SAS to invest USD 1 billion in AI over the next 3 years

Aurel Dragan 21/03/2019 | 12:18

SAS, the global leader in data analysis solutions, will invest USD 1 billion in Artificial Intelligence over the next three years, supporting innovation in software development, education, the creation of professional service packages, and more. The educational programs and expertise provided will help companies equip senior management and data analysts for the future of the AI, providing the technology, skills and support needed to transform their organizations.

“We remain dedicated to our customers and their success, this investment being an example of our commitment,” said Jim Goodnight CEO SAS. “SAS’s innovative capabilities in the field of Artificial Intelligence already support companies in detecting fraud, fighting fatal illness, managing risk and providing personalized services for customers or citizens, plus many more.”

The USD 1 billion investment to develop AI solutions targets three major areas: Research Innovation (R&D) – an area where SAS is growing as a result of the success of its global efforts in the field of Artificial Intelligence; education and initiatives for clients’ needs and support in understanding and taking advantage of the advancement of AI; and professional services to optimize company earnings in AI projects.

Innovation in research

Through the R&D department, SAS will invest in innovation in all aspects of Artificial Intelligence, focusing on facilitating the use of these solutions by people with diverse skills – from business experts to data analysts. SAS already includes AI solutions for data management, customer data analysis, fraud detection and security, risk management as well as applications for industries such as financial services, healthcare, production or commerce.

SAS will continue to collaborate with innovative companies and top technology providers such as Accenture, Cisco, Deloitte, Intel or NVIDIA. Thus, the company will be able to bring its latest developments and industry practices closer to its customers, making sure that its AI technologies work best on hardware or cloud solutions of customers.

SciSports, an innovative Dutch start-up, uses computer vision solutions from SAS to analyze data during football matches. SAS’s AI technology runs on NVIDIA GPUs and provides relevant information during matches for coaches and management teams. Collecting and analyzing data, football clubs can add to this “nice game” by changing strategies during a game, recruiting players or improving supporters’ experience during parties.

“The reason SAS has been at the forefront of companies gaining advanced data analysis for five years is that the solutions offered are based on machine learning tools and a deep knowledge of the field of data analysis. This is SAS DNA,” says Dave Schubmehl, research director for AI at IDC (International Data Corporation). “SAS knowledge and technology combined with the company’s continued desire to innovate in areas such as vison computer, NLP or deep learning will facilitate adoption of AI solutions across multiple industries. This will be a help for companies interested in AI, no matter if they are taking the first steps in this area or have a wider experience.”

AI and data analysis in action

The latest SAS building, SAS’s newest building, a 39,000-square-foot tower hosting the Global Education Center uses AI and machine learning innovations to link performance to business results. The new building has thousands of IoT sensors installed on air conditioning and ventilation systems to monitor water and energy consumption. Through a neural network that uses SAS Event Stream Processing, SAS administrative teams track real-time sensor information and the performance of these systems to improve estimates of required maintenance periods (system identifies possible equipment problems before they occur) and optimization water and energy consumption. To further emphasize SAS’s commitment to sustainability, nearly half of the building’s energy needs come from a SAS photovoltaic plant.

Among the many companies that use SAS solutions in AI and machine learning are:

  • Connexions Loyalty – works with leading brands in delivering customer loyalty programs, serving over 200 million people worldwide. The company relies on customization tools provided by SAS AI systems to increase customer loyalty.
  • Daiwa Securities – has created a recommendation system based on an SAS AI solution for sales teams. The system analyzes each client and anticipates changes, recommending appropriate products or appropriate messages to address customers to reduce the rate of customers choosing other solutions.
  • Volvo and Mack Trucks – use SAS AI solutions to analyze data collected by large trucks, giving the company important estimates of their maintenance and helping fleets distribute goods on time.
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