Weaviate Raises $50 Million Funding to Meet Demand for AI Vector Database Technology

Bob van Luijt and Etienne Dilocker, co-founders of Weaviate

Company’s open source vector database and new cloud service are essential to rapidly growing AI application development market

Weaviate.io, developer of the AI-native Weaviate vector database, today announced a $50M round of funding led by Index Ventures with participation from Battery Ventures. Weaviate’s existing investors, including NEA, Cortical Ventures, Zetta Venture Partners, and ING Ventures also joined this round. The capital will be used to expand the Weaviate team and accelerate the development of its popular open source database and new Weaviate Cloud Service to satisfy the rapidly growing AI application development market.

AI Innovation is Fueled by Algorithmic “Vector Data”
Global spending on artificial intelligence (AI) technology and services is expected to reach $154 billion in 2023 and surpass $300 billion in 2026 (source: IDC). This massive wave of application development will be powered by a new type of data, embedding vectors, which are AI-generated representations of documents, images, customers, products, and other objects. The Weaviate AI-native vector database is essential to the growth of AI applications, including generative AI. It is used by developers who need to generate, store, share, and search millions or even billions of vectors, very often in real-time.

“The Weaviate vector database is used as core infrastructure in the emerging AI-native ecosystem,” said Weaviate CEO and co-founder, Bob van Luijt “It allows users, from startups to enterprises, to create a new wave of applications ranging from custom-made search and recommendation systems to ChatGPT plugins.”

Simpler AI Development, millions of downloads, and new Cloud Services
The Weaviate database simplifies vector data management for AI developers. An essential AI-native infrastructure component, it solves the hard problem of generating, storing, and searching embedding vectors and their corresponding objects. AI-native vector database capabilities include:

Extensible, built-in machine learning (ML) modules –  Just load and search; Weaviate does the ML heavy lifting – any data type, any model, any use case.
Richer vector search – Supports a variety of ML searches with the added benefit of being able to search vectors AND the source objects from which the vectors were generated.
High performance – Sub-second search, scales to billions of objects, runs non-stop.

Since raising its series A funding in early 2022, Weaviate has seen open source downloads pass the 2 million mark. Weaviate has also launched a new Weaviate Cloud Service, which gives developers the full power of the Weaviate database without any of the operational overhead. The Weaviate Cloud Service is available immediately and can be used for free for 14 days.

“Weaviate’s vector database and search engine provides a critical piece of infrastructure that’s helping to drive a massive AI platform shift,” says Index Ventures partner Erin Price-Wright. “The pace of adoption across enterprises and AI-native startups alike developing multimodal search, recommendation, and generative applications with Weaviate is incredible. This is the best-in-class product for developers building with AI and we are thrilled to be partnering with them to help drive the next phase of growth.”

In February, the company introduced generative search support to make it easier for developers to meaningfully harness the power of large language models (LLM) like GPT-4 and their human-like ability to seemingly understand and respond to queries in natural language.

“With every major data-platform shift, we’ve seen the emergence of a new, underlying technology – and the explosion of generative AI is no different,” said Dharmesh Thakker, a general partner at Battery Ventures. “Just as Elastic and MongoDB helped companies leverage non-tabular data, we believe Weaviate is poised to lead the revolution of vector databases, giving organizations critical tools to store, index and retrieve unstructured data through vector embeddings. We could not be more excited to partner with the Weaviate team and help the company refine its go-to-market program, particularly in the U.S.”

For more information visit weaviate.io or join the Weaviate community forum on Slack. Weaviate is hiring–openings can be found on the Weaviate careers page.

About Weaviate
Weaviate is the developer of the popular Weaviate open source vector database. AI innovation is fueled by machine learning-generated embedding vectors data, which makes the Weaviate vector database an essential part of the AI-native infrastructure. The company was founded in 2019 and is funded by Index Ventures, Battery Ventures, NEA, Cortical Ventures, Zetta Venture Partners, and ING Ventures. Weaviate is headquartered in Amsterdam with offices in the U.S. and Australia.