Meet the second round of Disrupt Audience Choice winners

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We asked TechCrunch readers to vote on the roundtables they would most like to see on Vehicle destruction October 18-20 in San Francisco, and startup fans from all over the world performed.

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One of the most popular sessions on TechCrunch Disrupt, roundtables are 30-minute expert-led discussions for up to 20 participants who share an interest in a particular topic. The format allows for deeper conversation, questions and answers, and gives participants time to network and explore opportunities for collaboration.

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Before we introduce the next five roundtables that got huge love during our Audience Choice poll, here’s a quick reminder from head office:

Click and save: Buy a pass at Disrupt before the price increase on August 5, 2022 and you can get over $1,000.

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Ready for an interesting mix of roundtable topics? From solving real problems with NFT, improving AI with better data, and non-destructive destruction, to knowing when to start from stealth and how to make a graceful, profitable exit, you’ll have a hard time choosing. What an amazing dilemma.

NFT for solving real problems

Speaker: Manuela SevCEO of

NFTs are still associated with digital files, but in fact they can be used to solve issues around authenticity, resale, and community participation in art, fashion, and even real estate.

In this roundtable, we’ll talk about real-world use cases developed with to certify art and luxury goods. This includes point of sale integration for legacy brands, porting paper COA to NFTs, enhancing utility, and collecting resale royalties.

We will also explore how, using NFT, you can offer exclusive digital environments and products to loyal followers, fund the production of physical objects and experiences, and create a tool that allows creators to maintain control over their work and fund any project.

Expanding the use of AI in real estate and beyond

Speaker: Sam Stone, Director of Product Management, Pricing and Data at Opendoor

While buying a home is often one of the most important financial decisions, the process remained the same for decades until Opendoor overhauled every part of the transactional experience to make it digital, on-demand, and more accessible.

Pricing systems are the backbone of Opendoor’s DNA. By developing various types of machine learning models and using data science, the company ensures a high level of accuracy, coverage and functionality.

This roundtable will draw on our expertise in artificial intelligence, machine learning and data science and will focus on finding ways to develop a data-centric approach to finance, integrate algorithms and people, and improve AI with better data.

Destruction Lessons of Destroyers

Speaker: Shaival Shah, co-founder and CEO of Ribbon

Is it possible to destroy, be profitable and useful to society? Disruption is a natural outcome of innovation, but it can destroy essential industry ecosystems. With a subtle approach, founders can create solutions to solve industry bottlenecks, develop products that solve tomorrow’s problems and grow the ecosystem, rather than turn it upside down.

In important industries such as real estate, Wall Street investors and online shoppers are increasingly destroying inventory by declining homeownership. However, the destruction of an industry need not necessarily destroy the communities it ultimately serves.

Ribbon entered the market to provide competitive cash offers to casual buyers through an open solution that incentivizes local agents and lenders rather than stealing their business. At this roundtable, Shaival Shah will share the lessons he has learned during this process and the benefits that can come from destroying the destroyers.

How do I know? How to Choose the Right Time (and Method) to Launch from Stealth Mode

Speaker: Andrey Safundzich, co-founder and CEO of Lumos

You have a product or idea, you have angel investors and a few early clients, and now you are thinking about launching. When? And How? It is tempting to launch as soon as possible, and many companies are taking this step.

We took a different approach to launch. We went against the grain, challenging ourselves to be storytellers, creating a culture we could be proud of, and selling in stealth mode. The world has changed in 2020 and so has our strategy. Like many startups, we needed to think fast and bet early on our go-to-market strategy.

In this roundtable, we will talk about the lessons we have learned, how we set goals, created infrastructure and thought about how to grow from a company of four people to a company of 40 people, as well as what we would do differently. Join us and the other founders who went against the grain and took a different approach to launching their companies from Stealth Mode.

Startup exits: the good, the bad, and the ugly

Speaker: Sam Wong, CEO Coach, Fundable Startups

Startup founders and investors work for years to achieve a successful exit. After going through five exit opportunities culminating in four acquisitions, Sam Wong I saw the good, the bad and the ugly.

One exit died at 11 o’clock. One deal was closed but ended in financial ruin. Another result is five sentences. Are you choosing the buyer who offers tons of shares, or the one who offers all the money? Another deal resulted in a nine-figure acquisition but likely left money on the table. Sam recently acquired the company, so he saw both the buy side and the sell side.

In this roundtable, Sam will discuss sell opportunity and due diligence, and to help entrepreneurs position themselves for the best possible exit, he will share the inside story of what worked, what didn’t, and why.

Verify first group of round tables We recently announced and stay tuned for more Audience Award Roundtable winners coming soon!

TechCrunch Disruption will be held October 18-20 in San Francisco, with an online day on October 21. Buy a pass before the August 5th price increase and you’ll save over $1,000.

Is your company interested in sponsoring or participating in TechCrunch Disrupt 2022? Contact our sponsor sales team at by filling out this form.

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