updated 01:45 pm EDT, Tue March 10, 2009
NVIDIA GPU Venture Zone
NVIDIA has announced the launch of its GPU Ventures Program on Tuesday that aims to identify, support and invest in start-up companies that are writing software to take advantage of the graphics chipmakers' parallel processing tools. The company already showcases the innovative work of some of these GPU-based software developers on its GPU Venture Zone. With this program, NVIDIA is hoping to identify future software developers that aim to take advantage of GPUs to help in computing tasks via creating applications for specific tasks. NVIDIA's own CUDA and PhysX programs are meant to utilize the GPU for some of the same, but the graphics company is seeking partners to help grow what the company believes is the next level in computing.
Via the program, NVIDIA will evaluate the companies and decide whether it will make a monetary investment ranging from $500,000 to $5 million or enter into a marketing, development, product development or another form of partnership. GPU-processing applications include enhancing computing speeds and performance in areas such as video and image enhancement, scientific discovery, financial analysis and 3D interfaces.
Jeff Herbst, VP of business development at NVIDIA, said the GPU Venture Zone is meant to highlight the up-and-comers and encourage venture capitalists to invest in them to help them develop their software. The number of companies on the Zone is already numbering 60, with NVIDIA hoping to add plenty more at this year's Emerging Companies Summit in the fall. The goal of the events, Herbst said, "is to provide fuel for the growth for the entire visual and high-performance computing eco-system."
NVIDIA has recently made its own investments in specific companies, teaming up with MotionDSP last fall and Elemental Technologies to develop software that takes better advantage of the GPU.