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Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries — the show that explores GTM stories from tech’s most innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Patricia, Co-Founder and CEO at Private AI, a privacy tech startup that has raised over $11 million. Patricia shares insights from her journey, emphasizing the critical intersection of privacy, technology, and entrepreneurship.

Here are the most interesting points from our conversation:

  • Origin Story: Patricia transitioned from academic research in privacy-preserving natural and spoken language processing into entrepreneurship. She put her PhD on hold to address privacy concerns in data processing, founding Private AI.
  • Motivation for Starting Private AI: The motivation stemmed from the challenges Patricia faced during her academic research projects. She realized the necessity for scalable privacy solutions in data processing, which led to the creation of Private AI.
  • Admiration for Jennifer Arnold: Patricia admires Jennifer Arnold, CEO of Minerva AI, for her leadership and the swift scaling of her company, highlighting the importance of identifying and solving critical problems in innovative ways.
  • Impactful Literature: “How the World Really Works” by V.A. Claus Mel influenced Patricia’s perspective on tackling global challenges, including privacy issues, by leveraging technological advances.
  • Private AI’s Mission and Products: Private AI aims to make data compliance easier across various languages and jurisdictions. Its products focus on identifying, redacting, and replacing personally identifiable information to help companies comply with privacy regulations like GDPR, PCI, and HIPAA.
  • Global Vision and Challenges: The company targets a global market, with initial success in North America and a strategic focus on Europe due to GDPR compliance. Patricia discusses the challenges of simplifying complex technical solutions for diverse markets and the importance of customer education and adaptive messaging.


Identify and Solve a Real Problem:

Patricia's admiration for Jennifer Arnold, CEO of Minerva AI, underscores the importance of identifying real-world problems and developing solutions. B2B tech founders should focus on pain points in their industries that have not been adequately addressed, offering innovative solutions that can scale quickly.

Leverage Academic Research for Entrepreneurial Success:

Patricia's transition from academic research to founding Private AI illustrates the potential of leveraging specialized knowledge to address market needs. Founders should consider how their academic or technical expertise could solve industry problems, particularly in areas like privacy and data security.

Understand Regulatory Compliance as a Market Opportunity:

With the advent of GDPR and other privacy regulations, there is a growing market need for tools that help companies comply. Founders should explore how changes in legislation create opportunities for new solutions and consider privacy and compliance as integral to product development.

Globalize Your Solution from the Start:

Private AI’s focus on supporting 47 languages demonstrates the importance of considering global needs and compliance from the inception of your product. Tech founders should design their products with global markets in mind, ensuring they address the varied compliance and cultural requirements of different regions.

Educate Your Market:

Given the complexity of privacy tech and compliance, there's a significant need to educate potential clients. Founders should invest in content marketing, customer education, and transparent communication to explain their solutions' value and ease the adoption process. This approach helps in demystifying complex solutions and fostering trust with potential customers.

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