Ben is the Co-Founder of BootstrapLabs, a leading venture capital firm, based in Silicon Valley and focused on Applied Artificial Intelligence.

BootstrapLabs Keynote at the AI Summit San Francisco

San Francisco, September 28, 2017 – BootstrapLabs Co-Founder, Benjamin Levy, led a keynote session at the AI Summit last week in San Francisco, exploring AI’s latest implications for the business world and our society as a whole.

Ben Levy discussed the rapid evolution of AI technology

Ben discussed the rapid evolution of AI technology and its impending impact on a wide range of business sectors, including finance, healthcare, education, agriculture, and more. His presentation highlighted the most current investment trends, data projections, and other industry guideposts to help light the way forward for those hoping to make the most of AI’s transformative power.

 

 

The AI Summit brings together 2,000+ of the most senior business CxOs, AI visionaries, AI start-up innovators, press/media, and acclaimed researchers in the world. Ben spoke alongside executives from companies such as Google, Microsoft, Unity, Mercedes-Benz, IBM Watson, Netflix, Amazon Web Services, Facebook, Nvidia, and many other leaders in the space.

 

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BootstrapLabs Presents at Lionbridge Global Innovation Symposium

San Jose, CA, September 21, 2017 – BootstrapLabs co-founder Ben Levy was one of five featured keynote speakers at the Lionbridge Global Innovation Symposium in September.

Lionbridge Ben Levy Presentation

Ben’s presentation was part of a series at the event focusing on “The Impact of AI on Global Customer Experience.” Ben spoke alongside speakers including Falon Fetami, CEO of Node, Peter Isaacson, CMO of Demandbase, and Katell Jantreau, Globalization Manager at Netflix.

The Symposium focused on connecting more effectively with customers using AI and deep learning, from product development to delivering personalized content and streamlining marketing reporting. You can find more information about the event here.

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DEAR CEOs ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE IS YOUR BIGGEST THREAT AND YOUR BIGGEST OPPORTUNITY

Dear CEOs: Artificial Intelligence is your biggest threat, and your biggest opportunity

It is no secret that artificial intelligence (AI) is poised to take the world by storm. But what exactly does that mean if you are a business leader? It means you need a strategy, and you need to act fast.

Just ask Mark Fields, the former CEO of Ford who was replaced back in May by Jim Hackett, head of their future focused Ford Smart Mobility division. Though it will take time for any company’s internal AI capability to grow, the time to get started is now – and waiting might end up costing you at lot more.

What is Your Game Plan?

Beyond the dwindling profits motive for Ford, we are talking about entire industries and their supply chains being transformed at unprecedented speed. Amazon’s recent acquisition of Whole Foods suggests that even successful, profitable companies, in what most would consider a non-tech sector,  are not immune to changing times and technology disruption.

We have already seen early AI adopters like Facebook, Google, Uber, Microsoft and IBM establish new standards for data analysis and customer experience, and those standards will continue to sharpen as more companies take advantage of this technology. With $1.7 billion invested in AI startups in Q1 2017 alone, and the exponential efficiencies created by this sort of technology, this evolution will happen quicker than many business leaders are prepared for.

If you aren’t sure where to start, don’t worry – you’re not alone. The good news is that you still have options:

  1. You can acquire, or invest in, an innovative technology company applying AI/ML in your market, and gain access to new product and AI/ML talent.
  2. You can seek to invest as a limited partner in a few early stage AI focused VC firms like BootstrapLabs, gaining immediate access and exposure to vetted early stage innovation, a community of experts and market trends.
  3. You can set out to build an AI-focused division to optimize your internal processes using AI, and map out how AI can be integrated into your future products. But recruiting in the space is painful and you will need a strong vision and sense of purpose to attract and retain the best.
  4. You can use outside development-for-hire shops like new entrant Element.ai, who raised over $100M last June,  or more traditional consulting firms like Accenture, Capgemini, and others to fill the gaps or get the ball rolling.

What’s more, these options are by no means mutually exclusive. On the contrary, as an executive leader in the digital era, you need to adopt a lean and iterative philosophy around execution: build/partner/buy, measure, learn, and double down on what’s working for your company.

The best companies in the world are already doing this, and many more are preparing to do so soon. Are you?

Connect to the Community and Start Building

Since our second annual Applied AI Conference back in May, which gathered over 700 senior executives, we have been amazed at the level of enthusiasm surrounding the AI advancements and possibilities taking shape across all industries.

What was once but a body of research has given way to massive investment, adoption, and before long we will see large-scale market adaptation taking place well beyond the current use cases. The technology is there, ready for action, and an amazing community has formed around it, across many important industries.

Over the last several years, BootstrapLabs has lead the way in connecting this community. From the technologists and evangelists to the entrepreneurs and investors, we are much more knowledgeable and capable together than any one of us could be alone.

The same principle applies to your business. The talent war around AI is already raging, and as you build your strategy, you need a plan for attracting and retaining top personnel. This means that you have to do more than just “lip service” or “innovation theater” and execute in all aspect of your business to make AI part of your brand and core infrastructure. Your stakeholders will first ask for it, then quickly demand it.

Be Future-Ready

Okay, you’re sold on creating and executing your AI strategy – but how do you prepare for the unknown?

Not only must you focus on adapting for the near-term impact that AI will have on your market, but you must build out capabilities which will set you up for long-term success. This is where your leadership is so important.

Create and mobilize an ecosystem of human capital, venture capital, and technology that will help your organization sail through the seas of change. Empower your domain experts with a robust and agile business strategy, and the innovation will happen more organically.

The puzzle pieces are all there, it’s just up to you to start putting them together. You have much to gain. As Akli Adjaoute, President and CEO of AI company Brighterion suggests, we are talking about “10x ROI for enterprise: you could solve problems within a minute using this technology, instead of weeks.” This opens up space to solve bigger and better problems, increasing employee engagement and productivity and reducing the risk of inefficiencies eating away at your margins.

Don’t wait to be in Mark Fields’ position. Be remembered as the visionary leader that managed to plan, take action, and come out ahead of this challenging innovation curve. Just reflect back on the move that Mark Zuckerberg made with Instagram in 2012. He chose to spend $1 billion (10% of Facebook’s valuation at the time) to buy a revenue-less, two year old mobile photo sharing company – and invested several million dollars since to keep supporting its growth.

He knew that mobile was transforming everything, and Facebook had to stay relevant. Seeing how far we’ve come since this move, you would take that bet any day of the week. Now let me ask you: How much of your market cap are you investing in your AI transformation today?

If the answer is not enough, not fast enough, then refer back to the above section on game plan and reach out to the community!

Corporate investment in artificial intelligence “is predicted to triple in 2017, becoming a $100 billion market by 2025,” writes Ray Wang of Harvard Business Review. He and his colleagues agree that “the question now is not about whether managers should investigate adopting AI, but about how fast they can do so.”

Don’t be mistaken, though – you can’t do it overnight. Developing your AI capability will take some serious effort, commitment, and consultation from multiple invested parties in the space before it can really take flight.

Never forget that innovation and entrepreneurship is a team sport, so ask yourself, who is on my team?


BENJAMIN LEVY

Ben is the Co-Founder of BootstrapLabs, a leading venture capital firm, based in Silicon Valley and focused on Applied Artificial Intelligence.

Some of BootstrapLabs’ portfolio companies include Prezi, AngelList, Zerply, Trusted Insight, AEye, Qurious.io, Roger.ai, Vidora, and Sibly.

Born in France and living in Silicon Valley for the past 18 years, Ben is a repeat entrepreneur who launched, built, and exited two startups in the financial technology space. Read more.

Autonomous Transportation- Rethinking Security, Infrastructure, and Experience

Announcing the BootstrapLabs Applied AI Insiders Series: Autonomous Transportation

Autonomous Transportation- Rethinking Security, Infrastructure, and Experience

BootstrapLabs is thrilled to announce the BootstrapLabs Applied AI Insiders Series: Autonomous Transportation

Event Summary:

  • Date and Time: Tue, October 3, 2017 | 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm
  • Location: Google Launchpad Space, 301 Howard Street, San Francisco, California 94105
  • Registration: this event is INVITE ONLY. If you did not receive an invitation you can request one below.

 

 

Event Description

Topic: Autonomous Transportation: Rethinking Security, Infrastructure, and Experience

Autonomous transportation goes well beyond cars and includes all modes of powered transport such as motorcycles, buses, trucks, trains, ships, helicopters, planes, and even spacecraft. There are also various degrees of autonomy levels which need to be considered in the context of fluid and frictionless mobility.
Secure and intelligent communication networks, smart sensors, reliable and fast identification, fail safe and redundancy planning must all come together for the dream to become reality and to ensure safety and security. Read more.

Speakers

Ben Levy, Co-Founder, BootstrapLabs

Ben spent the last 20 years in Silicon Valley building and exiting two FinTech startups to Mergent and NASDAQ, investing in disruptive software technologies, and advising CxOs of Fortune 500 Telecom, Media and Technology companies on corporate strategy, financing and M&A.
Ben is a member of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), an Ambassador of La FrenchTech, as well as a frequent keynote speaker at industry conferences on innovation, technology investing, entrepreneurship, artificial intelligence, and globalization in the US, Europe, and Asia.

Dr. Allan Steinhardt, Chief Engineer, AEye

Steinhardt was Chief Scientist for DARPA, Chief Scientist at Booz Allen, co-author of a book on adaptive radar, and assistant professor in Electrical Engineering and Applied Mathematics at Cornell University among other experiences.

Tilly Chang, Executive Director of the San Francisco County Transportation Authority

Ms. Chang has also held posts with the World Bank, Metropolitan Transportation Commission, and a
technology startup. She serves on the boards of the California Transportation Foundation, SPUR and
the UC Transportation Centers.

Chad Partridge, CEO of Metamoto, Inc.

Chad is an accomplished executive making his recent mark as an entrepreneur in enterprise software contributing mission critical video, geospatial metadata, and computer vision within unmanned systems markets. His company Metamoto is a startup specializing in scalable simulation for autonomous systems.
Thank You To Our Host and Partner

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BootstrapLabs Speaks at GSMA Mobile World Congress Americas

San Francisco, CA, September 13, 2017 – BootstrapLabs co-founder Ben Levy participated in the GSMA Mobile World Congress Americas in San Francisco this past September, speaking on the Adventures in Applied AI: Practical Use Cases Panel, as well judging AI and IoT startup ideas in the 4YFN Americas Awards pitch competition.

Ben Levy - GSMA

Ben shared his expertise in Applied AI investment use cases, relevant across a range of industries, and global entrepreneurship and innovation strategies. He spoke on the panel alongside Kinuko Masaki, CEO & Founder of SmartEar (a BootstrapLabs portfolio company); Mark Sherman, Managing Director of Telstra Ventures, and Liesl Yearsley, a private researcher.

The panel was moderated by TechEmergence CEO Dan Faggella. The 4YFN Americas Awards jury was made up of other mobile entrepreneurship leaders from GE Digital, XSeed Capital, Verizon Ventures, and more.

The Mobile World Congress Americas focuses on the latest advancements in mobile technology products and business best practices. Participants in the event represented a wide range of disciplines and organizations across the Americas and the world, including executives from the largest and most influential mobile operators, software companies, device makers, equipment providers and internet companies, as well as government delegations.

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Announcing the Applied Artificial Intelligence in the New Industrial Revolution

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BootstrapLabs is thrilled to announce the Applied Artificial Intelligence in the New Industrial Revolution.

Event Summary:

  • Date and Time: Thu, April 13, 2017 | 5:45pm to 8:30pm
  • Location: 44 Tehama St
  • Registration at this link.

We stand in front of the 4th and largest wave of the industrial revolution, powered by AI and Data. This is the biggest opportunity, so far, for innovation and entrepreneurship, and every single industry will be disrupted and redefined by companies that are not yet even born.

With the AI market projected to grow over 20 fold in the next 10 years, to $3Tn annually, we believe Applied Artificial Intelligence represents one of the major wealth creation opportunities of this century.

Manufacturing robots, unmanned vehicles for transportation, warehouses drones as well as space exploration and environmental monitoring empowered by new architectures for distributed computing and intelligent systems are the initial signals of the next generation of industrial systems.

The power of AI will ultimately empower humans to work closely with robots, and bring us to the new age of collaborative systems that can operate side by side with humans.

 

Speakers:

 

Ben Levy, Co-Founder, BootstrapLabs

Joshua Bloom, CTO, Wise.io (Acquired by GE Digital)

George Mathew, CEO and Chairman, Kespry

Ruban Phukan, Co-Founder, Chief Product Officer, DataRPM

Eduardo Torres Jara, Founder, Robot Rebuilt

 

Learn more about the Agenda at this link.

Special Opportunity

Attendees of the Applied Artificial Intelligence in the New Industrial Revolution will receive a special discount for the Applied Artificial Intelligence Conference 2017.

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Thank You To Our Host and Partner

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BootstrapLabs Founders at the UN with the Top World Luminaries in AI

New York, NY, April 2, 2017 – In April, BootstrapLabs founders Nicolai Wadstrom and Ben Levy were invited to the United Nations Headquarters, overlooking New York’s East River, for a private and exclusive roundtable dinner with 70 of the best minds in artificial intelligence.

AI For GOOD Talk

Ben reported on Facebook:
“The world is preparing for what is to come! We are talking 10x the economical impact of the industrial revolution (approx. $14 Trillion vs. $1 Trillion) in 1/5 of the time!!! Humbled to have our firm BootstrapLabs be recognized among the top leaders in the space for its work supporting innovation and entrepreneurship in #AI and sharing its knowledge openly around the world.

Very excited to be sharing these incredible moments with my partner Nicolai Wadstrom, and my brother Patrick L Rosenthal who, with his company Emoshape – Emotion Synthesis, is making significant contribution to the future of AI. BootstrapLabs is pleased to extend a big THANK YOU to Mark D Minevich and Comtrade, without whom this gathering would not have been possible.”

The event brought together AI chiefs from Facebook, Google, IBM, Airbnb, and Samsung, among other leaders in the space. For more information, check out this write-up in Newsweek.

The UN has been active in exploring the impending impact of AI through its International Telecommunication Union (ITU) agency, and hosted a global AI Summit in Geneva this past summer.

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BootstrapLabs at the MITCNC Tech Conference

Redwood City, CA, March 25, 2017 –  Our co-founder Ben Levy was a featured speaker during the MIT Club of Northern California Tech Conference 2017 held on March 25th in Redwood City.

Ben spoke about AI investment strategy on the “AI Idol” panel alongside other participants from Sequoia Capital, 500 Startups, and Mentors Fund. The panel discussion was one of many interesting topics covered during a full day of AI exploration and knowledge sharing.

The MITCNC The Future of AI ConferenceMens Et Manus + Machines – (Mind

and Hands + Machines) focused on how to build real-world AI solutions and discussed the impact of AI in our society and our lives. The US Government CTO Megan Smith spoke at the conference, among many other leading AI technologists, professors, and investors.

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BootstrapLabs Talks AI at Law Firm K&L Gates

Pittsburg, PA, March 16, 2017 – This past March, BootstrapLabs co-founder Ben Levy spoke at the headquarters of international law firm K&L Gates for their AI event, The Artificial Intelligence Gateway For the Investment and Business Community.

AI at K&L Gates

Ben’s presentation was focused on the current investment landscape for AI applications across key global business sectors, including the effects of AI on legal practice in business. The event also featured speakers Howie Choset, CTO for the ARM Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, and Michael Wagner, CEO and co-founder of Edge Case Research.

The K&L Gates AI Initiative assists business clients in capitalizing on the most recent advancements in AI technology and best practices surrounding its investment and application. The launch of the AI initiative follows the firm’s announcement earlier this month of a $10 million gift to Carnegie Mellon University for the establishment of the “K&L Gates Endowment for Ethics and Computational Technologies,” to study the ethical issues posed by artificial intelligence. Partners from the firm later spoke at BootstrapLabs’ Applied Artificial Intelligence Conference 2017 in May.

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Bootstraplabs AI By The Bay Conference

BootstrapLabs at the AI By The Bay Conference

San Francisco, March 5, 2017 – Our co-founder Ben Levy spoke on the AI Venture Capital Panel at the AI By The Bay Conference on March 5th in San Francisco.

Ben shared BootstrapLabs’ vision about where and why to invest in early stage AI startups, as well as insights on AI talent wars and other challenges of being a founder today. You can watch the panel here. Ben spoke alongside:

  • Bradford Cross, Founding Partner, DCVC
  • Jake Flomenberg, Partner, Accel
  • Adam Kell, Partner, Comet Labs
  • Jean Xin. Partner, DCVC

The AI By The Bay Conference is an immersive three-day conference of AI learning and networking, ranging from drilled down technical knowledge sharing to overarching strategy, and focuses on both startup and enterprise contexts.

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