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AI will be a bigger than social networks, internet: Early Facebook backer

Venture capitalist Jim Breyer knows a bit about the next big tech revolution. He backed Facebook when it was just a baby in 2005. The social network is now worth over $326 billion.

So where should you be putting your money next? Into artificial intelligence, according to Breyer, an area which will create more wealth than that made for internet and social network investors.

Breyer expects artificial intelligence to transform content and the film entertainment business."

"Ten years from now, it will have even more significant wealth creation, stockholder appreciation opportunities, than what I believe we saw in social networks in 2005 and internet investing in 1995," Breyer told an audience at the Viva Technology conference in Paris on Thursday.


Jim Breyer, CEO Breyer Capital
Justin Solomon | CNBC
Jim Breyer, CEO Breyer Capital

Breyer was a former board member of Facebook and is still a significant shareholder. Through his firm Breyer Capital, he has also invested in a number of other companies including music streaming service Spotify and movie production start-up Legendary Entertainment, which was recently acquired by Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda for $3.5 billion.

At Legendary Entertainment, Breyer said he saw the use of artificial intelligence which has the potential to revolutionize the industry. Legendary Entertainment was behind the blockbuster movie "Interstellar" and Breyer explained how artificial intelligence was used to get the trailer right.

"We applied statistics, machine learning, and a small group of data developers to analyze how that first trailer of Interstellar was received on Facebook, Instagram and other social networks. We then used that data to inform us on how that second trailer should look and the final trailer," Breyer said.

"What really mattered for us, how many theaters should we open in, where should we open, how should we market, and where a 150 million (dollars) might be used typically for a marketing budget for a film, narrowing that down to perhaps 100 million (dollars), and using advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, human-assisted learning, with the data...it's far less costly, fare more effective."

The technology will also be used to inform casting decisions, budgets, and other aspects of making a movie Breyer said, who predicted that the movie industry will be "revolutionized by artificial intelligence".