Buster Franken, CEO (left) and Sako Arts, CTO (right)
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A 500,000 euro funding round for Fruitpunch AI will result in a big boost for training AI engineers in applying AI for Good. A huge lack of skilled AI engineers is the biggest bottleneck to AI implementation in businesses, as experienced by companies like Deloitte, EY, and McKinsey, but also by start-ups and SMEs worldwide.

Fruitpunch AI lets AI engineers collaboratively solve AI for Good challenges. This helps them train their AI skills with partners like Stanford University, European Space Agency, and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). Companies use it to upskill & retain their current workforce and find new, real-world vetted AI talent. The funding will be used to develop the platform’s features to support personalized learning journeys, hire strategic roles to expand in the HR market, and turn current pilot programs into sustainable partnerships.

Shamrock Ventures is the lead investor for the €500K round in syndication with LUMO Labs and various angels with strong industry experience. With this money, FruitPunch AI wants to accelerate its vision to become the global AI for good skills training platform and community. FruitPunch AI currently provides AI engineering power to industry-leading NGOs, impact startups & research centers like NXP, Stanford University, and WWF.

Opportunities for good purposes

“With the increasing range of AI possibilities, it is ever more important that developers can use those opportunities for good purposes”, says Tommy Hurley, Founder & Managing Partner at Shamrock Ventures. “FruitPunch AI facilitates this for developers throughout their careers.”

“Shamrock Ventures & LUMO Labs are aligned with us to do maximum good by building an impact company that scales”, said Buster Franken, FruitPunch AI’s CEO and co-founder. “Now we have the funding and expertise to realize this vision and help companies worldwide find, retain, and train the best AI talent.”

“Keeping up with the speed of advancements in Artificial Intelligence is challenging, but a massive competitive advantage for those who succeed in doing so”, said Andy Lürling, Founding Partner of LUMO Labs. “The FruitPunch AI platform allows medium, large, and giant organizations to continuously understand and improve the skills and mindset of their software developers, data engineers, and related staff. The cake underneath this cherry is that the platform is designed to put forward urgent social challenges as the grindstone to sharpen the skills and mindset of every single individual on the platform. This has already resulted in real-life, ground-breaking AI solutions for good.”