CHRIS GRAEBE – What’s Next? AI and Crowdfunding

Chris Graebe is the founder of The Crwd, a newsletter dedicated to teaching and empowering everyday investors about the world of startup investing.

Betting on AI: A Forward-Looking Perspective

Chris Graebe has placed his bets on artificial intelligence, investing in four AI companies. He firmly believes in AI’s transformative potential. Chris emphasizes the importance of companies surviving until 2025. He suggests that those who can maintain financial stability will emerge stronger. According to him, after 2025, markets will turn around. Money will start flowing again, leading to lower rates and increased venture capital opportunities.

AI Disruption Across Industries

The discussion touches on AI’s impact on various sectors, including accounting and law. There are concerns about AI possibly eroding critical thinking. AI provides quick answers, potentially eliminating middlemen. Both Chris Graebe and Mark Savant agree that AI is disrupting many sectors. However, they urge listeners to stay hopeful and proactive.

Strategic Investments in AI Startups

Chris Graebe discusses his investment in a startup using AI in the oil and gas industry. This technology helps find potential wells and revive dead ones for oil extraction. Additionally, he talks about another potential investment in a private equity firm. The firm aims to acquire a steel business and achieve a four to five times return in as many years. He also mentions an AI company focused on enterprise tax, which streamlines tax processes.

Challenges in Email Marketing

Mark Savant raises a pertinent question: Is email marketing dead? Chris Graebe agrees that email may not be the future. Text and direct messages (DMs) are gaining importance. Mark shares his frustration with email newsletters going to spam folders. How can emails survive if they all go to spam? Chris Graebe emphasizes the need to be strategic and intentional with emails. Understanding how to get into inboxes and avoid spam is crucial. The landscape of email marketing is changing, and practitioners must ramp up their game.

Lessons from Amazon FBA Business

The conversation draws parallels to the evolution of Amazon FBA business. Finding successful products is increasingly challenging. Chris Graebe shares his experience of finding success with his first product. This success story highlights the importance of perseverance and adaptability.

The Role of Big Companies

Large companies like Anheuser Busch are eyeing startups with traction and distribution. They integrate these startups into their systems. In the software and AI industry, being a first mover can attract big players. However, trends can be volatile. The example of Clubhouse losing popularity after competitors implemented similar features is a case in point.

Identifying Genuine AI Solutions

Investing in AI startups requires discernment. Some companies may just be following a trend. Chris Graebe shares a cautionary tale about a company offering AI girlfriends but actually employing people to respond to customers. Equity crowdfunding facilitates transparency, helping investors assess startups’ traction and growth.

Diverse Backgrounds and Seizing Opportunities

Chris Graebe has a rich and varied background. He has been on “Road Rules,” worked as a pastor, podcasted, authored a book, and been involved in e-commerce. Mark Savant highlights the importance of staying ahead of new trends in both business and life. Past successes may not guarantee relevance in current trends.

The Hype Around AI

Chris Graebe believes AI is still in its early stages. Its potential to change the future is enormous. However, he cautions against companies adding AI to their business without genuine development. Savant shares his positive experience using AI in his business but remains skeptical of “AI-enabled” claims.

The Future of AI Startups

Chris Graebe expresses concern about existing AI companies developing tools. Larger platforms might render smaller companies obsolete. Nevertheless, he discusses the strategy of letting smaller companies test the market for new products.


From the future of AI technology to the evolving landscape of email marketing, Chris Graebe offers valuable advice. Entrepreneurs and professionals can gain much from understanding these trends and preparing for future opportunities. Whether investing in AI or refining email strategies, staying adaptable and proactive remains key.

Takeaways with Chris Graebe

  1. Maintain stability and adapt for future rewards.
  2. Genuine AI and strong leadership matter for startups.
  3. Strategic email marketing boosts success rates.


00:00 Aging, changes, and memories of MTV days.

04:30 TV opportunities can lead to success or failure.

10:14 Early entry and resilience in adapting markets.

12:31 Found instant success in mold business, faced issues.

16:41 Forties adapting to AI in their careers.

18:25 AI adoption sparked career shift, marketing skepticism.

21:11 Startups need to consider acquisition and competition.

25:38 Startup success hinges on more than marketing prowess.

28:19 AI research for oil wells, equity crowdfunding.

33:16 Focused on AI investments for future stability.

36:36 Individual expertise crucial; caution against blind reliance.

38:16 Embrace technology for savings, avoid lengthy audits.

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