Japan’s KDDI to Take Control of Generative AI Startup Elyza

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
A KDDI building in Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Telecommunications carrier KDDI Corp. said Monday that it will make generative artificial intelligence startup Elyza Inc. a consolidated subsidiary.

Elyza, launched by University of Tokyo researchers, develops large-scale language models in Japanese for generative AI engines. The KDDI group, set to invest several billion yen in Elyza, will make the startup’s generative AI services available to companies and local governments from April.

The KDDI group plans to acquire a 53.4% stake in Elyza by around April 1.

Elyza last week said that it has developed an LLM with 70 billion parameters, among the biggest numbers that have been achieved in Japan. The larger the parameter number is, the more various tasks the LLM can perform.

KDDI hopes to use its own sales network to promote the introduction of the generative AI services at companies and local governments.

“We’re considering investing about ¥100 billion in the medium to long term” to boost the group’s computing infrastructure for the development of generative AI engines, KDDI President Makoto Takahashi told a press conference.