own areas; it is our honor to have the opportunity to partner with them all on AI research, development and applications. As Singapore serves as SenseTime's international hub, we're committed to building an AI ecosystem with our local partners and servicing our customers with leading AI technologies. We look forward to promoting the development of AI in the ASEAN region with their partnerships."
Professor Lam Khin Yong, Vice President (Research), NTU, said, "As one of the top universities in the world for artificial intelligence (AI) research, we are confident that our partnership with SenseTime to set up a joint research centre will lead to the development of cutting-edge technologies and skilled talents in the field of AI. This collaboration is also very timely as NTU seeks to become a Smart Campus – a living testbed for the technologies of tomorrow, in line with Singapore's drive to become a Smart Nation. Given NTU's and SenseTime's complementary strengths and expertise, we can look forward to innovative AI-based solutions for better living and learning, to benefit people, communities and businesses in Singapore and beyond."
NSCC's Chief Executive Associate Professor Tan Tin Wee expressed a similar level of enthusiasm. "As the largest provider of AI algorithms in China, SenseTime has been at the forefront of AI research. We are excited to work with SenseTime in the areas of research, development and industry adoption. With this partnership, we will build upon and extend NSCC's existing petascale distributed HPC infrastructure. We hope to achieve and bridge the HPC ecosystem by setting up a GPU-accelerated, AI-centric, supercomputing infrastructure and platform."
"This partnership and the recent investment in SenseTime by our corporate venture arm Singtel Innov8 speaks to our growing cooperation and commitment to innovation across the region," said Arthur Lang, CEO of International Group at Singtel. "We look forward to collaborating with SenseTime to grow our AI capabilities and drive the adoption of AI technology across Asia. Given the Singtel Group's regional footprint and digital eco-system, we see many opportunities to leverage AI — from innovative retail technology solutions to smart city projects."
Mr. Kiren Kumar, Assistant Managing Director of Singapore EDB, witnessed the signing of the MOU. On behalf of EDB, he thanked SenseTime for choosing Singapore to base its international hub and R&D operations. He believes that SenseTime's presence in Singapore will be an invaluable addition to Singapore's growing AI ecosystem of private and public partners like Singtel, NTU and NSCC, among others.
The signing of these MOU is quite significant for SenseTime's Singapore operations as well as the company's international expansion. Spanning across a wide range of academia, industry and government agencies, these partnerships will likely play an important role in accelerating AI developments in Asia.
Last September, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong visited SenseTime's Beijing office and exchanged thoughts and ideas with SenseTime Founder Professor Xiao'ou Tang. He also experienced the company's AI technologies such as facial recognition and image recognition capabilities. SenseTime was the only company that PM Lee stopped over during his China visit. In April this year, SenseTime raised US$600 million in its Series C round of financing, in which Singapore sovereign fund Temasek was one of the major investors.