AI Disruption in Manufacturing Explained: Startups Leveraging Converging Forces

NEA partner Dayna Grayson describes what it will take for artificial intelligence to reach its inflection point—the moment when it gains traction across a wide range of applications and transforms the businesses that leverage it. In manufacturing, the moment is approaching fast: three converging forces—miniaturization, commoditization, and subscription models—are bringing about an avalanche of data and quickly diffusing new technologies into existing manufacturing processes.
Dayna Grayson

Dayna Grayson is an engineer and product designer investing in digital platforms for consumer services and products. She has led many of the firms’ investments in industrial software, systems and additive manufacturing, including Desktop Metal, Formlabs, Onshape, Tulip and Upskill. Occasionally, she invests in vertically integrated consumer brands that leverage industrial or operations tech, such as Framebridge, Curalate and Glamsquad.

Prior to joining NEA, Dayna was an investor at North Bridge Venture Partners where she championed companies including Camiant (acquired by Tekelec) and Tapjoy. As an engineer, Dayna started her career at Eye Response Technologies, a startup spun out of the University of Virginia that commercialized eye gaze tracking technology and was later acquired by Dynavox Mayer-Johnson. As an operator and product designer, Dayna led product design of financial accounting products at Blackbaud (BLKB), the leading global provider of software to nonprofit organizations.

Dayna serves as a Harvard Business School Venture Partner, and is on the investment committee of the University of Virginia’s Seed Fund. She is a founding member of AllRaise, an organization dedicated to increasing the number of female investors and founders, leading the organizations’ east coast initiatives. Dayna has a BS from the University of Virginia in Systems Engineering and an MBA from Harvard Business School.


Read the Digital Factory Report

The future of manufacturing is digital. We explore the technologies that are transforming fabrication, from advanced 3D printing to AI-assisted design, and get to know the leaders who are bringing them to the factory floor.

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