AI

The Czech Republic is one of the best European destinations for investments, where talent, level of education and innovativeness create suitable conditions for the growth of technology. All these externalities have enabled many companies to grow while attracting a strong inflow of projects with high value added from leading global tech companies. It’s not surprising that the Czech Republic is still, even today, one of the countries where Google has a strong local competitor, in this case Seznam.cz, which for more than three decades has been making localised products that challenge/compete with those of Google. No other country where the Latin alphabet is used has such a local champion.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is coming to the forefront and the Czech Republic is a remarkably strong and significant AI hotspot. Many companies have their AI research teams and activities in the Czech Republic and collaborate with world-class researchers at local universities. Companies like Resistant.ai and Rossum.ai have attracted significant investments in recent years and may soon be joined by others. CzechInvest is keeping up, as AI is one of the main technologies that the agency supports within its AI HUB, while its Technology Incubation (TI) project is an effective tool for supporting startups. AI was the most prominent field in the first call of the TI project, when 35% of applicants referred to themselves as AI startups. The first startups are being incubated since 2023 with many more to follow in the coming years. Around 30 AI startups are incubated in 2024.

New trends and technical advancements, such as challenges in AI, are actively supported by numerous programmes, national strategies, outstanding research centres and universities. The noteworthy regional entities prg.ai, or Brno.AI have assembled and actively participated in local AI ecosystems that have universities at their core. Academics and researchers are successfully coordinated within AI Czechia, an initiative that brings together AI researchers with an objective similar to that of CzechInvest, prg.ai and Brno.ai, i.e., to make the Czech Republic an outstanding location for AI innovation with global reach.

Prague and Brno are the biggest hotspots for AI research in the Czech Republic and the home of more than 80% of all AI companies and researchers. It’s worth taking note of AI Days, an event that offers the opportunity to approach the local AI community. The first edition of AI Days, which was held in Brno in 2022, was rated as a major success, and it was thus agreed that future editions will take place in other regions of the country. In 2023 Dny AI took place in Prague, Brno, Ostrava and Plzeň, making it the biggest nation-wide event in Europe. 4 weeks were packed with meetups, hackathons, pitch contests, speeches and showcases of what AI can do. Stay tuned for Dny AI 2024!

At CzechInvest, we believe there is huge potential in AI that is yet to be discovered, as the Czech Republic has world-class researchers in NLP and machine perception, among other areas, and more of the country’s world-class startups will provide their services around the globe in the years to come.

Zdeněk Havel
Director AI HUB
CzechInvest