Neil Patel

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In the labyrinth of entrepreneurial ventures, where dreams take flight and innovation shapes destinies, few individuals stand as examples of relentless pursuit and unwavering commitment. Goutham (Gou) Rao is one such visionary whose journey from the bustling streets of Brooklyn to the innovation hub of Silicon Valley is a story of resilience, passion, and audacity.

Gou’s latest venture, NeuBird, has raised funding from top-tier investor, Mayfield.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • Gou’s journey from Brooklyn to India exemplifies how diversity fuels ambition and fosters resilience.
  • Gou’s passion for technology ignited during his formative years, catalyzed by his father’s visionary gift of a computer.
  • Gou’s pursuit of academic excellence at the University of Pennsylvania laid the foundation for his professional ascent.
  • Gou’s entry into Silicon Valley marked the beginning of his entrepreneurial journey, where innovation thrived.
  • Gou’s ventures, from Linux contributions to secure remote access initiatives, exemplify entrepreneurial resilience and innovation.
  • Gou’s series of successful acquisitions underscore his acumen and vision in shaping the technology landscape.
  • With NeuBird, Gou embarks on a new frontier, leveraging AI to redefine the future of technology entrepreneurship.



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About Goutham (Gou) Rao:

Goutham Rao is the Co-Founder and CTO of Portworx. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.

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Connect with Goutham (Gou) Rao:

Read the Full Transcription of the Interview:

Alejandro Cremades: Alrighty hello everyone and welcome to the deal maker show so that we have an amazing guest. You know we have a guest that they has done it multiple times you know he’s gone through several acquisitions. He is right now launching you know he’s a latest baby which is a rocket ship but then. Again, we’re going to be talking about. You know all the good stuff that we like to hear like the building the scaling the financing the exiting in this case too. We’re going to be diving deep into how to think like an end customer how to really think about problems and how those problems could be applied to really starting. What could be a company a successful company. So again, you know, very inspiring you know conversation in front of us so without further ado. Let’s welcome. Our guest today. Go rao welcome to the show.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Thank you very much all a hundredra excited to be here. Thanks for having me.

Alejandro Cremades: So originally born in Brooklyn New York but you ended up moving back to India so and it coming back to the Us. But let’s let’s let’s do a little of a walkthrough memory lane. How was life growing up for yougo.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Ah, life was interesting. Um, growing up in Brooklyn was certainly interesting. Um, both my parents. Um you know immigrants. Ah their doctors. There was a large community of like I guess indians that in the 70 s settle down in the Brooklyn area. So. Um, you know we had ah ah our ah our own social circles and um you know um I ah base my share of being bullied and things like that. So ah, you know when you take me back Memory Lane there are certain some things that I probably wouldn’t want to remember. Life was interesting. Um and certainly going back to India to um, you know when I had you know spent most of my schooling over here. It was a little difficult for me to make that transition and adjust um to India but I think I um, you know after a year or so I kind of um was able to get in the saddle and get ah. Going with a gro of things and yeah, um I did my engineering in India in in Banglore and bangla university ah and then I came back here.

Alejandro Cremades: By the by by the way what you just mentioned is a big deal because you know you ultimately the first years you were in the in New York and then all of a sudden you’re in India new place new friends new everything. So how do you think that shaped you up to.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: You know, actually I think that was probably 1 of the most defining things for me I would have been certainly a very different person if I had just lived in New York or in the us most of my life I think being taken out of my comfort zone out of my element. And being thrown into India and so and by the way when we went back there I had 2 young brothers and my parents were busy at work. So I kind of had to take care of them and and and their transition and adjust adjustment to India too. Um, so I grew up very quickly. Um, when I went to India um. There were times where I’m not kidding I would go to the bathroom and and start crying because I couldn’t take the pressure. Um, this um, you know I think it it definitely really shaped who I am today.

Alejandro Cremades: So in your case, you know, really going into the whole engineering thing. What really got you into um into computers to begin with.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: You know my um, that’s a really good question and I want to thank my dad for this. Um and and you know India was behind the us when it when it comes to computers and things like that I had a commodore when I was here in the us which I had to give up because it. It kind of wouldn’t work in India. Um, so there were a couple of years where I was without a computer but my dad went out of his way to buy me. Um you know a um, um I guess it was a eighty six back then um, you know, um, a computer and it kind of. Assembled the computer altogether myself because I’ve always been interested in electronics and and um this was when I was in um, you know, um before I got into college I started picking up books we didn’t have the internet or anything back then on on how to write? ah. Ah, basic code, basic basic the programming code. Um and I ran into somebody that was sort of a little bit senior to me but teaching if students in India how to write? ah basic programs and I kind of really got interested in it hung out with him a lot. Um, that’s really that was the. Birth for my um journey into computer science.

Alejandro Cremades: So eventually, you know you ended up getting into computer science. You did your degree there in India and you also developed an interest for Ai. You know it’s funny because probably at that point you know, Ai. Was not that big of a deal but now Ai is everywhere everyone is talking about Ai this ai that chat gpd. So I mean what? why Ai you know? what what? What really got you excited about artificial intelligence.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Yeah.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Okay, um, now this is ah um, this is ah a fun true story for me. Um I was um, you know just when I had just gotten into um programming and this is after a couple but maybe two or three years after I picked up basic and and things like that. And I think I was in my first year of ah engineering so we really hadn’t gotten into hardcore computer science and and ai subjects and things like that. So um, before I had even picked up my first ai book which I think was by night. Was the name of the ah author and this is a couple of years after the story I’m going to tell you I was um, ah ah you know, hanging out with a ah couple of friends who are big into chess and um, you know I really didn’t know chess that well but these guys did and you know I it would always ah it. You know I got thinking like is is chess really about doing repetitive moves or is it really about intelligence can can a can computer beat a person. Um and I kind of told them hey I think I can write a program where the program can beat you even though I can’t and they started you know obviously laughing at me and so. I started thinking about how would one write that program. How can a program actually beat a human being and so I thought really hard and then I thought about okay well you have to do the following first let the person make a move.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Then you have to let the computer think as if it were the person and say if I were playing this person. What would my move be and the computer would flip back and forth between playing roles. Um, meaning one layer you’re playing for the user the next layer you’re playing for the computer and the next layer you’re paying playing for the user again. Ah, your audience who know computer science would know that this algorithm is called mini-max which is an algorithm that sort of falls in the ai bucket and gives a computer a way to ah prune through decision-making trees and actually play games I came up with this without having read the book. And um I wrote the program turns out that um you know I wasn’t back then smart enough to understand combinatorial explosion and so the program would eventually get very slow and people would beat it because people think cognitively differently. We prune out areas that we shouldn’t focus on where my program couldn’t anyway. Um, short of that long story is um I realized that I really enjoy Um Algorithms and building programs that can do things that people cannot do or do things that people do but do it better.

Alejandro Cremades: So for you. Obviously you know the us was you know there for you I mean obviously is all you knew until you know you went to middle school. Ah and I’m sure it was in your heart you know because he was just like the first culture that you were able to experience. No so. Eventually you come back to the us you know to do your master’s degree and you did your masters there in the University Of Pennsylvania Computer Science ah and essentially not only you know you got your master’s but then you also you were able to meet the most important person in your life. Your wife. So. Eventually once you got the um the degree there you decided to move to California out of all places. You know the place that you know was the East Coast what attracted you from the west coast.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Now.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: You know this look I I have fond memories of both the the East Coast um so any opportunity I get I will visit the East Coast um continentally my parents and my brother they still live out on the East Coast they now live in the dc area and I love dc. But for me, um, you know, growing um, growing up when I was in New York we would all you know frequently. My parents would bring me out to California whether it’s Disneyland or or just even the San Francisco area and I just kind of liked the weather. The mountains. Um I um. Um, growing up in India I had a motorcycle I love riding motorcycles and so quite honestly California is a awesome place to ride motorcycles so you know the the ah for me California is kind of the. You know the the quintessential place to um, the combination of that Mediterranean landscape the the mountains riding a motorcycle and um, you know you can write it pretty much. Um, all twelve months of the year there’s no bad weather other than a couple of months when it rains. Um. That really that that kind of environment was very appealing to me and also let’s not discount that Silicon Valley and that’s kind of my you know computers and computer sciences my passion and this is where a lot of the innovation happens I’m sure it happens throughout the world too. But at least in 99 this was the hub.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Of where things were moving so fast I Just could not be ah, not part of that action.

Alejandro Cremades: So let’s talk about that action because I mean that action you know, got you interested in linux you were also doing your own you know contributions there and that eventually got you into Intel which was your first in rodeo.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Yeah.

Alejandro Cremades: But that was a really nice seway into the venture world for you. You know which would end up you know, becoming your first company with nit six. So what would you say were the sequence of events that needed to happen for you to be okay with venturing into the unknown.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Ah, well couple of things. Um I was young back then and so young people can take risks. Maybe there. It’s a it’s a sometimes out of stupidity too. Um. So every venture is risky. Your first venture is always the most riskiest. But for me, you know I didn’t have children. Um I was always a person that um you know um I like to define what I’m working on. Ah. Mostly because I know that I do the best job when I’m really passionate about what I’m doing and passion can’t be handed down to you somebody can’t tell you hey go be passionate about this. It doesn’t work that way and I’m always uneasy if um, if I’m working on something that. You know it’s kind of a chore and I have to do it as a means to an end in anything. Um I enjoy cooking for instance and so I don’t think I’ll ever make a meal that I don’t really want to eat you know, but um, you know sometimes um, you know people do that. It’s just ah for for them. You know. Putting a sandwich together is just so that they can get the calories. But for me, it has to be like um I’m I’m going to enjoy every bite of this? Um, so when netsi um, you know I was working at Intel I like my job but it’s not like a product that.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: I would say that hey I’m using this day in day out I really enjoy it. Um, the you know the linux kernel is a necessity. It’s not something you get obsessed about so I wanted to work on something that I thought was a pain point back then and it was secure remote application access. Um, started putting a prototype together and look I think um, most entrepreneurs will know this it all starts with the first line of code you write or if you’re building something the first um you know bolt you put into to the product. It all starts with that and 1 thing leads to another and and your um first line of code. Um, turns to 10 and it starts looking awesome and turns to a hundred lines of code and you’re like wow this is really cool and you then you get obsessed with it and that’s kind of how I started net six and I want to if you want to really do something good. You got to do it full time. So I said hey I’m going to quit my job I’m going to focus on this full time.

Alejandro Cremades: So then so then what happened next.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Well, um, next is um, an interesting story I was fortunate enough to meet. Um, um, my first co-founder his name was is Murley um, he was the Ceo of netsix. Um and he um you know he knew people that had money. So um, you know I think if you’re starting your first gig. That’s usually the hardest part which is to find somebody that will trust you and say um, you know I’ll kind of invest in you because there’s no track record and um, you know everybody has ah their own story in how they cracked. Um, um, that their first um you know the time that they raise money. It’s it’s everybody’s journey is different sometimes people um, put their own money in and get things off the ground. Um, that’s something certainly I did but we needed a lot more capital finding somebody that will trust you is an important thing. And um I think that’s probably the hardest part for an um, um, entrepreneurs that was a hard part for me too I did get lucky in meeting Merley um, we were able to find people that um well they knew him and then they um after talking to me for whatever reason they believed in me or even though I had no track record. Other than um, my engineering accomplishments. Um, they really had no um way of validating that um I’m a good product guy or or I could I’m a good cto or I’m a good person to build a business with but they um you know, um I guess um.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: After talking to me a few me a few times they got the confidence and said let’s let’s go do this I’ll give you some money? Um, yeah, and then you know, Um, then when when when when somebody gives you money they are actually giving you more than money they’re giving you ah their belief their faith in you. And so things then really get real and that dollar that you get is the most precious dollar and so you want to Maximize. Um, you want to really make them proud for believing in you and so once that sets in um, at least for me. It became a tireless obsession I went on a mission saying you know, not only do I Enjoy building this product I’m going to prove it to everybody around me that um I can knock things out of the ballpark And yeah, yeah.

Alejandro Cremades: Well hey you you? you definitely did. You definitely did because I mean with nets six I mean where you guys were doing secure and application access. Ultimately, the company was acquired by seatrix for ah, reported 50000000 you know cash. So talk about you know. First hit you know first exit I mean really remarkable walk us through how was that journey to of really understanding the full cycles of a company because I mean in this case, you were able to reach the finish line on your first day a company so what do you think that opened up for you.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: The most important thing for me there. Ah andro was um, it was a learning experience every time you realize that look um I know this that um my smartest days are ahead of me. What I mean is um. Every day I realized that um you know you know the the tomorrow I’m going to be a little bit smarter than I am today because I’m going to learn something from my mistakes and so um, you know, um, and first time in nets six. Well we did knock it out of the ballpark. Um, but there are lessons that we learned along the way um mistakes that I didn’t repeat at at Oak Areina but then there were mistakes done at ocarina which we learned from and we didn’t repeat at poor orcs and so on and so forth. Um, what your question was what did I learn at at 6 um, what I’d learned at netsix is um ah you have to be very picky in the team that you build a company with as well. Um, um, you know the the my cofounders back at netsix they shared the same passion. Um, that I have which is that relentless customer focus um work ethic. And yeah, you got to find people like that and I was again fortunate enough to um, start oak areina with another person that had that same work ethic. This was a person that we had um, hired at net 6.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: And so his name is Eric Brugerman and and so we started that company with him and and again same um, that focus on customers. The focus on work ethic and so um, what I learned at netsix is that ultimately the team that you build and the team that you surround yourself with um. Is is the most important thing because you can’t be a 1 man army you need to find ways in which you can impart your vision and passion into um other people and and you have to replicate yourself.

Alejandro Cremades: So I guess in that in that direction too because I mean the company got acquired by citrix then you spent a couple of years at Citrix. You know there as a cit on their the on one of their divisions but but I want to ask you you know once an entrepreneur entrepreneur always an entrepreneur and. Right? after this, you know you you left a citrix and you started another company called ocarina which also got acquired and eventually you know you got acquired by them in this case, you know the terms were not disclosed but you know I I think it was a good exit from what I’ve been told but I want to ask you there. What was what was the lesson there. For you with Okorina and what were you guys doing too.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: So Oariina focused. Ah so this was just a small um segue here. But this is now in around the 2006 timeframe when um, you know, social media and and you know. Companies like Facebook were taking off and ultimately this was causing a lot of storage consumption and you know, um, so what we did at Okarina was focusing on data management and data management using. Um. Um, you know in a unique way using algorithms using compression technologies using dedu deduplication There were a lot of technologies around back then that were doing data management by doing things like archival solutions or moving data around we focused on saying hey you know there’s only so much of this moving around. You can do. Ah, there has to be a better way to manage this kind of data and it has to be tackled at an algorithmic level and maybe there’s a lot of redundancy in the data and and so we focused on the problem that way. Um, you know the the lessons learned there were ah to for me. The harder the the the more um important the problem is for the person like the pain. Um, the bigger is going to be there if you can solve that the the it’s a better return on your own time and investment. Um.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: That certainly was the case at Oakarina we had a lot more customers than we had at net 6 paying a lot more money for the product that we were building because the problem was so big for them and ultimately um, turned into a much bigger exit for us too and so you know I think what? ah we had learned is. Ah, ah, maybe even ah lessons that I’d taken from netsi we built a really good product but there were probably a few other ways to solve that pain point and when we got to oak arena there were fewer ways of solving the data management problem and and it was a bigger problem. And um, the elegance with which we did it? Um, you know that also ultimately became really important that people could adopt the oakarina solution. Um, you know without too much disruption compared to other technologies out there. Um, so that you know was something that we ah that I always had a belief in the back of my mind. Um, but it kind of um you know it proved the point that and with the real world result.

Alejandro Cremades: So 1 thing that I want to ask you here because again, you know you kept going and the next one that you started was poor work port works. But right before you know that and I guess as you were thinking about the next one because I’m sure that now you’re being very intentional at this point you know, starting companies. How do you think entrepreneurs should think about ah starting companies. You know when it comes to really looking into problems and then perhaps from there into a solution that could eventually become a company.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: So I you know I have this theory that um, every couple of years um and and maybe the the years could be decades given the industry you’re in but every so often. Let’s just say it that way. That any product or any solution or that people use needs to be rethought. You need to rethink how we’re doing things and can it be done better and why why is that the case for me my belief is that because people evolve our tastes of all, um, our needs evolve. Our appetite evolves and so this is certainly I mean you can look at the I the phone I mean the phone’s been around forever. But ah, why is the iphone better than its predate. Ah a blackberry for instance and so you have to um, um, always say you know. Um, you just look around and if there’s something that is a piece of technology that you that you use all the time but the last time it was updated was a few years ago um then probably there is good chance that if you do a refresh on that and re implement it with modern technologies modern usability techniques and and um. Um, you know best practices and to meet a modern appetite of the new new generation chances are you’re going to build a really good product. Um, so this um, you know was true for us at portworks because storage has been around forever. But the way in which people build applications certainly had changed.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Um, your audience and and yourself probably know this but you know, um, we live in the cloud native era and cloud native architectures look very different from applications twenty years ago right um you know it’s not the case that an entire application fits on one computer. It’s distributed and so on. So.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: We said what needs to change and again our background is around enterprise enterprise data and so storage needs to change it needs to be redone and rethought of in the cloud native era and um, again, we I think we did a really good job. The report works the elegance of the solution. The the usability of it. Um, the manner in which people interact with storage completely changed and I think it was brought up to um, modern era where the the way in which the newer age devops audience and um, the younger. Um um, new generation. Um ah system administrators want to use storage. It resonated with them and so um, wildly successful product. It’s still the number one data management platform for Kubernetes and cloud native architectures.

Alejandro Cremades: And obviously you know good acquisition to you know pure storage. You know, bought it for 370000000 my god you know on a roll one after the other and and and it’s incredible. How you’re able to like spot those problems and really build something that they and that they want I guess. At this point you know now you know obviously this is one is your last name transaction you know before now what you’re doing a new birth and we’re going to be talking about that in just um, a tiny bit here tell us about how an entrepreneur should think about sell versus continuing to build. Think about timings here. How do they look like when you’re thinking about an m and a transaction selling your business.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: You know it? Um, that’s a good question look um it. There’s a cup. There’s no single formula for this and I’ve seen companies without naming names. Um, that have refused to sell. Even though they’ve had a really good offer in front of them some spectacular companies. Um, and and I’m talking about very large acquisition numbers too and the billions of dollars um and they’ve turned it down only to see that um you know down the line. Um, that probably would have been a better option if they had taken it and. Um, and then I’ve seen companies that have sold too early. Um, um, you know I would like to think or at least would like to sleep at night knowing that every time we’ve sold our companies whether it’s netsi oakre in our portworks. We did it at the right time because you know you can’t um. Um, what can you do? You can’t change the past and and look in all cases. Our aquis were fantastic organizations for us. So as a good home for all of our products of pure is was an excellent fit for poorworks. Um, our team there is is is still loving it. The product is doing very well pure is doing a great job for the product. Um, but I don’t want to not answer your question look you have to ask ask yourself? Um, a couple of things does this make sense for my investors right? if I sell now are they going to be happy and and so you always have to make sure that you have that? um.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Um, financial responsibility to people that invested in you. Um, the second thing you have to ask is if I sell now is this going to be financially beneficial for my employees can I do this transaction in such a way that the employees are really going to make it feel like it was worth their while. And that there are a number of different um ah parameters to it because 1 the investors will get their money during the acquisition but the employees will have to stay back and um, the way that these things work and I’m sure you know this. But um, you have to maybe stay stay another two 3 4 years and earn earn it out and maybe there’s some extra incentives that acquiring company may put in into the deal so you have to weigh all that in and say okay, yeah I think this makes sense for my employees. Each employee is going to make you know a lot um be very comfortable. Um. And the third thing I have to say is this good home for my product because ultimately that is your baby too. You built that over the past how many every years and you want to make sure that the product is going to thrive. So um, there’s no simple answer for me at least these are 3 variables that we weighed each time very carefully. And um, in all cases the answer was like yeah makes sense. Um, you know, um, also you know when um, there are other factors that you look at too which are you know? ah long term can we keep doing this ourselves is this going to be better if we keep doing it ourselves.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Um, when we sold portworks. There was also covid around the corner. So there were some um you know, uncertainty into what is going to happen over the next four or five years so you take all of that into account and you try and optimize for the best possible outcome.

Alejandro Cremades: So then let’s talk about Newbert you know what are you guys doing at Newbert White Newbert you know after all these companies in after all those super successful exits I mean it sounds like anyone would think about. Maybe you know taking it easy for a little bit but not in your case.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Hey, a hundred I’ll tell you this um look I don’t um, ah Jenny I um, you know if if if somebody out there tolds you hey I kind of saw this coming I am gonna maybe call. Ah. A little bit of Bs on that it really did take the people by surprise and what I’m going where I’m going with this is and I’ll answer your question just give me one second here for a slight segue back in like in in 90 s when our 95 are kind of time frameme when I I you know did a project with neural networks and back then I built a three- layer back propagation neural network which would take 20 minutes to train and so we used to think that a neural network was an approximation of a brain but I don’t think we had the compute power to actually see it in action. Fast forward to today thanks to companies like Nvidia and Gpus and all of that we have you know 70000000000 parameter models which believe it or not maybe is an approximation of a kind. Um um of a brain and so where I’m going with this is there is no way in and in the world. Um, Viot who’s my co-founder myself, we’re going to sit back and and and not write this too much going on no matter how how you look at it. You know it’s easy to say ai is around the corner is going to change the future those are obvious statements.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: But I think that it’s going to happen a lot sooner than people think I think you know sometimes people will say you know hey Twenty plus years the world will look different I’m thinking in in like within 5 plus or that kind of that kind of timeframe every ah industry is going to say wow what hit us. This is so transformative and so is so revolutionary gen ai that um you know I I was reading an article the other day like in in the pharmaceutical industry which I have no I I you know no background in this and I’m just going by an article I read and um, you know it. Gen ai can come up with um, you know, um, recipes to make new. Um, ah, ah drugs because it can go through and analyze um you know case studies and and reports and ah, um, analyze data that human beings simply can’t and so.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Um, you know for us. Um, we ah me personally coming from a technology space I would hate to be in a in ah in a world where I’m surrounded by technology that I don’t know how it even works or how it was invented. I have to be at the forefront of of that innovation cycle on how things are being done what I’m where I’m going with this is I don’t know how to build a car but I kind of know how a car works like a high level of the mechanic. So I’m not kind of stupid of of the things that are in the planet today. I kind of know how a plane flies like I get the concept of ah you know aerodynamics and things like that I kind of know how computers work and televisions work even though I don’t know how to if you give me the parts I won’t be able to build it but I know generally how things work so I’m aware of my surroundings Jenny I if we sleep and not. Ah, keep an eye on how things are evolving I think very soon we’ll be in a world where people are wondering like how does this work even today people cannot tell you exactly how Gpt produces an answer. It’s it’s ah it’s it. It works. It’s it’s not possible to actually say exactly why it’s doing what it’s doing and um I guess what I’m trying to say is um, um, for the um, look what what What have been my passions in life algorithms data.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: And so we want to see how to apply gen ai to Enterprise Data it data um, somebody is going to solve this because it’s a problem that is getting worse and worse and people will not be able to cope with the amount of data that’s out there. Um, and I don’t want to live in a world where ah, somebody solves it and I’m like I don’t know how it works I don’t know how that’s been solved and I’m just kind of living.

Alejandro Cremades: So then so then I guess for the people that are listening new Birth What is the business model. How do you guys make your money.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Um, we are so we just got um, started right? We just announced our funding a couple of weeks ago and we’re starting to engage with customers meaning we’re starting to deploy. Ah, the newbird product which is actually called Hawkeye which so let me just tell you a little bit about what newbird does and then I’ll talk talk about the business itself. Um, newbird. Um, um, is ah creating a digital agent a digital workforce a digital it ops engineer. Called Hawkeye whose job is to work alongside human engineers to address any kind of it related issue. So there’s this concept obviously called it ops which is managing um the operations of an it infrastructure whether it’s cloud or on-prem. And um, you know, typically it’s um, human-driven so human beings ah respond to primarily 3 types of issues either performance or there’s a product outage something is crashing or breaking or you’re trying to optimize things and so this takes skilled talent. Which is getting harder and harder to find there are fewer computer science graduates. Um and um, quite honestly, it’s kind of hard to do because you have to look at all of these complex. Telemetry Data Metrics Alerts Logs um and in real-time very quickly because if there’s a problem then um, you’re under the gun.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: You have to very on the spot. Try and come up with a solution and to do that you have to try and figure out what is happening in the first place. What’s breaking what is what is the problem. So. What we’re doing is hawkeye is going to do that job. It will do the hard work of analyzing all of these logs metrics alerts traces again because it uses a large language model actually a sequence of large language models that have been trained on this kind of data and it can do the job that human beings um are. Are better focused on doing more creative things. Um, and so like hawkeye is going to do the grunt work. Um, and so the human engineers can again focus on more important tasks and now your question is. How are we selling this what we’re doing is we’re um, initially starting to insert this with what we call code development customers. This is a concept that we’ve I’ve used in all of my previous companies where you ah work with um you know select partners that you think are ah willing to. Code develop the product with you work alongside you give you feedback. They’re willing to um, you know because the pain point is so high that they are willing to say hey I want to see you succeed I’m going to help you succeed here’s my problem. Let’s make this work together.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: And you pick these ah customers. Um, we’ve been fortunate enough that over my career. We were some of these customers I worked with in my previous companies. That’s where we are um so the first step is to figure out. How is the product going to work in their environment. Then the next step is to understand what is the value that it’s providing to you The customer. Okay, you you can’t build a pricing model or put a dollar value to it until you figure all of this out you have to figure out. Um, Ah how important is it are they.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Um, um, ah grabbing the product and deploying it everywhere. Um, when they do deploy it. How are you measuring success. So for us and newbi. How do we measure success when a problem happens in our industry. It’s called the time to incident response or time to resolution. So when you have a problem an it problem how long. Did it take for you to fix the problem. How many engineers did it take for you to fix the problem. Those are two variables. We’re being measured on now with Hawkeye um with hawkeye. Um, what we want to measure is how long before hawkeye and after hawkeye were. Typically a problem could take many hours and sometimes days our goal is for a customer to say with Hawkeye I can solve a problem in minutes and I can solve a problem with fewer people. So my people can work on other things. That’s where we are once we do that we’ll figure out. Um, how to monetize it? What is it worth to the customer. What is it worth to us and so on.

Alejandro Cremades: So I guess a now with all these startups in you know, all this success. All this success I mean for this one. For example, you guys have already raised like over 20000000 you know from someone like Mayfield you know which is one of the top top Bcs I guess if I was to put you into a time machine. And I bring you back in time. Go and I bring you back to that moment where you were thinking about. Perhaps you know like taking a leap of faith and going into the unknown. Maybe when you were at Intel and you’re able to give that younger go 1 piece of advice for launching a business. What would that be and why giving all you know now.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Yeah, you know, um, again, you know every every every company that we did There were um, lessons learned not mistakes but lessons learned. Um, if I had to um if I had to give. The younger version of myself. Um, ah the feedback it would be um that you know believe in your convictions more and stand for it and so a lot of times I would and again this goes with I guess age and lack of experience and hence your question. Um, there would be times where in my heart I would feel like hey it doesn’t feel right I think I need to do it this way. But um, there are enough people around me that would have their opinions and and say no, let’s do it this way. But um, they were really not the people working on solving the problem they would just have an opinion because that was their role. And so to put all of that aside and say you know I hear you but my gut and tells me I need to do it this way because if you started the company and and you’re the and and talking to the entrepreneurs out there then. I Hope you believe in exactly what you’re doing and a belief in what you’re doing is not just a single belief. It’s actually you probably believe in many things about the product that you’re building an example I would think that I had a belief in.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Um, how to solve a technical aspect and whether it’s the um, ah, remote access product or or D do I had an opinion actually on how to sell it to or how to price it but I would maybe take a backseat on some of those things and only focus on building it. But no, the reality is as an entrepreneur I do. Have an opinion on those elements to how should it be consumed. How should it be sold. Um, how should it be marketed. How should it be messaged. Um, and as time went on I got more and more assertive in those things I wish I’d have done that a lot um earlier upfront and so. That would be something that I give as an advice to myself hope hope that makes sense.

Alejandro Cremades: I Love it. So go for the people that are listening that will love to reach out and say hi. What is the best way for them to do so.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Oh um, yeah, you know, um, we you can follow us on Twitter I’m not a big social media person. Um, but we do have a social media account. Um, and I know people do manage that and and respond on it so feel free to reach out to us over there. Um, if there are people that are interested in um, following what newber does um, you know we have newsletters that we um and blogs that we write on our site too. So you can certainly follow our story over there. Um there’s somebody interested in playing with hawkeye. Um, we have a form. Um, on our website that they can sign up for early access. Ah, those are really the best ways to get in touch.

Alejandro Cremades: Amazing. What Google thank you so much for being on the deal maker show today. It has been an absolute honor to have you with us.

Goutham (Gou) Rao: Thank you so much Alandra I Really appreciate the opportunity and and to your audience. Thanks for listening.


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