Hi everyone.  Hope your September is going great! A topic of interest that every professional membership organization is carefully studying is Artificial Intelligence (“AI”) and its impact on its profession.  Go to any professional conference and you’ll see some speaker addressing either AI, Machine Learning, Blockchain, and/ or Big Data.  We should label them the new Big 4! As one who attends many academic or professional conferences, I could be the first to attest that one of those four topics will be discussed. Depending upon the speaker’s intention, it could be one of “doom and gloom” or one of opportunity and success.  I for one always like to look at the positives in all innovations.  The Industrial Revolution in both England and the US was also predicted to create mass unemployment. It did quite the contrary.  With all this said, how will this affect business valuation? Stock Valuation? Only time will tell but if history is any indication of the future, the future will be bright. Employment displacement might occur in some areas of valuation but overall, new areas will emerge in valuation and create brand new opportunities for those seeking it.  For example, a financial analyst seeking to determine the risk level of a publicly-traded company would have to sift through hundreds of pages of annuals and quarterlies.  With AI, a valuator can train the machine to learn from human language. For instance, instead of the valuator reading the Management Discussion and Analysis, the machine can. The machine, over time, would be able to filter out changes in language and wording to detect red flags.  As you could tell, the valuator is not being displaced but refocused on analyzing the results of the AI.  Let’s enjoy the ride!! Until next time……

Joel

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