John Burke: We are standing in the birthplace of American innovation – a small town of just over 100,000 people, where the fate of our nation changed forever.
What happened here in 1882 transformed America into the world's foremost economic superpower. You see, I'm speaking to you from Menlo Park, New Jersey – the place where Thomas Edison unlocked the secret to household electricity, sparking a technological boom that's still going strong to this day.
Not only did Edison's breakthrough completely transform what daily life looks like to the average person – he unlocked an age of prosperity beyond imagination.
In just 40 years, household electricity doubled the U.S. economy. And in that same time, it helped some of the wealthiest men who ever lived create their fortunes – along with thousands of everyday American millionaires.
However, everything we've seen thus far was just the appetizer. Today, we enter the next era of innovation… only this time, it won't take half a century to double the economy. It's gonna happen in less than 10 years.
Between now and the year 2030, $22 trillion in new wealth will be created. These fortunes aren't just going to the people that are gonna invent the technology. Everyday Americans like you and I – who invest early – could claim our part of this new wealth.
Hi. My name is John Burke. In my almost 30 years as an investigative journalist, I've joined James Cameron on a submersible journey to explore the wreck of the Titanic. I've investigated the remote Nevada sites where the original atomic bomb tests were conducted. I'm one of only 12 people to see the original mining code written by one of America's first Bitcoin millionaires.
All of these events altered the course of history, but none of them had the impact of what you're about to see. This technology will – practically, on its own – drive American prosperity for the next decade… which is why joining me today on the grounds of Thomas Edison's original laboratory is one of the country's leading technology investing experts, Buck Jordan.
Buck just may be the greatest investor you've never heard of, and he's not investing in Apple or Amazon either. He's putting his money into startups – the companies truly driving this next wave of innovation.
After almost 10 years as an army pilot, he founded Canyon Creek Capital, an early-stage venture fund focused on startups solving big, world-changing problems. Since 2011, Canyon Creek Capital has funded 67 companies with 27 exits. They invested in HoneyBook, the go-to fintech platform for small businesses and freelancers, at just a $60 million valuation. HoneyBook is now worth over $1 billion. Canyon Creek was the first investor in AnyMeeting, a precursor to Zoom, which was acquired just five years later. And they were one of the earliest investors in Tonx – a coffee startup which was later acquired by Blue Bottle Coffee and eventually, Nestlé for $700 million.
Now, if most Americans amassed a fortune like Buck's, well, we'd probably retire and spend the rest of our days on the beach or playing golf. But Buck isn't slowing down.
In 2017, he launched Wavemaker Labs, a hybrid between a venture fund and a startup incubator. Through Wavemaker, he's creating and funding the next generation of companies that could play a central role in this new $22 trillion technological revolution.
As an early-stage angel investor and a serial entrepreneur, Buck has unique insight and unprecedented access to nearly all of the most exciting startups in this space. Buck, it's great to see you.
Buck Jordan: Good to see you too, John, and thanks for the introduction.
John Burke: Oh, absolutely. I gotta tell you – I'm really excited to have you here today. And it's interesting because outside of Silicon Valley and the VC world, not a lot of people really know who you are.
But you're leading the charge with a new way forward for creating and funding startups. Frankly, it seems like the obvious path forward really. Tell us a little bit more about Wavemaker Labs.
Buck Jordan: You hit all the high-level stuff. So Canyon Creek is where we invest in other companies, but Wavemaker is where we do it all ourselves. We assemble the team, we create the technology, we build out the go-to-market strategy, and then we open the opportunity to the public – raising money from individual investors to give them a chance to be part of our journey.
In the past two years, we've turned about $4 million in investor capital into $56 million in enterprise value. And we're just getting started.
John Burke: Wow.
Buck Jordan: I'm here today because I'm moving into a new phase – which I'm way more excited about.
John Burke: Yeah. And we're gonna get to that shortly. And you're right – it is very exciting. But I am personally impressed with what you've already accomplished, especially with two of your Wavemaker companies: Miso Robotics, which designs robots for fast food restaurants.
Miso has more than 50X'ed its valuation, growing from $7.4 million to $460 million in just under four years. And Winc, a monthly wine subscription service. You exited that deal with a 25X return over eight years. So whether it comes to companies that you're investing in or building yourself, I think it's safe to say that you know what the markets are looking for.
Buck Jordan: Well, sure. But I mean, to be perfectly honest I'm not batting 1,000. I've had my losses. The nice thing about private investing is that one winner can cover 10 losses and still leave you with a huge profit.
John Burke: Yeah, I think you're just being humble here. Really, there's no one better to guide our viewers through this technological scene change and the explosion of money coming in its wake.
Buck Jordan: The amount of money coming down the pike is just insane. You know, you mentioned that $22 trillion number… that's not my number – that's what McKinsey Global Institute says this new technology will create by 2030.
John Burke: Think about that – $22 trillion. I mean, that is a big number. It's really kind of hard to wrap your head around, isn't it?
Buck Jordan: Well, let's put it in context. To get to $22 trillion, you need to make $6 billion a day, every day, for the next decade. Or hypothetically, that's 6,000 new million-dollar fortunes created today alone. And another 6,000 tomorrow. And the day after that. And the day after that. And every single day between now and the year 2030.
John Burke: That is a staggering amount of wealth. I mean, there's a chance folks will hear that and think, "Frankly, you know what? You're full of it." I mean, I even had to triple-check the numbers myself.
Buck Jordan: You're right to be skeptical on numbers like that, John, but I'm convinced. And I think once you get all the facts, you and everyone watching will be too – because this technology… it's about so much more than just making money.
We're facing unprecedented problems around the world.
But the bigger those problems get, the more valuable those solutions become. Now, I've made a lot of money off burger-flipping robots and wine delivery apps. But my real focus is on companies that are trying to solve big, real-world problems. And that's what this technology enables. Look, it has the power to eliminate massive labor shortages in an $800 billion industry, cement our place as the global military superpower, and most importantly, reduce or completely eliminate almost 20 million deaths a year from cancer, heart disease, and medical misdiagnosis.
John Burke: Wow.
Buck Jordan: This is all here. It's on our doorstep. It has the power to make a lot of people extremely wealthy.
John Burke: Let's dive right in. What is this technology that's gonna change the world?
Buck Jordan: John, it's already happening. Artificial intelligence. It's here, and it's already an economic force.
John Burke: OK, I can hear all the objections coming right now. When you talk about artificial intelligence – alright – you don't mean killer robots. They've got evil red eyes. They're taking over the world. They just won't stop. Right?
Buck Jordan: I mean, definitely not. For the most part, artificial intelligence – AI – is a series of algorithms. It's just computer code designed to recognize and learn from patterns. It's being used in one way or another in every major business on the planet. Look at a company like Palantir – it's big data simplified. They help organizations turn tons of random, disorganized information into real insights they can use on a daily basis.
John Burke: OK. Give me an example of that.
Buck Jordan: Like when U.S. counterterrorism teams are monitoring border crossings and airport traffic, Palantir can help them look for the smallest irregularities – which signals an incoming threat. And the markets responded really well. Palantir grew from $7 million to $41 billion in just 10 years. That's over 291,000% growth – all while the company was still private. Now, AI helped Wavemaker grow by 1,300% in 24 months. It also led to one of our most successful exits – a company called Bridg. Bridg does real-world intelligent customer insights for businesses.
John Burke: OK, wait a minute. Wait. Intelligent customer insights? Can you explain that?
Buck Jordan: Sure. If you've ever bought anything on Amazon, you know that there's a section when you're placing an order that says, "You may also like…"
John Burke: Yeah, of course.
Buck Jordan: Right. So in the online environment, that's relatively easy to do. You just look at a person's shopping history, what they're shopping for now, and compare that to similar customers. It's much more challenging in a brick-and-mortar setting. That's the puzzle Bridg solved. They bring the same type of AI Amazon uses to physical mom-and-pop businesses, helping them to compete. We invested in Bridg back in 2015 – their Series A had a $13 million valuation. In May of 2021, the company was acquired for $350 million. Not quite as exciting as killer robots – but hey, I'll take it.
John Burke: Yeah, me too.
Buck Jordan: In fact, another company solving a similar problem just crossed my desk. They're serving a different – much bigger – market, and I'm excited to share more details on them soon.
John Burke: So before we dive in, let's make something clear here. We're not talking about stocks. The companies – and more importantly, the rare and extraordinary gains we're discussing today – they're all private, right?
Buck Jordan: Yeah, that's right. I mean, listen. I've got nothing against public markets. Well, I do a little bit… but we'll get to that in a sec. You know, you can see some otherworldly profits from investing in stocks… but, John, we all know the truth. The biggest gains almost always come from investing in companies at the early stage, then cashing out when they go public or get acquired. Is that riskier? Sure. But nothing's guaranteed in the stock market either. In both situations, you could lose it all, but the upside is much higher on the private side. I definitely prefer the asymmetric bets. The trick is finding the right companies out of all the startups looking to become the next unicorn.
John Burke: OK, Buck, what you just said – that's been true for decades. But now more than ever, it's important folks understand how much wealth is disproportionately saved for private investors.
Buck Jordan: Exactly. Companies are staying private for much, much longer. I mean, look at Stripe. They were just named the most valuable private company in the world – worth $95 billion after raising their Series H. I mean, seriously. They raised $600 million. That's more than most companies raise during their IPO.
John Burke: Now, it's becoming more and more clear – this is the present and future of investing for outsized returns. The biggest gains are going to private investors. Fortunately, everyday folks now have a chance to get in on the action. And, Buck, with $22 trillion on the line, it looks like most of the action is happening in AI. So let's dig in to that. Where is AI gonna make the biggest impact next?
Buck Jordan: I haven't seen a pitch deck in years that doesn't mention AI in some form. So it's really easy to get distracted. There are five different areas where I think AI, robotics, and automation are set to create the greatest amount of wealth in the next few years – five industries that are jumping decades into the future – which is why my team and I are disciplined about keeping our focus here.
John Burke: Well, you know, it's clear that you are a seasoned investor just based on how you talk about being disciplined. It sounds like you learned some of those lessons the hard way, yeah?
Buck Jordan: I learned most of that in the military, where the stakes are a lot higher. You've gotta rely on your intel and trust it – even if inside, your emotions are pushing you to do something else. In the movies, they glorify instincts – brave soldiers who defy command to make a gut move and win the day. In real life, that stuff will just get you killed… or if you survive, discharged. When you're in combat, you've got your training, your intel, and your orders. And that's how you win. Same thing in the investing world.
John Burke: That is an interesting parallel. Your service has clearly had a huge impact on your life and your career.
Buck Jordan: In more ways than one. The army's where I first got to experience AI. I mean, keep in mind – this is probably 2003 or something. I was doing tank training in Fort Knox, Kentucky, and suddenly, we get orders. "Move outta the way. Autonomous vehicles coming through." And I was like, "OK, cool." Not like I'd ever heard those words in that order before. So we all clear off the road, and three Humvees come whizzing by us. I mean, actually… let me rephrase that. Three Humvees drive themselves past us – no drivers… nobody even in the vehicles.
And that's when I became obsessed. AI, automation, and robotics was the future – full stop. Obviously, they were betting big on this technology changing defense. And it is… immensely. But just like we've been talking about, it's so much bigger than that.
John Burke: How so?
Buck Jordan: Well, here's an easy promise – the era of the fighter pilot is over.
John Burke: Wow, OK. That's a bold statement.
Buck Jordan: It is, John. But think about it this way. Manned aircraft just doesn't really make sense anymore. Almost 40% of the DOD budget is training and personnel costs – around $270 billion a year. When I was in the army, I had to fly 40 hours a month just on training runs. It costs $1,200 an hour to fly a Black Hawk, around $33,000 an hour for an F-35… not to mention the wear and tear from all that pointless flying. Having an autonomous fighter jet that's ready to go whenever needed – with an algorithm that's super sharp and trained on all the latest maneuvers – will save hundreds of billions of dollars.
John Burke: So it sounds like AI and robotics will save an incredible amount of money on defense while also saving countless lives. That's a great thing. So I'm interested: What companies have you and your team seen that are making inroads in this space?
Buck Jordan: One that we're really interested in is focused on the software part of all this. Instead of building the actual vehicles, they're building the AI-powered operating system for autonomous vehicles. Right now, they're focused more on the government and defense contract side of things because that's where the money is for them. But why I like them so much is that they could be a key player in the entire autonomous vehicle industry – worth over half a trillion dollars by 2026.
So investing in this company is both a defense play and a transportation play, which is exciting because they've got more paths to profitability, more exit strategies, and greater growth potential. They're mainly focusing on their area of expertise but recognize the potential to grow when the time is right.
John Burke: That is really fascinating. Companies like this, who have a core profitable area of focus but still some flexibility, have plenty of options when it comes to cashing out. And in industries like these, where so much money is flying around, that's likely the closest to a sure-thing investment you'll ever see. Defense and transportation are worth a combined $8 trillion. So a company that could be a big player in both spaces is definitely one worth watching.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. The Research Team and I are pulling all the details on this company and putting together a complete Due Diligence Package with everything investors need to know. This process takes a few weeks, but I'll talk more about that later. I think companies like this are pivotal to our national defense, and I'm really passionate about this industry. But as much as I love it, it's not even the area where AI will make the biggest difference.
John Burke: Which industry is that then?
Buck Jordan: Well, it's gotta be health care.
John Burke: OK. Well, I was hoping we'd get to talk about health care today, Buck. You know, health care is the one industry that affects everyone, and costs of everything from medicine to doctor visits are just skyrocketing. It's one of the top issues in every election, and you and I both know: The technology here – it's all over the place. In some areas, we're on the cutting edge and then in others, it seems like we're still barbaric.
Buck Jordan: Health care doesn't just represent the power to change and save lives. It's also the best chance to capitalize on the $22 trillion AI revolution. This is a market where new 1,000%-or-higher winners seem to be popping up regularly. And that's just in public markets. But since we're talking about private deals today, 1,000% gains in a few years are just the tip of the iceberg. Think of a company like HeartFlow – using artificial intelligence to diagnose coronary artery disease. The earliest private investors got in at a valuation of just under $600,000. HeartFlow is planning to go public at a $2.8 billion valuation. That's over 412,000% growth in just 12 years.
John Burke: That's the equivalent of turning $1,000 into over $4 million. Heart disease is the number-one killer of Americans, and HeartFlow is using AI to drastically decrease that number. You know, Buck, it seems like AI is helping doctors diagnose diseases earlier, right?
Buck Jordan: Yeah. I mean, it all comes down to pattern recognition. That's all diagnosis really is. An AI can find any pattern that we can – only it can do it faster, more accurately, and with more detail. Because unlike our brains, AI can run nonstop. And the longer it runs, the better it gets at finding patterns.
But, John, AI doesn't find patterns the same way humans do. In fact, it finds patterns in almost the completely opposite way, which is exactly why AI is so essential to doctors – especially when it comes to radiology. I'm talking about things like mammograms, MRIs, and X-rays.
When someone goes in for a mammogram… right now, the doctor uses his bare eyes or maybe a magnifying glass to go over the scan. An AI starts by breaking the scan up into billions of microscopic pixels. Then, it scans each one, looking for the tiniest traits of cancer… like a tumor developing inside dense tissue, making it almost invisible to the human eye until it's too late.
John Burke: So these AI algorithms are gonna reveal a lot more detail than doctors have ever been able to see before.
Buck Jordan: It's not just that, John. The AI gets much more practice at detecting cancer than a single doctor ever can. Look, a doctor goes through four years of undergrad, four years of med school, around four years of residency. After 12 years of training, he's maybe seen 3,000 mammograms in total.
Meanwhile, an AI algorithm is trained on more than 90,000 mammograms. Each one is labeled as cancerous or cancer free. And the cancer is clearly marked. The AI analyzes each one – pixel by pixel – looking for patterns. After going through that many mammograms, the AI gets really good at identifying cancer. And it can analyze all 90,000 in just 20 hours. It would take an oncologist 360 years to see that many mammograms.
John Burke: OK. So when the AI sees a new mammogram, it looks for similar patterns to tell us if the patient has cancer or not… which then begs the question: Is AI better at detecting cancer than doctors?
Buck Jordan: Yes, thanks to Regina Barzilay. So back in 2014, Regina was diagnosed with advanced-stage breast cancer. Her doctors quickly started chemo, and after several rounds, she went into remission. But it should never have gotten that far.
Regina didn't know the first thing about medicine, but as an MIT computer scientist, she understood technology. And one look at her oncologist's office told her that cancer screening was decades behind the time. As soon as she recovered, Regina assembled an elite team of medical scientists – including a Harvard radiologist and one of the country's top oncologists. With their combined knowledge and MIT's near-infinite computing power, Regina and her team built an AI that can diagnose cancer with 97% accuracy.
John Burke: Wow.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. Current methods are only accurate about 40% of the time.
John Burke: That right there – that is a massive difference, Buck. That's more than twice as accurate. I mean, over 42,000 women die from breast cancer in the United States every year. I mean, just imagine how many of those deaths Regina's AI could prevent.
Buck Jordan: I mean, that's not even the best part, John.
After her team built the system, Regina ran her own mammograms through it. The AI caught her cancer in the 2014 scan – the year she was diagnosed. But it also caught it in her 2013 mammogram. And the one from 2012. Regina had already had cancer for two years, but her doctors failed to find it. By then, it could have been too late. Regina got lucky. For millions of Americans, two years is too late.
But with this new AI, doctors and patients have two extra years to eliminate one of the world's most crippling diseases.
John Burke: You know, cancer and medical misdiagnoses are the highest causes of death in Americans after heart disease. Regina's AI is actively solving that problem. That is just incredible.
Buck Jordan: Remember – it all comes down to pattern recognition. So this is a lot bigger than individual diseases. AI like this is perfect for recognizing health patterns on a global scale, identifying new diseases, and warning leaders before another pandemic breaks out. So it's no wonder in 2017, Regina won the prestigious MacArthur Genius Grant for her work. And her work is saving lives in the real world.
Every year at Massachusetts General Hospital, doctors use Regina's AI to give over 50,000 patients the earliest and most accurate diagnosis possible. Regina's AI could soon be part of oncology departments in every hospital in the country. Right now, my team and I are looking for the next Regina – a founder and a company who are using AI to create the next big breakthrough in health care. And we've seen some really interesting candidates so far.
John Burke: So tell us about some of the more promising ones.
Buck Jordan: One startup is taking the idea of robot-assisted surgery to the next level. Instead of slicing someone open to do a procedure, imagine making a nick the size of a paper cut, inserting a robotic device remotely controlled by a surgeon, doing what you need to do, and then closing up the patient with a Band-Aid. No stitches, no long recovery, no expensive or risky anesthetics – full surgery done in minutes, instead of hours.
This is a thriving and growing market and will be worth over $90 billion in just a few years. CMR Surgical is just the latest unicorn in this space. With their robotic surgery technology, the company raised $600 million at a $3 billion valuation. In 2014, CMR raised their first funding round at just an $8 million valuation. That's a gain of more than 37,000% in just seven years – like turning $2,500 into almost $1 million.
John Burke: Wow.
Buck Jordan: Another company developing the world's first artificial human arm – not a cheap plastic-looking prosthetic but an actual mind-controlled arm with a wrist, elbows, and fingers. Most prosthetics on the market right now couldn't even pick up an apple. This company could redefine the $13 billion prosthetic industry over the next few years.
John Burke: So can folks watching expect to get an introduction to companies like these in the near future?
Buck Jordan: Definitely. If a company is solving big problems and meets my criteria, then it's in everyone's best interest to get them in front of as many investors as possible.
John Burke: Well, Buck, as you know, the U.S. spends almost $4 trillion a year on health care. And a lot of that market is gonna turn over thanks to new breakthroughs in AI, robotics, and automation. And viewers will have the chance to get details on these companies and others that the Research Team is looking at later on. That's really exciting. Now, you mentioned that health care is the industry where AI, robotics, and automation will be the biggest difference maker, right?
Buck Jordan: That's right. This technology is gonna solve huge problems in the health-care field. And investors will make a lot of money in the process. But there's another industry where potential gains will be way higher – transportation and shipping.
John Burke: That is definitely not the first industry that came to my mind, but you know what? That makes sense. I mean, we live in a very global economy, and overseas shipping alone is a multitrillion-dollar industry – not to mention the whole self-driving cars thing is always on the horizon.
Buck Jordan: 100%. But there's way more money here. Startups are flooding into the space. We're still a ways away from true self-driving cars, but autonomous vehicles are starting to become more mainstream.
John Burke: So if not cars, what are we looking at?
Buck Jordan: Well, this sounds ridiculous, John, but autonomous vehicles are making a big splash in the food delivery space.
John Burke: Well, you have to admit, Buck, the idea of a cooler on wheels just isn't as exciting as a self-driving Tesla.
Buck Jordan: True, but the advantage of the cooler on wheels is: It's not gonna kill anybody if the technology isn't 100% perfect.
John Burke: That's true.
Buck Jordan: What these companies are doing is perfecting the base layer of self-driving technology in a relatively safe environment. So yeah. Right now, it's a cooler on wheels beep-beeping through LA sidewalks. But in five years, that same company could have a fleet of autonomous trucks transporting produce across the country.
John Burke: You know, I really just had never thought of it that way, but you make a good point. Food delivery is such an interesting use for autonomous vehicles. It seems like a far less dangerous testing ground. And it's also extremely practical. After all, most of these delivery companies – talking about Uber Eats, GrubHub, DoorDash – they're not even profitable yet… which really, that's surprising considering the crazy-high fees both the consumers and the restaurants have to pay for these services. So hopefully this solves two problems, right? Giving these companies a profitable business model while also lowering costs for everyone involved.
Buck Jordan: I can't tell you how many pitches I've seen for autonomous food delivery… drone, robot, wagon, scooter – you name it. A successful startup is more than a great idea. They need to have either an incredible leadership team or some superimpressive backers. In this case, the winner has both – not to mention a huge technological advantage over the competition.
John Burke: Well, tell us more about their advantages.
Buck Jordan: Well, they've got an incredible leadership team and some heavyweight backers. Their COO was VP at GoDaddy. Their CEO was head of robotics at Uber, and Uber is their biggest investor – not to mention they're the only company I've seen in this space that actually has a working autonomous delivery vehicle. Forget remote control – this delivery bot drives itself. So when we had the chance to invest in this company, we didn't even think twice. Because like I said, I fully believe that this is the dominant player in what will shortly be an almost $100 billion market. Now, my team at Wavemaker Labs is coordinating this company's next fundraising round. The team is reviewing the company and the deal as we speak.
John Burke: You know, this company reminds me of what Amazon is trying to do with delivery drones.
Buck Jordan: Funny you mention drones. I mean, not too long ago we looked at a company that was solving the biggest problem in making drones mainstream.
John Burke: How's that?
Buck Jordan: Well, think of it this way. Why do we need air traffic controllers?
John Burke: Well, because without them, planes would constantly be crashing into each other. So your point is: There's no equivalent air traffic controllers for drones.
Buck Jordan: Exactly. I mean, John, if we had tens of thousands of drones – especially autonomous drones flying overhead, delivering packages – it would be dangerous just to walk on the street… not to mention flying. Imagine getting on a plane, and 30 seconds after takeoff, the plane needs to land again because a drone flew into one of the wings. This company realized we need an FAA for drones so that exact situation doesn't happen. And it's the perfect opportunity for AI. It's a rules-based system that requires crunching a lot of data all at once and balancing countless variables. That's a job that's just super hard and extremely stressful for humans.
John Burke: Well, it sounds like if this company could perfect AI for drone traffic, we could see the same solution for cars.
Buck Jordan: You're not far off, John. Like I said, we're still a ways from self-driving cars. But when we get there, an FAA for autonomous cars could make auto accidents and traffic jams a thing of the past. Imagine LA or New York without traffic. That's the future. The global drone market will soon be worth $41.3 billion. And the only way it gets there is a platform that makes everyday commercial drones a reality. This company is most likely the one that gets us there, but we weren't the only ones interested. This company's investors include two of the most prominent venture capital funds in Silicon Valley – General Catalyst and Social Capital. Between these two companies, they've invested in multiple rounds for Airbnb, Stripe, Livongo, Snap, Intercom, and Slack – just to name a few. Microsoft and Qualcomm, the Department of Defense have also invested in this company. So some of the most successful venture funds, billionaires, and the U.S. government are all throwing money at this startup.
John Burke: So when you're saying that you're looking for companies that solve big, real-world problems, that includes problems most people haven't even imagined yet.
Buck Jordan: Exactly. There's almost always a ton of money to be made by the company that solves a new and urgent problem. But obviously, there's more risk here. In new markets where there's no precedent, no rules, no existing players, it's easier to get burned. And your capital may be tied up for years, which is why you should never risk more than you can afford to lose.
John Burke: You know, I think everyone watching is aware of that. But you know, looking at your portfolio you've obviously found a way to mitigate it. I mean, your record speaks for itself. It really does. 40% of your portfolio companies have exited. You've had multiple thousand-percent-or-higher returns. Now, while those returns are in the past and we can't predict the future obviously, you found a system that seems to work for you.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. I find that investing in companies solving these problems in multiple industries makes them a safer bet. They have more options to diversify – like one startup sitting right at the edge of manufacturing and space exploration.
John Burke: Well, that doesn't sound anything like the manufacturing I'm used to.
Buck Jordan: Forget everything you think you know about manufacturing because I'm not talking about some Ford plant in Michigan. I'm talking about a company that 3D prints rocket ships.
John Burke: OK. Alright. You got my attention. Go ahead.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. This is my new favorite company. I've invested in every one of their funding rounds. They build rockets designed to haul cargo into space.
John Burke: So like SpaceX?
Buck Jordan: Kind of. I mean, like SpaceX this company also builds reusable rockets – eliminating waste and making space travel more affordable overall. But unlike SpaceX, the real breakthrough is their manufacturing technology – just how quickly and efficiently they can build rockets. They're unrivaled in this area. Their team designed a robotic arm that can 3D print a fully functional rocket in just 60 days.
John Burke: Wow.
Buck Jordan: It typically it takes 12 to 18 months to build a rocket. This company can do it in two months – using just 1% the amount of parts. That's a massive moat.
John Burke: Well, now it makes sense why you've invested in all their funding rounds. I'm sure it's paid off.
Buck Jordan: Well, in 2016 they took their first investors at a $2.5 million valuation. Now, we just closed out their Series E at $4.2 billion. So yeah, you could say that. But at the same time, they've got much more room to grow. This company isn't even close to being done. Look at SpaceX right now. They're sitting on a $74 billion valuation, and there's nothing stopping these guys from blowing right past that – which why I'm sure the folks watching at home would love to hear more about how they could possibly get involved in a future funding round.
John Burke: Well, we'll get to that part soon, Buck.
Buck Jordan: Before we change the subject, this new technology is so much bigger than 3D-printed rockets. I mean, yeah. That's where it starts. But just like we talked about earlier with the autonomous delivery robots, this is just the base-layer technology that's gonna expand into every other part of manufacturing.
First off, the U.S. manufacturing sector is worth almost $6 trillion right now. And this technology is what helps this industry grow again. Robotic assistance helps us take manufacturing away from China and put it back on American soil.
So we get American quality, affordable prices, and reduced shipping costs and time. Just think about a truly independent America, where we never have to rely on anyone else for any supply chain needs. That's the future. Robotic assistance is how this sector grows – creating a better economy and more jobs.
John Burke: You know, I can really tell you're extremely passionate about this sector. And the picture that you're painting is a lot nicer than most people probably have about American manufacturing. So are there any other companies in the space your team is looking at right now?
Buck Jordan: Yeah, there's one that's really got my attention. This company designed a robot that helps move products around a warehouse to make fulfillment faster and easier.
John Burke: Well, that sounds a lot like Kiva Systems. That's the company Amazon bought.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. Good point, John. This company is way cooler than Kiva though. The biggest limitation of Kiva's robots is that they can only move entire pallets or shelves. Warehouse workers still have to find the exact product on that shelf and pack it up. But this company's robots can find and move individual products – way more useful for a big organization like Amazon that tends to get a lot of one- and two-item orders.
John Burke: Well, Amazon purchased Kiva back in 2012 for $775 million. And back then, the entire warehouse automation market was only worth about $8 billion.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. Amazon basically spent 10% of the entire market size to buy Kiva. That market's approaching $30 billion now. And it's only getting bigger. So do the math on what an acquisition of this company could look like. And think about the potential gains when you realize this startup is only valued at $150 million right now.
John Burke: Alright, alright, Buck. So we just talked about four of the biggest opportunities in AI, and we're getting close to the end of this interview. But I know that there's one more industry that's gonna be completely transformed by this technology. And you're really excited about it.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. So as folks probably know by now, I'm really interested in AI, robotics, and automation. But my passion is actually in food. I love food – cooking, eating, smelling, watching… all of it. But let's be honest: There's not a lot of money in food. Restaurant margins are just razor thin. Most restaurants have a 3% to 5% profit margin. And a lot of that is because of labor, training costs, and of course, massive turnover. And then on top of that, we have this new labor shortage – which isn't helping at all.
When I started Wavemaker, it was really in response to that problem. My friend owns a fast-food chain on the West Coast, and he told me labor issues were keeping him up at night. So I made him a bet that we could design a robot to double his profit margins. If he lost, he'd have to invest in the company.
John Burke: So who won?
Buck Jordan: Well, he was the first investor in Miso, and he got in at a $1.5 million valuation. So even though he lost the bet, he still wins.
John Burke: And now, just to be clear for you folks at home we're talking about Miso Robotics: the company that designed Flippy, a robot arm that can – among other things – flip burgers… which saves a ton of money on labor.
Buck Jordan: You know, John, that sounds really simple – but in order to flip a burger, the arm needs to have both a wrist and an elbow. As far as I know, there's no other robotic arm that does that. So the potential use cases go way beyond just restaurant functions, which – by the way – is an $800 billion industry on its own.
John Burke: I'm sure a lot of companies would be willing to license that technology for their purposes.
Buck Jordan: Well, we're not counting on that. But it's very possibly another revenue stream for us.
John Burke: You know, you've taken the whole robot chef thing to another level though. I know one of your Wavemaker companies is a completely self-contained pizza kitchen.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. We already did it with burgers. That's a technology we sell to restaurants. But with pizza, I figured we could own the entire asset – because the entire pizza kitchen is self contained and small enough to fit in the lobby of most office buildings. We have so many more options for where we can place these with way less overhead than a traditional restaurant. We just closed the raise for this company. And we brought in almost $5 million from a few thousand Main Street investors. And personally, John, I love the fact that so many everyday folks were able to be part of this journey with us, and I wanna do it more and more. And that's really why we're here today, John.
John Burke: Buck, this is very exciting – because today, you'll be bringing your expertise, your knowledge, and deal flow to a select group of everyday Main Street investors.
Buck Jordan: You know, this is the next phase of investing. First, I started Canyon Creek – investing in a more traditional sense. It was the old-school VC approach – making my rich investors richer. Then, with Wavemaker we gave more opportunity to founders and entrepreneurs by bringing together the best and brightest minds and building these companies from the ground up. But now, it's time to bring more opportunity to the kind of people and families I grew up around.
Look, I've had a few a hundred-million-dollar-plus exits, which is great. But I grew up in the Midwest, and I went to a state school. I had to struggle for most of my opportunities. Even when I started Canyon Creek, I didn't have backers. Me and a few friends had to cobble together funds – a couple grand at a time. Then, the checks started getting bigger and bigger after we proved ourselves. Suddenly, we had $6 million to deploy. Then, $10 million. Then, $30 million.
So if anyone knows how to take a few thousand dollars and turn it into millions in just a few years, it's me. Now, I wanna give that opportunity to everyone I can – which is why I'm so proud to introduce New Wave Syndicate.
John Burke: Buck, you know, you're really the American Dream. Nobody handed you anything. You earned it all – every opportunity. And now, you're giving folks at home the chance to join these opportunities alongside you. So let's talk a little bit about how this is gonna work.
Buck Jordan: Yeah, absolutely. I'm really excited about this. One of the things I love most about my career is that I get to work with some of the smartest scientists and business operators in the world. The other thing I love is talking to investors and everyday people about what the businesses of the future are going to look like.
With New Wave Syndicate, I'm combining the two here. I'm putting together a group that I can take behind the scenes with me as I invest in or build the AI companies of the future. I'll be out there, sourcing the best deal I can – companies like Winc, Bridg, Miso, HoneyBook. The folks who join this one-of-a-kind research service will discover how to invest in high-upside deals just like these ones. They get the kind of access only hedge funds and big VC firms usually get.
John Burke: You're not just telling folks, "Look, here's a good startup. Go invest in it." You're putting them right in the midst of the action.
Buck Jordan: Yeah, that's the fun part. If I'm meeting with the founder of an exciting AI diagnostics company and he's telling me about a big breakthrough he just made in – let's say – cancer detection algorithm… well, I can just pull out my phone and livestream it to this group. Folks can ask questions that I can relay to him on the spot. And the recordings will be available online for members too.
John Burke: It would be almost impossible for you to get every last detail of what this founder says. So this makes everything crystal clear for the folks who join.
Buck Jordan: Exactly. Or let's say I'm going on the manufacturing floor to see the very first prototype of an autonomous hamburger machine. This group can watch right along with me as the very first prototype makes the very first burger of the billions we're eventually gonna sell over the life of this company. And then this group will get to decide – after they've already seen it in action – if they wanna put their money behind that startup alongside me.
For the past decade, I've had a sneak preview of the future over and over again. And this advantage has made me millions and millions of dollars. Now, I get to share that experience and the potential future profits with a small group of members in this service.
John Burke: Well, I know a lot of people are just excited to partner up with you. A third-party team of deal analysts has been reviewing your companies for over a year. And I gotta tell you, they tell me that the quality of deals that you bring to them – everything from the technology to the valuation – are head and shoulders above what they're used to seeing.
Buck Jordan: Not to brag, John, but I'm not surprised. I've already built multiple successful companies in the automation and AI space. And I'm only improving in that area. And the outside startups that come to me aren't just looking for investment. They give me the best terms because they want me on the board as a strategic advisor. So the quality of my deal flow – at least in the AI and automation space – it's just better than most investors see.
John Burke: Members of this new research service will get to see at least one of these deals every month. And these are deals that aren't available on the dozens of crowdfunding platforms out there.
Buck Jordan: That's right. These are companies pitching to me directly after getting through multiple rounds of due diligence from my team. Then, we pass our findings to the Angels & Entrepreneurs Research Team. They decide if they think the deal is a good opportunity for members.
John Burke: OK, OK. So let me get this clear, Buck. If and only if the deals get through your team, you personally, and finally, the Angels team, do these startups get presented to members.
Buck Jordan: Exactly. These are the best of the best startups making waves in AI, automation, and robotics – the companies with the most unique solutions to the toughest problems, the best leadership teams, the biggest growth potential, and the most reasonable valuations.
John Burke: Now, Buck, the amount of research, vetting, and market validation you and the team do on these deals could cost an individual tens of thousands of dollars.
Buck Jordan: That may be true. But it's more likely that no matter how much folks are willing to pay for the technical, business, and legal review, most of these companies wouldn't give just anyone access to all the information they need in the first place. This is a very competitive area. Remember, there's $22 trillion on the line. Each of these companies is aiming to grow to billions of dollars in value.
They're not just gonna let everyone see everything they're doing. I get access to the information because they want me as an investor and advisor. And I have at least one new company trying to pitch me almost every single day. Only about 10% of those get through my team. And I only end up investing in about a handful of those.
And it's the best of the best I'm sharing with this group. I'm not just sending out a quick email or text and saying, "Hey, invest in this company on XYZ site. I think they're cool." Members get a complete Investor Package that's taken the Angels & Entrepreneurs team months to research and compile. All the work has already been done. The only thing members need to do is review our research, look at the company documents, and decide whether or not to invest.
John Burke: And today, you're actually willing to give some of that research away for free.
Buck Jordan: Yeah. This is something I've never done before. I don't just normally share this intel, but I'm asking folks to join me behind the scenes with these companies. So I wanna give you a sneak peek into what you'll be getting right up front. So I'm letting everyone watching this see a version of the Due Diligence Package the Angels team has prepared for the company being recommended right now.
Go ahead and review it. You're gonna see pretty quickly why I think this is going to be a big part of this $22 trillion technological revolution. Just read for two minutes and you'll see this startup could make you a fortune.
John Burke: You know, Buck, that's an incredible offer. Each of these Due Diligence Packages could cost up to $10,000 for all the research and the effort that goes into them – not to mention the specialty analysis by industry experts. And you're giving folks their first one for free.
Buck Jordan: Well, look. When I invest in a startup, I don't just write a check because the founders pinky swear they're gonna make me a lot of money. I take a good look at their company and their product. So I want anyone who joins me on this journey to have the same chance – to see the work that goes into all of this before they spend a dime… because I think the really smart investors are going to very quickly realize just with this first deal that these are deals they're not gonna see anywhere else. And if they like what they see, they can sign up for the full details – the founders' Hot Seat videos, the group discussions, the behind-the-scenes video, and everything else my members get at the bottom of the page. They get to go with me everywhere – into the meetings with the scientists and the CEOs, onto the factory floor where the AI machines are being built, in my boardroom as I meet with strategic partners and make deals. This is the world through my eyes. I want folks to see what I see so they can understand exactly why I'm making the decisions I make.
John Burke: It's really a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the people who see the potential of AI. And again, AI is projected to generate $6 billion a day. I mean, that is the equivalent of 6,000 new millionaires a day until the end of the decade. I keep coming back to that number because it's just so extraordinary. And now, you have the chance to claim your portion of this new wealth. Isn't that right, Buck?
Buck Jordan: That's right. Right now, I'm inviting you to join me. There's $22 trillion coming down the pike between now and 2030 – $6 billion a day. By finding the best startups solving the biggest problems, we'll put ourselves in the best possible position to profit from the AI revolution. And when you subscribe to the New Wave Syndicate today, you're gonna discover one of these startups each and every month. These are deals you won't easily find anywhere else.
There's a button at the bottom your screen right now. Click it and review your first Due Diligence Package absolutely free. Then, if you agree that just this first deal can make you more money than any investment you've ever done before… just follow the instructions further down the page and join us.
John Burke: Buck, thank you so much for being here today. It sure was great meeting you – enjoyed it. To the folks at home, don't sit on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
If you have any questions about the service and how it will work for you, I encourage you to contact our reliable customer service team at 1-866-451-3715 or 443-354-4734 (for international calls) and mention Priority Code: WANWY405.
I'm John Burke. And thank you for joining us today at the Angels & Entrepreneurs Network.