French AI startup H raises $220M seed round


Image Credits: Kevin Ku / Unsplash

It’s not often that you hear about a seed round above $10 million. H, a startup based in Paris and previously known as Holistic AI, has announced a $220 million seed round just a few months after the company’s inception.

It has managed to raise so much money so quickly because it’s an AI startup working on new models with an impressive founding team. Charles Kantor, the startup’s co-founder and CEO, was a university researcher at Stanford.

The four other co-founders all previously worked for DeepMind, the AI company owned by Google: Karl Tuyls was a research director at DeepMind, where he worked on game theory and multi-agent research. Laurent Sifre was a principal scientist who contributed to many of DeepMind’s flagship projects, such as AlphaGo, AlphaFold and AlphaStar. More recently, he also worked on Google’s Gemini and Gemma AI models. Daan Wierstra, who will become H’s chief scientist, was a founding member at DeepMind. And, finally, Julien Perolat worked on game theory and multi-agent research at DeepMind.

As you may have guessed, H is going to work on AI agents: automated systems that can perform tasks that are traditionally performed by human workers. The company’s minimalistic site states that H is working on “frontier action models to boost the productivity of workers.”


Investors in the startup include a long list of billionaires (or their family offices); some well-known VC funds; and a few strategic backers. On the billionaire list you’ll find notable names like Eric Schmidt, Xavier Niel, Yuri Milner, Bernard Arnault (via Aglaé Ventures) and Motier Ventures (the family office of the owners of the Galeries Lafayette Group).

On the VC list, investors include Accel, Bpifrance’s Large Venture fund, Creandum, Elaia Partners, Eurazeo, FirstMark Capital and Visionaries Club.

Click here to read the full announcement on TechCrunch.