San Francisco-based MLOps startup Weights & Biases has raised $50 million in a new funding round led by Nat Friedman and Daniel Gross. The company provides tools to support machine learning model building, training, and deployment.
With the new capital, Weights & Biases plans to expand its "W&B Prompts" product line which helps developers quickly build AI-powered solutions using large language models like ChatGPT.
"Those LLMs have already had a profound impact on the ML space and we're finally seeing true democratization of AI," said Weights & Biases CEO Lukas Biewald in the funding announcement. "Suddenly it’s possible for any developer to build great ML-powered solutions on top of the GenAI or LLM products out there."
The funding round included participation from existing Weights & Biases investors including Coatue, Felicis Venture, and NVIDIA. It brings the company's total raised to over $150 million.
Weights & Biases was founded in 2017 by Biewald, Chris Van Pelt, and Shawn Lewis. The founders' mission was to build developer tools that could advance the state of machine learning after seeing first-hand the outdated tools used by AI researchers at OpenAI.
The company initially focused on an experiment tracking product but has since expanded into a full MLOps platform. Weights & Biases now counts companies like Meta, BMW, and Samsung among its customers.
Both Friedman and Gross bring extensive experience in machine learning and developer tools. Friedman was CEO of GitHub until its $7.5 billion acquisition by Microsoft and remains at Microsoft as a Corporate Vice President. Gross is a venture capitalist at QED Investors whose investments include Credit Karma, Remitly, and Avant.
“Nat and Daniel have been in the ML space for a long time and were both early users of Weights & Biases,” said Biewald. “They're joining us at an exciting moment for the company."
With the rise of large language models like ChatGPT, demand for MLOps platforms like Weights & Biases is expected to surge. The company appears poised to enable more developers to reliably build AI-powered applications through its specialized tooling.