Female Disruptors: Purva Gupta is shaking up the AI world with emotionally-intelligent AI.
Don’t be afraid to challenge your thinking or change your mind. I’ve learned from my mentors that it’s perfectly healthy — encouraged, even — to have an idea tomorrow that contradicts your idea today. The smartest people are constantly revising their understanding and reconsidering a problem they thought they’d solved. They’re open to new points of view, new information, new ideas, contradictions, and challenges to their own way of thinking. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a well-formed point of view, but it means you should consider your point of view as temporary. We started by building a consumer app, which had us obsess over every single detail in every single item of clothing as we were building our technology. But we ended up changing our mind on the go-to-market when we realized that our product can create a deeper impact at the root of the industry.
I had the pleasure to interview Purva Gupta. Purva is the co-founder & CEO of Lily AI, an emotionally intelligent AI platform for commerce. Lily AI claims some of the most iconic brands and retailers in the world as customers, has raised money from A-list investors and won many awards, like the best startup at the 2017 SXSW pitch competition. Purva is an immigrant founder who has been on 6 visas in last 4 years to live her American dream, has spent 10,000+ hours asking women ‘why’ they bought the clothes they bought and is now fearlessly building a product that will give an emotional & contextual upgrade to retail.
Thank you so much for joining us! What is your “backstory”?
I started my career working with ad agency Saatchi & Saatchi, where I discovered early on that beloved brands have the ability to create an emotional connection with their customers. It’s about how they make their customer base feel. Then I worked with a mobile banking and payments startup in India that made me fall in love with the concept of creating products that change people’s lives forever. My life’s goal became to land in Silicon Valley and fall in love with that one problem I would solve, but at 26, I felt like I was running out of time to make enough dents in the world.
Eventually I found my problem to solve: to understand the shoppers’ emotional context. However, all the odds were stacked against me: First-time, female founder, non-technical, without background in retail or psychology, away from my husband (who was then on the other coast) with no savings and no visa that lets me work in the US. I was intimidated in the beginning, but imagining what the promise land would look like with my solution always gave me the strength to take another step forward. I am so glad I didn’t let any of it stop me and I went against the flow.
Today, Lily AI has built the deepest image recognition technology in commerce, which powers the first-of-its-kind emotionally-intelligent AI platform. Our solution is not just able to understand every consumer’s emotional context and cognitive attributes when they come to a storefront, but it also helps the biggest names in retail make most of their retail functions smarter by better understanding every single customer.
Read the full article at Authority Magazine