Newly formed corporate venturing unit Gradient Ventures plans to back up to 15 artificial intelligence startups this year, investing up to $8m a time.

US-based internet technology provider Google launched a new corporate venturing fund called Gradient Ventures yesterday that will focus on artificial intelligence technology startups.

Gradient does not have a precise fund size yet, and managing partner Anna Patterson told TechCrunch it will instead invest directly from Google’s balance sheet, and that it has the flexibility to pursue follow-on investments when it wishes.

The unit intends to invest in 10 to 15 startups in 2017, Patterson told CNBC, adding that it will…

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