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🌊 How should AI founders highlight their unique product benefits and market leadership?
The Flowlie Times #34
Welcome to The Flowlie Times.
This edition is brought to you by Spacebar Visuals and Aura.
Articles we enjoyed:
Sequoia founder, Don Valentine, would ask founders two questions: "Why now?" and "So what?" to understand the significance of their ideas.
AI has a compelling "why now?" with the development of large language models (LLMs) trained with the Transformer architecture, making it practical to handle vast amounts of data and train AI models with billions and trillions of parameters.
“So what?”: experts estimate that LLMs will soon achieve 99% accuracy, at which point they will no longer be referred to as AI, but rather as "language interfaces" or simply LLMs. They offer capabilities like writing code on the fly and communicating in various languages.
The "AI effect" is a part of the broader "frontier paradox," where humans continuously push the boundaries of technology, making the frontier of AI perpetually ill-defined.
Being precise with language is crucial for founders in expressing their unique product's benefits and market leadership in the AI landscape.
2️⃣ “Speed x AI” by NFX. The AI revolution demands startups to move faster than ever before, as AI technologies like LLMs enable unprecedented capabilities. Founders need to adopt new mindsets to overcome barriers to speed and run numerous experiments to stay ahead of the competition and embrace borrowing successful ideas. Embracing a "fuck it" mentality, dropping self-sabotage tendencies, and doing it for others' benefit can help founders accelerate their progress in the age of AI.
3️⃣ The use of psychedelics, including ketamine, psilocybin, and LSD, has become increasingly common among tech executives and employees, who see them as gateways to business breakthroughs. Some leaders believe microdosing these substances helps with mental clarity and creativity, but it has raised concerns among companies and their boards regarding potential liability for illegal drug use within the workforce. Research and investment into psychedelic treatments are on the rise, but experts caution against self-diagnosis and unsupervised drug use, as it may lead to abuse or self-destructive behavior.
Venture announcements that caught our eye:
1️⃣ Runway, founded by Siqi Chen, is a strategic management platform for high-growth tech companies, offering intuitive financial modeling and reporting workflows. The company recently raised $27.5 million in a Series A funding round led by Initialized Capital, bringing the total raised to $33.5 million. Runway is going a competitive space including Finmark, Forecastr, Firmbase, Pigment, Mosaic, Caena, and others. I think you’ll agree however that they have the best website, by far.
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2️⃣ School bus technology provider BusRight raised $7 million in Series A funding led by Las Olas Venture Capital, with participation from several other investors. The company aims to use the funds to double its employee headcount, accelerate product development, and expand its customer base among U.S. K-12 education transportation systems. Keith is a prime example of a hardworking individual who is building a business in an antiquated industry.
3️⃣ Impact investing platform Giraffe secured $10.5 million in Seed funding, led by Group 11 and with participation from Altair Capital. Giraffe offers a user-friendly platform that allows companies, employees, and individuals to invest in S&P 500 companies aligned with their personal values, with a minimum investment value as low as $100, providing control over investment portfolios and generating quantifiable impact reports for employers' ESG reports.
Flowlie news 🎉
Thrilled to announce the launch of our new podcast, “The VC Architects”, where we spotlight emerging managers as they build their first funds. Tune in every other Wednesday to learn from the best.
Mike from Flowlie