The auditing and consulting firm PwC Germany, the largest non-listed expert organization DEKRA and the City of Hamburg plan to cooperate to launch a company for the testing and certification of Artificial Intelligence (AI) products. The project is subject to clearance by the anti-trust authorities.
The growth potential of the global AI market is enormous. By 2028, the market is expected to increase tenfold and reach a total volume of 150 billion US dollars. As a result, there is a gap in the market for a company that focuses primarily on the security needs of AI technology. CertifAI plans to fill this gap by helping businesses comply with standards and regulatory requirements for AI-based products.
Perfect Partners for Trustworthy AI
This combination of competencies in the field of AI is truly unique, the spokesperson for PwC Germany’s management and co-responsible for planning the joint venture, Petra Justenhoven summarizes: “DEKRA, as a shareholder in CertifAI, brings many years of expertise in the testing and certification of Cyber Physical Systems (CPS). And we, PwC, contribute our know-how regarding the strategic view of Artificial Intelligence’s opportunities and risks and how these will transform the economy. This is also where our long-standing investment in “Digital Trust in AI” and our role in shaping regulatory issues pays off. The City of Hamburg’s commitment further demonstrates the public interest in trustworthy AI-based products. We look forward to CertifAI’s planned launch in the market this winter.”
The focus of the joint venture will be on a solution and customer-oriented service offering that specializes in the individual testing of AI products and components. At the same time, the company will help with compliance regarding industry-specific norms and standards, such as those found in the automotive industry, to ensure a safe and trustworthy use of AI. “Current regulations are mostly not yet specific to AI and new ones need to be evolved. Applying these regulations in a practical way is the key for the time-to-market for digital applications and thus innovation,” elaborates Hendrik Reese, partner and expert in the Trust in AI practice at PwC Germany.
Clear regulatory framework needed for AI safety and quality
Therefore, from day one the company will cooperate closely with the private and public sector, legislators, and regulators. Stan Zurkiewicz, DEKRA CEO and chairman of the board stresses: “The AI sector’s regulations, which serve as a vital basis for testing and certification, must keep pace with its rapid development. This is the only way to ensure user safety whilst building and expanding trust in Artificial Intelligence.” The CEO of DEKRA DIGITAL, Dr. Kerim Galal, adds: “Trust is the foundation for the acceptance of AI in all aspects of life. Society has a legitimate interest in AI being safe and trustworthy.”
Milestone for the AI-site Hamburg
Michael Westhagemann, the Hanseatic City of Hamburg’s Senator for Economic Affairs, emphasizes: “AI is a key technology which is already being used today in many industries such as logistics, aviation, life science and the energy sector. In the future, this technology will shape many more areas of society and business and change our lives. CertifAI will set quality standards for Artificial Intelligence and thus create more trust. I am pleased to be involved in the foundation of the certification provider through the Innovation Fund Hamburg (“Innovationsstarter Fonds Hamburg”). This is another milestone both for Hamburg as an AI site and for more trust in this groundbreaking technology.”