US-based artificial intelligence (AI) startup Anthropic is reportedly in discussions to raise $750m in a funding round.

The round is being led by venture capital firm Menlo Ventures, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The funding round, which has not yet been finalised, is expected to value Anthropic at approximately $18bn. The Information reported citing sources familiar with the development.

The funds raised will be used to support the continuous development of a chatbot that emphasises safety and responsible AI.

Anthropic was established in 2021 by Dario and Daniela Amodei, former executives at Microsoft-backed rival OpenAI.

The San Francisco-based startup has a team of researchers, engineers, policy experts, and operational leaders working together to develop reliable and understandable AI systems.

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The company focuses on building systems that people can rely on and generate research about the opportunities and risks of AI.

It has developed its own conversational AI chatbot, known as Claude, to compete with OpenAI’s GPT series.

Claude can perform tasks such as summarising, searching, answering questions, and coding.

Anthropic has already received investments from Alphabet’s subsidiary Google and

Google and have reportedly agreed to invest up to $2bn and $4bn, respectively.

Anthropic has also signed a multi-year cloud agreement with Google this year, a person familiar with the details told Bloomberg.

Earlier in August 2023, Anthropic secured an additional $100m investment from South Korea’s SK Telecom.

As part of this deal, Anthropic is responsible for working in partnership with SK Telecom to develop a multilingual large language model (LLM) customised specifically for telcos industry.

Once developed, this LLM will be capable of supporting different languages, including Arabic, English, German, Japanese, Korean and Spanish.

The funds raised will be support the continuous development of a chatbot that emphasises safety and responsible AI.