As a sponsor of the conference, we couldn't have been more excited to have Mark Cuban and Steve Case effectively make the pitch for AI Capital during the Wednesday afternoon session on the SALT Stage.
Citing flyover country, Steve Case’s Rise of the Rest theme echoed our sentiment on valuations and deal flow.
"Last year - for all the investors out there (I guess all of you) - 75% of venture capital in this country went to just three states: California, New York, and Massachusetts. Seventy five percent." It's also, a great - I think - investment arbitrage because most of the capital is in one place (not surprisingly), supply/demand, you all know the dynamics, valuations tend to be higher, and in most parts of the country, tend to be lower."
Both talked about domain expertise. Said Cuban, "In an AI world where you're building, you need domain expertise. And domain expertise comes from everywhere." "So if I'm building a machine learning tool - probably half the people here have dealt with machine learning, like neural networks, they need people who understand the vertical they're approaching. That's not the kind of expertise Silicon Valley has. Or you know, there's oil and gas, you get [domain expertise] out of Texas."
We enjoyed meeting Steve and Mark and dozens of others over the four-day event.