Big boost for AI solutions as Spatialedge acquires Cape AI

Retief Gerber, co-founder and chief executive of Spatialedge. Photo: Supplied/Ventureburn
Retief Gerber, co-founder and chief executive of Spatialedge. Photo: Supplied/Ventureburn

AI solutions provider Spatialedge has acquired Cape AI, a South Africa-founded tech start-up on a mission to help businesses grow by enabling them to make smart decisions using artificial intelligence technology. 

Based in Stellenbosch in the Cape Winelands, Spatialedge is a big data and applied machine learning solutions company. It enables companies to rapidly build and operationalise robust machine learning solutions. Enterprise data science teams are now able to deliver improved business value faster through a toolkit of engineers, data science specialists, and proprietary and open-source software.

The news of the Cape AI acquisition comes as the global Fourth Industrial Revolution is in full swing. Companies are investing billions of dollars on advanced analytics and artificial intelligence (AI). Organisations around the world are expecting and experiencing significant increases in business returns as a result of successful investment in AI.

“This is a great achievement for both Spatialedge and Cape AI,” says Retief Gerber, co-founder and chief executive of Spatialedge.

“Spatialedge has grown from five engineers to over seventy in just four years, while market demand for working AI solutions continues to grow. It has been our objective to find ways to scale faster so that we can meet the growing demand.

“As part of our future growth strategy, we intend to engage in several mergers and acquisitions, and we already have a few more deals in the pipeline. The acquisition of Cape AI has allowed us to scale and acquiring them is just the beginning.”

Cape AI has founded, incubated and spun-out multiple AI ventures, and has grown to be a prominent player in the AI solutions space.

“We are on a mission to build the best specialised data and AI business in Africa, Europe and beyond.  Whenever a company wants to invest in AI, their options are to either go for the non-specialised offerings or one of the many small players.  In the end, this often results in non-performant and lacklustre solutions,” says Gerber.

“Only by putting together a high performing organisation specialised in the artificial intelligence lifecycle, from implementing solid data pipelines to rapidly rolling out new use cases, can we transform organisations and bring them into the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

As part of the acquisition, Cape AI will be consolidated into the Spatialedge business.

Corporate players in South Africa are excited to see the merging of key players in the space and they are hoping to see additional value added to their business from the convergence of knowledge from these players.

“I am excited to explore additional areas of growth within the machine learning and AI space with this new acquisition of Cape AI by Spatialedge,” remarked Venette van Zyl, the head of data and analytics at Pepkor and client of Spatialedge.

“This landscape is changing quickly and there is a definite increase in the required pace of product development in analytics, accompanied by the surge in realisation of opportunities to drive businesses into the future.”

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