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AI Search Startup Perplexity Set to Double Valuation to $1 Billion

Perplexity, an artificial intelligence startup aiming to challenge Google’s dominance in web search, is finalizing a new funding deal at around a $1 billion valuation, people familiar with the matter said, roughly doubling its valuation since its most recent financing a few months ago.

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The funding frenzy for the one-year-old startup is a remarkable example of the enthusiasm among some venture capitalists who think AI technology could challenge Google’s years-long grip over search and breathe new life into startups after a bruising couple of years.

Perplexity, co-founded by Chief Executive Aravind Srinivas, uses advanced AI models to provide direct answers to search queries, as opposed to a list of website links, something Google is also working on.

Past efforts to dislodge Google in search haven’t gone so well. Microsoft has struggled to make a dent in Google’s search dominance after releasing a new version of its Bing search engine powered by large language models.

Even so, Perplexity is growing fast. The company recently surpassed $10 million in annual revenue; a person familiar with the matter said. Visits to its mobile and desktop app grew 8.6% in February to around 50 million users, according to preliminary estimates from the data service Similarweb.


Image: Perplexity.ai