Total Addressable Market is a key metric that VCs use to determine whether an idea is investable and one that some tech founders use to determine whether they’re solving a large enough problem. This begs the questions “how can you accurately assess the magnitude of a problem without having actually experienced the problem yourself?”. This gap in problem awareness has created an incredible opportunity for underrepresented founders to build solutions that speak to the unique needs and build valuable solutions that improve the lives of overlooked populations.
In this episode, we sit with Maria Burns Ortiz, Co-Founder and CEO of 7 Generation Games. Her team is building video games that close the math skills gap found in underrepresented communities.
Maria Burns Ortiz is co-founder and CEO of 7 Generation Games, a video game studio making immersive educational games and interactive apps with a mission of breaking down barriers to success, one math problem at a time. Previously, Maria was a multimedia journalist and NY Times best-selling author. For her work at 7 Generation Games, she was an invited speaker at the 2016 White House: State of Women Summit, received the National Latina Business Women Association-Los Angeles’ Rising Star in 2017 and named one of Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal's 40 Under 40 in 2021.
1:15 The many interesting facts about Maria Burns Ortiz’s life
4:011 An atypical path to tech entrepreneurship |A career as an ESPN reporter
6:02 Reinventing your career| From reporter to video game developer
10:02 Operating as a cofounding team in the early days
11:29 What is 7 Generation Games and what problem it is solving?
14:22 The extraordinary value in serving underserved communities
15:45 The process of video game development
20:02 The importance of engagement UI/UX vs the tech itself
24:02 Building the first version of a gaming product
28:32 Testing your product with real world customers and getting traction
31:02 Finding the ideal customer for the product and communicating ROI to schools
35:02 How solving a problem in a niche creates a reputation of success
36:10 The promise of AI in EdTech | The personalization of the learning experience
40:13 Continue following 7GG at 7generationgames.com