It’s nearly impossible to ignore generative AI. It comes up in dinner conversations, small talk with Uber drivers, strategy discussions with work colleagues, and even in the latest congressional hearings. Generative AI has taken the world by storm, and rightfully so. It has unleashed a creative revolution. Whether using LLMs for drafting blog posts, diffusion models for image generation or AI coding assistants for code generation, it’s clear generative AI has unlocked a step-change in productivity for employees and creators alike. 

Today, we’re excited to announce our investment in Synthesia – the leading AI video platform for the enterprise. Video has become a core part of our lives. We watch around 19 hours of video per week (up 81% in the last five years) and a third of us use video tutorials on a weekly basis. With the growth of TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts, it’s clear the consumer video boom is in full swing, and the enterprise sector is following close behind.

Today, this shift has pushed enterprises to spend upwards of $280 billion on custom (and often unengaging) Learning & Development content.  Historically, the creation of this content involves hiring actors, equipment, studios, and full production crews. After all this investment, teams have to wait for a lengthy and complex editing process before they can see the end product. If that video isn’t up to par, enterprises are back to square one, and costs begin to spiral. Enter Synthesia – the world’s largest video generation platform for enterprises. Synthesia enables teams to write a script, choose an avatar, and immediately create a custom video.

Synthesia’s platform can reduce video production time by 95%, making it a cost effective solution that also improves engagement with videos. This is a value proposition that has resonated: 12 million videos across corporate training, marketing, and customer service use cases have been created on Synthesia, and user growth has increased 456% year-over-year.  It has proliferated beyond prosumers as 50,000 businesses have created videos on Synthesia, including some of the largest organizations: Amazon, Johnson & Johnson, Accenture, and many more. In fact, 35% of the Fortune 100 are now users of Synthesia.

As users ourselves, we were blown away by how easy it has been to create videos. For example, using Synthesia’s integration with ChatGPT, it took us 10 minutes to create this video: 

Use cases for Synthesia’s platform are evolving daily. For example, we spoke with a large automotive manufacturer that uses Synthesia to send updates to its network of dealerships. Before Synthesia, this manufacturer would send PDF updates, which would often be left unread. The value of Synthesia was immediately apparent: higher video engagement resulted in fewer support calls.  This type of productivity lift is just the beginning. In the near term, more realistic avatars will unlock use cases for personalized sales and marketing outreach. Longer term, customers will be able to manipulate more parts of the video: full-body representations, camera angles, 3D backgrounds, and multiple avatars. All of these will only expand Synthesia’s potential impact.

We’re excited about Synthesia’s limitless potential, though are aware that malicious actors will try to use this technology for nefarious purposes. For that reason, trust and safety have been core to Synthesia since day one. Today, Synthesia is a proud partner of Partnership on AI (PAI) and helped launch the first industry-wide framework for the ethical and responsible development, creation, and sharing of synthetic media (Responsible Practices for Synthetic Media).

When we first met Victor and Steffen two years ago, Synthesia immediately stood out as one of the few generative AI companies combining a differentiated technology, an exceptional founding team, and a clear ROI for enterprise customers. Part of what makes Victor and Steffen so special is their ability to push the boundaries of what’s possible on the research front while translating those breakthroughs into customer-facing improvements in the product. On the research-side, all of Synthesia’s technology is built in-house and the team is behind several AI breakthroughs around avatar fidelity. On the product-side, the technology is wrapped in an interface simple enough for a business user (we made the below video in 15 minutes).

Like the shift to cloud and mobile, we believe we're undergoing a huge transformation through the use of generative AI. This is a sentiment shared by some of the brightest minds we know – our Tech Council members. At our latest event, generative AI was at the core of every discussion, and businesses were focused on where they could see real ROI with this technology. Synthesia brings just that on the video generation front. Over the years at Accel, we’ve been fortunate to partner with and learn from leaders at the forefront of AI: UiPath, Celonis, AssemblyAI, Ada, and ScaleAI. We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Victor and Steffen, and to welcome the entire Synthesia team to the Accel family. 

––Philippe, Ben, Charlie, and Tim

<sup>1<sup> Statista, “Average Weekly time spent with online video worldwide from 2018 to 2023”

<sup>2<sup>The Josh Bernstein Company, “The Creator Market for Corporate Learning”