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Columns | Go Far With Kovar

Investing in AI

by Taylor Kovar

August 16, 2023

Hi Taylor - AI is obviously super hot right now—so is it a good time to invest or have I missed the boat? Is this just a passing craze or is it really the next big thing?

Hi Max - Very good questions. You haven't missed the boat, so to speak, but with the AI market being as popular as it is, you have to pick wisely when it comes to where you invest. At this point, I think it's gone beyond a passing craze, but that doesn't mean every startup developing an AI tool needs to be in your portfolio.

1. Analyzing the buzz. We've had different versions of AI in use for years now. Grammarly uses AI to spellcheck your online documents while you write, and Google auto-populates your search bar, trying to guess what you're looking for. A lot of big companies have been working on iterations of this technology for a long time. The current buzz exists because ChatGPT became available to the public last year and people got to see firsthand what happens when a robot takes on your writing prompts. It's this generative AI that has people excited and pulling out their checkbooks, and more and more tech startups are including those words—generative AI—in their pitches when they meet with venture capitalists.

2. Which companies are making waves?
If you search for AI companies, you'll see a lot of names you probably don't recognize. FrameAI, Synesthesia, Moveworks—the list goes on and on and on. Right now, most of these companies are doing well as the swelling interest in generative intelligence has people buying products and making investments. As of now, OpenAI is the real juggernaut in the industry because ChatGPT is so widely used. The smaller companies might be on the rise, but it's hard to say which ones will catch on and outpace the others. Like with any stock, you should find a product you like and invest in that company. At the very least, that means you know what you're investing in as opposed to just rolling the dice on a random AI developer.

3. The big picture.
There very well could be an AI bubble that bursts down the road. Anytime an investment gets this much attention, the startups usually grow more quickly than the public's need for that product. However, the usefulness of generative AI is undeniable. There's no doubt this technology is here to stay and the companies that find clever ways to employ it will have a lot of success. Viz.ai, for example, is working on software that helps expedite critical care to patients. As cool as it is to get a paper written by ChatGPT, lifesaving AI will be more valuable as these systems become more common. With more and more VC money pouring into this arena, we're going to see a lot more advancements in this kind of technology.

My best advice is not to invest blindly. Don't sink money into a company because you see AI in its brand description. Think about the tech, what it's used for, and who's developing it. When you find a company you believe in, go ahead and make a reasonable investment. Good luck, Max!
Taylor Kovar

"Go Far With Kovar" August 16, 2023 Column
Legal Disclaimer: Information presented is for educational purposes only and is not an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of any specific securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and, unless otherwise stated, are not guaranteed. Be sure to first consult with a qualified financial adviser and/or tax professional before implementing any strategy discussed herein. To submit a question to be answered in this column, please send it via email to Question@GoFarWithKovar.com, or via USPS to Taylor Kovar, 415 S 1st St, Suite 300, Lufkin, TX 75901.


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