Meet Vise AI, the startup reimagining portfolio management

The founders of Vise AI met when they were 13, a couple of teenagers more interested in applied artificial intelligence than English class. Fast-forward several years and the pair has relocated from the Midwest to San Francisco to raise money for a financial technology business they’ve been self-funding since 2016.

As teenagers with an inordinate amount of AI knowledge, Samir Vasavada and Runik Mehrotra proved to be quite useful to large businesses, investment bankers and other financiers. Leveraging their AI know-how, they were paid $700 per hour by a consulting firm to teach financial “experts” about AI. Mehrotra, according to Vasavada, is a mathematical prodigy: “And that translates extremely well to AI, right, because what underlies AI is math,” Vasavada, co-founder and chief executive officer of Vise AI, tells TechCrunch. “We had the ability of articulating what AI is to investment bankers in a way that they would understand. Whereas most expert explanations would be really complex and very technical.”

Meanwhile, school was on autopilot. “I was taking phone calls in English class,” Vasavada said. “It wasn’t very good but we were making a lot of money.” Ultimately, that money funneled into the early makings of a real business,

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