Will startups have a shot in the enterprise AI race?

It’s impossible to escape AI chatter as the largest tech companies race to build or partner with new large language models, and integrate them into their software and search services. The underlying technology is advancing quickly enough that we have seen calls for the work to pause, and Congress interrogate technology leaders on the subject.

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But while ChatGPT and other, similar tools are popular, there’s a less-discussed side to the current artificial intelligence race: the enterprise.

Recent news from Appian, a public software company, and Neeva, a startup born to build a search engine that could compete with offerings from majors, make plain that the number of participants racing to build AI tooling and services for large companies is expected to be healthy. Given how lucrative selling software to large corporations can prove, the players are not chasing a small market.

TechCrunch+ has covered enterprise AI in the present context several times in recent weeks, providing much-needed intellectual footing. It’s important to understand what Databricks and Cisco are building, after all. But I have a different questions: Do smaller tech companies also have a chance at market share?

This morning let’s remind ourselves how generative AI may fit into the enterprise, and then dig into the latest news that matters to form a clearer understanding of the direction tech companies are building toward.

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