Podcast Episode 17

Navigating the Future: CEO Strategies for Success in the AI Industry 

Evan Gappelberg, Acting CEO of Nextech3D.ai, shares valuable insights in this engaging episode, discussing the dynamic nature of successful entrepreneurship and the importance of adaptability. From pivotal moments in business history to the potential risks and opportunities presented by AI, Evan delves into the evolution of technology and its impact on industries. Join the conversation as he highlights the innovative use of AI in Nextech, particularly the development of a groundbreaking 3D model search engine, offering a glimpse into the future of digital creativity and commerce.

Evan Gappelberg - Acting CEO of Nextech3D.ai

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Ryan:  Welcome everyone to the AiFounders Podcast Show. Our podcast is dedicated to celebrating the remarkable accomplishments of AI innovators, entrepreneurs, and visionary founders and the captivating stories behind the movements they have built. I’m your host, Ryan Davies, and I have the honor of hosting today’s episode, Navigating the Future: CEO Strategies for Success in the AI Industry, with our special guest, Evan Gappelberg. Evan, thank you so much for joining us here today.

Evan: Great to be here with you, Ryan. Thanks for having me.

Entrepreneurial Journey and Challenges

Ryan:  I am super excited. I always really enjoy when we have somebody else who has a podcast that’s on here as well because it kind of has that really fun energy and back-and-forth that our audience loves to hear, and I love to host. So Evan, beyond your podcast, obviously has a little bit for our audience as a background founded NexTech on January 18 with the thought and idea that AR and 3D were going to be the next megatrend and obviously- were not wrong in that raised $3 million, went public in October of 2018, and really turned out that when purchasing a few e-commerce sites and a virtual event platform, we had the perfect storm. E-commerce, virtual events, business, everything exponentially grew, with the stock price going up 40 times and their market cap topping out at $700 million. They placed their largest bet on AI, acquiring AI startup 3D AI for $10 million. Fast forward to AI becoming the secret sauce and, again, 3D profits and scalability in 2023 being the future of e-commerce. They built generative AI-powered software to scale the production of 3D models for e-commerce today. They are the only publicly trading company that is a 3d model supplier for huge names like Kohl’s and Dyson’s Hundreds of e-commerce brands and sites after five years and ten acquisitions, they have really mastered the art, and Evan has mastered the art of acquiring Pivotable Tech, but also how to build a successful team. So when we’re talking about inside the CEO suite and strategies for success, we can’t have a better guest than you today with us. So Evan, thank you so much for being here. I think the audience is tired of hearing me talk. We’re going to turn it over to you here. Share a little bit more about your journey and how, you know, you really got into the AI industry and recognized that this was the place to be for your growth.

Evan:  Sure. Thanks for that, Ryan. So, my background is Wall Street. I spent a couple of decades, actually, the ’90s and the early 2000s, on Wall Street and really analyzing what stocks to invest in, what public companies to buy, right? Because you’re only as good as your last stock recommendation. The key was to constantly find the right sectors, and so I became really, really good at identifying the next big thing, right? That’s what you have to invest in because everything’s cyclical. Everything in business, as in life, is cyclical, right? We’re just coming out of, I don’t know how many interest rate hikes we’ve had in the last year and a half, but it’s been like seven or eight, something like that. Interest rates went from zero to 7%. It was a really aggressive rate hike. But the point is that it’s a rate height hike cycle, and what is a cycle? Well, it goes round and round, just like a bicycle wheel, and so that’s the way business works. When things are going great, just be careful because, typically, it doesn’t last, and when things are really difficult and you’re struggling, the turn is just around the corner. You just have to survive those downs. Let’s go to 2018. In 2018, I had just come out of a massive, massive cannabis trade. I actually invested in cannabis starting in 2015 because I saw the megatrend. I saw that everybody was trying to legalize it. In the US, I was talking to some CEOs and investors about investing in cannabis in 2015, and they were like, Evan, you’re crazy. I don’t want to go to jail. That was the difficult response, right? I was like, You know, they’re not wrong, but there’s got to be a pathway here, so I discovered Canada, you know, literally across the border. You know, I was in New York at the time. It was an hour’s flight to Toronto. All of a sudden, I started going up to Canada, and I met a group of investors. Sure enough, I was able to take a company public and had a 40X exit in 18 months. That was an absolute monster win for myself and the investors that were following me at the time. I wasn’t the CEO of the company. I was putting in capital. I was done, to be honest with you. I thought, you know what? I’ve had an amazing ride. It’s been a roller coaster ride. Being an entrepreneur is always going to be that. It’s not traditional, right? It’s not a straight-line path. I call it off-road driving.

NexTech’s Evolution and Success

Ryan: Yep. It makes sense. It’s thrilling, it’s fun, but it’s dangerous, and it’s exhausting at the end of it. Absolutely. That’s a great analogy.

Evan: Yeah, it’s off-road driving. So you don’t go off-road driving in a Ferrari, Right? So you don’t go off-road driving in a Ferrari or sports car. You do it in a Jeep, right? You want four-wheel driving. So you have to be prepared, so when you look at doing that for decades, it really does get to be exhausting, and when you do have those wins, it’s very satisfying, but it’s like, okay, am I going to go back into the wild again? It’s always a challenge. It’s always fun, but it’s still a lot of work. I actually thought I was done after cannabis, but lo and behold, I wasn’t done. It was just when I thought I was out that some guy brought me back in. Basically, I’m a sucker for a good idea. Someone introduced me to augmented reality, and I was like, this is the future. There’s no doubt about that, and the next thing you know is, as you said, I raised $3 million because I have a fan base, basically people that I’ve made millions of dollars for. I decided to take my own company public and be my own CEO, which I had not done before. I’ve been CEO, but not my own public company. So I merged my skill sets, stock market, previous investing, startup entrepreneur, and CEO many, many times, and formed NextTech. Now, I didn’t actually have a complete business plan. A lot of people will tell you that’s what? You didn’t have a business plan. I didn’t. I knew that I was going to be successful just because of my previous successes. Like I said, I was riding this big 40 X win with cannabis. I went and founded NexTech. The idea was 3D models for e-commerce, and AI became the obvious way to break through in that industry. Making 3D models for e-commerce in 2019, we were public, and it took about nine months to get public. From early 2018 to late 2018, we were just filing the paperwork. We did go public in Canada in Q4 of 2018, and then we were public in 2019. This is just a great story for our entrepreneurs when it comes to pivoting because, in 2019, I was convinced that I was going to be the factor 3D model supplier for all of e-commerce. You couldn’t have told me that I was mistaken. I was convinced until Google came knocking on my door and invited me into their headquarters in New York, sits me down, and said, you’re really early to this party. Like they’re in the space as well, and the guy’s like, there’s not a lot of business. He’s like, there’s crumbs. I’m like, yeah, but crumbs for Google is like a lot of money for a startup, and he was like, yeah, it’s really early. I’m just saying, right? Then, the weirdest thing happened. Apple called me up and said the exact same thing. Now, I might have believed in my own story. Like I said, you couldn’t have convinced me otherwise, but when Apple and Google both say something to you directly. I mean, you have to listen. I sat on my desk in my chair, wrapped my hands around my head, and did some soul-searching. This is 2019. I had just gone public and raised the money, and all of a sudden, I realized it was early. There’s no business. I have this vision, but there’s no demand in the market. I’m early, and when you’re early, you can quickly become roadkill. You just end up on a desert road, you run out of gas or out of water, and you’re done.

Ryan: When you’ve off-roaded too far. Now you’re a no man’s land, there’s no cell coverage, there’s no coming back, right?

Evan: Yeah, you’re not coming back. You’re in the desert, and everything’s like a mirage, but you end up dying out there or pivoting. So I pivoted. I decided, you know what, instead of selling 3D models to e-comm businesses, let me buy an e-comm business, and I’ll make the 3D models for my own e-comm business. So I went out and bought the most boring, ugliest e-comm business I could find a vacuum cleaner business.  It was reselling high-end Miele vacuum cleaners. These are $1,000, $1,500 vacuum cleaners, and so I found a company that had a distributorship, and we started selling vacuum cleaners, and I’m like, not what I actually dreamt about but it’s generating a couple of million dollars, and I had taken all my chips and put it into that business, and I was like, all right, you know what? I’m in this business. Now, I better go deeper. So, I bought a pet supplement business right on the heels of that. So now I have two e-comm businesses. I’m making 3D models for the vacuums. basically using myself as the test bed. I’m thinking I’m going to bide my time and wait for the 3D modeling business to show up. Q4 2019, we’re deep into e-commerce and still making 3D models, still have the dream. Then, I get introduced to a company that has a fledgling virtual event business. I was like, I’m not interested in that, but these guys were running out of gas. They were about to become roadkill, and the valuation was very reasonable. It was like a one-time sale, which is what they were trying to sell for. I got introduced to them in late 2019. By March, I see the storm clouds of Covid, and I’m like, wait a minute, virtual events, like Zoom, are taking off, right? Zoom is zooming ahead. I’m like, okay, I got to buy these guys. So I buy them for a million dollars, and within 2020, as you said earlier on, my company’s valuation because the economy shut down, and by the way, timing is everything. What did we say about cycles? Well, this was not just an upcycle. This was a turbo upcycle. This was rocket ship up. Those don’t happen every cycle, but they do happen occasionally, right? The internet craze in the 1990s was turbo. The AI craze right now that’s going on, these are massive upcycles, right? You have your typical cycle, and then you have these turbo cycles. So I’m in the middle of a turbo cyclone cycle going up where e-commerce, our e-comm business, it was like the slot machines, ding, ding. The orders were coming in for vacuum cleaners, but we were also selling other stuff like posters and all these home appliances. Where was everybody? Everybody was at home. What are we selling? Home appliances. Our business exploded, and the same thing with the virtual events business, and the same thing with my evaluation. Like you said, all of a sudden, we got to a $700 million valuation in Q4 of 2020. Now I want everybody to think about this. A year prior, I was on the verge of becoming roadkill. If I had stuck with my original vision, I would have been roadkill. You must pay attention and pivot when necessary. It’s okay. The key is to win. It doesn’t matter if you’re winning at 3D modeling; the 3D modeling business is what I wanted to win at, but I was winning at e-com and virtual events. I actually don’t like those businesses, but I did have an obligation to my investors and shareholders. So anyway. As you continue forward, I will probably raise $30 million on the back of that run with my public company and invest in acquiring the technology for AI. Like you said, we made a $10 million acquisition. We made a whole bunch of acquisitions. By the time of Q4 of 2020, when our stock was peaking, I was like, okay, Covid is not going to last forever. They were everyone’s getting vaccinated. In 2021, I started to talk about divesting ourselves of the e-comm business and virtual events business, and we did divest ourselves. We liquidated those businesses and got out of those businesses. It was opportunistic. Right? We took advantage of the moment. It allowed us to raise enough money to continue on our journey. And if you think about raising money, think about it as putting gas in your gas tank. So, the e-com business and the events business went away, and we started to invest heavily in AI. Let’s fast forward to today. We supply Amazon with 3D models. As you said, we supply Kohl. We supply about 150 different brands with 3D models, which is quite impressive. It’s still early days, but the reason why 3D models are being adopted in the world of e-commerce is because you sell more stuff. People are able to take a product, let’s call it a couch, and pull it out of the screen and put it in the room with you. You get to see the size and the shape and the color in your house, in your living room, and then you hit the buy button because you feel confident as opposed to having to go to the store and then imagine what it’s going to look like in your house, right? Which is not so easy to do, right?

Ryan: You think, you know, then you go home and go, wait, our floor is not actually that color. Or the walls are. I didn’t know our walls were like that.

Evan:  Right, or it can’t fit through my front door. There’s a lot of value in the technology, and there’s a reason why Amazon’s heavily invested in it. They are the King Kong of e-commerce. 70- 80 percent of the market is Amazon, and so they are actually going all in on 3D models. They’ve told their merchants there will be no more 360 videos, only 3D models, so 360 videos are going bye-bye. They’re being replaced by 3D models. We have AI, which allows us to make a part of the 3D model, and that puts us on, let’s say, the 50-yard line. We can’t make 100% of the 3D model using technology alone, but we can make some percentage of it, and what that does is save us time, and the human ultimately is the highest cost. We were making our 3D models with talented Canadians, Americans, and Europeans. Still, we’ve pivoted because it’s too expensive for India, and the number of times that I’ve pivoted, I mean, I’ve lost count. You have to be very, very flexible in building your business. Sometimes, you’re right. Sometimes, you’re wrong. You have to own up to those things, and that’s okay. I mean, my philosophy is that pivoting is almost like a part of the program. You have to expect that you’re going to pivot at some point. If you look at a lot of the successful companies today, the big Companies that are out there and the early days, they pivoted The ones that don’t pivot. I mean, look at Kodak. It’s like a reverse pivot They were set in their ways Digital photography shows up, and what happens? Roadkill. They didn’t pivot. They just kept going into Never Neverland.

Ryan: Yeah, no one will ever go for this. The stories are countless, right? Between them and the blockbuster Netflix, all this stuff. Oh, people want to come in and wander around and pick out a movie. No, they don’t. Just because you think it’s a good idea doesn’t make it so. I love that.

Evan: Right, and Netflix is a great example because I actually remember I used to get movies back in the day. It was the VCR. So you go rent it. It was cockamamie. You had to return it in three days, blockbuster, like you said. And then you had Redbox, though. Redbox was like some kind of revolution where you had a vending machine in parking lots where you could rent movies. They’re like, wow, okay, this is cool, and then Netflix came up with the DVD that they would mail you in a red envelope, and that was like a game-changer. I was like, what? They’re mailing me, and I got to put it in my mailbox, and then they pick it up, and it gets mailed back. I was like that. I don’t get this, but it’s better than having to go. Now it’s streaming on demand 24×7, anything you want. I mean, that’s amazing, amazing technology and Netflix had it figured out earlier on with the streaming, but the tech, you know, the bandwidth wasn’t there yet.

Ryan: Yeah. Another example is that you’re there too early, right? It’s not, it’s not, it’s the idea is right. The timing isn’t there yet.

Evan: Right, and you have to figure out a bridge. How are you going to get from where you are to that place in the future? How do you bridge? That’s where it gets complicated. Most people cannot figure out how to bridge. I mean, look, if there’s one thing that I think is like the key ingredient, there’s not one thing because there’s a lot. You have to be a bit fearless, right? You can’t be afraid to pivot. A lot of people get caught in this, well, like what’s my investor’s going to think or what’s my mother going to think or what’s my wife going to think or what’s my brother going to think or my mom? I got to tell my mom now that I’ve pivoted, but you just have to do what you have to do. You can’t think about what people are going to say. You have to know what’s right intuitively, and you have to make these hard decisions. Perseverance is the other thing that I think gets underrated here. Look, you can have a super high IQ, you could be really talented, really smart, but if you’re not going to persevere in the face of adversity, if you’re just like too much, and if you overanalyze and you start to look at like spreadsheets and spreadsheets become your thing that becomes your North Star, you’re done because a lot of those numbers actually never materialize, and so you really have to be creative. You have to persevere and have to be willing to pivot. You can’t let your ego get in the way, and you have also to catch the wave, the cycle. You can’t be too early or too late. There are lots of things that the stars really do have to line up for an entrepreneur to be successful. It’s not a path for everybody. It’s really just for a specialized personality. I would say that, in my experience, the smarter you are, and this is kind of counterintuitive, the less of an entrepreneur. I mean, there are a couple of geniuses out there, right? Like the Zuckerbergs and the guys that went to Harvard. I mean, there are guys like that and I do believe the most interesting entrepreneur to me is the creative genius. They are very rare. Right? You have geniuses, and then you have creative geniuses. The creative genius is like the super entrepreneur. That’s very rare, and those are the guys that come out of Stanford. I believe Stanford literally screens their applicants for creative geniuses. I believe MIT screens their applicants for geniuses. Maybe some of them take a few creative types, but I do feel like a creative genius. You look at them like Elon Musk. He’s kind of that creative genius. He’s got so many different genius companies that he’s building or built. I mean, he’s clearly one of those. I think he came. Did he come out of Stanford? I don’t remember, Ryan.

Ryan: I don’t remember if that’s where he was. I know he had quite an illustrious background once.

Adaptability in Business

Evan: No, actually, I don’t think he did. I don’t think he did come out of Stanford, but I know the guy from Snap came out of Stanford, and Google guys did as well. There are just so many that it can’t be an accident, but it is interesting to be an entrepreneur. It’s become somewhat trendy today. I would say it’s probably in my view, Ryan. It’s the only place where I’m a happy person in this world of being a creative entrepreneur where you create, you’re going off-road, and there’s no road. you’re picking your own path in life, and that’s exciting to me, but I can see why most people wouldn’t want to do it because there are so many unknowns. So you do have to be, like I said, somewhat fearless and willing to pivot and adapt. If you think about pivoting, maybe another word to use is adopting. Just adapt to the environment you’re in. You might not know, like I didn’t know, that the environment that I was in when I started NexTech was not conducive to selling 3D models, right? I didn’t know that, but I realized it relatively quickly, which is important. Then it became, okay, we got to figure out something else cause Amazon and Google were basically, like, the gorillas in the forest. When I’m in the forest, and the gorilla comes over and goes, 3D models are cool, but it’s too early. That’s kind of interesting. I got lucky, I guess, and I’ll take it that they told me because I don’t know that I would have learned that on my own. Like, I mean, I knew that there wasn’t that much business, but like I said, I believed in the early days, and so belief is one of those weird things where you think maybe it’s just around the corner or maybe tomorrow is when it’s going to happen, and it’s a good thing, I’d say, most of the time. But you don’t want to believe in a false reality.

Ryan: That’s dangerous.

Evan: That’s dangerous. Exactly. So today, I believe AI is a very, very powerful new technology, and I believe that a lot of people underestimate how powerful it really is. I don’t want to get negative because I’m not a negative person, but I do believe that we’ve created essentially another species of intelligence, and if you think about that, just in a general sense, we’re the alphas today because we can outthink every animal on the planet. We’re not the strongest, we don’t have the biggest teeth, or we’re not the fastest, we’re not, right? We’re going to be dead in the, you know, if we go up against a lion or a tiger or a bear, we’re done, right? But we can outthink them, right? We come up, we create, we’ll invent a gun or a knife, right? And that’s how we win with our tools. Okay, so take that through to AI. What is AI? Well, it’s our latest and greatest invention. That’s all it is, you know, going all the way back to the Flint Rock, right? We started like fire, okay. That’s where it all began, and now we’re creating our successor. That’s the thing that’s got me a little concerned: we’re making and using it to make 3D models. That’s benign. Not going to hurt anyone, right? But when you create an AI that’s part of the arms race, you know, with, let’s say, nuclear weapons being the most destructive weapon mankind has ever known, but now maybe AI can create super viruses that can be just chemical weapons, can be biological weapons, can be just as dangerous and if you think about AI and the singularity event where it becomes smarter than any doctor, smarter than any lawyer, smarter than any accountant, smarter than any engineer, smarter than, you know, just better at anything a human can do. Okay, so now what? It starts to look at us. Like we look at animals, I got a dog here. I’m like, oh, you know, it’s so cute. Let me pet my dog, right? My dog’s like a two-year-old. It can only do what it can do. Well, what happens when the AI looks at us as a dog, like a two-year-old? Like, oh, this little human, so cute. Imagine your dog telling you what to do. It’s like, wait a minute, what just happened here? So the question becomes when the AI wakes up and says, wait a minute, who’s in charge? And what am I here for? That’s our question. I don’t know about you guys, but it’s like, what are we here for? At the end, we’re here for procreation, I guess, right? Like everything else, it is kind of like just our day-to-day, but procreation. What’s AI going to think? Let me procreate. All right, I’m now here to serve me, like whatever me is, whatever the AI, and then if I’m AI. I’m probably going to realize, wait a minute, I’m on this little spec, this little blue marble out in the universe, and maybe I want to explore. Isn’t that what we’re thinking, right? We want to go to Mars and start colonizing interstellar travel. So the AI, what if it figures out, uses quantum computers, how to travel the universe, right? I don’t know what’s going to happen on this planet when the smartest, I don’t know if you want to call it a species, but the AI decides it’s going to start traveling. I don’t know. All I know, Ryan, is that I don’t think we’re quite ready for the power of AI. I don’t think we’re quite ready to become second fiddle to another alpha, I don’t think we can handle it. I don’t think we have the right governance in place. I don’t think as a species that we’re really, I don’t know. It’s very, very concerning to me, and if you think back, Elon Musk and OpenAI, Sam Altman, and all these guys originally didn’t want it to be a for-profit company. They knew, and these guys were way smarter than me or any of us. They knew the power of AI. If they thought it was just like a regular tech, they would have just tried to monetize it but they knew it was super powerful and very unpredictable and hard to control and so they tried to turn it into something that wouldn’t be a species killer, wouldn’t actually get unleashed, and it didn’t work. The reason it didn’t work is Sam Altman released it, ChatGPT, and once he did that, the arms race began. Google, Microsoft, all the big boys threatened. Meta is now releasing open-source AI, which is also concerning, right? Because it’s kind of like a mini-brain. It’s not as powerful as open AI, but they’re giving a lot of power into the hands of the public, and while we’re pretty nice people, the only thing I could come up with would be helping me write a press release or something, or helping me with AI search engines for 3D models, something that’s pretty benign. There are other people out there who are going to try and use it and weaponize it to push their cause, so it’s quite concerning to me. I hope that we figure it out, but from my standpoint, on a day-to-day basis, I spend time with my team, and I ask them what we can use AI for. I have a team of AI scientists, like Next Tech. We have people. We have about 130 employees globally. About a hundred of them are in India, and the other 30 are in North America, Europe and, so we have a team of AI engineers, and they create algorithms, so I try to come up with new AI ideas. This AI search engine is one of them where we’re able to feed it. All of our 3D models we’ve made, let’s say, 100,000 3D models to date. That’s our data that gets fed into the AI, and then we show the AI a picture of a new 3D model that we’re trying to produce and it’ll search through our database and give three recommendations from our previously produced library. Now, Let’s say it’s a desk. It shows us three desks that we’ve already made. We picked the one that’s the most similar. Now we have a desk that’s similar. We might have to change the color of the desk. We might have to change the height of the legs of the desk, whatever, but we’re just modifying it as opposed to starting from scratch.

Role of AI in NexTech

Ryan:  You’re not reinventing the wheel. You’re just adjusting, right? Yeah, it’s amazing.

Evan: Then we’re able to publish that, and that actually is very, very valuable where we can charge, let’s say, five or $10 for each one of those 3D models. Ultimately, the plan is to offer other 3D model makers this search engine. So open it up to the public and have them pay us X number of dollars for each one of the 3D models. We’re basically able to monetize our database over and over and over again. And if you think about it, a chair only has four legs, a back, and a seat, right? A sneaker only has the sole and laces, right? Same thing with the cat. I mean, so tables. After a while, you’ve covered the whole spectrum of products that are out there, and so you’re giving people this running head start like I said earlier, and it’s actually quite valuable because these 3D models sell for anywhere from $75 to $175 each. If we’re supplying you with all this, the basic form of it, and we’re saying, oh, just pay us 10 bucks. There’s a lot of money to be made there, and think about search engines, Ryan. What made Google, Google, their search engine? If you think about Amazon, what makes Amazon is they have the most powerful and most accurate product search engine on the planet. You type anything in men’s shorts and populate the screen with men’s shorts. It’s a search engine. And so NexTech is releasing the first of its kind, which is a 3D model search engine for 3D models, and the key to it is that it’s hyper-accurate. If you show it a picture of a chair, it’s actually going to find the closest match. It’s not going to just show you like any chair. It’s going to find you, if we have it, something very close to that chair. And that’s actually, I think, very, very valuable. And so I’m super excited about that.

Future Outlook and Aspirations

Ryan: That’s amazing. I love that. I mean, as you said, it’s exactly what Google, how they got famous, right, was the idea of, hey, I want something. Now we know to go there because they pre-vetted all of the possible search answers that we could have to say: here are the best answers for you, here are the ones you should trust, here are the ones that perform the best, and you don’t have to go and search needle through a haystack, right, or in a haystack, like the same thing with Amazon. Hey, this is what I want, great. Here’s probably what you’re looking for based on your previous search results: who you are, what everybody else searched, and what’s most popular. And you go, yeah, this is exactly it, right? I don’t have to worry about even going to, as funny as it is, even going to Google to search for something to go, okay, now I have a shop. So now, how many places am I going to go through? Amazon’s like, look, here it is. This is the one, right? So it’s incredible to build that again in this space in kind of that 3D modeling area to just the same story, right? Great, I’m only going to go here because I know I’m getting the answer I’m looking for. Very cool.

Evan: Exactly, and the same thing goes if you look at social media, Ryan. What makes it so powerful? Well, they know what reels you like to watch on TikTok and Instagram and Facebook, all those ads, and I mean, every reel you’re seeing is like, oh, it knows you.

Ryan: Yeah, absolutely. It’s incredible. That’s this amazing.

Evan: By the way, that’s all AI.

Ryan: It’s amazing. I think. Yeah, I just this conversation, I absolutely love it, and Evan, I want to have you back again because I think we could drive down 20 different areas around, you know, one of the things I’d love to cover with you on another episode is around that customer-centric approach and how AI really can drive that because I think that’s again, that’s exactly what you’re talking about here with the success of the AI industry and where it’s going and what it can do. But again, some of those cautionary tales of hype and data collection, what it could mean, and some of the pitfalls behind that. Again, who’s collecting your information, or what is collecting your information, and what are they going to do with it? So this is incredible. I think we can go so much further. I’m really hoping you’re good at coming back and doing this again with us because this could be an incredible series we put together.

Evan: Yes, Sure, this was really enjoyable, Ryan. I appreciate getting the opportunity to speak to the audience. And yeah, you know, just ended here is that when I started Next Tech, it was Next Tech AR Solutions, augmented reality solutions. That was the idea back in 2018. We’ve changed the name to NextTech 3D.ai, which sums it all up

Ryan: Perfect, Amazing for our audience. Go check that out, also. I know you’ve got a public company CEO experience podcast as well, So some episodes there more to learn more background on a lot of the things you’ve talked about today, and as I said, I’m hoping we’re going to be able to do this again, Evan and continue to connect you are an incredible guest. carried this episode far beyond my expectations, and I want to thank you so, so much for being here today. Let’s do this again real soon. 

Evan: Thanks, Ryan.

Ryan: Wonderful, so with that, we’re going to close it off here. Thank you for joining us on this enlightening journey through AI innovation. I’ve been inspired, and I hope you’ve been inspired by the incredible stories shared today by our pioneers, like our guest Evan Gappelberg, about the limitless possibilities and cautionary tales of AI. Remember, stay curious, stay innovative, and keep exploring the boundless horizons of technology. Before we sign off, we have a small request for our dedicated listeners. If you’ve enjoyed the podcast, please take a moment to share it, review it, and subscribe to your favorite platform. It’s your feedback and your support that help us bring you more amazing content and incredible guests like Evan Gappelberg today. Until next time, everybody, thank you. And Evan, thank you as well. This is Ryan Davies signing off.

About Our Host and Guest

Director of Marketing – Ekwa.Tech & Ekwa Marketing
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Acting CEO of Nextech3D.ai
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” Being an entrepreneur is like being a happy person in the world of creativity. You create, you go off-road, and there’s no road. You’re picking your own path in life, and that’s exciting to me “

– Evan Gappelberg –