071: David Karandish (Jane.ai)

David Karandish on Innovation City

If you fail at something and have a transferable piece of knowledge out of it to take with you to your next gig…that’s a different type of failure- it’s a transferable failure. — David Karandish

Welcome to Innovation City—powered by Venture Cafe—where Tyler Kelley and Michael Johnson, Co-Founders of SLAM! Agency, interview innovators, creators, and disruptors to discover how business is changing in the modern world.

Created and produced by SLAM! Agency in cooperation with Venture Cafe St. Louis and Venture Cafe Miami, Innovation City gives you an inside look at how rapidly business and culture are changing thanks to increasing diversity and inclusion, heightened creativity, and a stronger and better-connected business community. Venture Cafe is the largest combined gathering of entrepreneurs and innovators anywhere in the world. Events are held every Thursday in St. Louis, Miami, and other leading innovation cities around the globe.

Today’s guest is David Karandish, Founder & CEO at Jane.ai. Jane.ai is a technology company that focuses on making all company intelligence accessible to employees. David has worked in the tech industry for over 17 years, but has always had a passion for creating things since his adolescence. Currently, David is on his 8th startup venture. David joins us today to discuss his entrepreneurial journey, his AI company, Jane.ai, helping students to learn about technology, working in the nonprofit sector, and much more!

They discuss:

  • His journey as an entrepreneur
    • Started his career doing web page development with his friend in high school
    • Continued web development ventures into college
    • Worked at a small startup company doing web and SEO
    • Using the knowledge from the startup, he began his own startup ventures
  • Starting entrepreneurship early (high school to college) while the stakes are low
  • Making sure you have a transferable piece of knowledge from any failure
  • Taking time off from his last successful venture to think about what he wanted to do next
    • Looked at what type of technology is going to have a big impact on the way people work (i.e. artificial intelligence)
  • What is Jane.ai
    • High Level: A company’s first AI-powered team member
    • Similar to Siri or Alexa but applied to the workplace
    • She takes all company intel and makes it accessible in a chat box
  • Most big successful companies have a secret to how they became successful
  • Jane pulls information from 6 main apps:
    • Email
    • Calendar
    • HR System
    • CRM
    • Ticketing System
    • Cloud Drive
  • Selling to financial service and property management type businesses
    • Jane helps their hard-to-navigate systems
    • Most businesses in those areas use the same applications
  • Building his company as a horizontal across all the major apps businesses use day-to-day, while also building vertically to accommodate industry-specific platforms
  • Getting his first computer (that was going to be thrown away) from his dad’s work
  • State of Missouri doesn’t have any mandated computer science requirements for students
  • Wanting to help people have access to learning about technology (specifically students)
  • Starting a nonprofit organization, Create a Loop, to teach kids computer science by creating clubs across the world
  • Helping to bridge the gap between the socioeconomic differences of students North and South of Delmar Boulevard
    • For every one student who could afford to pay for tuition to join the club, one student who couldn’t afford to join would be awarded a scholarship
    • By doing this they have created a diverse and inclusive environment for all
  • After starting the nonprofit last year and starting with one class, they are now up to 5 classes with more being added this spring semester
  • The importance of encouraging kids to be creators of tech and media, not just consumers
  • Varsity Tutors, an online tutoring service that allows people to get tutoring from anywhere in the world
  • Get in touch with Jane.ai on their website