Franklin Templeton Investments hosted a panel of AI experts for a conversation on “AI and Machine Learning: A View from Silicon Valley” at its institutional client conference in San Francisco. President and Chief Technology Officer Ed Abbo and Entefy CEO Alston Ghafourifar sat down with Franklin Equity Group Research Analyst Ryan Biggs to discuss the state of AI technology and the urgency for businesses to transform.

The panel spoke on pertinent topics such as the ROI of AI‚ the challenges posed by AI adoption‚ and whether the technology is opening more doors or creating unrealistic business expectations and difficulties.

With most technology cycles‚ the hype around such huge promises can lead to frustrations in harnessing real applications and uses. However‚ what is noticeably different today around AI is the engagement at the executive level‚ said Abbo.

“Most of my career has been spent talking to chief information officers now‚ we’re increasingly finding ourselves hosting executive teams where the CEO is coming in to spend time with us and other Silicon Valley companies‚ and that’s different‚” said Abbo.

“There is a level of urgency among CEOs that they need to transform their businesses‚ otherwise somebody is going to put them out of business‚” Abbo noted. “So‚ the level of engagement is really high in trying to figure this out.”

The discussion further emphasized how companies can succeed by leveraging the right combination of technology investment and data management and applying AI in ways that help them excel in their respective industries.

The Franklin Templeton panel discussion took place at October 31‚ 2018‚ in San Francisco. You can listen to the full recorded discussion here.