Synthetic Media AI Startup Synthesia Raises $90M
Synthetic media startup Synthesia has raised $90 million in a Series C funding round led by Accel, along with Nvidia and other investors. Synthesia uses AI to produce virtual humans able to realistically mimic people’s appearance and voice for video and audio productions, an area drawing a lot of attention as generative AI proliferates.
Synthesia can analyze videos of real people to generate simulacra or generate an entirely fictitious human to perform from a script, with background details and other elements fine-tuned by the user. The startup claims creators have produced more than 12 million videos using its technology and counts more than 50,000 businesses as clients. The new funding brings Synthesia’s valuation to $1 billion and ‘unicorn’ status. The new capital is earmarked for research and development, especially in AI. Synthesia is planning several upgrades to its video avatars that the investment will help bring to market that will make the avatars more natural in their movements, expressions, and voices, with more customization available.
“We’ve made great strides toward our vision to make video easy for everyone, but there’s still a long way to go. I’m proud of our team for building Synthesia into a sustainable company that delivers real business utility, not just novelty, for our thousands of customers,” said Synthesia CEO Victor Riparbelli said. “While we weren’t actively looking for new investment, Accel and Nvidia share our vision for transforming traditional video production into a digital workflow that will enable creators to bring their ideas, from training videos to Hollywood films, to life with only a Synthesia account. I’m delighted to have them on board as we accelerate our AI research efforts.”
Generative AI has given the world of synthetic media an enormous boost, including audio and video. For instance, synthetic media startup D-ID went from a gimmick tool to make still images move to launch its Creative Reality Studio, a way for customers to design their own video avatars based on uploaded photographs or from synthetically generated images produced by Stable Diffusion’s text-to-image engine. Similarly Virtual being developer Hour One uses generative AI in its Video Wizard ‘prompt-to-video’ feature to transform a written brief into a complete video.