Lisbon-Based AI Translation Company Ubabel Opens in the Pittsburgh Innovation District 

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Perhaps the most exciting part about the Pittsburgh Innovation District is the endless opportunity it creates for companies and individuals not just from Pittsburgh, but from all over the world. The latest to join the ranks in Oakland is Unbabel, a Lisbon-based company providing AI-powered human translation solutions.

This September, Unbabel opened its Pittsburgh office right in the heart of the Innovation District with Alon Lavie, vice president of language technologies, at the helm. Until this month, Lavie was Unbabel’s sole Pittsburgh employee. Though the company (and the majority of its 225 employees) operates mostly out of its home base in Portugal and a smaller office in San Francisco, Unbabel showed the first signs of interest in Pittsburgh when they hired Lavie back in April.  

Since the beginning of September, Unbabel has grown its Pittsburgh team to four employees, with a goal of five or six employees by the end of the year. Come 2020, Unbabel hopes to continue its Pittsburgh hires, assembling a team that will work closely with the Lisbon team and frequently collaborate on projects between the two cities.

“We’re excited to welcome Unbabel to the Pittsburgh Innovation District. As a serial Pittsburgh founder, Alon Lavie knows better than anyone that Unbabel’s new location in Oakland provides unlimited potential to tap into the artificial intelligence and deep learning expertise at Carnegie Mellon and the University of Pittsburgh,” said Pittsburgh Innovation District Executive Director Sean Luther.

With the number one artificial intelligence program in the United States (at Carnegie Mellon) located within walking distance of Unbabel’s new 1,617-square-foot Oakland office, the company should have no trouble finding—or hiring—new talent. Add in lots of development opportunities, two major research institutions and endless resources at the intersection of language and humanities, and the Pittsburgh Innovation District becomes a perfect jumping off point for Unbabel’s growth as a global company.

amy roberts