SAS to Dedicate $1B to AI Endeavors

Analytics solutions firm SAS has announced it will invest $1 billion in artificial intelligence solutions — covering software, education, expert services and more — over the next three years.

The planned investment will cover research and development innovation, education initiatives aimed at addressing SAS customer needs, and services to optimize customer return on AI endeavors. Part of the company’s plan also features an AI Accelerator Program, geared toward “helping organizations and professionals get AI-ready at any level,” the company said.

“At SAS, we remain dedicated to our customers and their success, and this investment is another example of that commitment,” said SAS CEO Jim Goodnight. “With our innovative capabilities in AI, SAS helps businesses deter damaging fraud, fight deadly disease, better manage risk, provide exemplary service to customers and citizens, and much more.”

In the R&D corner, SAS will focus on making it easy for users of all skill levels to benefit from AI, catering to business experts, data engineers and data scientists, by embedding AI capabilities into its solutions for customer intelligence, data and risk management, and fraud and security intelligence, along with applications for financial services, manufacturing, retail and other industries.

SAS also plans on building on its AI partnerships with companies like Accenture, NVIDIA, Intel, Deloitte and others.

“The reason SAS tops the revenue list for advanced analytics for the last five years is that SAS solutions are built on a foundation of machine learning and deep knowledge of analytics. These are part of SAS’ DNA,” said Dave Schubmehl, research director for AI for research firm IDC. “Combining SAS’ knowledge and technology with its continued push to innovate in computer vison, NLP [neuro-linguistic programming] and deep learning will drive further adoption of AI across multiple industries. And it will help companies interested in AI — whether early in their AI and analytics life cycle or more mature.”

In education and development, SAS’ AI Accelerator Program will offer both online and in-person training in AI technologies for clients, certification programs to help analytics professionals and data scientists for “SAS Certified Professional in AI and Machine Learning” recognition, and the formation of the SAS Analytics Center of Excellence, comprised of a group of experts in AI, machine learning, NLP, computer vision, and other data science arenas.

Additionally, at its Cary, N.C. headquarter-building, SAS has incorporated AI innovations, with thousands of IoT connected sensors (“embedded in chillers, boilers and air handlers,” the company said) to monitor water and energy use.

For more information, visit sas.com/en_us/solutions/ai.html