Member blog: AI Impacting Startups

December 05, 2023

In this member blog, active FiBAN member and angel investor Jorma Heinonen explores how AI can be utilized, what kind of experiences he has had with AI tools, and what insights and Slush brought up to the surface.

I’m excited to share my experiences with AI and its impact on startups, especially after the inspiring Slush event in 2023. AI was a hot topic this year, sparking engaging discussions, and I have aimed to share that experience with my portfolio companies during this past year.

My AI Journey  – Exploring AI Tools in Action

Since last year, I’ve been exploring various AI applications as well as participating in various training programs. This spring, I set a personal goal to dedicate an hour each workday to learning and experimenting with AI tools. I’ve maintained this routine except for summer vacations, and my enthusiasm for discovering new AI advancements grows daily.


I began last year with ChatGPT and expanded to apps like Midjourney and Bing. While many are free initially, some require a subscription post-trial. Recently, I’ve delved into Microsoft Copilot. Awaiting when MS 365 Copilot is available for small enterprises.

Google Bard

I have also been testing Google Bard, which I have seen quite useful for personal LLM usage, even though it is probably still quite early for business use. Now, I’m looking forward to Google’s further AI announcements in the very near future. Learn more in the video below.

Amazon AI

Right now, I’m eager to explore Amazon AI following the AWS Reinvent event. Also awaiting more AWS AI applications to come.

The Impact AI has on the Startup

AI is already making waves. For instance, Accenture’s CEO Julie Sweet reported significant time savings for consultants using Microsoft Copilot AI. Bill Gates also highlighted AI’s potential to free up time for more productive tasks.

Slush 2023 Insights

This year’s Slush was phenomenal, with many talks focusing on AI’s role in startups. Investors in Silicon Valley now consider AI integration crucial, and Tesla co-founder Marc Tarpenning predicts AI will become ubiquitous. Benedict Evans gave us a great presentation about what’s up right now in AI. Roman Huet (Open AI) also shared his story from research to reality and ChatGPT 4 Turbo announcement.

What kind of influence does AI have, and on which industries?

I asked GPT about industries most affected by AI today, and here’s the summary of what it offered.

Impact on Startups

AI Advantages for Startups

What I’ve learned personally about AI?

Some of my AI trial experiences

Language Translation: AI translations surpass traditional tools like Google Translate, often eliminating the need for traditional translations.

Design and Creativity: Tools like ChatGPT 4, Bing Enterprise with Dalle-3, and Midjourney AI image generators offer impressive design capabilities, and there are many more AI applications available providing drawing and design features.

Efficient Presentations: Using VBA code generated by Bing Enterprise simplifies creating PowerPoint slides, anticipating the release of Microsoft 365 Copilot for small enterprises, which will impact and speed up generating high quality PP slides dramatically.

Coding Assistance: GitHub Copilot aids in code generation and provides support with existing code. Most software companies already use GitHub and Copilot AI will benefit them right away.

Lastly, I have also enclosed the Microsoft Copilot intro for top AI use cases, which I found very useful for us to validate in all industries. 

In summary, AI is here now, and I will push all my portfolio companies to start using and learning AI capabilities, understanding the hype and potential risk of IPRs and regulation. I am eager to find new potential growth companies that will provide new applications and use cases using AI benefits. 

This blog is just my opening also to start dialog with investors and Startups using AI. It is very difficult to find the right AI wave and technology to step in, but quite necessary to be there in an early stage anyway.

Jorma Heinonen CEO

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