David Valverde // Ep 82 // The Internal Battles of Your Ego and Road to Self Discovery

Welcome to Episode 82 of the Asian Hustle Network Podcast! We are very excited to have David Valverde on this week's episode.

We interview Asian entrepreneurs around the world to amplify their voices and empower Asians to pursue their dreams and goals. We believe that each person has a message and a unique story from their entrepreneurial journey that they can share with all of us.

Check us out on Anchor, iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play Music, TuneIn, Spotify and more. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe and leave us a positive 5-star review. This is our opportunity to use the voices of the Asian community and share these incredible stories with the world. We release a new episode every Wednesday, so stay tuned!

David Valverde was born in Costa Rica and moved to Germany at seven years old. Spent most of his formative years in Germany until he attended Rollins College and University of Utah where he majored in International Trade and Commerce & minored in Computer Science.  David’s fascination with artificial intelligence , and software led him to meeting his teammates at Grabb-it. They soon after got accepted to Y-Combinators Summer 18 batch and decided to  move to Silicon Valley. David is now the founder & CEO of PRANOS.ai – the broadcast system that converts your car windows into transparent HD displays.

David Valverde currently lives in Atherton, California. He loves reading, playing tennis and polo  in his spare time. 

**Pranos is currently issuing a public offering via Wefunder. Anyone can now buy shares here https://wefunder.com/pranosai.**

Please check out our Patreon at @asianhustlenetwork. We want AHN to continue to be meaningful and give back to the Asian community. If you enjoy our podcast and would like to contribute to our future, we hope you’ll consider becoming a patron.
Descript is a groundbreaking new media tool that allows creators to edit audio and video like a text document, and create a realistic clone of their own voice for seamless edits.

 

#MadeWithDescript #DescriptPro @Descript
Sign up for Descript here: https://descript.com?lmref=AKo2mg 

 

Transcript

Intro: (00:00:00) Hey guys, welcome to Asian Hustle Network Podcast, My name is Bryan. 

And my name is Maggie 

And we interview Asian entrepreneurs around the world to amplify their voices and empower Asians to pursue their dreams and goals.

We believe that each person has a message and a unique story from their entrepreneurial journey that they can share with all of us.

Maggie: (00:00:23) Hi, everyone. Welcome to the Asian hustle network podcast. Today, we have a very special guest with us. His name is David Val Verde. David was born in Costa Rica and moved to Germany at seven years. Old spent most of his formative years in Germany until he attended Rollins college and university of Utah, where he majored in international trade and commerce and minored in computer science. David’s fascination with artificial intelligence and software led him to meeting his teammates at grab it. They soon after it got accepted to Y Combinator, his summer 18 batch, and decided to move to Silicon Valley. [David is now the founder and CEO of Pronto star AI. The broadcast system that converts your car windows into transparent HD displays. Dave already currently lives in Atherton, California. He loves reading, playing tennis and polo in his spare time. David welcome.  

David: (00:01:17)  Thanks for having me,

Bryan: (00:01:20)  David. We’re excited to have you on today. Let’s hop right into it, man. Tell us about yourself and call us about your upbringing.

David: (00:01:25) Yeah, sure. Um, So, you know, originally I’m Costa Rican. Um, my grandmother is actually a full Korean and that’s one of the reasons why I reached out to you guys to begin with. Cause I’ve always kind of identified with the Korean culture, Korean food as well. Um, but when I was seven, I moved to Germany and I kind of grew up there till I was 19. And then I went to college in the US and I’ve been here ever since, shortly after college, you know, it’s kind of an interesting story in a more of like a serendipity type story. Um, No, I was in the library and I met co-founder at grab it. And then we became really a friend. I mean, we were friends from before, but then, you know, we, we kind of started working together and then next thing you know, we got accepted to YC and then, um, you know, everything kind of took off from there. Um, but we just, you know, I grabbed it. We, uh, we kind of had to shut down the company because we ran out of runway. So Banos were doing something completely different, but, um, you know, we’re building a consumer product that converts car windows and digital splits. So that’s essentially what we’re doing.  

Bryan: (00:02:35)   You make it sound so easy, man. Getting YC is no joke. And Craig, congratulations on that. And I know like being entrepreneurs is very difficult. Can you kind of talk through, like, what are the key lessons that you learned from your first venture? That didn’t go well, And how did you learn from that and correct yourself in the second venture Panos?

David: (00:02:54) Yeah. Well, you know, one of the, one of the main things and how I’ve always seen it as, I mean, I, I didn’t really grow up wanting to be an entrepreneur. Right. I wanted to be a doctor and soccer player. And even in college, I was a bio major and I switched like halfway through. So it wasn’t like being an entrepreneur was really in my cards. Um, but one of the biggest things that I’ve learned was, uh, Just surrounding myself with people that are more experienced and will be considered smarter. Um, you know, as far as you know, I wasn’t, you know, when I, when I joined the graduate team, I was, uh, you know, it was probably the most junior person or thing. Everyone else was like 40 and up. And they were kind of senior guys in the corporate world. And I think that strategically made sense to me. And that’s something I still do a prognosis. All of my executives are, you know, 40 and up and they’re senior. It’s like, I mean, they’re, they’re senior in the corporate world and they’re obviously still senior in, in our startup, but, um, just surround you so who we can learn from not being intimidated, that yeah, they, they have more experience than you in certain areas. But I think a lot of times people build startup teams. They try to build it with people around the same level as them, for me, I’ve always kind of always found people that are just further along than me. So that’s us. That’s one of the biggest lessons.

Bryan: (00:04:18)   Oh, I like, I like that approach a lot. You just really surround yourself with people that you want to get to the next level where I think that’s the best way to leverage yourself a lot. Um, out of curiosity, man, like prognose, like what is it? How’d you feel about the idea? It sounds so cool, Greg. And during the time of this recording, congratulations on raising a 600,000. We funded. You know, you definitely want to hear, hear more about the inspiration behind Kronos.  

David: (00:04:48) Yeah. So, um, you know, we have some reservations on we fund that we haven’t officially launched the campaign. We’re looking to, uh, we’re looking to dilute about 6% and, uh, we just have some reservations nothing’s confirmed yet as far as investments. Um, but we’ve gotten a lot of traction so far. Um, and really, can you ask the first part of the question so I can,

Bryan: (00:05:10)   yeah. I just want to hear the inspiration behind it. You know, what started this whole thing?

David: (00:05:14) Yeah. I mean, it’s just, uh, it’s been a long road. I mean, it’s been three, four years in the making. Um, I spent a lot of time in China, uh, so solidifying a supply chain, um, you know, and, and, and you’re really just listening to some of the, some of our bigger supporters around the world we got after the tech crunch article, we’ve gotten. Attention from basically every continent and, you know, we’ve taken trips to Nigeria. I’ve been to Dubai, Australia, and there’s people that want to just take our product and launch it in our markets and just kind of, you know, the inspiration. It was just a lot of iterations. Just listen to people and really understanding what it was that we’re building. I mean, it wasn’t in the beginning. Whereas, you know, we created a cool display system, you know, grab it where it’s selling ads. And then we realized that, you know, at Pronto’s we’re doing something different where we’re just building a consumer product that allows for anyone to buy and to basically screen, mirror anything that’s directly from their phone and just express themselves. And that’s all we plan on getting to scale. But so to get to really the inspiration has been just listening to the people and listening to our bigger, biggest supporters.

Bryan: (00:06:21)   That’s awesome.

Maggie: (00:06:22) Yeah. That’s amazing. Was there like, um, a specific problem that you saw in the market that kind of fed into this inspiration of you starting? Cause it’s pretty niche, pretty unique. You wouldn’t really hear a lot of, a lot of other companies that have started something like this.

Bryan: (00:06:39) I want to look at the window and be like, maybe I could put ads there only here like that. Like what triggered the idea? 

David: (00:06:47)  Yeah. I mean, I think it was just a lot of different ideas. Over time to get to this point, a lot of input from a lot of people. And we were able to kind of synthesize it into, into a product we can take to market, but really the genesis, I guess, you know, the out-of-home world is kind of turned off, right? If we really drive around anywhere in the world, this is billboards, maybe some digital taxi toppers, maybe in the big metropolitan areas like New York or San Francisco, maybe the bus shelters. So as far as the digital signage outside, It’s a lot of it is static and unless you’re in times square. Um, but so we were going to realize that we can build a cost effective consumer product that can go on all cars. It’s affordable, scalable, and there’s a valid proposition and really interesting valid proposition for consumers because we’re probably the first ones to allow for consumers to buy this, buy the unit and also generate their own content. So, um, You know, in the out-of-home world, you know, billboards and bus shelters, it’s usually the businesses and the corporations that generate the content, right. It’s usually ads or non-profits here. You can drive around and you maybe want to run your tick-tock account. Maybe you want to run your podcast. You want to run, you know, A political message. Maybe you want to run ads, which is our phase three of the launch allow for geo geo targeted ads, but that’s when we get to scale. But so that’s kind of the idea behind this, just allowing people to express themselves outside and in a cool way. So,  

Bryan: (00:08:18)    I mean, I never thought to advertise on podcasts behind McFarland drive or whatever. That’s a, that’s a really cool idea. Um, in terms of, like I just mentioned before, it’s like a three to four years in the making rate, like, how did you prepare for this? What was your go-to market strategy? Because, you know, looking at this and thinking, Oh yeah, it’s a great idea. But actually turning this into reality and looking at supply chain, like, what was, what was that process like? And what was your experience like going into this? Do you have any idea? Do you have any ideas of how like windows work or cars work or something like that? The foundation.

David: (00:08:55)  Yeah, that’s a great, a great question. I mean, I think that, you know, like I said, we, we got into YC right after I graduate probably six months after I graduated from bachelor’s degree. So I’ve always, I guess I’ve, since college I’ve been an entrepreneur. Right. So, um, it’s all just been just a lot of just diving into the deep end and learning. So that’s how it feels. I just dove into the deep in the pool and couldn’t swim at first, but you just. You do it so much and you get in your leverage, people around you, you bring key people, you bring key advisors, um, to help you out and advise you. Um, so that’s really how I’ve kind of done it. I’ve just kind of brought in people that kind of, uh, basically Mason, I’m running people that fit in the gaps of what you would consider, what you would consider my lack of experiences. I am relatively young, I guess. And I that’s, that’s a good question because I think that’s one that was one of my biggest insecurities at first was just that I was so young and trying to put some together. It was as big even when we’re in China, you know? And when we’re talking to, you know, CEO’s that, you know, automotive manufacturer, we’re taught, we’re under NDA with human die and Honda right conversations with senior executives that big, big corporations. And I’m like straight out of college. You know, at first it was, it’s definitely a intimidating yeah, scary, intimidating. But you eventually kind of tried to master what it is that you’re doing and really surrounding yourself with the right stuff. Um, yeah. I’m not gonna sit here and say that I’m, I’m, uh, I’m an expert in automotive world or an optics or yeah. Or really anything. I’m just, there’s so many pieces that we’re putting together and, and deploying it as a product. So there’s just, yeah, I guess you kind of have to be really naive to put something like this together. Uh, I think the diet, the naivete was a big thing for me, just being young and just doing it. Um, yeah. And it’s working out pretty well. I mean, people love what we’re doing, so

Bryan: (00:11:11)   yeah. I like what you guys are doing. And I think you bring a really good point too, because. You have a lot of people on the entrepreneurial, or we have a lot of people on our podcast. And then the most common thing is that a lot of founders that we have who have made it big are pretty naive and they kind of just hop into this, not the hero is going to be hard, you know, because they didn’t have a solid understanding of what was, what was required. And that’s like the common theme entrepreneurs you have in this podcast is it’s like they follow their passion and it just jumped into the deep end and just figure things out, you know?  

David: (00:11:44)  Right, which is interesting, right? It happens all the time. Silicon Valley. It’s like, yeah, well, it’s like the Airbnb guys. It wasn’t like they came from hospitality, hospitality, backgrounds, or finance backgrounds, you know, he came from a design background or something, something random. But so, you know, it’s kind of weird how you put it together, but it’s interesting, but

Bryan: (00:12:04)   that’s entrepreneurship in general. Like you are the one figuring out the, how you’re piecing things together. You making these move forward, you keep yourself accountable. No, you are the architect of building that vision. And sometimes that also involves maybe me not being the complete expert at first, but it does require you to be some sort of expert as you’re going through the process, but otherwise you can make those great decisions, you know?

Maggie: (00:12:28) Yeah, exactly. And I love how you brought up that, you know, you definitely were one of the youngest people. As you were coming into this. And so a lot of people inside Ahn, you know, they are, you know, hustlers and they’re, you know, trying to be entrepreneurs. And oftentimes they are the youngest in, you know, whatever team that they’re joining. And so there is a lot of, you know, imposter syndrome that goes along with it. And, you know, I love how you brought up the really. Important thing is just to surround yourself with really good mentors, surround yourself with really smart people, to uplift you and elevate you to the point where, you know, you can learn and you can immerse yourself into that environment.

Bryan: (00:13:05)  Yeah. So my question is for the next one is when you’re engaging all these talents at the very beginning, we understand that, you know, this is not a cheap thing. This is not like a low cost, low overhead to execute this idea. How do you start paying your team immediately? Is it through like a North star. This is the vision that we want to get to. Or did you have like funding in place already? And if you have money in place, how did you get the funding for something that you didn’t have a product yet?   

David: (00:13:34) Well, so we we’ve, we’ve had a product for a long time. It’s had a MVP for a long time in our commercial Bible units, almost it’s almost ready. Um, and you can actually see pictures of it on our, we funder page. Um, but really it’s, it’s, my story is a little weird just because everything kind of just came together and almost like, and like, um, like something off of a movie, just because a lot of the pieces just kind of came to me. Like my team grew organically, you know, I spent a lot of time in Silicon Valley, socializing, networking, and, you know, I tell everyone what I’ve been up to, but so it’s like almost everyone I run into wants to be a part of it. Either, either as an advisor or as an operator or a manager. And so I think we’ve just been fortunate that we’ve been able to attract talent just organically. Um, so people understand the vision, which is, you know, democratizing content distribution and out of home world. Um, but it, but, but I think one of the most appealing things to people is just that we’re kind of pushing the needle when it comes to, uh, leveraging existing real estate and converting that into a. A mechanism that can distribute content in at a low cost, low cost way. Which so, I mean, and of course the aesthetics of it, right. It’s a really cool futuristic looking display. Every time we bring our cars around people take pictures, they surround it, you know, it’s, it’s definitely a Nick Turner. Um, so I think that’s definitely one of the biggest things for us is just the aesthetics of it and the appeal. So we’ve been fortunate in that way. Um, but yeah, I think it, whether it’s investors, advisors, Apart of foreign partners. People just always reached out to me and being part. And so I really had really, there’s some recruiting that I’ve done a little bit, very, very minimal. Mostly it’s just been kind of vetting people and making sure they’re a good fit, but, um, I think we’ve been fortunate in that way.

Bryan: (00:15:29) Yeah. The universe always, always sorta helps out the entrepreneurs today. Your idea is to attract like minded people who want to tell them and help you a lot. So that’s awesome. I know that your product has gone under a lot of traction online through celebrities. Can you kind of quickly talk through that? Like who your top celebrities and what was that process like and what was it like, like negotiating with them and meeting them.

David: (00:15:55)   Yeah. Yeah. I mean, that’s a great question. I mean, so we’re actually working with, uh, sticky fingers who was, uh, he was a hip hop superstar back in the eighties. Uh, he was in a rap group, Onyx. He assigned by Def jam and, you know, he, you know, he was pretty big in the, in the urban music scene. Um, and he’s kind of an advisor for us. He introduced us to a few record labels. Um, We got invited to the Grammy’s and there, you know, we connected with another boutique, uh, record from a record label. And, you know, they connected us with lady Gaga is team rich, the kid’s team, um, or working with quality control too, which is the metos label or Migos label and Cardi B’s label. Um, so I mean, that’s another thing that I want to say is. For some reason or another, the media and the hip hop industry, particularly the hip hop industry really loves what we’re doing. Maybe he’s gets flashy and it looks luxurious. So a lot of them have DJ Khalid as well. Um, has expressed interest in owning a unit, but the unit wasn’t ready yet when you express an interest. Um, so it’s just, I think that as far as going to market, that’s going to be really helpful for us because the appeal by these, uh, influencers, right. Um, so we will be deploying, um, when we’re actually in talks with Kanye West’s cousin as well. Um, I think that’s probably the biggest one so far, um, and trying to see if he’s going to lead this next round is Kanye West is also a investor. Um, so for some reason, like I said, I guess I keep kind of mentioning, uh, the Hollywood Hollywood and the media industry is fascinated by this. So hopefully that’s going to help us out as far as scaling. Really going to market,

Bryan: (00:17:37) I’m fasting by this, you know?  

Maggie: (00:17:41)  Uh, it’s just, uh, yeah, that’s amazing for you to get, you know, recognition and, you know, for celebrities to jump on board with this idea. And I definitely think, you know, it, it is really big in the hip hop scene just because it’s really flashy. Like Garner’s all that attention.

Bryan: (00:17:55)   Yeah. Yeah. I do want to shift the focus back to you, you know, talk about your challenges as a CEO and co-founder or a founder of this product. No. Like what kind of challenges you face on a day-to-day basis? Like walk us through, like, what is your day to day decision making? Like, you know, had you been making a lot of big decision to now and you’re getting a lot of attention and a lot of funding? What, what goes through your mind? Like mentally, emotionally?

David: (00:18:21)   Yeah, right, right. You know, I really base everything I do with our, our values. I have a lot certain values that, that I kind of make all my decisions based off of. And then also our company. I mean, and then of course, you know, I’m trying to implement those same values to the company culture. Um, and, and just being navigating, helping the values kind of direct the direction we go in each decision. That’s how I approach every decision and, uh, you know, just being as informed as possible, you know, I, I try to get briefed by, you know, my executives and try. Tried to understand the, the particular, uh, subject and then just trying to basically, uh, make the best decision I can in the moment. But I really do the listening a lot of times. I, uh, I mean, I see my executives as advisors really as well, um, and coaches. And so I’m not really the one that micromanages or tells them what to do. And a lot of times they tell me what to do. And that’s, that’s why you bring in these, these guys on your team is to, uh, It’s kind of tell you what to do. And I know it’s kind of hard for a lot of entrepreneurs. It’s the ego thing. Right. And then, you know, if you, if you have one of your team members letting you, if you kind of let your team members, so you would do a lot of people are under the impression that, um, you’re probably not a good CEO and all that. I mean, I, I see a lot of like repetitive rookie mistakes where like, uh, first time CEOs. Or, or founders. Um, and I think the ego gets in the way, sometimes you just got to get yourself out of the way and let the experts deal with it and listen to them. And, and, you know, I think that’s how I approach it. Um, you know, I, I tried to take that approach, which is a little different, I think, because a lot of them, if you notice a lot of startups, CEOs that they’re very tyrannical, they like to micromanage everything. They like to keep everything in silos. They’re not transparent. So things of that nature, I tried to, uh, to kind of mitigate as much as possible.

Maggie: (00:20:24) Yeah, that’s awesome. Thank you so much for sharing that, David. And, um, you know, I’m, I’m curious to know as a C as a first time CEO, what type of challenges did you go through, uh, personally? And like, how did you kind of overcome them?  

Bryan: (00:20:38)   Talk about your growth since day one? You know, what was, uh, yeah. What are some things you were scared recently, easier fearful. How’d you overcome them? What are your, what, what are you like now?

David: (00:20:49)   Yeah. Yeah. I mean, so I do think I’m very much a very different person than I was, let’s say two years ago. Um, you know, I was, I think a lot of it is in your head. A lot of the, a lot of your insecurities are in your head. Um, but also I think I’ve become more grounded, more objective with my approach. I’ve, uh, worked on not being so egotistical and narcissistic. I mean, I used to be. Kind of over the top when it came to, uh, express myself, my myself in general, just, you know, very confident, but almost over the top to the point where you’re like arrogant and, you know, I, I was young and you know, when you’re young out of college, you see a lot of success can get, can get in your head. Um, but you know, the ups and downs have allowed me to kind of humble myself and kind of understand that this is an incremental process, right. And that. I dunno. I mean, I I’ve I’ve I definitely have tried to work on, on things like that. I used to just be kind of obnoxious, I think. And I’m just trying to be as honest as possible. Um, you know, and I think a lot of people hate to admit those things and that’s why they don’t really grow. Right. You know, I just did a lot of introspection on things that may rub people the wrong way. And I mean, I was still closing deals and I was still trying to get people to my company, but then it, but then the day you still, you, you, you, you start to kind of. Put yourself in the feet of other, in the shoes of others and try to understand how they feel about something and not just negotiating deals that are beneficial to you, but figure out win-win situations. Right. So I think that’s been a big part of my development is just trying to find common ground and goal alignment and try to, uh, yeah, just, just always find win-win scenarios. I think that’s the best way to summarize it.

Maggie: (00:22:39) Yeah, that’s amazing. I also want to know, um, you know, like personally I think this is more for just educating myself because I don’t know a lot about the industry that you’re in, but it’s so interesting to us, you know? And, um, in terms of like competition, I’m sure you know who your competitors are. Like I personally wouldn’t know who they are, but how do you view competition and how do you kind of use that, um, to elevate your own business?

Bryan: (00:23:06)  Yeah. And before you get to that question, I do want to acknowledge the fact that, you know, you are aware of how we, how you were before. You know, I do want to give you a lot of credit for growing. Before I continue to grow as a person. You know, these things, aren’t easy to admit, especially as a founder, because you always have this internal belief where it’s undying, where you have to believe in yourself. No one else does. And it’s good that you recognize the good and the bad, and you’re trying to work on yourself.  

Maggie: (00:23:32) So, yeah, definitely. I mean like some CEOs, they take a long while to actually like row from their starting point. And for you to kind of recognize like where you came from and how much you’ve grown shows a lot about, you know, how much you have. Developed herself.

David: (00:23:46)  Yeah. I appreciate that. Yeah. I mean, it means a lot. It’s, uh, it’s just, just identifying your weaknesses and owning them, allows you to, you know, work on them or else just think, you know it all. And I do see that pattern in a lot of people that they’re there. I mean, none of us know it all. I mean, you could be on Stein and you never going to know it. All right. Um, so you do see that and in Silicon Valley before very humble with how they approach things for the rest of America, it’s just, you have a conversation with somebody in it. He liked to always be right. You don’t always have to be right about everything, you know, so, you know, just kind of learn things like that. That resonate with me. You know, I know they sound cliche, but. I live them now and I see the difference every day, but I think you asked a question. I missed it. 

Maggie: (00:24:30)    Oh yeah. Yeah. I was just curious to know how you view competition, because I’m sure that there are other companies who are kind of doing something similar. Um, and so how do you view competition in that, in that market and how do you use it to elevate your own company? How do you make sure that you, um, remain unique in your own?

Bryan: (00:24:48)  Basically what we’re asking is how do you say our product manager of your product?

David: (00:24:52)  Yeah. Yeah. I mean, that’s a great question. So one of the first things that we did was, you know, I found the best, uh, law firm I possibly could in Silicon Valley and, uh, IP, IP firm. And, uh, you know, I partnered up with them on the corporate securities end, but also on the IPN then we made sure we build a very, very comprehensive patent portfolio throughout, uh, utility patents, business method, patents, design, patents, and we just continued to amend them. We just filed with international PCT. We actually just, coincidentally, we just filed international PCT with the Korean search authority. So, you know, our, our pads are going to be international now. Um, but yeah, so that, as far as competition, we don’t really have much competition. I mean, I know that’s a nice thing to say, but other than maybe the digital taxi toppers, Firefly, um, but they, they have a taxi topper business model. They just. Showcase ads. People can’t own a digital tax topper. You can’t buy one and just post whatever you want. And these are just given to you by the company. You’re a taxi driver and you get to drive around with it. Right? So as far as competition in the competitive landscape, there’s not much, there is a company in China. That’s also using real projection technology. On there on the rear windshields. I mean, you may see it in China here and there, but they’re not doing too well. It’s just because their business model is also flawed. Um, and, and people, and that’s why our business you go on B to C is definitely very attractive because it’s hard for a lot of these companies to reach scale. And that’s something we’ve figured out. We figured out the right strategy for scale and which we believe is the B to C play. But, um, yeah, I think hopefully that answered it. I mean, it’s, I mean, There’s yeah, as far as, I mean, I was. So just to kind of give you those a bit more information on that. I just had a conversation with a former, uh, director of a, uh, an, uh, former director of NSA TSA, which is the, uh, agency that regulates, uh, traffic and safety across the United States. It’s a government agency and, you know, he’s, he’s now in the private sector and he’s very interested in joining us perhaps on the advisory, but. You know, he’s basically, he wrote the law himself on, you know, drive, uh, driving while you’re texting and the law revolving autonomous vehicles, uh, for the United States. And yeah, he loves what we’re doing. And, um, he basically said himself that there’s really no one doing what we’re doing right now. So, I mean, we saw we’re really good to go. There’s really no legislation against what we’re doing. So as far as competition, I like to say we’re the first movers, but I also want to make sure that we’re the last movers as well. Um, Yeah, of course that’s always hard before really successful. So we’ll see. But

Bryan: (00:27:40)  yeah. Yeah, you guys are on the right track. Can you quickly talk a little bit, a bit about the mission statement for Pronos? Like what are you guys looking to achieve or is it, what is your ultimate vision? What coffee looks like in the next five to 10 years?

David: (00:27:54) Yeah, well, you know, democratize content distribution, and we like, uh, unify the world with a decentralized network of outdoor communication. And really the goal is, you know, five, 10, 20 years from now. Um, it’s, uh, really our, our business model just kind of paint a picture of, so you guys can understand what, what it is that we’re done. Uh, then we’ll get to, we’ll get to a point where you can own an autonomous vehicle that you own as your, your investment. And it goes off and it picks people off, drops people off, it picks food up, it drops food off, and then it also runs ads, right. Or content, right. Um, through our grid. Um, so we want to really create a system that subsidizes transportation and allows people to earn passive income, you know, the comfort of their home. Right. So, you know, they’re at home hanging out and you have this autonomous vehicle make money for you. So I think that’s the future of work and, uh, supposedly

Bryan: (00:28:55)  yeah, that’s, that’s really cool. So what I’m, what I am envisioning is, you know, someone could pay me for ads and I could reject that on my window as I drive to work, or as I tried to get whatever, you know, um, can you talk through like technology, how it works exactly. Is it. Is it a brand new windshield installation in my car? Is it a projector that pushes out onto the, the windshield? How’s it work?

David: (00:29:21) Yeah. So we had developed the proprietary film that goes on your window. And then also the display source is a projector, um, that we built and the hardware that we built, the media player, that’s also custom software. So basically. What it looks like. It’s your, for example. And you’ll see, you’ll see a picture on the, we funder. We designed it to look like a headrest. So you take off your head rest. You put, when you have often the projector is actually built into the headrest and that, uh, basically it projects onto the, to your window and that’s, and it really wasn’t designed to be very turnkey. You know, you can remove it, put it back on and all that stuff. Um, and that’s, I mean, that’s a summarized version of what it is.

Bryan: (00:30:05)  Okay. That’s very cool. I’m thinking about how many users it ready?

David: (00:30:13) Well, you shouldn’t, you know? Yeah. I’ll definitely send you one. When, when, when is ready, I’ll send both of you guys want,

Bryan: (00:30:18)   my friends will be like, what the heck is this? I’m like, dude, it’s so cool.

Maggie: (00:30:23)  What’s your goal for the next year for Panos?   

David: (00:30:28) Yeah. So really our goal is really closing the round that we’re currently, uh, fundraising. Um, like I said, we are planning to dilute at about a target of 6%. Um, but really the goal is to hit market and to start, uh, generating traction as far as you know, of course revenue. Right? We’re pre-revenue so generating revenues, obviously a big one, but, um, we based off of our case studies, um, We, we, we already found product market fit, but we just want to make sure that, I mean, I guess product market fit is a really relative term, right. Never ends, but I mean, some degree of product market fit where we’re going to be able to at least achieve some type of traction and then, um, really just, uh, start getting feedback on our user interface. Right. Because we want we’re we’re, we’re finalizing the app, right. So we want to make sure that the app is easy to use. The hardware is you don’t install. So the goal for the rest of the year is just to make, to start kind of, uh, iterating on, on some of the initial user feedback.

Bryan: (00:31:36) Gotcha. I know you mentioned a lot about like user feedback and hearing about the customer. How are you guys collecting this user feedback? Is it through a survey or is it their emails? And you know, how often are you getting these type of feedbacks from the, from your customers?

David: (00:31:49) Yeah. So, like I said, our commercial viable, unit’s not ready yet. So once it is ready and we’re starting to point it to a, our long waiting lists of customers from around the world, we will start getting some of that consumer generated feedback. But as of today we ran a lot of surveys. We’ve, uh, you know, uh, mostly surveys and case studies and, uh, you know, we’ve. Like I said the CTO at grab, it was also the CTO Panos. Um, you know, some of the other, another executive can grab it. So some of the, some of the team at grab it’s still at Kronos. Um, but so we, we just learned a lot from, I mean, it was like a fail fast experience. It was, you know, eight months where the top of our world, next thing you know, we ran out of runway. We couldn’t raise any more money. The business model was broken and it was sustainable. So, you know, I don’t want to talk too much about that, but you know, it really it’s. We learned a lot of lessons about content distribution and out-of-home, and we were just selling ads was not scalable. So, um, I think that just learnings from our previous experience and then just the surveys and people we’re talking to, and some of our, uh, demos that we’ve conducted. Um, and I love to share a video, but I don’t know if I’m able to, but, um,

Bryan: (00:33:17) we’re going to put that in your show notes to no worries.

David: (00:33:19) Do you want me to send it to you after? Is that what you said? One thing I show notes. Okay. Yeah. So basically we did a, we did like a showcase in Dubai, right. With the transport authority and they really like it, but it was still a lot of off the shelf components. The product just wasn’t ready yet. So we, the Bill’s not close, but, you know, just to kind of, you know, we’ve gotten a lot of feedback from things like that, a lot of those conversations. Um, but yeah, I guess, you know, I’ve done the day. You, you really gotta hit, we got, we really gotta hit market.

Maggie: (00:33:59)  Right. Absolutely. Yeah. I love that. You’re incorporating all of that feedback because at the end of the day, you don’t want to put out a product where no one really wants. And so customer feedback is super important. Um, and so David, we have one last question for you. If you could give one advice to an aspiring entrepreneur, what advice would that be?

David: (00:34:23) Ooh, that’s a, I mean, I decorate a book about this just because of all the stuff that I’ve been through. But, um, I guess just really, uh, one of the biggest things, I think as a first time, entrepreneur is you’re a bit delusional and you overvalue your company and sometimes you’re, you’re just kind of crazy on the terms and things that you can just waste a lot of time, just making a lot of those rookie mistakes on terms and. And, uh, projections and you just got to, uh, either join a really successful accelerator that has advisors, or try to get advisors on your cap table, whatever the case may be, but try to get people that really have done it before and actually listened to them because it sounds cliche, but I listened to some things, but there’s a lot of things I wish I would’ve listened to early on. And I always say even more time. Um, but yeah, just try to listen to these advisers. Um, a lot of times they know what they’re talking about, you know, you know, I’m just a good example of, I mean, I listened to some, some things, but not everything. So I guess just, you know, try, try to surround yourself with senior people and listen to them. I think that’s my biggest, yeah, that’s really good advice.

Maggie: (00:35:33)  That’s great advice. Um, and how can our listeners find out more about you and Pronos online?  

David: (00:35:40) Yeah, so just feel free to check out our Refunder slash kronos.ai. Um, you can just search us on, we funder, you know, apprentice.ai is our website. Um, you know, just either a website. Um, we fund they’re in my emails, david@kronos.ai. Do you have any other questions or followups? Um, yeah, hopefully that was valuable. Hopefully some of that resonates with somebody. Um, like I said, it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s a long journey of just self discovery really. So you just gotta be open to learning. That’s really the biggest thing.

Bryan: (00:36:14) Definitely.

Maggie: (00:36:15)   That’s awesome. Well, thank you so much for sharing your story today, David. It was amazing having you on and learning about your story and proudness.

Bryan: (00:36:23) I appreciate you being on the shows. Amen. Thank you so much.

David: (00:36:26) Thank you guys. Appreciate it.

Outro: [00:36:28] Hey guys, we hope you enjoy this episode. Please subscribe to the show.

We would like to get to the top 10 on iTunes so be sure to leave us a five-star review. We release an episode every single Wednesday. So, stay tuned.

Thank you, guys, so much.