The New Big Thing: Entrepreneurial Superstars Build Startup Studios

The startup world is driven by a familiar formula: you get an idea, you build a product based on your idea, you start a business to sell your product, your business succeeds — or, more likely, it fails — and you start all over again, looking for a new idea.

Lately, however, a new formula has begun to take hold, one that challenges the very idea of how a business should be built. It plays out quite differently: you start a business, your business experiments with lots of ideas, many ideas fail but some succeed, you turn these ideas into new businesses, and the formula repeats on its own.

What is a Startup Studio?

The name for this is often referred to as a Startup Studio. The first one, Idealab, was started in 1996. It developed a successful model for business creation, yet the startup studio model itself didn’t really start to catch on until 2016. Today there are roughly 200 Startup Studios worldwide, mostly owned and operated by some of the biggest tech-star entrepreneurs.

VerdantAI is a special type of startup studio focused purely on building Enterprise Grade Artificial Intelligence. Our niche is working closely with enterprise partners in developing ideas, where 80% of CIOs see AI as core to innovation. AI is expected to transform industries globally on a massive scale with an expected growth rate of 43% CAGR over the next several years. It promises to bring disruption and market creation similar to how the internet has transformed our lives over the last 20 years.

Startup Studios, unlike most new startup ventures, bring together a diverse group of entrepreneurs and domain experts who have previous experience and success building companies. In other words, this ain’t their first rodeo.

Our very own Brian Dolan is a serial entrepreneur and data scientist who’s been building AI solutions for over 20 years. The last company he built was just listed on Fortune’s Top 50 AI Companies in Healthcare. Let’s just say “Brian’s been around the AI block” having done work with the CIA, Yahoo!, FOX, NBA and many other companies developing AI solutions.

VerdantAI is comprised of successful entrepreneurs with different backgrounds including developers, creatives, project managers, and business developers — all the ingredients needed to create, launch, and scale companies.

Continuous Loop of AI Innovation

The Verdant approach is to create an interface between corporate innovators and entrepreneurs that forms a continuous loop of AI innovation. Our corporate partners come to us with a unique set of problems and usually massive amounts of data that our team then sets out to resolve through new product development. These large scale endeavors generate new IP and inspire new ideas that feed our startup studio, where these ideas are spun out into new companies or incorporated back into the enterprise.

The process for working with enterprises to create a company is performed through a carefully crafted 6 stage approach:

  1. Discovery: A collaborative process to uncover potential for AI or ML to create the biggest impact or revenue creation for the company. If an area is discovered, then…
  2. Design Sprint: A 5-day intensive process that will take us from mapping out the various options for achieving success all the way to a prototype and testing.
  1. Business Strategy: We then enter into the partnership that makes the most sense, options can range from Joint Venture, Revenue Share, OEM, or a variation of cash plus business partnership.
  2. Execution: Build out the AI project and develop the go-to-market strategy. Depending on the complexity and the number of stakeholders from the enterprise, this could take from 3 to 6 months to beta-test and plan for a full launch.
  3. Launch: During launch, Verdant supports all technical aspects of the demonstrations & installs.
  4. On-Going Support: As part of our service offering, Verdant will continue to validate, update, and improve the product to keep it cutting edge in the market.

Our job is to basically kill ideas before they turn into companies, our team has decades of entreprenerial experience in various verticals, so it’s highly improbable that we launch a company that isn’t going to be successful. That’s why we only launch a couple per year.

Paul Kapenga, VP of Business Development

In a world where people are afraid of risk but still want to innovate, create, and profit, a startup studio provides a higher value, lower risk solution to entrepreneurs, enterprises, and investors alike. Verdant, with its expertise in building AI and ML products, is uniquely positioned to provide these benefits within this space.