Soul Machines

Soul Machines talks how it expanded its operations internationally

Money making machines

Soul Machines talks how it expanded its operations internationally

When the subject of Soul Machines comes up, most of us think immediately of the company’s startlingly realistic AI-powered digital humans. But you could argue that the company’s rapid international expansion is almost as striking. The numbers certainly ready well: To date, the company has raised NZ$25 million from investors such as Horizons Ventures, Iconiq and Mercedes Benz. Created as a result of the spin out from the University of Auckland, the company was co-founded and serial entrepreneur Greg Cross, whose last company, PowerbyProxi, was sold in 2017, and by Dr. Mark Sagar, who had led the scientific research since 2012. With R&D headquartered in Auckland and executives located in LA, San Francisco, and New York City, the company combines neuroscience, cognitive science and developmental psychology to create new ways for humans to interact with AI. Current customers include Autodesk, P&G, Royal Bank of Scotland and ANZ Bank. Not a bad resume for a local company, we reckon, so we asked Greg Cross, Soul Machines co-founder and chief business officer, just what it takes to grow something so big starting somewhere so small.

Taking tech to the world

Soul Machines co-founder and chief business officer Greg Cross, Predict HQ, Rocket Lab founder Peter Beck and Pushpay were among the big winners of the 2019 NZ Hi-Tech Awards held on Friday, which celebrates the best performing high-tech companies in New Zealand. Cross, who was nominated by his peers into the Hi-Tech Hall of Fame, shares some learnings from a career spent taking New Zealand tech companies to the world, and the direction he hopes the tech sector will take in the future.

Reality check

With news that Soul Machines has rolled out a brand-new digital avatar called Will that will act as a digital teacher on behalf of Vector educating schoolkids about energy, we cast our eye around the globe to find the companies using tech to replicate the parts of us that make us human.

Idealog + Tech Futures Lab

Dr. Elinor Swery gets excited about using technology to make the world a better place. With a background in Mechanical Engineering, she now works at Soul Machines as a solutions architect, working with international companies to deliver Artificial Humans and humanise the way in which we interact with technology. She has worked in various industries, from utilities and automotive to banking and telecommunication all the while focusing on improving process and user experiences through the enablement and adoption of AI technologies. Here's what keeps her up at night.

Say it ain't soul

Air New Zealand is trialling a new team member in the form of Sophie, a digital human created by Soul Machines to answer questions about New Zealand as a tourist destination and the airline’s products and services.