On New Year’s eve, analytical companies are pouring out AI market reviews, their forecasts, and shortlists of the leaders of the global AI race. I wish I could describe 2022 with one beautiful phrase, but it’ll take more than that, and it’s not the time to romanticize the results of the year when a full-scale war has been going on in my country for ten months. Nevertheless, Reface has something to share — this year, we had a lot of work, life, emotions, and results aimed at developing the company and bringing Ukraine’s victory closer.
In today’s letter:
👁 2022 with Reface: war, struggle, resilience, and courage
🎱 Numbers: a comprehensive infographic with wins we’re proud of
🎓 Learnings: business insights, key takeaways
🚬 Smoking Room: key points of this season in the tech industry
🎅 Oh, My Meme: I look like Bad Santa, talk like Bad Santa
👁 2022 with Reface
War, struggle, resilience, and courage
Despite all the obstacles of 2022, we kept business in Ukraine during the war. Partly during blackouts. Often under air raids.
- We kept Reface operational, optimized infrastructure and comms processes, outperformed in business results, and helped our country fight on the tech frontlines. We are Ukrainians, and we have the super skills to adapt to unreal conditions, getting closer to our victory day by day.
- We are flexible as never before. Reface now operates safely in 15 countries on four continents, also maintaining an autonomous residence in Ukraine, as a big part of our team remains in their native Kyiv, a city they love. Yes, now we are genuinely a remote-first company.
- We started launching more products that engage and entertain users and bring income to Ukraine. Reface has also begun working with generative AI and neural rendering of 3D objects.
- We tested hypotheses and launched new features and products, starting with a local meme-generating app and ending the year with AI Avatar, a high-quality generative AI tool within the Reface app.
- Reface has evolved from advanced face-swaps to AI avatars, bridging users and new technologies. We have the passion and resources for this.
For 2023 we have clear goals:
Empower content creation & self-expression with AI, and keep building a great product company from Ukraine.
A comprehensive infographic with wins we’re proud of
Refacians are volunteers, warriors, donators, and superhumans, balancing war, work, and life. We discussed breakthrough AI technology and presented our new products at leading tech events in 2022, including Web Summit, TNW & Slush. Here is our 2022 in numbers.
Business insights, key takeaways
2022 didn’t pass by without giving us some business insights. I even find them somewhat positively:
- The market continues to grow despite the global crisis. The AI tech segment for our products has grown incredibly this year and has great prospects for 2023.
- Saving and sharing works, but what works better is the audience — people who consume your product because they like it, even in hard times. Audience and distribution are significant and take time to develop.
- Quick launches don’t always work. Don’t just bet on hype — high-quality results take a lot of development resources, product, marketing capabilities, and user support in their customer journey.
- Build and nurture your team. Your team is essential for the product development process.
🚬 smoking room
key points of this season in the tech industry
Generative AI-based products will go far in 2023, transforming creative work with super-lifelike synthetic content. And the role of the Ukrainian tech community is very significant here. I don't want you to miss out on the key points of this season, so here's my shortlist of worthy newsbreaks in the tech industry.
- A new case with multimodal AI is hot: D-ID has combined Stable Diffusion with GPT3 to design user video avatars.
- Over the past five years, Ukraine has remained home to a thriving tech sector and has grown by 158% in ICT exports — more than ten big European countries. Follow Ukrainian tech's journey in the State of European Tech 2022 report.
- Google will cut staff in early 2023, with even more cuts coming to its cloud computing unit. The Information predicts future developments of Disney, SpaceX, and other tech companies in the new year — it's exciting, but you'll make it.
- South Park creators raised $20 million for Deep Voodoo — an AI entertainment startup that previously produced the cringeworthy synthetic YouTube show "Sassy Justice with Fred Sassy."
🎅 Oh, My Meme
I look like Bad Santa, talk like Bad Santa
Well, Happy New Year, survivors. Congrats on making it through a year of chaos and war, upheaval, and general absurdity. And let's be honest, if you can survive 2022, you can survive anything. But just because we've made it this far doesn't mean we can rest on our laurels. We have to keep pushing forward, no matter how difficult things get. So here's my advice for the coming year:
2. Keep your sense of humor. Laughter is the best medicine, especially when things get tough.
3. Take care of yourself. Remember to eat, sleep, and get some exercise. You can't fight the good fight if you're a total mess.
4. Keep an open mind. There's always more to learn, and you never know where the next great idea might come from.
5. And most importantly, never stop believing in yourself. You've got this.
*Got you. I asked ChatGPT to write a few words here as Bad Santa and made a New Year's AI avatar from my selfies 🏴☠️🏴☠️🏴☠️
So let's raise a glass (of whatever caffeinated beverage we can get our hands on) to another year of AI greatness. And if all else fails, we can always fall back on the tried and true method of blaming it on the interns. Cheers!
Happy Holidays, Refacers, & see you in 2023!