20VC: Why Raising A Fund Is Like Raising A $25m Seed Round with No Product & Why Not All LP Money Is Equal with Chad Byers, General Partner @ Susa Ventures

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Chad Byers is a General Partner @ Susa Ventures and very exciting news, Susa last week announced the raise of Susa II, a new $50m fund, testament to the quality of fund 1 which included the likes of former guests Lyst, RobinHood, LendUp and many more incredible companies. As for Chad, he focuses on investments in enterprise software, fintech, and healthcare. Prior to Susa, Chad spent time in various marketing and product management roles. As well as being a prolific angel investor in over 30+ companies.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Chad made the transition from angel investor to General Partner @ Susa?

2.) How was the fundraise with Susa 1? How was the fundraise for Susa II? How did the funding rounds change for each fund?

3.) How does Chad assess LP fit? Is all LP money not equal? What does Chad look for in his LPs?

4.) Question from Michael Kim @ Cendana: How does Chad look to establish the mindshare with entrepreneurs and other VCs for Susa in today’s competitive environment?

5.) How does Chad approach the reserve structure of Susa fund II? How did Chad come tot hat conclusion as the optimal amount for follow on?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Chad’s Fave Blog and Newsletter: Coding VC, Bill Gurley: Above The Crowd

Chad’s Fave Book: When Breathe Becomes Air

Chad’s Most Recent Investment: Modsy

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and Chad on Twitter here!

Likewise, you can follow Harry on Snapchat here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

 

20VC: Upfront Ventures’ Greg Bettinelli on Testing For Founder ‘Grit’ & What It Takes To Build A Successful Consumer Brand Today

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Greg Bettinelli is a Partner at Upfront Ventures where he specialises in businesses at the juncture of retail and technology. Prior to Upfront, Greg was the CMO for HauteLook, a leading online flash-sale retailer that was acquired by Nordstrom for $270mm. Before HauteLook, Greg was Executive Vice President of Business Development and Strategy at Live Nation, responsible for strategic direction and key business partnerships for Live Nation’s ticketing and digital businesses. Before Live Nation, Greg held a number of leadership positions at eBay and StubHub and was the business leader who led eBay’s acquisition of StubHub in 2007.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Greg made his way into VC from the unconventional world of retail and consumer?

2.) How has Greg’s unconventional background altered how he views investments and founders? How does Greg test for the ‘grit’ required to be a founder?

3.) With the rise of direct to consumer, will we see the end of the physical retail store? Why do big retailers still have such little e-commerce presence?

4.) To what extent does Greg view brand as a form of IP in a prospective investment? How have we seen changing brand loyalty in the last decade?

5.) What are the fundamentals for growing a consumer brand successfully? Who has exemplified this?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Greg’s Fave Blog and Newsletter: Dan Primack: Term Sheet

Greg’s Fave Book: Michael Lewis

Greg’s Most Recent Investment: Happy Returns

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and Greg on Twitter here!

Likewise, you can follow Harry on Snapchat here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

WeAreLATech is the number one resource uniting the LA startup community. Immediately integrate into the explosive LA tech scene by visiting WeAreLATech.com/VCWeAreLATech offers a unique combination of curated offline experiences, the #1 LA Tech podcast called “WeAreLATech”, and the only mobile app that keeps you in the know with a full calendar of events. Make sure go to WeAreLATech.com/VC to explore and learn all about everything LA tech and silicon beach. You’ll also get access to a private LA tech immersion call exclusively for 20 Minute VC listeners.

Eve make 1 perfect mattress – made with 3 layer technology and next generation memory foam. It comes packaged in a beautiful box and arrives the day after you order. You get 100 nights to try it with free return pick-up – it really is the perfect mattress for everyone. Just go online to evemattress.co.uk and enter the code 20VC for £50 off. Everybody deserves the perfect start with Eve.

20VC: How Entrepreneurs Should Manage Their Board & Why Time Constraints Are Always The Key To Progress with Paul Berberian @ Sphero

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Paul Berberian is the CEO of Sphero, the robotic ball controlled from your smartphone. They have investment from our friends in Boulder, Brad Feld and David Cohen. Prior to Sphero, Paul was the co-founder of Raindance Communications (NASDAQ: RNDC). Paul also founded Market Force Information, an emerging information company with a vision to provide retailers. As well as, LINK-VTC, a video teleconferencing company, which was sold in 1995 to Frontier Communications.

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In Today’s Episode with Paul You Will Learn:

1.) How Paul came to be CEO @ Sphero?

2.) Paul has founded and run 7 businesses, How has Paul seen his style of leadership change over the past decade or so?

3.) Question from Brad Feld: When Paul disagrees with his board, how does he resolve it? What have been Paul’s learnings in maintaining a happy board environment?

4.) Sphero have raised, at last count, $80m? How has Paul seen investor sentiment to hardware alter over the 5-6 years? How did he meet his investors? What did Paul do well and what would Paul like to improve upon for next time?

5.) Question from Brad Feld: ‘Sphero looks like a massive success but every startup has had failures, so what have Paul’s failures been and what did he learn from them?’

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Paul’s Fave Blog and Newsletter: Quora

Paul’s Fave Book: The Black Box

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and Paul on Twitter here!

Likewise, you can follow Harry on Snapchat here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

Eve make 1 perfect mattress – made with 3 layer technology and next generation memory foam. It comes packaged in a beautiful box and arrives the day after you order. You get 100 nights to try it with free return pick-up – it really is the perfect mattress for everyone. Just go online to evemattress.co.uk and enter the code 20VC for £50 off. Everybody deserves the perfect start with Eve.

20VC: Why Hardware Is Actually Software Wrapped In Plastic & “Of Course Hardware Is Hard, Everything Is Hard” with Ben Einstein, Founder & General Partner @ Bolt VC

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Ben Einstein is Founder and General Partner @ Bolt, Bolt is a fund designed to address the unique needs of early-stage startups at the intersection of hardware and software, investing up to $500K in pre-seed, pre-product companies. They have created and backed some world class businesses that have received later funding from Khosla, Kleiner Perkins, NEA, and Softtech just to name a few.

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In Today’s Episode with Ben You Will Learn:

  • How Ben made his way into VC from such a product centric background?
  • Why have we seen a rise in hardware investing over the last 5 years? How has this affected the hardware ecosystem?
  • To what extent do hardware and software integrate today? Why have we seen the rise of software determining the hardware winners?
  • Why is brand the most important thing in consumer hardware? Who has done it best? Who has not done it well?
  • What is Ben’s biggest advice to hardware founders today? Why is raising too much money extremely dangerous for hardware founders?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Ben’s Fave Blog and Newsletter: Ben Evans

Ben’s Fave Book: The Box

Ben’s Most Recent Investment: Grow: Redesigning Gardening

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and Ben on Twitter here!

Likewise, you can follow Harry on Snapchat here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

Eve make 1 perfect mattress – made with 3 layer technology and next generation memory foam. It comes packaged in a beautiful box and arrives the day after you order. You get 100 nights to try it with free return pick-up – it really is the perfect mattress for everyone. Just go online to evemattress.co.uk and enter the code 20VC for £50 off. Everybody deserves the perfect start with Eve.

20VC: 500 Startups’ Dave McClure on Whether Unicorns Are Necessary For Venture Returns & Why Ownership Is Not The Math To Think About When Investing

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Dave McClure is the founding partner of 500 Startups, who have made over 1500 investments in the likes of Twilio, SendGrid, Intercom and Makerbot just to name a few. Prior to 500 Dave was on the investment team at Founders Fund, he also led the Facebook Fund Incubator and was Head of Marketing @ Paypal pre IPO.

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In Today’s Episode with Dave You Will Learn:

  • How Dave made his way into VC and came to found 500 Startups?
  • Do you need unicorn exits to have significant venture returns? What is the 500 view with regards to the hit ratio of finding unicorns?
  • How much ownership does 500 typically take? Does this allow Dave enough of a right to follow on in further rounds with such a small initial slice?
  • How does Dave and 500 avoid the inherent signalling risk involved with their fund and accelerator? How prominent is signalling in today’s market?
  • What did Dave think of Sam Altman’s statement on YC not accepting companies from other accelerators? How does Dave view YC companies?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Dave’s Fave Blog and Newsletter: Brad Feld, AVC, Mark Suster

Dave’s Fave Book: Guns Germs and Steel, The Mystery of Capital

Dave’s Most Recent Investment: Markhor

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and Dave on Twitter here!

Likewise, you can follow Harry on Snapchat here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

Eve make 1 perfect mattress – made with 3 layer technology and next generation memory foam. It comes packaged in a beautiful box and arrives the day after you order. You get 100 nights to try it with free return pick-up – it really is the perfect mattress for everyone. Just go online to evemattress.co.uk and enter the code 20VC for £50 off. Everybody deserves the perfect start with Eve.

20VC: Wealthfront’s Adam Nash on What Makes Great CEO’s & Why Humans Suck At Investing

Adam Nash is the President and CEO of Wealthfront, where he is on a mission to put the client first and change the bad practices of the financial services industry. Adam joined Wealthfront from Greylock Partners, where he was an Executive-in-Residence. Prior to Greylock, he was VP of Product Management at LinkedIn, where he built the teams responsible for core product, user experience, platform and mobile. Adam also held a number of roles at Ebay, Atlas Venture Preview Systems and Apple.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Adam came to be President and CEO @ Wealthfront?

2.) What makes a great product person and how does that compare to Adam’s role now as CEO and the skills required to be a great CEO?

3.) Is it fair to suggest that PMs are the CEO of a mini product? How transferrable are the skills of product managers to the skills required of CEOs?

4.) How was the transition for Andy in making the move from PM to COO to CEO? What were the biggest challenges and surprises?

5.) Why does Andy believe that building software through hierarchy does not work? How can leaders empower their team with a sense of ownership?

6.) Why do humans suck at investing? Will we see the domination of full scale financial robo advisors in the next 10 years?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Adam’s Fave Book: Foundation by Isaac Asimov

Adam’s Fave Blog and Newsletter: Nuzzel

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Adam on Twitter here!
Eve make 1 perfect mattress – made with 3 layer technology and next generation memory foam. It comes packaged in a beautiful box and arrives the day after you order. You get 100 nights to try it with free return pick-up – it really is the perfect mattress for everyone. Just go online to evemattress.co.uk and enter the code 20VC for £50 off. Everybody deserves the perfect start with Eve.

20VC: Dollar Shave Club’s Series A & B Lead Investor, David Pakman on The Requirements For A Successful Subscription Business & Why A Lot of Investors Do Not Like Consumer

David Pakman is a Partner at Venrock and the man behind Venrock’s leading of the Series A and B rounds for Dollar Shave Club. Prior to Venrock David spent 12 years as an internet entrepreneur. Including being CEO of eMusic, the world’s leading digital retailer of independent music, second only to iTunes. Prior to eMusic, David co-founded Myplay in 1999, which he later sold, in 2001, to Bertelsmann’s ecommerce Group. If that wasn’t enough David is also the co-creator of Apple Computer’s Music Group.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

 

  • How did David make his way into the world of VC with Venrock?
  • David invested in Dollar Shave when subscription ecommerce funding was largely out of favour. What was it that excited Dave about Dollar Shave and why did he choose to invest?
  • To what extent do we see the existence of party rounds in today’s funding environment?
  • Venrock took the rather unusual position to lead both the A and B rounds for Dollar Shave. What was the internal conversations like within Venrock towards this decision?
  • Dollar Shave was growing at phenomenal rates with impressive growth, what was behind the decision to sell at this time? What were the incentives behind selling to Unilever?
  • Will we see other large e-commerce exits in the future? What does the future M&A environment look like for consumer businesses?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

David’s Fave Book: Mindset by Carole Dweck

David’s Most Recent Investment: Pearl

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and David on Twitter here!

Likewise, you can follow Harry on Snapchat here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

Eve make 1 perfect mattress – made with 3 layer technology and next generation memory foam. It comes packaged in a beautiful box and arrives the day after you order. You get 100 nights to try it with free return pick-up – it really is the perfect mattress for everyone. Just go online to evemattress.co.uk and enter the code 20VC for £50 off. Everybody deserves the perfect start with Eve.

20VC: Data Collective’s Matt Ocko on Why “All Fund Size Models Are Wrong” and The Lifecycle of Current Venture Funds Is Inefficient?

Matt Ocko is the Co-Managing Partner and Co-Founder @ Data Collective and has over 3 decades of experience as a tech entrepreneur and VC and has made investments in the likes of Facebook, Zynga, Uber and AngelList just to name a few. If that was not enough he is also an inventor on over 40 granted or in process patents. A truly deep thinker and one of my fave ever shows to record.

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In Today’s Episode with Matt You Will Learn:

  • How Matt made his way into VC and came to co-found Data Collective?
  • Why does Matt believe “All Fund Size Models are Wrong”. Does the current bifurcation of VC into angels/micro-VCs, small seed/A funds, big bruisers, and post-C/pre-IPO make for sub-optimal returns both on a societal and monetary perspective?
  • What does the opportunity fund allow Data Collective? How do they use the initial fund to invest for insight in into companies at the earliest stages? How do they avoid the negative signalling risk that is normally ensued with an opportunity fund?
  • How important is thesis driven venture firms? Does specialisation aid or hinder venture returns and why?
  • How does Matt view the lifecycle of current venture? Matt has previously said it is inherently inefficient, why?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Matt’s Fave Blog and Newsletter: MIT Technology Review

Matt’s Fave Book: The Way Things Work

Matt’s Most Recent Investment: Tradeshift

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and Matt on Twitter here!

Likewise, you can follow Harry on Snapchat here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

Eve make 1 perfect mattress – made with 3 layer technology and next generation memory foam. It comes packaged in a beautiful box and arrives the day after you order. You get 100 nights to try it with free return pick-up – it really is the perfect mattress for everyone. Just go online to evemattress.co.uk and enter the code 20VC for £50 off. Everybody deserves the perfect start with Eve.

20VC: Steve Schlafman, Investor @ RRE Ventures

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Steve Schlafman is an early stage investor @ RRE Ventures, where he specialises in marketplaces, mobile services and hardware. At RRE, Steve has led investments in the likes of theSkimm, Hightower, TinyBop, Breather, and Managed by Q. Prior to joining RRE, Steve was a principal with our friends at Lerer Hippeau Ventures in NYC. Before becoming a venture capitalist, Steve worked in operations at Stickybits Inc, Turntable.fm, Microsoft and served as Director of Venture Investments at The Kraft Group.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Steve made his way into the VC industry with YC?

2.) What does it take to make the transition from seed investor to Series A and later stage investor?

3.) What does ‘hurting a company look like when pricing the round for a startup’s nest funding round? Is it the VCs role to educate entrepreneurs on this caution? 

4.) How does the investment decision making process differ when comparing the Seed to Series A round?

5.) Why does Steve think there needs to be greater mentoring in the ecosystem? What can individuals do to build relationships and gain mentors?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Steve’s Fave Book: Work Rules, Leading by Mike Moritz

Steve’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: AVC, Statechery

Steve’s Most Recent Investment: Brightwheel

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Steve on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
DC-logo-500x278
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Justin Kan: Partner @ YC

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Justin Kan is a partner at the world renowned Y Combinator, the birthplace of the likes of Dropbox, AirBnB, Scribd and Reddit just to name a few. Prior to YC, Justin was the founder @ Twitch.tv, the world’s leading video platform and community for gamers which was acquired by Amazon for $970m. Previous guest Mike Seibel was also part of that amazing journey and if you have not checked out his episode, you can find it here.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Justin came to found Twitch.tv and later made his way into the VC industry with YC?

2.) What does Justin believe are the 3 fundamental qualities that make up a good investor? How has his own approach to pattern recognition altered over time?

3.) With the growth of YC batches, how have YC attempted to maintain the same levels of quality and mentorship with the growth

4.) We are always told YC and VCs work together. Is YC’s new $700m growth fund not in direct competition with VCs?

5.)  How does Justin approach the growth of his own personal brand? How important is it to Justin and investors and VCs on the whole?

6.) Why is Justin so bullish on Snapchat? What elements have Snapchat done that he looked to do with Justin.tv? If Justin were Evan Spiegel for the day, what would he change?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Justin’s Fave Book: Shogun: The 1st Novel of The Asian Saga

Justin’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Nuzzel, The Information

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Justin on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
DC-logo-500x278
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Why People Should Never Be Surprised If Fired, Subscription E-Commerce Is Hot & People Never Give True and Direct Feedback with Amir Elaguizy, Co-Founder @ Cratejoy

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Amir Elaguizy is the Founder & CEO @ YC backed, Cratejoy, the website builder and backend for subscription e-commerce stores. Cratejoy have funding from the likes of General Catalyst, Andreesen Horowitz, Y Combinator and Charles River Ventures With regards to Amir, he previously founded Market Zero, a poker software company which was acquired by Zynga, where he then spent time as a game CTO.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Amir came to be an entrepreneur, got acquired by Zynga and then started Cratejoy?

2.) With the recent acquisition of Dollar Shave Club, the subscription e-commerce business is hot, why does Amir think most people misunderstand the space?

3.) Amir previously said, ‘owning recruiting is the single most important thing you can do’, why does he believe this? Does Amir believe that the early team might not necessarily be the team to evolve from a $1m business to a $20m business? 

4.) What is the difference between foundational team members and mercenary team members? What are the signs an individual is worth spending time to grow with?

5.)  Amir previously said, ‘most people have never received true direct feedback on performance’, how does Amir look to differentiate himself? Is it suitable for the leadership to be the bad guy?

6.) How can the firing process be approached with respect and dignity? Should it ever be a surprise? If it is a surprise what does that suggest about your leadership previously?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Amir’s Fave Book: Hard Thing About Hard Things

Amir’s Fave Podcasts: The Twenty Minute VC, SaaStr

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Amir on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
DC-logo-500x278
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Mythbuster: Is Mobile Dying? Is AR/VR Overhyped? Is The Excitement Around Bots Justified with Sean Flynn, Partner @ Shasta Ventures

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Sean Flynn is a Managing Partner @ Shasta Ventures where he invests in mobile-enabled consumer Internet and enterprise software companies. Sean has led Shasta’s investments in Dollar Shave Club, Whisper and serves on the board of directors for the likes of TimeHop, Zefr, Swipely, Bloc and TigerText. Before joining Shasta, Sean worked at Yahoo, where he focused on growing the company’s communication and messaging products such as Yahoo! Mail, Messenger, Groups and Flickr.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Sean made his way into VC from the titan that is Yahoo?

Now today I want to do something slightly different and do a myth busting episode, take a couple of sectors and discuss whether they are truths and complexities to the core statement.

2.) Starting with the most common assumption in VC that it is all about team, to what extent does Sean place team ahead of product and is this a slight misconception?

3.) Many are saying mobile is a dying space. Sean previously said, ‘it is not dead yet’. Why is there promise for mobile? What will be the catalyst of it’s death? How does this affect Sean’s investment decision making?

4.) Another much hyped topic is AR/VR, is the excitement surround AR and VR justified? Where does Sean stand on investing in the installation phase of cycles?

5.) Similar to AR/VR is the hype surround bots justified? What will be the sustainable business model for bots?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Sean’s Fave Book: What Do You Do With An Idea 

Sean’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Nuzzel, 538 Blog

Sean’s Most Recent Investment: Tally

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Sean on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
DC-logo-500x278
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Semil Shah on Why The Most Important Thing An Investor Can Do Is Attract Follow On & The Fundamentals of VC Branding

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Semil Shah is the founder of Haystack, an early stage investment firm now investing out of it’s third fund, with previous investments being Instacart, DoorDash, Managed by Q. In the past he has also been a consultant to some of the leading funds in the valley including the likes of Kleiner Perkins, DFJ, General Catalyst and more. If that was not enough, Shah also has an extensive career in media having been a contributor for both TechCrunch and the Harvard Business Review in the past. Due to all of this Shah was listed by Marc Andreesen as one of his ’55 Unknown Rockstars in Tech’.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Semil made his way into VC? How did he come to create Haystack?

2.) What were the challenges and concerns for Semil in raising and establishing his own fund?

3.) Question from Michelle Tandler: How does Semil send deals through to Series A? What is his ‘cool’ process? What are the commonalities of those that make it to Series A and those that do not?

4.) How has Semil approached the aspect of personal VC branding? How does he evaluate the rise of the personal VC brand in the last few years?

5.) Why does Semil believe he is not ‘founder friendly’ in the conventional sense?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Semil’s Fave Book: Burmese Days by George Orwell

Semil’s Most Recent Investment: AquaCloud

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Semil on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
DC-logo-500x278
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

Unity 3D’s David Helgason on Building a $bn Business, Getting Funded By Sequoia and Powering The Pokemon Revolution

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David Helgason is the Founder and Board Member @ Unity 3D. The company that recently announced a new $181m Series C, valuing the company at $1.5bn. Unity’s platform has revolutionized the game industry by allowing any size studio from Indie to Triple-A to create beautiful and compelling games and experiences and monetize them with their advertising and analytics services. As for David, he served as CEO of Unity from its founding in 2003 right up until 2014 taking the company through numerous funding rounds including from the one and only Sequoia Capital.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How David came to found Unity 3D?

2.) How pivotal was the rise of the App stores to the rise of Unity 3D? What does David make of Apple’s recent announcement to add paid search and subscription pricing?

3.) How does David evaluate the current gaming landscape? What does he not like about the industry and how the major players are operating?

4.) What are David’s thoughts on the emerging platforms like AR and VR? How does he incorporate them into Unity’s future product roadmap?

5.) How was the fundraising process for David with Unity? How did the Sequoia investment happen and what has it been like to work with them and Roelof Botha?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

David’s Fave Book: Guns, Germs & Steel 

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and David on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Why The Whole Industry Is Backward Looking, The Best Funds Are Entrepreneur Led and Venture Is All About Access with Alex Bangash, Founder @ Trusted Insight

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Alex Bangash is the founder of Trusted Insight, the largest online asset management platform for institutional investors. He is also the managing director of TI Platform Fund, an online venture capital fund-of-fund. Prior to founding Trusted Insight, Alex was also the founder of Rumson Group, an advisor to institutional investors. Alex has helped invest over $1 billion in over 50 funds.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Alex made his way into the world of investing in VC funds?

2.) Why does Alex believe the whole finance industry is backward looking? Is this why he thinks there is so much VC churn?

3.) Why does Alex believe VC is always about access? Is this why Alex has such a strong preference for funds that are also platforms?

4.) Why does Alex believe true early stage is getting smaller and smaller? How does his return expectations differ according to the size of the fund?

5.) What happens when funds do not go to plan or do not have notable exits to raise fund II? What happens then?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Alex’s Fave Book: Ben Horowitz: Hard Thing About Hard Things, Peter Thiel: Zero To One

Alex’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Paul Graham

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Alex on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
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How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Flybridge’s Jeff Bussgang on Why It Is Not All About Unit Economics & Why VCs Are Big Data Decision Makers

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Jeff Bussgang is a Co-Founder and General partner @ Flybridge Capital, where has made investments in numerous incredible companies including 2 former guests of the show, Jeff Seibert @ Crashlytics (sold to Twitter) and Josh Udashkin @ Raden. Jeff is also a Senior Lecturer @ Harvard Business School where he has co-authored no less than 15 cases. He is also an author having written the renowned, Mastering The VC Game to the acclaim of The Financial Times, TechCrunch, BusinessWeek and more. Jeff also has an incredible blog, Seeing Both Sides, which you can find here.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Jeff made his way into VC? How did he come to co-found Flybridge?

2.) To what extent does Jeff believe there is a glass ceiling for people without operations experience to progress up the VC ladder?

3.) How can companies establish cultures and processes when they have to change and reinvent every 6-12 months?

4.) What are venture returns? What metrics does Jeff use to determine his success?

5.) Is a focus on unit economics now one of the only ways to achieve equity value creation? How can consumer adoption drive equity value creation?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Jeff’s Fave Book: Man’s Search For Meaning by Viktor Frankl

Jeff’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Mattermark Daily

Jeff’s Most Recent Investment: Sentenai

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jeff on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
DC-logo-500x278
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Why Every Employee Should Re-Apply For Their Job Every Year & The Strategies To Prepare For A Successful Fundraise with Kyle Hill, Founder & CEO @ HomeHero

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Kyle Hill is the Co-Founder & CEO @ HomeHero, one of the largest providers of non-medical home care in California. HomeHero has provided over 1 million hours of care to thousands of families and won “Best Employment Website of 2014”. Due to this immense success Kyle has been on CNN, Forbes, Wall Street Journal and many more. HomeHero has raised funds from some of the world’s best investors including Chamath & Mamoon @ Social Capital, Jason Calacanis @ TWIST and Peter & Michael @ Science Inc.

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1In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Kyle came to found HomeHero? What was the a-ha moment for him?

2.) Question from Mamoon @ Social Capital: Considering that this is not your typical software business; being largely people centric, how does Kyle think about the profitability of such a business?

3.) How much of a role does unit economics lay in the mind of Kyle? How does Kyle look to balance growth with profitability?

4.) How was the fundraising process for Kyle with Chamath & Mamoon @ Social Capital? What did Kyle do to prepare for the pitch? What did Kyle do well? What would Kyle look to improve upon? How would Kyle like VCs to treat him as a Founder?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Kyle’s’s Fave Book: Black Swan

Kyle’s Fave Blog: The Best Designs.com

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Kyle on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: USV’s Brad Burnham on Co-Founding USV with Fred Wilson, What They Look For In Potential Partners & Whether We Are Entering a Period of Consolidation or Expansion

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Brad Burnham is the Co-Founder & Managing Partner @ Union Square Ventures. I feel Brad is far better described by his partner Fred Wilson, than I ever could so this is Fred’s words on Brad. “Brad and I founded USV together in 2003. We had both been in the venture business for more than a decade, had made a fair bit of money, but were still hungry to prove ourselves. Brad is the strategist and the most principled investor in our firm. It was Brad’s idea to write a treatise on venture capital and the internet before we set off to raise our first fund and that exercise we did together continues to be our guding light. Brad is the person behind phrases like “the application layer of the technology stack” and “large networks of engaged users” that I use all the time. He gives me most of my good stuff which I often get credit for.”

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Brad made his way into VC? How did he come to co-found USV with Fred in 2003?

2.) How did Brad approach team building with USV? What does he look for in his partners?

3.) Brad has previously stated his belief that ‘history does not repeat itself but it does rhyme,. How does this affect Brad’s view toward market cycles, the way tech is adopted and ultimately replaced?

4.) What does Brad make of the extension of the private market? Are we entering a period of consolidation? What makes Brad believe this?

5.) Looking back at the history of USV, what have been the inflection points in both the stature of the firm and then Brad’s learnings as a VC?

 

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Brad’s Fave Book: The Irrational Optimist

Brad’s Most Recent Investment: OB1

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Brad on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: USV’s Albert Wenger on Automation Replacing Humans, The Universal Basic Income and The Instalment & The Deployment Phase

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Albert Wenger is a partner at Union Square Ventures, one of the world’s leading VC firms with investments in Twitter, Twilio, Zynga, Soundcloud, Tumblr, Lending Club and many more. Before joining USV, Albert was the president of del.icio.us through the company’s sale to Yahoo and an angel investor (Etsy, Tumblr). He previously founded or co-founded several companies, including a management consulting firm and an early hosted data analytics company. Albert also writes a fantastic blog at Continuations.com and did a brilliant Ted X Talk here!

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Albert made his way into the wonderful world of VC?

2.) Albert breaks down the differences between the instalment and the deployment phases of technology? At what stage USV choose to invest and why?

3.) How much of a role does valuation play in Albert’s investment decision making process? At what level does speculation become irrational exuberance?

4.) Why does Albert want to limit network effects that are provided to winning companies? What does Albert think makes a contestable market? What are the characteristics?

5.) Why is Albert such a protagonist for the basic income guarantee? What are the challenges? How will this affect human’s relationship to automation? What will mankind do with this increased abundance of time?

6.) Why does Albert believe that every individual has the right to be presented by a personal bot? What are the prominent use cases? How does it invert the power relationships between networks and their participants?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Albert’s Fave Book: Beginning of Infinity 

Albert’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Azeem Azhar: The Exponential View

Albert’s Most Recent Investment: Clue: Period and Ovulation Tracker

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Albert on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: When To Transition From Growth to Profitability & The KPI’s of The On Demand Economy with Frank Mycroft @ Booster Fuels

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Frank Mycroft is the Founder & CEO @ Booster Fuels, the on-demand fuel delivery service backed by the likes of our friends at Maveron and Version One. As for Frank himself, he is literally a former rocket scientist with Nasa and has more degrees that I have done podcast episodes, making him one of the smartest guests we have ever had on the show. Directly prior to Booster Fuels, Frank was the VP of Strategy @ Planetary Resources, the Redmond based, asteroid mining company.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Frank came to Found Booster Fuels from his days with Nasa?

2.) How important a role does naivety play for founders starting building their company?

3.) With Fuel being such a  low margin business, how does Frank balance growth vs profitability with Booster Fuels? What are the tips for doing so in the on-demand economy?

4.) When is the transition point between growth at all costs to focusing on profitability and unit economics?

5.) To what extent is regulation a limiting factor for the growth of Booster fuels?

6.) Question from Dave Wu @ Maveron: What did Frank look for in his Series A investors? Question from Angela @ Version One: What is Frank’s wider vision for the future of on demand and Booster Fuels?

 

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Frank’s Fave Book: Oh The Places You’ll Go

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Frank  on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: What It Takes To Raise A VC Fund & Investing in First Time Fund Managers with Michael Kim @ Cendana Capital

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Michael Kim is the founder and Managing Partner of Cendana Capital, a fund of funds which invests in seed VC funds. Michael has many of our previous guests in his portfolio including the likes of SoftTech, Freestyle, Founder Collective, Collaborative Fund and many more, clearly great minds think alike! Prior to Cendana, Michael was one of the original partners of Rustic Canyon Partners a VC firm with $1bn AUM.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Michael made his way into VC and then made the transition into the world of LP?

2.) Why have we seen the proliferation of seed funding? Is this a good thing for the economy? Is dumb money good or bad for the early stage environment?

3.) Chris Douvos states we will begin to see the hybridisation of LPs and GPs, does Michael agree? What are the inherent problems with this happening?

4.) What is Michael’s blackbox for assessing emerging fund managers? What does he look for? How can they present their edge?

4.) How does Michael respond to Dave McClure’s portfolio construction theory of allocating capital to many startups with the realisation that 0.5% become unicorns?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Michael’s Fave Book: Catcher & The Rye

Michael’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Techcrunch, The Twenty Minute VC

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Michael on Twitter here!

This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.
dave mcclure 16:30

20VC: The 4 Required Powers For A Startup To Be A $500m Business with “The Most Powerful Woman in Startups”, Ann Miura Ko, Co-Founder @ Floodgate

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Ann Miura-Ko has been called “the most powerful woman in startups” by Forbes and is the Co-Founder of Floodgate, one of the valley’s leading early stage funds with investments in the likes of Twitter, Twitch and TaskRabbit. Some of Ann’s investments at Floodgate include Lyft, Ayasdi, Xamarin, Refinery29, Chloe and Isabel, Maker Media, Wanelo, TaskRabbit, and Modcloth. Ann is also a lecturer in the School of Engineering at Stanford University, where she got her PhD focused on mathematical modeling of computer security.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Ann made her way into the wonderful world of VC?

2.) Ann’s 2nd day in VC was 9/11, how does Ann view investing in times of crisis and downturn? How does this effect the macro-economy and her investing cadence?

Floodgate state that all venture bankable high growth companies share 4 very common characteristics with regards to power. Here we break them down:

  • Proprietary Power: What is it? What are it’s characteristics?
  • Product Power: What does this imply about product market fit? What are the nuances and complexities?
  • Company Power: What does it take to be created and maintained? How have so many unicorns established themselves without credible and sustainable business models?
  • Category Power: Why it is so important to create a new category? How can this be done and who has done it well in the past?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Ann’s Fave Book: The Poisonwood Bible

Ann’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Benedict Evans

Ann’s Most Recent Investment: The Greatist

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Ann on Twitter here!
This episode was brought to you by DesignCrowd, the online marketplace for custom graphic, logo and web design that helps startups, entrepreneurs, web developers and agencies outsource design projects to designers from around the world.
How Does It Work?
Once you have launched your brief, designers will begin submitting quality designs for you to review. With some constructive feedback, you can quickly generate a large gallery of designs that really do fit your needs. You can have exactly what you need within just three days. Once you have selected your favourite design, you will be sent all the files you require to update your branding. If you don’t like any of the submitted designs, then DesignCrowd offers a money back guarantee. So checkout designcrowd.com/VC and enter the promo code VC100 to get an astonishing $100 off your next project.

20VC: Why Great VCs Know The Opportunity In Hardware, Physical Stores Will Not Disappear and The Importance of Consumer Brand with Josh Udashkin @ Raden

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Josh Udashkin is the Founder and CEO @ Raden, essentially making the unsexy sexy with a design-forward app-connected piece of luggage that provides a superior end-to-end travel experience. Prior to founding Raden, Udashkin practiced law and did international development for Canadian shoe company, Aldo. To date, Raden have raised funds from our friends @ First Round Capital, Lerer Hippeau, Pritzker Group and many more incredible investors.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Josh came to found Raden and what the a-ha moment was for him?

2.) Why does Josh believe in the benefits of the dual approach to selling both being online and with physical retail stores?

3.) Why have we seen such innovation in the space in the last 30 years? The incumbents have said, they are bad at selling online, what are they doing wrong? What is Josh doing to optimise the process?

4.) Why is Josh bullish on omni-channel retail? What are the benefits?

5.) How are hardware products innovating on the hardware as a service model and integrating physical retail products with superior mobile experiences?

6.) What trends have we seen in investing in hardware products in the last 5 years or so? Why is hardware becoming more attractive an investment field?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Josh’s Fave Book: Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of NIKE

Josh’s Fave Blog: Business of Fashion

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VC and Harry on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
If you are looking to make your move into the world of VC or improve your investing skills,  Venture Capital Unlocked: Secrets of Silicon Valley Investing is a must! It is a 2 week crash course at Stanford run by Stanford Professional Development Centre and 500 Startups. You will learn the mechanics of all things Silicon Valley investing, check it out here.
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa. Lees is like the TOMS Shoes or Warby Parker of the mattress industry. Here are 3 reasons why they are the best place to get your new mattress: Leesa has done away with the awkward mattress showroom experience by allowing a fully online experience, shipping to your doorstep for free. Their 10 inch mattresses come in all sizes and is crafted with 3 unique layers o foam including2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of really cool latex like foam design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are made 100% in the US or UK and they give you a 100 night trial, to make sure the mattress is perfect for you. Go to leesa.com/VC and enter promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Felicis’ Wesley Chan on The Rise of IoT, Getting Recruited by Larry Page & Creating Google’s Biggest Success Disaster

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Wesley Chan is a Manging Director @ Felicis Ventures where he has led investments in the likes of Canva, Flexport and Luma, just to name a few. Prior to Felicis, Wesley was a General Partner @ Google Ventures. Before Google Ventures he was an early employee at Google, where he founded and launched Google Analytics and Google Voice, resulting in his being awarded Google’s Founders Award–the company’s most prestigious recognition–for leading the development of Google’s early client efforts, which led to the development of Google Chrome. Fun fact about Wesley he is a massive hacker and IOT enthusiast with over 100 connected devices in his home.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Wesley made the transition from Foundering Google Voice and analytics to being a VC?

2.) What were Wesley’s biggest takeaways from leading investment at Google Ventures? When looking at Google’s investment in Nest, what makes Nest such a truly phenomenal connected device?

3.) Wesley previously said, ‘I look for patterns similar to Google Analytics in how if you build something great.’ What are those patterns and what does that thought process lead to in terms of thought outcome? What is a good example of this?

4.)  Where does Wesley think we are on the programmable interface element of consumer hardware? What would he like to see change or improve in the space?

5.) How has Wesley seen the investor sentiment to hardware change over the last decade? What have been the rivers in the rising positivity of investing in hardware?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Wesley’s Fave Book: The Big Short

Wesley’s Most Recent Investment: Luma

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Wesley on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Snapchat here!

 

If you are looking to make your move into the world of VC or improve your investing skills,  Venture Capital Unlocked: Secrets of Silicon Valley Investing is a must! It is a 2 week crash course at Stanford run by Stanford Professional Development Centre and 500 Startups. You will learn the mechanics of all things Silicon Valley investing, check it out here.

The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa. Leesa is like the TOMS Shoes or Warby Parker of the mattress industry. Here are 3 reasons why they are the best place to get your new mattress: Leesa has done away with the awkward mattress showroom experience by allowing a fully online experience, shipping to your doorstep for free. Their 10 inch mattresses come in all sizes and is crafted with 3 unique layers o foam including2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of really cool latex like foam design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are made 100% in the US or UK and they give you a 100 night trial, to make sure the mattress is perfect for you. Go to leesa.com/VC and enter promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

 

20VC: Techstars Founder, David Cohen on Scaling Techstars Ventures and Investing In Uber, Twilio and Sendgrid

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David Cohen is the founder and managing partner at Techstars, so a few amazing stats on techstars first, they have a total of 762 companies of which 90% are active or have been acquired, having raised more than 2bn in funding. As for David he is a serial entrepreneur having founded Pinpoint Technologies which was acquired by ZOLL Medical Corporation in 1999. David was also the founder and CEO of earFeeder.com, a music service which was sold to SonicSwap.com in 2006.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How David made the transition from Founder to VC with Techstars and Fund I?

2.) Fund I is one of the most successful funds in history; what was the structure with Fund I? Why did David choose a $5m fund size? How did he decide initial to follow on ratio?

3.)  Why was David so valuation sensitive with Fund I? Why was David so rigid on a consistent cheque size on Fund I?

4.)  Why did David decide to expand from being a solo GP fund? What are the challenges and complexities of fund scaling and did David approach this?

5.) Question from Ari Newman: What does David think about uncapped notes? Why does David like big boring companies? Brett Jackson: How did you meet Ryan Graves @ Uber and how did the Uber deal come about? Jason Seats: Where does David still see inefficiencies in the current venture model?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

David’s Fave Book: The Soul Of Money

David’s Fave Blog: Mattermark Daily

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and David on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Snapchat here!

 

If you are looking to make your move into the world of VC or improve your investing skills,  Venture Capital Unlocked: Secrets of Silicon Valley Investing is a must! It is a 2 week crash course at Stanford run by Stanford Professional Development Centre and 500 Startups. You will learn the mechanics of all things Silicon Valley investing, check it out here.

The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa. Leesa is like the TOMS Shoes or Warby Parker of the mattress industry. Here are 3 reasons why they are the best place to get your new mattress: Leesa has done away with the awkward mattress showroom experience by allowing a fully online experience, shipping to your doorstep for free. Their 10 inch mattresses come in all sizes and is crafted with 3 unique layers o foam including2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of really cool latex like foam design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are made 100% in the US or UK and they give you a 100 night trial, to make sure the mattress is perfect for you. Go to leesa.com/VC and enter promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

 

20 VC: Dennis Mortensen

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Dennis Mortensen is the CEO and Founder of X.ai, the artificial intelligence driven personal assistant that lets people schedule meetings using plain English and nothing more than a CC to amy@x.ai. Their female persona Amy is so lifelike that users have asked her on a date at a rate of one request per month! X.ai is now one of the best funded AI startups having raised over $30m from our friends at FirstMark and a big thanks to Matt Turck for making the intro and from DCM, who also helped us with some of the questions for Dennis!
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Dennis came to found X.ai and what the a-ha moment was for him?

2.) What did the training look like for X.ai? How long did it take? How much data did you have to painstakingly annotate? What is more important; data or algorithms?

3.) Many VCs are concerned about large incumbents having proprietary data sets. Does this concern Dennis and what can be done to mitigate this

4.) Question from David Cheg @ DCM: How will AI startups interact with giant corporates also investing heavily in AI research?

5.) How was the fundraising journey for Dennis? How did he approach it strategically? What challenges did he face? How did he go about choosing his investors?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Dennis’ Fave Book: How To Get Rich by Felix Dennis

Dennis’ Fave Blog: Wait But Why

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Dennis on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
If you are looking to make your move into the world of VC or improve your investing skills,  Venture Capital Unlocked: Secrets of Silicon Valley Investing is a must! It is a 2 week crash course at Stanford run by Stanford Professional Development Centre and 500 Startups. You will learn the mechanics of all things Silicon Valley investing, check it out here.
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa. Lees is like the TOMS Shoes or Warby Parker of the mattress industry. Here are 3 reasons why they are the best place to get your new mattress: Leesa has done away with the awkward mattress showroom experience by allowing a fully online experience, shipping to your doorstep for free. Their 10 inch mattresses come in all sizes and is crafted with 3 unique layers o foam including2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of really cool latex like foam design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are made 100% in the US or UK and they give you a 100 night trial, to make sure the mattress is perfect for you. Go to leesa.com/VC and enter promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Why Bots Are The New Black, Conversational Interface Is The Next Wave For Consumerisation and The Determinants Of A Successful Marketplace with Annie Kadavy, General Partner @ CRV

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Annie Kadavy is a General Partner @ Charles River Ventures. The prestigious VC fund that is now on it’s 16th fund and has backed the likes of Twitter, Yammer and Mailbox just to name a few. At CRV, Annie focuses on all things consumer and has either led or sourced their investments in ClassPass, Cratejoy, Patreon, Laurel & Wolf and DoorDash. Prior to CRV, Annie spent time with SV Angel and Warby Parker.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Annie made her way into the world of VC?

2.)Why have we seen the explosion of marketplaces in recent years? What are the inherent challenges of two sided marketplaces; typically consumers and micro-entrepreneurs? Does Annie agree with Jeff Jordan in stating that these marketplaces need to nurture and manage conditions of perfect competition?

3.) What are the core components to growing traditional producer consumer marketplaces? How do they broach the chicken and the egg problem of supply and demand?

4.) Why is Annie so excited for the potential of bots? Will the transition to bots and conversational interfaces represent a major point of disruption or more of an evolution in the interface paradigm?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Annie’s Fave Book: Mindset: How You Can Fulfill Your Potential by Carol Dweck

Annie’s Fave Blog: The Skimm

Annie’s Most Recent Investment: Roam

If you are looking to make your move into the world of VC or improve your investing skills,  Venture Capital Unlocked: Secrets of Silicon Valley Investing is a must! It is a 2 week crash course at Stanford run by Stanford Professional Development Centre and 500 Startups. You will learn the mechanics of all things Silicon Valley investing, check it out here.
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa. Lees is like the TOMS Shoes or Warby Parker of the mattress industry. Here are 3 reasons why they are the best place to get your new mattress: Leesa has done away with the awkward mattress showroom experience by allowing a fully online experience, shipping to your doorstep for free. Their 10 inch mattresses come in all sizes and is crafted with 3 unique layers o foam including2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of really cool latex like foam design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are made 100% in the US or UK and they give you a 100 night trial, to make sure the mattress is perfect for you. Go to leesa.com/VC and enter promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Andy Rachleff, Founder @ Benchmark & Wealthfront on What Makes The Best CEO & Board Member & Why Ivy League Endowments Are The Best Managed Capital In The World

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From 1995 until 2004 Andy Rachleff was a co-founder and General Partner of Benchmark Capital, who have backed the likes of Twitter, Snapchat, Dropbox, Uber and Instagram. Upon his retirement from Benchmark, Andy joined the faculty of the Stanford Graduate School of Business to teach a variety of courses on entrepreneurship. In 2008 he co-founded Wealthfront Inc, the online financial advisor and investment management solution,  where he now serves as Executive Chairman. In just 3 years, Wealthfront now have over $2bn AUM.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Andy made his way into the world of VC and what was the origin story behind the founding of Benchmark?

2.) Andy took the opposite route to most having been a VC and then founding Wealthfront. So what does Andy make of doing VC first and then becoming an operator?

3.) Why does Andy believe Ivy League endowments are the best managed pools of capital? What do they do well and what separates the good from the great?

4.) Andy has worked with some of the world’s best CEO’s and board members, so what makes the best board member and what makes the best CEO?

5.) How has Andy seen the VC industry evolve and develop over the last 20 years? How has Andy seen his own investment decision making process and patter recognition alter over that time?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Andy’s Fave Book: The Innovator’s Dilemma

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Andy on Twitter here!
If you are looking to make your move into the world of VC or improve your investing skills,  Venture Capital Unlocked: Secrets of Silicon Valley Investing is a must! It is a 2 week crash course at Stanford run by Stanford Professional Development Centre and 500 Startups. You will learn the mechanics of all things Silicon Valley investing, check it out here.
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Raising $150m, Meeting Yuri Milner & Revolutionising Mobile Finance with Sasha Orloff @ LendUp

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Sasha Orloff is the CEO and Co-founder of LendUp, a fintech startup offering online and mobile personal loans and credit cards in the United States. Prior to launching LendUp Sasha was on the other side of the table as a VC with Citi Group’s corporate venture capital arm. On the topic of VC funding, LendUp raised an incredible $150m in Jan 2016 from likes of SV Angel, Yuri Milner our friends at Susa and Google Ventures just to name a few.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Sasha come to found LendUp following a stint in VC with Citi Group?

2.) What Sasha learnt from VC about running a successful startup and how he applied them to his founding of LendUp?

3.) Was it difficult leaving the security of a VC job to found a startup? Would you have done the same had you had children at the time?

4.) What trends in FinTech is Sasha most excited for? Why does Sasha think banks are in so much trouble? Is there the potential to co-operate rather than replace banks?

5.) How was the fundraising process for Sasha? What was his preferred round and how did they differ from stag to stage?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Sasha’s Fave Book: Banker To The Poor

Sasha’s Fave Blog: Sam Altman

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Sasha on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Will LPs Replace GPs with Chris Douvos, Managing Director @ VIA

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If you’re interested in hearing more from Chris, you can also check out the incredible episode Notation Capital did with Chris here!

Chris Douvos is Managing Director @ Venture Investment Associates (VIA) where he is a member of the Firm’s Investment Committee and has responsibility for the management of relationships with the funds’ managers and its limited partners, as well as the identification and development of new relationships for the Firm. Prior to joining VIA, he spent time at The Investment Fund For Foundations (TIFF). where he was responsible for over $1 billion. Prior to that, Chris worked on Princeton University’s endowment team. One of Chris’ most notable investments is his pre-first fund investment in First Round Capital. Chris is also the author of the fantastic blog, www.SuperLP.com, definitely check that out if you have not had the chance yet.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Chris make his way into the world of limited partners?

2.) How does Chris respond to FOMO as an LP? Does it affect his decision making process? How does he look to avoid it?

3.) What patterns and processes has Chris developed to asses the ability of potential GPs?

4.) Is Chris concerned by the increasing time it is taking for startups to exit? How does this affect his think as an LP and cash on cash relationship to this asset class?

5.) In 2013, Chris aid micro VC was the most exciting space in VC, where is he most excited for now? Where will we see innovation in the VC market?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Chris’ Fave Blog: RedEye VC, Tomasz Tunguz

Chris’ Fave Book: The Great Gatsby

Chris’ Most Recent Investment: Other Lab

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Chris on Twitter here!
 
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: What LP’s Want In VCs with Beezer Clarkson, Managing Director @ Sapphire Ventures

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Beezer Clarkson is Managing Director @ Sapphire Ventures where she leads Sapphire’s investments in venture funds domestically and internationally. Prior to joining Sapphire, Beezer managed day-to-day operations @ DFJ’s Global Network, which had $7 billion under management across 16 venture funds worldwide. She has also spent time at Omidyar Network created by Ebay founder, Pierre Omdiyar, Hewlett Packard and Morgan Stanley. Beezer also runs the incredible openlp.com which is really opening up the world of LPs and if you have not checked that out, it really is a must!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Beezer make her way into the world of limited partners?

2.) How do LP’s find a new and talented fund manager? Is it a similar referral process as in startups with? How does the sourcing element of the LP world work?

3.) How do GPs raising a fund differ from startups raised their round? What are the similarities and differences in the processes?

4.) What does the investment decision making process look like for Beezer? Are their commonalities in the process of great LP’s processes? What do you at Sapphire focus on when investing??

5.) At Sapphire you have extensively researched the formulas of what makes a great VC, what have been your findings? What are the commonalities amongst the great VCs?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Beezer’s Fave Blog: Term Sheet, Strictly VC, The Information

Beezer’s Fave Book: The Tale of the One Way Street

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Beezer on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Start Niche, Move Broader & Become Profitable Quickly with Melanie Perkins, Founder & CEO @ Canva

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Melanie Perkins, Founder & CEO at Canva the disruptive online platform allowing anyone to create professional quality designs. They have over 10m users from 179 countries and have funding from our friends at Shasta, Felicis and upcoming guests Blackbird Ventures and Airtree in Australia. Prior to Canva, Melanie was the Fusion Yearbooks which she grew to be the largest Yearbook publisher in Australia.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Melanie come to found Canva, what was the a-ha moment for her?

2.) How has Melanie looked to  scale the team whilst maintaining the same core startup values and company ethos? What are the strategies at play here?

3.) What does it take to grow in international markets? Where were the benefits of founding Canva in the isolated tech ecosystem of Perth??

4.) What did Melanie look for in her investors? As a newbie to the VC scene how did she approach the fundraising process and what would she like to improve on?

5.) How can products that have both a free and a paid model offer enough in the free version to entice users, whilst retain enough for the paid to justify the price?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Melanie’s Fave Book: Designing The Obvious

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Melanie on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Spark’s Nabeel Hyatt on Investing in Oculus and Cruise & What It Takes To Invest Ahead Of The Curve

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Nabeel Hyatt is a venture partner at Spark Capital where he invests in entrepreneurs using that rare combination of design and technology to transform markets. He is currently on the board of Spark Capital’s investments in Cruise (acquired by General Motors), Fig, Harmonix, Postmates, Proletariat, and Thalmic Labs. Nabeel was previously cofounder and CEO of Conduit Labs, which was sold to Zynga in 2010, where he then became General Manager up through the IPO. Prior to that he was variously cofounder, head of product, and CEO at a variety of hardware and software companies including MIT Media Lab spin-out Ambient Devices, Teamtalk (BSkyB), and Interphase.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Nabeel make his way into the world of VC?

2.) What are the biggest lessons Nabeel can apply from his time in the trenches to being a VC at Spark? How has his investment strategy and decision making changed over time?

3.) What were the biggest takeaways for Nabeel as an observer and investor in Oculus?

4.) What is the story behind Spark’s investment in Cruise (recently acquired by GM)? How did Nabeel come to meet Kyle and the team? What was the product like? How did it evolve?

5.) What does Cruise’s acquisition mean for the autonomous car industry? What are the inherent challenges for the industry as a whole? How will they be overcome and what timeline are you placing on the industry to come into fruition?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Nabeel’s Fave Blog: AVC

Nabeel’s Most Recent Investment: Fig 

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Nabeel on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Spark’s Bijan Sabet on Investing in Twitter, Tumblr and Foursquare & Why First Time Founders Are So Exciting

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Bijan Sabet is General Partner @ Spark Capital where he primarily invests in digital canvases and online communities for people at work and at play. Bijan led early investments for Spark in the likes of Twitter, Tumblr, Foursquare, OMGPOP and Runkeeper just to name a few. Before becoming an investor, Bijan led product management and business development at GameLogic (acquired by Scientific Games), Moxi Digital (acquired by Digeo) and WebTV Networks (acquired by Microsoft Corporation).
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Bijan make his way into the world of VC?

2.) How did the Twitter and Tumblr deals come about? What made you say yes?

3.) Looking at Bijan’s thesis, is it true that Bijan has a preference for first time founders? What are the commonalities of all great first time founders?

4.) Often first time founders nail product market fit but struggle to scale the operations to suit the growth of the product. How does Bijan as a VC lend to this situation?

5.) Does Bijan agree with Fred Wilson’s assessment of the consumer downturn? Why does Bijan think that David must beat Goliath in the end?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Bijan’s Fave Blog: Ready Player One 

Bijan’s Fave Blog: AVC

Bijan’s Most Recent Investment: Lily: Your Throw and Go Camera

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Bijan on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: inDinero’s Jessica Mah on Why Angel Money Is Better Than Institutional Money and Boards Should Work For Founders

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Jessica Mah is Founder and CEO of inDinero, which she started back in 2010 to help entrepreneurs with all their accounting and tax needs after going through the same challenges with her own businesses. Jessica has grown inDinero from zero to multi-million dollar revenues with over 100 full-time employees and has been featured in the Forbes and Inc 30 Under 30 Lists.  The company has raised over $10M to date and is growing rapidly. Her goal is grow inDinero into being the leading accounting provider for businesses.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Jessica come to found Indinero, an SMB accounting startup when she was at University?

2.) Why did Jessica decide to raise funding from angels over VC’s? What were the benefits of this?

3.) Why does Jessica believe that institutional capital is never patient capital? What additional value add do angels bring that VCs and HNW’s do not bring?

4.) How does Jessica like to involve her investors in the hiring process? How can founders do this and why should they?

5.) Why does Jessica believe it is better to have a board that works for the founder and not the other way round? Does this not lead to conflict?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Jessica’s Fave Book: A Guide To The Good Life

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jessica on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!
accounting hs been a real nightmare
steve black david wearied pooler, not komisares

20VC: The Future For Autonomous Vehicles & How Software Is Eating Cars with Nikhil Basu Trivedi, Investor @ Shasta Ventures

 

FullSizeRender 8Nikhil Basu Trivedi is an early stage investor with Shasta Ventures, where he focuses on consumer, mobile and SaaS. Prior to joining Shasta, Nikhil was a member of the Insight Venture Partners team in NYC. Before making the move into venture, Nikhil co-founded Artsy in his sophomore year at Princeton University, Artsy now employs over 100 people and has raised over $50m in venture financing. One of Nikhil’s main passions is self driving cars and so today’s show will be centred around the proliferation of autonomous vehicles and what that means for us as a society?

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Nikhil come to be a VC in SF having spent his early years in the UK?

2.) Why is Nikhil so excited about self-driving cars? What is the enabler that is allowing this mass rise of the autonomous vehicle?

3.) What happens in a world of little mechanical engineering at all, where repairs can be achieved with software updates? How does this change the complexity of production? How does this change what the supply chain might look like? How does this change the capital structure required?

4.)How does the rise of the autonomous vehicles effect the sharing economy? Is Nikhil bullish on Lyft, Uber, Didi? With on demand, when will we reach a point of equilibrium when the supply of drivers that gets drawn in and the price that attracts consumers will be equivalent?

5.) Who is the leader, is this a winner take all, will the acquisition of GM and Cruise mean a dominance? Who has Nikhil been impressed by?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Nikhil’s Fave Book: Leading by Sir Alex Ferguson and Michael Moritz 

Nikhil’s Fave Blog: Mattermark Daily, CB Insights

Nikhil’s Most Recent Investment: Tally 

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Nikhil on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

Is Big Data Still A Thing with Matt Turck, Managing Director at FirstMark Capital

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Matt Turck is Managing Director of FirstMark Capital where he invests across a broad range of early-stage enterprise and consumer startups. Prior to FirstMark, he was a Managing Director at Bloomberg Ventures, the investment and incubation arm of Bloomberg LP. Previously, Matt was the co-founder of TripleHop Technologies, a venture-backed enterprise search software startup that was acquired by Oracle. Matt organizes two large monthly events, Data Driven NYC (focuses on Big Data and AI) and Hardwired NYC(focuses on IOT, AR/VR, drones). At Firstmark, Matt has made investments in the likes of Sketchfab, Sense 360 and the much loved X.ai with Amy Ingram as your personal secretary.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Matt make his way into the world of VC?

2.) What does big data really mean? With the cool kids in the data world moving on to obsessing over AI, is big data still a ‘thing’ in 2016?

3.) Why is now the time for big data? What has enabled big data to have sudden mass utility across a variety of applications?

4.) How does Matt view the integration of big data and AI? Is AI helping big data deliver it’s promise?

5.) How can we combat the incumbency advantage of large companies owning the majority of datasets? How can startups access similar datasets?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Matt’s Fave Blog: AVC, Chris Dixon, Brad Feld, Wait But Why 

Matt’s Most Recent Investment: Hyperscience

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Matt on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: The Information’s Jessica Lessin on The Future For Online Journalism & The Benefits Of A Subscription Based Business Model

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Jessica Lessin founder and Editor in Chief of The Information. Prior to The Information, she covered Silicon the technology industry for eight years at the Wall Street Journal where she wrote nearly 1,000 articles for the paper, consistently breaking news about major products, management changes and strategy shifts. Jessica was also part of a team that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Now you can follow both Jessica and me on Snapchat on @jlessk and @hstebbings
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Jessica come to found The Information following The Wall Street Journal?

2.) Marc Andreesen: ‘print journalism is converging in quality and technique with blogs and Wikipedia’. Does Jessica agree with this? Has revisability has led to a lower quality initial publication?

3.) How does Jessica view the competitive landscape for journalism today? Who are competitors and what would Jessica say is complimentary to The Information??

4.) We have seen the decentralization away from the central forms of authority in journalism. What effect has this decentralization had on distribution? Competition? Market size?

5.) What is the monetisation strategy for The Information? Why choose that strategy over the more prevalent others such as advertising?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Jessica’s Fave Book: Ben Bradlee: A Good Life 

Jessica’s Fave Blog: Doug Young 

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jessica on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Sam Lessin on Why Bots Will Change Business & The Internet Has Mostly Failed

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Sam Lessin is a Partner at Slow Ventures who have made investments in the likes of Facebook, Twitter, Mattermark, AngelList,Dropbox and many more. On top of this, Sam is also the Founder and Co-CEO at Fin, which is basically like Siri Echo or Google now except it actually works, truly a phenomenal product. Prior to Fin and Slow, Sam was VP of Product Management at Facebook following the acquisition of his company, Drop.io by Facebook in 2010. Sam is also an intern at The Information where he reports directly to the boss Jessica Lessin!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Sam come to found Fin and what was his route into VC with Slow?

2.) What are the fundamental shifts that have occurred in the world of tech? How has this affected the wider tech and investing ecosystem?

3.) Will the transition to bots and conversational interfaces represent a major point of disruption or more of an evolution in the interface paradigm?

4.) How can bots establish the same relationship and stickiness with the user as apps? In a world of bot domination where strong data sets is the ultimate weapon, are we not at a fundamental incumbency disadvantage? How can the platforms react to this?

5.) What will the effect of self driving cars be on society? How long before this was be possible? How does the sharing economy and capitalism survive in unison?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Sam’s Fave Book: The Three-Body Problem 

Sam’s Fave Blog: The Information

Sam’s Most Recent Investment: Common

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Sam on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20 VC: K9’s Manu Kumar on His Approach To Risk, Valuation & Believing What Other People Don’t

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Manu Kumar founder and Chief Firestarter at K9 Ventures, a pre-seed and seed stage micro-VC fund based in Palo Alto, according to K9 they invests ‘frighteningly early’ and like to be the first institutional capital invested in a startup. K9 is an investor in Lyft, Twilio, Occipital, eShares, and their companies have been acquired by the likes of Linkedin, Facebook, Dropbox, Paypal and more. Prior to K9, Manu was either the founder or co-founder of 4 companies, 3 of which with successful exits and the 4th being the fantastic eshares!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Manu come to found K9 and what was his route into VC? How does Manu define entrepreneurialism and how did this play out in his early life?

2.) “The best buys are found in things most people don’t understand or believe in.” How does this play out in Manu’s investment strategy?  ?

3.) “The riskiest thing is the belief there’s no risk.” How does risk assessment feature in Manu’s investment mentality? How does Manu transition this to your portfolio construction? ?

4.) Josh Koppelman states “What has to be remembered is the defining role of price.” How much of a role does valuation play in Manu’s investment decision making process?

5.) “An absence of losses can give you a great start toward a good outcome.” As a seed fund how does Manu approach inevitable losses? How does Manu try and minimize mortality rate?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Manu’s Fave Book: The Cuckoo’s Egg by Clifford Stoll

Manu’s Fave Blog: Strictly VC, Dan Primack: Term Sheet

Manu’s Most Recent Investment: GradeScope

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Manu on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!
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20VC: Xero’s Rod Drury on IPO on Day 1 To Hedge Fund to VC & Doing Startups Backward

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Rod Drury is the Founder & CEO @ Xero, essentially beautiful accounting software for small business. Xero has received funding from some of the best investors in the world including the likes of Peter Thiel, Accel and Matrix Partners. Prior to Xero, Rod has founded and exited several successful startups including being acquired by QuestSoftware (later acquired by Dell). This success has led to a mass of awards including the likes of NZ Entrepreneur of The Year and NZ High Tech Hall Of Fame.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Rod came to found one of New Zealand’s breakout tech startup in Xero?

2.) What were the very first days of Xero like? How and why did Rod decide to IPO from the start? How did Rod convey the narrative so well from day 1?

3.) What does it take to transition a firm like Xero from a 50 man startup to a 500 an company? What are the challenges? How do you assure a consistent hiring quality and mechanism?

4.) How are Xero doing in the US in terms of fighting Intuit? Is it a winner take all market?

5.) How was the fundraising process for Rod? How did Rod choose and meet his investors? What was important for Rod when making the selection?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Rod’s Fave Book: How the Billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla is Shaping our Future

Rod’s Fave Blog: Feedly, Techmeme

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Rod on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: How Startups Should React To Today’s Funding Environment & Why Big Markets Are More Forgiving with Jenny Lefcourt, Partner @ Freestyle.vc

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Jenny Lefcourt is a Partner @ Freestyle where she invests in early stage tech companies. Prior to Freestyle, Jenny was the Founder of Weddingchannel.com and Bella Pictures which were both acquired. During this time, Jenny raised funds from titans of VC including Kleiner Perkins, Trinity Ventures, Amazon and more. Jenny has also angel invested and advised some incredible entrepreneurs with the likes of Minted and Style Seat.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Jenny made his way into VC from founding and exiting 2 startups?

2.) What were the differences in raising money as a founder and as a VC? What learnings as a founder did Jenny have that have helped her move into VC?

3.) How have the large macro-economic changes affected Jenny’s investing style? Has she seen a change in her investment cadence? Does Jenny place more emphasis on burn reduction now?

4.) Why does Freestyle not invest with a thesis? What are the benefits of this? How does Jenny make investment decisions going forward without a thesis?

5.) What does Jenny mean when she says that VCs suffer from duck syndrome? What can VCs do to make them the best and their founders life easier?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Jenny’s Fave Book: Dreamland, Blinkist (Harry’s Suggestion)

Jenny’s Most Recent Investment: CREXi

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jenny on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Rob Go @ NextView on WTF Is Seed Investing Today and Why Raising Too Much Money Can Harm Your Startup

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Rob Go is a co-founder and Partner at NextView Ventures, Next View are hands on, high conviction true seed stage investors. Prior to founding NextView, Rob was at Spark Capital and focused on early stage investments in consumer web and mobile. Before joining Spark Capital, Rob worked at Ebay as the Business Product Lead for “Finding”. In this role, he oversaw the launch of major products that enhanced the search, browse, and product discovery experience for tens of millions of users.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Rob come to found NextView and what was his route into VC?

2.)  NextView are seed investors but what does that really mean today? Why has the entire seed stage moved further down the funnel?

3.) With regards to runway, there are two side son the table, those like Jeff Clavier and I who believe 36 months is optimal. What side of the table is Rob on? Longer or shorter runway?

4.) Why are smaller rounds optimal according to Rob? What do they allow you to do that you cannot do with larger rounds? What does the rise of pre-seed do for Rob as a true seed investor?

5.) Regadless of label competition between VC is now larger than ever, what does Rob make of the personalisation of VC and branding tactics used by Mark Suster etc?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Rob’s Fave Book: Ready Player One

Rob’s Fave Blog: Wait But Why

Rob’s Most Recent Investment: Dia & Co

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Rob on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
Attend one of the best conferences of the year, Sunrise, with speakers from the likes of Atlasssian, Canva and Planet Labs. Check it out here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!\

20VC: Creating A Competitive Process Between VCs & Having Bill Gurley As A Board Member with Aaron Hirschhorn, Founder & CEO @ DogVacay

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Aaron Hirschhorn is the founder, CEO and “Top Dog” of DogVacay, the leading online and mobile pet sitting company. DogVacay connects pet parents in need of services with more than 25,000 vetted and insured pet caregivers in 10,000 cities across the country. Founded in March 2012 and based in Santa Monica, CA, the company has over 80 employees and has raised $47M from investors including Omers, Benchmark Capital and Andreessen Horowitz. Prior to DogVacay, Aaron spent several years in venture capital and technology, working at Monitor Group, Upfront Ventures, and Monitor Ventures. Previously, Aaron was an analyst at Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Aaron come to found one of the startup hits to come out of LA? In the beginning what was the harder element the demand or the supply side?

2.) How did Aaron know when he had achieved product market fit with DogVacay? What were the signs and how did he follow this up? How did Aaaron react to VCs laughing at his concept and how did he stay energised and positive?

3.) How was the fundraising process for Aaron with DogVacay and Benchmark, Andreesen and First Round? How can founders look to control the dialogue? How many investors should founders look to target? What makes Aaron want and not want a particular investor?

4.) What business fundamentally work in the on demand economy and what don’t ? How should marketplace founders be approaching the issue of unit economics and should growth still be the priority?

5.) What is it like having Bill Gurley as a broad member ? What will be the enabler that will allow DogVacy to achieve that market penetration required?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:
 
 Aaron’s Fave Blog Or Newsletter: Bill Gurley, Jason Calacanis: Inside
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Aaron on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Why More People Should Be Entrepreneurs & How Do you Know When You Are Ready with Matt Clifford @ Entrepreneur First

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Matt Clifford is co-founder and CEO of Entrepreneur First, Europe’s leading pre-seed investment programme for founders of deep technology startups. Founded in 2011, EF backs the world’s top technical talent pre-company. EF’s startups have raised over $100m in funding and are breaking ground in artificial intelligence, robotics and infrastructure, among other fields. Outside EF, he is co-founder and non-executive director of Code First Girls and non-executive director of Techfortrade. Before starting EF, Matt worked at McKinsey & Co. as a strategy consultant, and studied at the University of Cambridge and at MIT.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Matt come to found the world’s top technical talent pre-company programme?

2.)  Should everyone be an entrepreneur? How can a founder determine whether this is the right path for them? Can entrepreneurialism be taught or is it an innate skill within?

3.) What does Matt think of the idea and fear of many founders that they are simply not ready? How do we know when one is ready? What are the signs?

4.) How important is mindset for founders? Matt has previously stated the importance of a growth mindset? What does he mean by this and how does he advise founders to approach this?

5.) What is the most common mistake Matt sees entrepreneurs in EF make? How hoes he help to combat this?

6.) What does the future of work look like? Where will jobs be at this century?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Matt’s Fave Book: Sapiens (Same as Parker Thompson @ AngelList)

Matt’s Fave Blog: Marginal Revolution

Matt’s Most Recent Investment: Cloud NC, Third Eye

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Matt on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!\

20VC: Raising A Solo GP Fund & Why They Are So Prominent Today with Charles Hudson, Managing Partner @ Precursor Ventures

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Charles Hudson is the Managing Partner with Precursor Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm focused on first check investments in strong teams developing innovative hardware and software products and services. Prior to founding Precursor, Charles was a Partner with SoftTech VC, one of the most active seed stage investors in Internet and mobile startups. Prior to SoftTech, Hudson spent time at Google,  IronPort Systems, and In-Q-Tel.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Charles made his way into VC from working with the CIA? What were Charles biggest takeaways from his operational experience?

2.) Why have we seen the rise of the solo GP fund? What tools and services can be used by solo GPs to make their lives easier?

3.) Chris Sacca said, ‘you have to be a moron to launch a solo VC fund’. What does Charles think about this and what was it about Precursor that made him want to leave SoftTech?

4.) How does Charles’ market requirements change now as a pre seed investor, a 100m exit is excellent. Do you you still need unicorns?

5.) How does Charles look to differentiate with Precursor in the sea of emerging VC funds? What is the most important thing for him about pr-seed investing?

6.) What is Charles’ vision for Precursor? What would success look like for him?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Charles’ Fave Book: Alec Ross: Industries of The Future

Charles’ Fave Blog: The Information
 

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Charles on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Why VC Is The Perfect Preparation For Founding A Startup & Changing The World Of Online Fashion with Chris Morton, Co-Founder & CEO @ Lyst

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Chris Morton the Founder & CEO @ Lyst, the fashion aggregation and discovery app and universal checkout cart that has pulled in more than $60m in funding from the likes of Balderton, Accel and DFJ. Chris was previously in the wonderful world of venture himself as an early stage investor with Balderton Capital where he focused on consumer internet companies. Prior to that Chris worked on various projects from making custard suits to working in renewable energy!
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Chris come to found one of the hottest fashion startups, Lyst? What was the interview process with Benchmark like?

2.) Why did Chris become a VC first before an entrepreneur? What does being a VC allow you to become a better entrepreneur with?

3.) Chris has said before that we have not scratched the surface of e-commerce, so why have we not? What is the vision and what are the challenges that stand in the way? Question from Harry Briggs: Will we see physical retail stores largely disappear?

4.) Lyst place heavy emphasis on data collection and usage. Why is this? What does it power to Lyst to do? What interesting consumer trends and behaviours have been revealed from the data?

5.) How was the fundraising process for Chris? What did being in VC teach him about the process that he could implement in entrepreneurship? What were the challenges? What would he do differently if he were to raise again?

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Chris on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Accel’s Brian O’Malley On The Prioritisation Of Growth, Metrics That Show True Customer Retention & Why The Most Interesting Companies Create A Market

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Brian O’Malley is a Partner @ Accel Partners, where he spearheads Accel’s work with next-generation marketplaces and consumer-focused companies. He led the firm’s investments in Amino, Gametime, HotelTonight and Luma, as well as disruptive software-as-a-services businesses Duetto and Narvar. Brian joined Accel from Battery Ventures, where as a general partner he led investments in companies like Dollar Shave Club, BazaarVoice (public), Coupa, Skullcandy (public) and TradeKing (acquired by Ally). Prior to Battery, Brian led sales efforts and built some of the first web service-based API integrations for Bowstreet, Inc. (acquired by IBM).

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Brian make his way into one of the world’s leading VC firms? What were Brian’s biggest takeaways from being in the trenches during the bust of the dot com bubble?

2.)  What is the macro economic view to value compression? How should startups being approaching and dealing with this?

3.) How can startups maintain growth as the priority whilst maintaining investor expectations on burn rates? What is Brian’s approach to the growth vs retention theory?

4.) What retention metrics would Accel look for indifferent products? How does this vary from category to category? What are the commonalities Brian has seen in products that have insane retentive ability??

5.) Where does Brian stand on market size and the potential for market transition down the line? Does the market even need to be there today for it to be investable today?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Brian’s Fave Book:  Zero To One By Peter Thiel

Brian’s Most Recent Investment: Luma: Fast, Reliable Wifi

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Brian on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!
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20VC: Bessemer’s Byron Deeter on The Commonalities Of Truly Great Founders and Learnings From Investing In Box, Twilio and GainSight

 

image1Byron Deeter is a Partner at Bessemer Venture Partners. Prior to being a VC, Byron himself was a veteran cloud CEO & Founder returning to venture capital in 2005 to lead Bessemer’s global cloud practice where he has been actively involved with over 100 cloud investments representing a third of the market cap of all public cloud companies. Byron has lead investments in the likes of Box, Twilio, Intercom, Cornerstone On Demand and many many more. Byron’s pedigree is recognised globally as he is consistently ranked one of the top global investors across all industries.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Byron make his way into VC from being a veteran cloud CEO and Founder?

2.)  What are the commonalities angst the truly exceptional operators that Byron has worked with? What is it that makes the likes Aaron Levie so special?

3.) We saw a $63bn drop in late stage SaaS valuations, so what does this really mean for the early guys? In these markets should founders be placing greater emphasis on unit economics?

4.) With the increasing importance of customer retention will we see further increased growth in the field of customer success? How important is it really now for startups?

5.) How does Byron define efficient growth, what does cash is king mean? Where does Byron stand on the bottoms up sales approach, is this the new sales method of the 21st century?

6.) What have been the biggest takeaways for Byron of watching Box, Sendgrid, Twilio go into hyper growth mode and scale into the rocketships that they are

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

Byron’s Fave Book: The Everything Store 

Byron’s Fave Productivity Tools: Clutter

Byron’s Fave Blog: Bleacher Report, Techcrunch 

Byron’s Most Recent Investment: Rainforest QA

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Byron on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Why It Is All Still About User Growth and How To Conduct The Optimal Beta Testing Phase with Mike Mignano, Co-Founder & CEO @ Anchor

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Mike Mignano is the Co-Founder & CEO @ Anchor, the app that allows you to share and engage with your network via audio, essentially radio for the people. Prior to founding Anchor, Mike was Head of Product @ Aviary, prior to it’s acquisition by Adobe. Anchor was one of the hottest products at SXSW this year and has received funding from our good friends at Homebrew, SV Angel, Betaworks, Eniac Ventures, Scott Belsky and many more.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Mike come to found one of the hottest new audio startups, Anchor?

2.) Why have we seen such a renaissance of podcast listening? Will this continue in the long term future and if so, what will drive the long term future growth?

3.) How did Mike use the beta testing phase to learn and iterate on customer behaviour? Following this, how did he implement this feedback to create a community that could be harnessed on launch?

4.) When examining alongside Sarah Tavel’s hierarchy of engagement, how does Mike address retention and the creation of virtuous loops within Anchor?

5.) How does Mike fundamentally attempt to menthes Anchor? At what level of growth can the cash taps be turned on? How can Anchor be made to be revenue generating for both the platform and content creators?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Mike’s Fave Blog: The Skimm

Mike’s Fave Book: Cat’s Cradle

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Mike on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Why Every Successful Company Pivots and Good Companies Get Funded in Good & Bad Markets with John Frankel, Founding Partner @ ff Venture Capital

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John Frankel is the founding partner of ff Venture Capital and has been an early-stage investor since 1999. He has served on the boards of more than 35 companies and has led investments in more than 80 companies, including Cornerstone OnDemand (CSOD), Indiegogo, Ionic Security, Unikey, Socure, Skycatch, Plated, 500px, Distil Networks, and Bottlenose. Prior to founding ffVC, John worked at Goldman Sachs for 21 years in a variety of roles that involved technology development, reengineering and capital markets. At Goldman Sachs, he worked closely with some of the world’s leading hedge fund managers and developed a keen understanding of emerging technologies and portfolio risk/return management.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did John make the move from Oxford grad to NYC venture capitalist?

2.) How has the massive decrease in startup costs affected the seed funding environment? How does David identify the startups he invests in with the plethora that are now available?

3.) How much of an extent is portfolio a branding tool for VCs? In recent years we have seen the rise of the operational VC model with the likes of Andreesen, will this continue as a prominent model in VC?

4.) How as a seed investor does John advise his founders when chasing a valuation that will only lead to a down round? What is John’s views on the dreaded down round?

5.) Many companies pivot in the process? Does John like to see pivots? If pivoting what is it important for founders to remember and focus on?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode: 

John’s Fave Book: The Accidental Superpower

John’s Most Recent Investment: Wade and Wendy

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and John on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Europe’s Youngest Series A Venture Partner, James Wise @ Balderton Capital on How To Get Into Venture & What The Future Of The VC Industry Looks Like

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James Wise is a partner at Balderton Capital, one of Europe’s leading early stage venture funds with $2.5B in funds. The youngest partner at a Series A fund in Europe, at 29 James has already led on deals including the likes of CrowdcubeSketchFab3D HubsSunrise and Workable amongst others. He discusses his unusual background, coming into VC after previously setting up and running a charity, why he thinks geography matters less than every and why he continues to focus on areas in healthtech and edutech as well as many other emerging sectors.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) As Europe’s youngest venture partner, is venture capital a viable career going forward? What makes James say this? Has there been a time when you doubted this thesis and why?

2.) So it is a viable career, where do we go from here? Why should we choose venture in Europe over venture in the US? What are the inherent pros and cons? Does James get the itch to head to the Valley?

3.) So VC in Europe is the place to be, so why did James choose Balderton? There are a plethora of great and emerging funds in Europe, what attracted James to Balderton?

4.) What does the next 10 years of VC look like? Where we are heading? Although a viable career now, will this continue to be with increasing power of crowd sourced financing and decreasing startup costs?

5.) What advice would James give a young individual looking to get into the industry? How can an individual show their passion and inherent interest for VC and startups in a tangible way?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and James on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Nicolas Dessaigne Founder & CEO @ Algolia

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Nicolas Dessaigne is the Co-Founder and CEO @ Algolia. Algolia are a brilliant case study for the successful pivot, having started off life as an offline search engine for mobiles but really took off by helping companies deliver an intuitive search-as-you-type experience on their websites and mobile apps. They participated in Y Combinator’s Winter 2014 batch and raised $18.3M in May 2015 from the likes of Accel Partners, Point Nine Capital, Storm Ventures and many more incredible investors.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Nicolas make his way into tech and come to found the likes of Friendster and Algolia?

2.) How did Algolia go about crafting their company culture and how have they approached maintaining it as they have gone into hyper growth mode?

3.) What des Nicolas think are the most common challenges with regards to the building and maintenance of a company culture? What pitfalls and advice would Nicolas give to an early stage founder looking to build that culture from the offset? How can investors determine the strength and sustainability of the company culture when viewing startups?

4.) How was the fundraising process for Nicolas? How did the rounds differ from round to round? What elements surprised or challenged him? For Algolia, an incredibly hot startup, how did Nicolas go about about selecting which investors to have?

5.) Talking of the highly competitive round and the very excitable startup community, how do you respond to all of this insane hype and positivity. How do you ensure that you do not fall into the trap of drinking your own cool aid and remain grounded and humble?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Nicolas’ Fave Blog: SaaStr

Nicolas’ Fave Book: Creativity Inc

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Nicolas on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: The Rise Of The Celebrity VC & The Pros and Cons Of Staying Private with Logan Bartlett @ Battery Ventures

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Logan Bartlett is an investor @ Battery Ventures, where he focuses on growth investments for B2B software companies. He is currently involved in Battery’s investment in Pendo and StreamSets. Before joining Battery, Logan was in investment banking with Spurrier Capital Partners, a boutique merchant bank focused on the technology sector. There, he sourced application-software deals with a focused on the marketing-automation sector as well as sales force automation, human-capital management, work management/collaboration, front-office analytics and data-services companies. Prior to that, Logan served as an investment banking analyst at Deutsche Bank focusing on financial technology.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Logan made his way into the wonderful world of venture capital?

2.) So as young chap entering the industry, I would love to hear how you have gone abut trying to build your brand and identity? What are the key personal marketing strategies for you? How important do you think the brand of the VC is? How do you address the juxtaposition of branding and marketing yourself and battery?

3.) How does Logan approach the deal sourcing aspect of the job? What is his approach to this vital thesis?

3.) Moving to more financial matters I want to address both the seed end and the later stage end of the market today. So starting with the seed funding environment, in recent years we have seen a massive drop in the cost of company creation in conjunction with a large rise in seed funding,. What is the effect of this for you as a Series A-B investor, potentially located in what some may call the funding gap?

4.) You are very much located in the B2B space, d I am intrigued wht kind of ARR do you look for at the stage you are investing and what price point per customer do you believe allows for that ARR metric to be hit within a reasonably short amount of time?

5.) Moving to the later stages of the market I have seen in a slide of yours from the past that you stated that more institutional investors have made their way into the private markets and startups are staying private longer. You followed up by staying that this is a win win for all? Why do you think that is? Does it not mean later stage VCs are priced out of rounds due to the inflow of public money? Does it not mean later stage startups attain inflated valuation that will only lead to a down round at follow on or IPO?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Logan’s Fave Book: Gang Leader For A Day

Logan’s Fave Blog Or Newsletter: Dan Primack: Term Sheet

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Logan on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: The Best Determinant Of Product Market Fit & Why You Prior Experience Is Nor Required For Founder Success with Neeraj Agrawal, General Partner @ Battery Ventures

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Neeraj Agrawal is a general partner at Battery Ventures investing in SaaS and Internet companies across all stages.  He was a founding investor in BladeLogic in 2001 and has invested in several other companies that have gone on to stage IPOs, including Bazaarvoice, Guidewire Software, Marketo, Omniture, RealPage and Wayfair. His current, private investments include AppDynamics, Catchpoint, Chef, Cohesity, Coupa, Glassdoor.com, Nutanix, Optimizely, Pendo, SmarterHQ, Sprinklr, StellaService, Tealium and Yesware. For the last six years, Neeraj has been recognized on the Forbes Midas List, which ranks the top 100 venture capitalists in the world.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Neeraj made his way into the world of VC?

2.)Question From Logan Bartlett: ‘What is your thought process on what makes a good vs a bad deal? Also, how have you developed your ability to process deals and poke holes in logic?’

3.) How can early stage Saas founders determine the extent to their product market fit??

4.) What is it like to back rocketships like GlassDoor or Marketo and helping scale operations when you’re in hyper growth mode? Does Neeraj agree with Sheryl Sandberg’s statement, it doesn’t matter where you sit, as long as you have a seat on the rocketship?

5.) Neeraj previously stated in a Nasdaq article that it is all about the team and the market. What are Neeraj’s thoughts on VC founder alignment? Neeraj also places emphasis on the market, so how does Neeraj view the juxtaposition between current and future market?

6.) One hurdle preventing some companies from growth is the ability to attain later rounds of funding so as a largely Series B investor, why is raising a Series B so tough? Is it the embodiment of the funding barbell?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Neeraj’s Fave Blog: Brad Feld, Jason Lemkin

Neeraj’s Most Recent Investment: Pendo.io

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Neeraj on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: From Netscape To Friendster To Nuzzel: Jonathan Abrams on A Silicon Valley Adventure

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Jonathan Abrams is the founder & CEO of the social news service Nuzzel.  Jonathan is also co-founder and Managing Partner of Founders Den, a shared office space and private club for experienced entrepreneurs and their friends. Previously, Jonathan was the founder & CEO of Socializr, Friendster, and HotLinks, and a software engineer at companies such as Netscape and Nortel. Jonathan is a board member at Girls in Tech, an advisor to CodeNow, and has previously been a mentor in Steve Blank’s entrepreneurship classes at Stanford and Berkeley, a top-rated mentor at The Founder Institute and a member of the advisory board of the Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs. Jonathan is also an angel investor in over 50 startups including AngelList, Docker, Front, HelloSign, Instacart, Sapho, Seed, Slideshare, Socialcam, and Vouch.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Jonathan make his way into tech and come to found the likes of Friendster and Nuzzel? What were his biggest lessons from working at Netscape?

2.) How can founders determine the customer stickiness and value proposition in the early days of product testing with friends and family?

3.) How does Jonathan view the competitive landscape for news aggregation? Why is consumer app such a competitive space?

4.) Question From Matt Mazzeo: How does Jonathan compare this moment in time to previous points in the innovation curve?

5.) Having worked with both the old and the new guard of VC, how does working with Lowercase, Homebrew and Softtech compare with the old guard of Benchmark and Kleiner Perkins?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jonathan on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Why Machine Intelligence Will Eat The World Of Software with Roy Bahat, Head of Bloomberg Beta

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Roy Bahat is the head of Bloomberg Beta, a new venture fund backed by Bloomberg L.P. Prior to Bloomberg, Roy was chairman of OUYA, a new kind of game console, where he was the first investor. Before that Roy spent five years leading News Corporation’s IGN Entertainment, an online media company with a monthly audience of 70 million people, a top 10 YouTube channel, and the leading website in its category in almost every market globally. Roy served on the board of Revision3 (acquired by Discovery) and was a board observer at Flixster (acquired by Warner Bros). Before joining News Corp., Roy was in the public sector in the office of New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg and at New York’s 2012 Olympic bid.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Roy made his way into the world of VC from working alongside Mayor Michael Bloomberg?

2.) What do all these definitions within AI mean? What does artificial intelligence include? What is machine learning? What is deep learning?

3.) When we talk about AI are we talking pure AI , with the likes of Watson and DeepMind or are we talking consumer centric software with elements of AI?

4.) With data playing such a huge role in the efficiency of AI, do large incumbents like Google and Facebook not have a massive advantage? How can startups get access to datasets? Is AI not fundamentally an acquihire industry?

5.) How important has open source in allowing and encouraging the progression of the machine intelligence ecosystem? What more can be done to further it’s growth?

6.) With the rise of machine intelligence, what does the future of work look like? How will we live in a world where 47% of white collar jobs will be replaced by machines and AI?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Roy’s Fave Book:

Roy’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Roy on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

20VC: Felicis’ Aydin Senkut on Scaling Felicis From $4m to $120m, Doing Venture Differently and Why Being A VC Is Like A Jamaican Bobsled Team!

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Aydin Senkut is the Founder and Managing Director of Felicis Ventures. An original “super-angel” investor, he was named to Forbes’ 2014 and 2015 Midas List and previously appeared as one of the top 15 tech angels by Businessweek. Aydin is well-known as an early backer of a number of iconic companies including Shopify (NYSE:SHOP), Fitbit (NYSE:FIT), Adyen, Clearslide, Credit Karma, and Rovio. More than 55 Felicis companies such as Brightroll, Climate Corp, Dropcam, Twitch, and Meraki, have been acquired by industry leaders such as Google, Amazon, Cisco, Apple, Microsoft, AT&T, Disney, Yahoo and Ebay.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Aydin made his way into the world of VC from being a Senior Manager @ Google?

2.) What does Aydin suggest to all those looking to make the move into VC who have potentially, an unconventional background??

3.) What caused Aylin’s shift from angel investor to VC ? What was Aydin’s investment strategy look like at the beginning and how has that evolved over time? How does Aydin look to differentiate Felicis from the plethora of seed funds?

4.) How does Felicis’ stage agnosticity work in practicality for Aydin and the fund itself? How much of a role does valuation play in Felicis’ investment decision making?

5.) Question from Rob Hayes @ First Round: How did the Rovio investment come about? Why do you say you are most proud if it?

6.) Question From Hiten Shah: How do you approach the topic of growing the organisation, whilst still supporting founders with the same time and quality?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Aydin’s Fave Book:

Aylin’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Aydin on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!
wesley chan, dan waterhouse, hiten shah, james park,

20VC: Sprig’s Gagan Biyani on The 3 Principles Of Fundraising and Building The World’s Largest Restaurant

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Gagan Biyani is the CEO and Co-Founder @ Sprig, on a mission to build the world’s largest restaurant providing healthy and sustainable food. Sprig has attained funding from the likes of Greylock Partners, Accel and Battery Partners. Prior to Sprig, Gagan was the Interim Head of Marketing @ Lyft, where he wrote the first Lyft new market launch playbook and launched Lyft LA. Before that Gagan, was the Co-Founder and CEO of the world’s largest online teaching and learning marketplace with the founding of Udemy.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) What was the origin story for Sprig? What was the aha moment?

2.) Question from Josh Elman: What lessons have Sprig and Gagan learnt from Chipotle, both in terms of their growth and their food?

3.) What are the coolest things that Gagan has learnt about foods that have learnt and not worked from user and product testing?

4.) On TWIST Gagan stated that the food delivery market is a winner take all market , so what makes Gagan believe that and what will ensure that Sprig is the startup that will be victorious?

5.) How do Sprig address expansion theory? Are they the Uber or the Lyft in terms of aggressive market expansion? How do Sprig choose which new market to enter? Is there a scientific approach?

6.) From having raised 9 rounds of VC and angel funding, what are Gagan’s biggest tips and takeaways to anyone entering the VC or funding process?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Gagan’s’s Fave Book:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Gagan on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!
adeo ressi, simon rothman

20VC: Greylock’s Sarah Tavel on What Founders Need From A Good Investor and Why Products Need To Be 10X Better & Cheaper

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Sarah Tavel is a Partner at Greylock Partners. Prior to Greylock, Sarah was a product lead at Pinterest. As one of the first 35 employees, her first order of business was to launch Pinterest internationally and close the Series C financing. Sarah then moved into product, becoming Pinterest’s founding PM for search and discovery, and launching Pinterest’s first search and recommendations features. She also led three acquisitions as she helped the company scale through a period of hyper-growth. Sarah joined Pinterest in 2012 after co-leading the Series A investment while at Bessemer Venture Partners. She spent six years at Bessemer, investing in a wide range of businesses from Quidsi to Cornerstone OnDemand.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Sarah made her way into the world of VC from selling ads in college?

2.) What is the deal sourcing story behind your sourcing of Pinterest for Bessemer? What made Sarah so excited about the product? At what stage did Sarah realise the huge potential Pinterest did have?

3.) How did Sarah decide Greylock was the right VC to choose over the plethora of other options?

4.) How does Sarah try and appeal to the inner founder? What does she do to make sure she is the first person they call? What forms of communication does Srah like to communicate with?

5.) What is Sarah’s attitude to VC’s personal brand? How has Sarah seen the personalisation of VC in recent years? Why the shift from blog to Medium?

6.) What is the most important attribute for a consumer product to have? Does it have to be both 10X better and cheaper?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Sarah’s’s Fave Book:

Sarah’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Josh on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

 

20VC: Greylock’s Josh Elman on Why We Are Not In A Consumer Downturn, The Next Wave Of Social and What Twitter Should Do Next

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Josh Elman is a Partner at Greylock Partners, which he joined the team in 2011 and invests in entrepreneurs building new consumer products and services. Josh specializes in designing, building, and scaling consumer products, having been part of multiple companies that have grown to more than 100 million users. Before joining Greylock, Josh was the product lead for growth and relevance at Twitter, growing Twitter’s active user base by nearly 10x. Prior to Twitter, Josh worked on the platform at Facebook and was an early employee at LinkedIn helping establish models for user growth and launched v1 of LinkedIn Jobs. Josh currently serves on the boards of Medium, Meerkat, Operator, Discord, and Jelly.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Josh made his move into the VC world from Twitter, Linkedin and Facebook?

2.) What were the biggest takeaways of watching fb, Linkedin and Twitter to hyper growth mode?

3.) Question from Jeff Seibert: What would Josh do with the Twitter product today??

4.) How would Josh apply his principles of the on boarding process to Twitter? What does he mean when he refers to the ladder of engagement?

5.) How does Josh respond to Fred Wilson’s out on the consumer downturn? Is consumer really as hard as Fred makes it out to be? What sort of metrics really get Josh excited when viewing consumer startups?

6.) How has Josh’s own investment decision making process been honed and refined since joining Greylock?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Josh’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Josh on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
 The Twenty Minute VC is brought to you by Leesa, the Warby Parker or TOMS shoes of the mattress industry. Lees have done away with the terrible mattress showroom buying experience by creating a luxury premium foam mattress that is order completely online and ships for free to your doorstep. The 10 inch mattress comes in all sizes and is engineered with 3 unique foam layers for a universal, adaptive feel, including 2 inches of memory foam and 2 inches of a really cool latex foam called Avena, design to keep you cool. All Leesa mattresses are 100% US or UK made and for every 10 mattresses they sell, they donate one to a shelter. Go to Leesa.com/VC and enter the promo code VC75 to get $75 off!

RobinHood’s Baiju Bhatt on The Importance Of Design in Fintech and Having A 10X Better Product

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Baiju Bhatt is the Co-Founder and CEO at RobinHood, the wildly successful stock market trading app with absolutely no commission fees. Since launching RobinHood there have been many amazing milestones including being awarded an Apple Design Award (first Finch company ever to achieve this), funding from the likes of Index, Google Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz and even movie star Jared Leto. They were also nominated for best mobile app at The Crunchies by TechCrunch this year.

CLICK TO PLAY

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Baiju made his way into the world of tech and came to be Founder @ RobinHood?

2.) How did Baiju deal with the regulatory hurdles heading into the fintech and trading world?

3.) How did Baiju go about building the waitlist for RobinHood to 1m people? What were the defining strategies and channels that made the difference?

4.) What is the thesis behind the decision of RobinHood? Will this design enable previously untouched markets to tap into the growing trading market?

5.) What are the biggest challenges for Baiju and RobinHood going forward? What keeps Baiju up at night? What is Baiju’s biggest piece of advice to a founder scaling their startup?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Baiju’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: TechCrunch

Baiju’s Fave Productivity Tool: Slack

Baiju’s Fave Book: The Case For Mars

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Baiju on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: ‘The Best Seed Investors Hunt’ with Paige Craig @ Arena VC

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Paige Craig is a Founder and General Partner of Arena Ventures. He is an experienced angel investor who has invested in over 110 startups in the last seven years, including companies like Lyft, AngelList, Wish, Postmates, Twitter, Styleseat, Zenpayroll, Quizup and more. Paige spent the first half of his career in the Marine Corps and US Intelligence Community and later launched a defense contractor, driving alone into Iraq in 2003 with just $10,000 and expanding operations across the Middle East, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Africa and Southeast Asia.

As always we would like thank the awesome team at Mattermark for providing us with all the data and analysis for the show today, check out Mattermark search here
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Paige made his way into the wonderful world of VC?

2.) What were Paige’s biggest takeaways from his previous career in the military? How did this shape his investment thesis?

3.) Arena VC have both the fund and the AngelList syndicate, why did Paige choose this dual model? What have been the drivers of it’s success?

4.) What does Paige believe makes a great VC? What aspects of himself would he like to improve upon? Is an inherent fight mode common among VCs?

5.) What advice would Paige give to someone looking to start a syndicate? What would Craig recommend to someone looking to join a syndicate?

 

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Paige’s Fave Book:

Paige’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Paige on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Homebrew’s Satya Patel on The Key Components of Being A Great VC & The 3 Main Reasons Startups Fail At Seed

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Satya Patel is a Partner @ Homebrew alongside Hunter Walk. Prior to Homebrew, Satya was VP Product at Twitter, building and leading the Product Management and User Services teams. Before Twitter, Satya was a Partner at Battery Ventures, where he co-led the seed and early stage investing practices. In 2003, Satya joined Google and was responsible for AdSense product management and partnerships. Before heading to Silicon Valley for Google, I worked for DoubleClick, in venture capital and as a strategy consultant.

CLICK TO PLAY

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Satya made his way into the world of tech and came to Partner with Hunter @ Homebrew?

2.) Is hustle the key component of a great VC? What does Satya believes makes a great investor?

4.) How can startups present emotion and depict their narrative to the VC? What are the benefits of doing so? What founder is most

5.) From Satya’s experience, what are the most common reasons startups fail at the seed stage? What can they do to maximise their chances of survival?

6.) We always hear that products should focus on a niche but how then do you attract VC money that is looking for a broad opportunity that can return the fund?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Satya’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: CB Insights, Fred Wilson, Brad Feld

Satya’s Fave Book: A Fine Balance

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Satya on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

Immediately’s Branko Cerny on The Rise Of Bottoms Up Sales and The Importance of Branding For Enterprise SaaS Companies

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Branko Cerny is the Founder and CEO at Immediately, the mobile platform for modern sales professionals whose mission is to elevate sales back to it’s core foundation, a relationship driven craft. Immediately has some of the US’s finest backing in terms of investment with the likes of Naval Ravikant @ AngelList, Ryan Holmes @ Hootsuite, Jonathan Abrams @ Friendster and Nuzzel and previous guest Kate Shillo @ Galvanize.

CLICK TO PLAY

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Branko made his way into the world of tech and came to be CEO @ Immediately?

2.) How does Branko find being one of the youngest enterprise CEO in the business? What are the challenges and what are the benefits?

3.) What can enterprise companies learn from the likes of Tinder and Equinox? How important is brand building for emerging enterprise sales companies?

4.) To what extent will we see the bottoms up sales process continue in enterprise sales? How does this change Immediately approach to UX, UI and brand building? Why did Branko choose to focus on a mobile platform with Immediately?

5.) How did Branko come to meet his stellar lineup of investors? What value add was he looking for when assembling the lineup? Is he concerned by the large number of investors Immediately has at an early stage?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Branko’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: First Round Review, Nir Eyal

Branko’s Fave Productivity Tool: IntercomMoleskin Notebook (Harry’s Productivity Tool too!)

Branko’s Fave Book: American Gods by Neil Gaiman

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Branko on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
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20VC: Rebecca Kaden @ Maveron

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Rebecca Kaden is a Partner at Maveron where she identifies emerging consumer-focused entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley, Southern California, and New York. Rebecca also plays a leading role in Maveron’s seed program, where they partner with emerging consumer companies at their earliest stages. She’s a Board Observer at August, Common, Darby Smart, Dolls Kill, Eargo, Earnest and General Assembly. Her outstanding achievements have been recognised by Forbes who included Rebecca is their annual ’30 Under 30′.
As always we would like thank the awesome team at Mattermark for providing us with all the data and analysis for the show today, check out Mattermark search here
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Rebecca made her way into the wonderful world of VC?

2.) Maveron have shown their belief in the consumerisation of IOT. What are Rebecca’s thoughts on the space, how it is progressing, barriers that are preventing mass adoption?

3.) What is your take on the integration of messaging and chat with IOT? Whis there a recent broader market positivity towards chat interfaces at the moment?

4.) Maveron have also shown their likeability towards hardware investments so why is this? Why do Maveron not feel the broader VC market concerns of shipping, logistics? Are we seeing a shift in investing patterns in hardware?

5.) How do Rebecca approach the common problem with consumer startups transtioning from an early adopter market to a mass market product?  What does Rebecca feel is the tipping point? What is necessary to make the transition from SF hipster client to everyone?

6.) What are the benefits are of having a narrow investing thesis (only consumer)? How has Rebecca found it? Is it challenging when finding companies you would like to invest in but are outside the mandate?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Rebecca’s Fave Book:

Rebecca’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Rebecca’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Rebecca on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
How many emails do you have in your inbox right now? A hundred? A thousand? The answer is too many. But here’s the thing—even though I knew I wanted to do something about it, I didn’t know how. It’s called SaneBox. SaneBox sorts through your email and moves all of the trivial stuff into a different folder so the only messages in your inbox are the ones you actually want to see. Visit sanebox.com/20VC today and they’ll throw in an extra $20 credit on top of the two-week free trial. 

Uber’s First Investor, First Round Capital’s Rob Hayes on How The Deal Of The Decade Originated and Why Product Orientated VC Is The Future

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Rob Hayes is a partner at First Round Capital where he opened up the firm’s San Francisco office. Over the past ten years, he has led investments in companies such as Mint.com (acquired by Intuit), Gnip (acquired by Twitter), Square, Uber, eero, and Planet Labs. Prior to joining First Round, Rob became the first venture investor at Omidyar Network, the investment firm started by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. While there, he led most of the initial venture capital deals and later built and ran the technology investing group.
Before that, Rob worked at Palm, where he product managed Palm OS and started the company’s corporate venture fund.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Rob made his move into the VC world from working with Palm in the heyday?

2.) Question From David Hornik : How did Rob’s seed investment in Uber originate? What made Rob invest? Did Rob realise the potential for Uber when he invested? When did Rob realize it was going to be huge?

3.) Has the investment in Uber changed how Rob views seed investing? Talking of the Uber’s of the world, how do you ensure that you find and decide to invest in the next Uber, when it raises a seed round?

4.) In terms of deal closing, how does Rob approach that element of the deal and what was the competition and closing environment around the Uber deal?

5.) Question from Satya at Homebrew: Stepping back and looking at First Round, what has changed in FRC’s approach as the firm has grown? How does the firm think about managing generational transition?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Rob’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Rob’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Rob on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
How many emails do you have in your inbox right now? A hundred? A thousand? The answer is too many. But here’s the thing—even though I knew I wanted to do something about it, I didn’t know how. It’s called SaneBox. SaneBox sorts through your email and moves all of the trivial stuff into a different folder so the only messages in your inbox are the ones you actually want to see. Visit sanebox.com/20VC today and they’ll throw in an extra $20 credit on top of the two-week free trial. 

Pre-YC Demo Day: Msg.ai’s Puneet Mehta on The Rise of AI, The Potential For Messaging and Life As A Current YC Startup

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Puneet Mehta, Founder @ Msg.ai, an artificial intelligence startup for conversational commerce and for an AI founder you don’t get much better than starting your career at IBM’s TJ Watson Center, which is exactly what Puneet did. He then went on to build predictive platforms to power large-scale trading systems aka bots on Wall St. It is clearly not joust us who think he is awesome as Advertising Age named Puneet to the Creativity 50 list in 2014, honoring the most creative and innovative thinkers and doers.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Puneet made his way into the world of AI and came to be the founder of YC’s latest, Msg.ai?

2.) How has the YC experience been for Msg.ai and for Puneet as a founder? Have YC been able to keep the same quality of mentorship with the largely expanding number in their latest batch?

3.) VC funding is usually very available to YC alums graduating, how will Puneet go about picking his investors? What are the fundamental determinants?

4.) What have been the biggest takeaways for Puneet? What has been the highlight? What has been tough? What was surprising and unexpected? How did Puneet deal with the requirement for 10% weekly growth?

5.) Taking a step back now, Puneet has stated before about building the Turing test for money. So what does he mean by this and how does he look at AI as a key driver for conversational commerce?

6.) What is it about messaging that makes Puneet believe this is the platform of the future? What is it that bots provide that has never been possible before?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Puneet’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Puneet on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

 

20VC: The Three Fundamental Forces in Society with Ciaran O’Leary, Partner @ BlueYard

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Ciaran O’Leary is the General Partner at one of Europe’s newest funds, BlueYard. A $120m fund located at the early stage, centring around 3 key areas: The decentralisation of markets, the democratisation of capabilities, and the liberation of data. Prior to BlueYard, Ciaran was a Partner at Earlybird with investments in the likes of Peak Games (emerging markets social gaming), 6Wunderkinder (productivity apps), Moped (private messaging), B2X Care Solutions (outsourcing platform), madvertise (mobile targeting network) and simfy (digital music distribution company). Before Earlybird, Ciarán co-founded a startup and gathered operational experience at others.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Ciaran made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What is the thesis with BlueYard? What is the preferred cheque size, sector and geography?

3.) With the mass of VCs emerging, how can startups at the early stage determine whether a VC really is early stage? Are there any defining characteristics?

4.) For startup founders out there who always hear from fellow founders that everything is going gangbusters, how should they react to that? How can you determine whether a startup really is doing well?

5.) Say the startup really is going well and they are looking to scale and hire, we always hear we need a world beating, world class X? How can they communicate that hire better to their current team and their board? What should the CEO or Head of Talent be focusing on when viewing talent? Is there anything they should look out for in particular?

6.) Now when a startup really scales, board meetings become a big part of a CEO’s life. So how can CEO’s turn useless board meetings into very useful value added meetings? How can they optimize that time? What should they look for? What should they ask for?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Ciaran’s Fave Book: The Road

Ciaran’s Fave Blog: The Economist Espresso

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Ciaran on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Lowercase’s Matt Mazzeo on Being Chris Sacca’s Partner and The 3 KPIs to Successful Investing

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Matt Mazzeo is Managing Director at Lowercase Capital, alongside legendary angel investor, Chris Sacca. At Lowercase Matt leads a seed and series A investment strategy managing a portfolio of over forty investments including Uber, Twitter, Stripe and Optimizely just to name a few. Prior to joining Lowercase Capital, Matt spearheaded many of the digital and venture efforts at Creative Artists Agency (CAA). Matt helped shape the agency’s seed stage investment strategy and played an integral role in the founding of CAA’s incubated start-up companies, including Funny or Die, WhoSay, and Moonshark. Matt has been recognized as an innovative force across technology, entertainment, and advertising for which Fast Company named Matt one of the Most Creative People in Business. In addition to making Forbes Midas Brink List in 2014, Matt has been recognized on both Ad Age’s 40 Under 40 List in 2013, and The Wrap’s Inaugural Innovators List.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Matt made the transition from the world of celebrity management to the world of venture capital?

2.) How have we seen the personalisation of VCs in the emerging eco-system? Are VCs themselves brands now? How does Matt look to establish his brand?

3.) What are the required KPI’s to make a successful investor? What is Matt pleased with in himself and what would he like to improve?

4.) Why will we see the decentralisation of VC away from the traditional Sand Hill Road? How does being in LA affect the operations and deal flow of Lowercase?

5.) What are Matt’s biggest learnings from being partner with Chris? What has Matt founded the most challenging in making the transition from CAA to VC?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Matt’s Fave Book:

Matt’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Matt’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Matt on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

 

20VC: Niccolo De Masi on The Bursting Of The Tech Bubble and What It Takes To Be A Celebrity Partner with Glu Mobile

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Niccolo De Masi is the CEO & Chairman @ Glu Mobile, one of the world’s hottest gaming companies with title including the current No 1 Game in the App Store with the Kendall and Kylie Game, Glu is also the maker of the Kim Kardashian game and the likes of Deer Hunter and many more. Prior to Glu, Niccolo was CEO at mobile entertainment company Hands On Mobile and before that Niccolo was the CEO at London listed mobile entertainment company, Monstermob Group Plc.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) What does Niccolo make of the wildly unrealistic pricing applied to early stage startups today? What will result from this incredibly optimistic pricing?

2.) If Niccolo were a VC today, how would he respond to the impending implosion of the early stage startups? What are the best VCs currently doing and what can startups do to preserve as much value as possible?

3.) How central a role does first mover advantage become in a down turning market? Will we see large scale consolidation and if so what will the effects of this be? How can startups position themselves to be the consolidator not the consolidated?

4.) How do Glu pick the celebrities that are featured for their celebrity feature games? What are the KPI’s? What are the requirements in terms of existing brand and audience for a celebrity game to be a success?

5.) Why are women better at establishing larger social following than men? What celebrities would Niccolo most like to have on Glu’s platform who they currently do not have?

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Niccolo on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Christian Hernandez on The Importance of Mobile and The Relationship Between Growth vs Revenue

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Christian Hernandez is the Co-Founder and Partner @ Whitestar Capital in London. Prior to co-founding White Star Capital, Christian worked at Facebook and led the international expansion of the company’s Business Development, Platform and Developer Network groups. He previously held leadership roles in the U.S. and Europe at Google and Microsoft and started his career in technology at MicroStrategy, a startup he joined prior to its 1999 IPO. Christian has worked closely with entrepreneurs and leading VCs and has been an active angel investor and advisor.  He represents White Star on the Boards of KeyMe, Glow Media, Bloglovin’ and Hole 19. Christian also serves as a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Christian made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Having worked with the likes of Facebook, Google and Microsoft, how has Christian seen the ecosystem develop; for both the good and the bad?

3.) Moving to White Star specifically now, what is the thesis, investment mandate? Average cheque size, preferred sectors? Geography? Talking of geography, WSC has a transatlantic model with offices in both London and NYC, why is that? What are the benefits of having this spread?

4.) According to Mattermark, White Star have 38% of your portfolio in mobile, so what are Christians views on the evolution of mobile? How does he respond to Fred Wilson’s post about the mobile downtown and the difficulty in attaining and maintaining traction for mobile apps? What are Christian’s thoughts on discovery?

5.) Where does Christian stand on the relationship between growth and revenue? Are there any cases where it can be beneficial to focus solely on growth? In today’s environment, with VCs moderating their valuations more, is it possible to raise on pure momentum growth?

6.) Christian recently wrote an article: ‘Hiring For The Future Of Your Company’, so what does he really mean by this? Is it not a little ironic coming from the VC scene, an inherently risky asset class who have a fundamental unwillingness to move away from the old hiring style of investment bank or consultancy, in many cases?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Christian’s Fave Book: Physics of the Future

Christian’s Fave Blog: Medium, Nuzzel

Christian’s Most Serendipitous Investment: Keyme

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Christian on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Tom Tunguz on Why Now Is The Best Time To Be Investing and The Effect of Late Stage Valuations on Startups

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Tom Tunguz is a Partner @ Redpoint Ventures, where he has invested in Axial, Dremio, Expensify, Electric Imp, Looker, and ThredUP. Before joining Redpoint, Tomasz was the product manager for Google’s AdSense social-media products and AdSense internationalization. Tom is also the author of the world famous blog and newsletter which can be found at http://tomtunguz.com

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Tom made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What does the huge drop in late stage saas valuations mean for the early guys? Does Tom expect them to hunker down? Take more time? Spend less cash?

3.) In recent years with the likes of Zenefits, we have seen the rise of Free Saas Enabled Marketplaces, why have we seen this rise, what are the benefits of adopting this strategy? Does the lack of predictability and lower (30%) gross margin not generate concern towards the model?

4.) Where does Tom see room for real innovation in SaaS? Is Tom excited about mobile enterprise?

5.) Question from Javier Soltero @ Microsoft: How have you approached developing your ‘personal’ brand and how that has made an impact in your development as an investor?

6.) Question from Eric ver Ploeg (episode 70) and Tak Lo (Episode 37): Where does Tom generate the ideas for articles and what does the idea creation process look like?’ What does the scheduling look like to churn our such high quality content on a daily occurrence?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Tom’s Fave Book: Narcissus and Goldmund

Tom’s Fave Blog: SaastrDavid Skok

Tom’s Most Recent Investment: Dremio

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Tom on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC FF: Hiten Shah on VC Funded vs Bootstrapped Businesses and How He Decides Which Startups To Advise

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Hiten Shah is one of the most prominent players in the data marketing industry having co-Founded both KissMetrics (raised $10m+ VC Funding) and Crazy Egg (bootstrapped), both wildly successful businesses serving some of the world’s largest companies. Hiten is also an extremely successful angel investor with investments in the likes of Buffer, Mattermark and MessageMe (acquired by Yahoo.) In addition, Hiten is also a serial startup advisor having been an advisor with Linkedin, SlideShare and WordPress’ Automattic.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Hiten made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Why did Hiten decide to take VC funding for on startup and not the other? Did taking VC funding allow for much greater growth or make him less resourceful and creative?

3.) How have Hiten’s entrepreneurial endeavours altered his attitude to investing? How does Hiten’s large personal brand add to his investing style?

4.) Hiten has said before that he likes to ask founders ‘what is their earliest most traumatic memory’? Why is that and what does Hiten learn from that?

5.) Question from Erik Torenberg @ ProductHunt: How does Hiten assess which startups he wants to spend time with as an advisor?

6.) Question from Ryan Hoover @ ProductHunt: What is the most counter-intuitive advice for this starting a company?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Hiten’s Fave Book: The War of Art

Hiten’s Fave Blog: 731 Users Reveal Why Slack Is So Addictive

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Hiten on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Building a Game Changing Consumer Startup and Hunting His 4th Unicorn with Jim Scheinman @ Maven Ventures

Jim Scheinman is the Founder and Managing Partner @ Maven Ventures, a leading seed stage consumer VC with investments in the likes of AngelList, WealthFront and Altspace. Prior to founding Maven, Jim was a pioneer in the early days of the social media revolution as Head of Business Development and Sales at the first social networking site, Friendster. However, in 2005, Jim left Friendster to join co-founders Michael and Xochi Birch to launch Bebo as the first employee and Board member. Bebo later went on to become a unicorn for Jim, however, that was not his only unicorn as he was also an investor in Tango ($bn valuation) and NBCi (IPOd for 6bn.)

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Jim made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What was it like being in the midst of the social media revolution as it was taking place? How does Jim view the social scene today? Why does Jim think there is skepticism to investing in social?

3.) On consumer mobile Fred Wilson stated: ‘doing anything in the consumer mobile space is super hard. i can’t think of many consumer mobile apps that have gained massive traction and sustained it. can you?’ So why is the space so hard? Is it not a monopoly play with the dominant incumbents?

4.) How has Jim seen the consumer landscape develop over the last decade with the rise of mobile? How can you tackle the distribution challenges inherent within mobile? Does Jim agree that with mobile consumer product market fit is no longer enough to gain a large user base?

5.) What are the core elements of building a successful consumer business? What are the challenges? Is there a pareto’s principle on this, with 20% determining 80% of the returns?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Jim’s Fave Book: The Boys In The Boat 

Jim’s Fave Blog: Mattermark, Strictly VC, TechCrunch

Jim’s Most Recent Investment: HomeMade

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jim on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

SoftTech VC’s Andy McLoughlin on The Series A Crunch, Maximising Runway and Minimising Burn and For Startups

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Andy McLoughlin is a Partner with SoftTech VC, where he primarily invests in B2B, SaaS, developer tools and mobile applications. Prior to joining SoftTech, Andy was co-founder of London-based Huddle, under Andy’s leadership, Huddle became one of Europe’s most awarded and well-known technology startups, raising over $80M of venture funding to date. Since 2010 Andy has been a prolific angel investor building a portfolio covering 35 startups, mostly in the SaaS / B2B space. Just to name a few of the investments from his incredible portfolio Andy was an angel in the likes of Buffer, Intercom, Pipedrive, Postmates, Secret Escapes, just to name a few.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Andy made his startup as an entrepreneur and then VC?

2.) What was it that made Andy make the move from the world of entrepreneurship to VC?

3.) As a seed stage investor, what does Andy make of the Series A crunch? How prevalent has it been for him as an investor? What is the optimal amount of runway founders should raise for?

4.) What does Andy think of the size and cadence of the first funding rounds that we are seeing now? What does he make of the rise of the second seed or the bridge round? Is it an indication of trouble?

5.) SoftTech are near the closing of Fund V, so what is the thesis and the mission going forward? What themes and spaces is Andy most excited by and why?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Andy’s Fave Book:

Andy’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Andy’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Andy on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

 

20VC: Gary Liu @ Digg on The Rebirth of Digg & The Evolution Of Content

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Gary Liu is the CEO @ Digg, the incredibly famous platform that allows users to find, read and share the most talked about stories on the internet. Prior to joining Digg, Gary was an early employee at Spotify holding numerous positions including, Head of Spotify Labs and Global Director of Ad Product Strategy. Gary joined Spotify from AOL, where he was the Director of Sales Strategy and Operations at Patch. Before joining AOL, Gary was a business and sales operations leader at Google and Clickable.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Gary made his entry into the world of tech and later became CEO at Digg?

2.) What were Gary’s biggest takeaways from his time at Google and being an early employee at Spotfiy? How has he adapted those learnings to his role now at Digg?

3.) What really happened at Digg? What went wrong? Why did Digg not live up to the early hype of being the darling of the internet age? How are Digg evolving to change this?

4.) In the vastly competitive space of content creation and distribution, how do Digg stand out and differentiate themselves from the plethora of options available to consumers?

5.) How do Digg try to engage and unite the community through the commenting process without alienating people through the potential for malicious posts and trolling?

6.) How does a platform like Digg plan to monetize content with the ever disappearing ad dollar? Does it concern Gary or does he see potential in other avenues?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Gary on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Investing In The Next Frontiers Of Tech & Harry Potter with Adam Draper, Founder & CEO @ Boost VC

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Adam Draper is a fourth generation venture capitalist and the Founder & CEO @ Boost VC, a specialised seed stage accelerator that invests in blockchain and virtual reality startups. Before starting Boost, Adam angel invested in 20 companies including Coinbase, Plangrid and Practice Fusion. During his angel investment period, Adam was also the Founder of Xpert Financial in his aim to revolutionise the financial markets for private companies.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Adam made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Why is Adam so bullish on the topics of bitcoin and virtual reality?

3.) What are the fundamental use cases for bitcoin and why have we not seen mass adoption on a global scale so far? What are the barriers to adoption?

4.) What is the investment attitude to the bitcoin and VR space? Does the volatility of the price in bitcoin affect the level of investment going into the sector?

5.) What would Adam like to see more of in the space? What is he most excited for and where does he see the most potential?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Adam’s Fave Book: The Name Of The Wind

Adam’s Fave Blog: Mugglenet

Adam’s Most Recent Investment: Joystream

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Adam on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

 

20VC: Tim Draper on Investing In Tesla, The Best Pitch He Has Ever Seen & The Evolution of Venture and Startups

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Tim Draper is the founding partner of leading venture capital firms Draper Associates and DFJ. Some of his Venture successes include Skype, Baidu, Tesla, Hotmail, Twitch.tv, and hundreds of others. Fun fact about Tim, it was his original suggestion to use viral marketing in web-based email to geometrically spread an Internet product to its market was instrumental to the successes of Hotmail, YahooMail, and Gmail and has been adopted as a standard marketing technique by thousands of businesses. His prominence is evident through his being named 100 most influential Harvard Alumni, and seven on the Forbes Midas List. He was named Always-On #1 top venture capital deal maker.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Tim made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Having founded Draper Associates in 1985, how has Tim seen the investing landscape develop over time?

3.) Draper obviously invests across a variety of stage, but what is Tim’s preferred stage? Where does he see the most opportunity for venture returns? Why?

4.) Of all the companies Tim has seen, which was the best pitch? Why? Which founder inspired Tim the most? Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?

5.) What is DraperU? What are the plans for the future? What is the vision? Why did Tim choose to do a reality show in StartupU? Has it been a very different experience being the lead in a TV show compared to investing in startups?

6.)Why is behind Tim’s immense belief in Bitcoin. Why is this? When did Tim realize the potential? How long will adoption take?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Tim on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC: Niccolo De Masi @ Glu Mobile on Private Market Valuations, Being A Public Market CEO & The Trends Of Mobile Gaming

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Niccolo De Masi is the CEO & Chairman @ Glu Mobile, one of the world’s hottest gaming companies with title including the current No 1 Game in the App Store with the Kendall and Kylie Game, Glu is also the maker of the Kim Kardashian game and the likes of Deer Hunter and many more. Prior to Glu, Niccolo was CEO at mobile entertainment company Hands On Mobile and before that Niccolo was the CEO at London listed mobile entertainment company, Monstermob Group Plc.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Niccolo came to be CEO at one of the world’s hottest gaming companies, Glu Mobile?

2.) How did Niccolo make the transition from feature phone business to smartphone business with Glu so successfully? How did Glu’s public market status affect the transition?

3.) How important is transparency within organisations as a leader, whether it be Founder or CEO? What are the important elements to communicate with your team and your investors?

4.) Why are private market valuations so misaligned with the public market? What will happen to the plethora of newly made unicorns?

5.) How does Niccolo source potential acquisition targets, what does he look for in, so called ‘well valued assets’? What makes them well valued?

6.) What is Niccolo’s turnaround strategy for his acquisition targets? How can Glu’s platform elevate companies that are in distress?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Niccolo’s Fave Book: The Rise and Fall Of The Great Powers 

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Niccolo on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Tyler Willis on How To Be Innovative With Customer Acquisition and The Future Of Innovation

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Tyler Willis is probably one of the best angel investors around and has invested in seed stage companies that have gone on to raise from the likes of Index Ventures, Founders Fund, Khosla Ventures and others. Some of these investments include the likes of wildly popular ride sharing app Lyft, the incredible Patreon (now delivering 2m a month to creators) and Change.org which now has over 80m users.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Tyler made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Where does Tyler sit on investor specialisation? Is it best to have preferred sectors and round sizes?

3.) What elements are essential for Tyler pre investment and what can be tweaked later down the line?

4.) Question from Arielle Zuckerberg: How does Tyler evaluate customer acquisition so well? What is his approach to this with potential investments and portfolio companies?

5.) Why are people so negative on the future of innovation? Is Founders Fund’s ‘we expected flying cars and instead got 140 characters’ fair?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Tyler’s Fave Book: Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christensen

Tyler’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Mattermark Daily

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Tyler on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC: Arielle Zuckerberg, Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

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Arielle Zuckerberg, Partner @ Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers. Arielle Zuckerberg joined KPCB in 2015 and focuses on early-stage investments in the firm’s digital practice as part of the venture team. Arielle joined Kleiner from Humin, where she led product for the company’s mobile apps. She started her career as a product manager by day and Hackathon host by night at Wildfire Interactive, Inc., which was acquired by Google in 2012. After the acquisition, Arielle worked as a product manager on social ads at Google. Outside of KPCB, Arielle has made several angel investments across the food tech and health sectors in the likes of Partender, Bitty Foods and The Ticket Fairy, just to name a few.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Arielle made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What has the move been like from angel to VC? What theories and investment theses are adjustable? How doe the fiduciary responsibility to your LP’s adjust your risk profile when investing?

3.) Questions from Tyler Willis: How does Arielle evaluate new products? How does Arielle learn and how does Ariele come down on the learning curve on new things so quickly (new investor to KPCB in ~2 years, for example).

4.) Arielle has now spent her first few months in venture, what have been the biggest surprises? Biggest challenges? What is Arielle’s fave part and what is her least fave part?

5.) How does Arielle see the AI space now? Where does she see room for innovation? Is there anything Arielle is concerned about?

6.) Now when doing research for this interview I came across Arielle’s New Years Resolution list from 2012! So what are your new years resolutions for 2016? What are the goals you are aiming for?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Arielle’s Fave Book: The Symposium by Plato

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Arielle on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC FF 035: Why Crowdfunding Is Not Right For Tech Startups with Ryan Caldbeck @ CircleUp

Ryan Caldbeck is the Founder & CEO @ CircleUp, the online investing platform that allows you to invest in innovative consumer companies. They have raised funding from some of the best including USV, Maveron and Canaan Partners (all past guests). Before Ryan founded CircleUp, he worked in consumer product and retail-focused private equity at TSG Consumer Partners and Encore Consumer Capital, where he was exposed to hundreds of great consumer and retail businesses that were too small to obtain funding through the customary private equity channels and did not fit the risk profiles many VCs demanded. As a result, Ryan decided to build the solution, a private equity marketplace with the economics and scale to make funding available to these promising companies.

CLICK TO PLAY

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Ryan make the move from the world of VC to founding his own tech startup?

2.) Why is CircleUp marketplace investing, not crowdfunding? What does Ryan believe are the misnomers around the term crowdfunding?

3.) Where does this sector make sense and where is it  inefficient? Why is it wrong for tech companies?

4.) One major aspect in the UK that this segment has struggled with is it’s ability to attract institutional investors to the sector. So with CircleUp, how are institutional investors getting into this market and is there anything more Ryan would like to see with this regard?

5.) To what extent does Ryan think this is disrupting private capital formation? Should VCs be concerned? What sector of the funding environment is most vulnerable to being disrupted by the rise of marketplace investing?

6.) How was the funding process for Ryan? CircleUp raised over $50m over several rounds with investors from our friends at USV and Maveron, how that came about and what Ryan would advise founders entering the process?

Items Mentioned In Todays Show:

Ryan’s Fave Blog: AVC, Jeff Jordan, Bill Gurley

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VC and Harry on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

20VC: The First Online Venture Fund Built On AngelList with Dustin Dolginow @ Maiden Lane

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Dustin Dolginow is the General Partner @ Maiden Lane, the first online venture fund which uses AngelList as it’s operating system, serving as the institutional capital partner to the best angel investors in the world. Dustin has made investments in the likes of Getable, PipeDrive, Beepi and many more incredible companies. Dustin is also a venture partner with Accomplice where he serves some of the best entrepreneurs on the planet. Prior to investing, Dustin cut his teeth in the operations game with Social Swipe, which allowed merchants to gain more value from their transaction data.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Dustin made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What were Dustin’s major takeaways from his operational experience and how has he applied them to his role investing with Maiden Lane?

3.) Where does Ryan you democratisation of funding going in the next five years? What direction does Dustin believe we are moving in?

4.) Dustin has said that ‘capital is a crappy differentiator’ so what value add should founders look for in their VCs? How are we seeing the VC value add evolve over time?

4.) How does Dustin sell Maiden Lane in the sea of seed funds that have emerged over the last few years? How important does Dustin think it is for VCs and funds to have personal brands? What is bigger the brand of the VC or the fund?

5.) What is it Dustin looks for in products? Are there any must haves? Any design requirements?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Dustin’s Fave Book:

Dustin’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Dustin on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

 

20VC: Gil Penchina @ Flight.vc

Gil Penchina is the Founder @ Flight.vc, a network of AngelList syndicates that covers a wide range of sectors from SaaS to security from Israel to England. Gil also has the title of the largest raise for an AngelList syndicate, essentially turning himself into a one man fund. Some of Gil’s investments include the likes of Paypal, Indiegogo, AngelList, Linkedin and many more. Prior to his investing career, Gil cut his teeth with operating roles at numerous companies including Ebay. We would also like to wish Gil the best of luck in his nomination for Angel Investor of The Year at tonight’s Crunchies by TechCrunch.
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Gil made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Why did Gil choose numerous syndicate approach over one huge syndicate? What are the benefits of having numerous specialized syndicates?

3.) What is included in Gil’s sell of Flight as an investor? What is the driving force behind the success of Flight? What is the biggest challenge within this job as founder?

4.) How does Gil try and convince the startups that the syndicate method of investment is better for them? How does Gil portray his value add to startups?

5.) Does Gil insist on pro-rata rights? Should founders always grant them to early stage investors?Which VCs does Gil like to work with and what makes them a good VC?

6.) Where does Gil see the future of first AngelList? Will it replace the archaic system of VC? What are Gil’s plans for his syndicates? Is Gil looking to move into Series A and B rounds? How do you plan to become the Fidelity of this asset class?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Gil’s Fave Book:

Gil’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Gil’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Gil on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

20 VC FF 034: What Fintech Can Learn From Uber and The Shift From Financial Organisation To Financial Efficiency with Kelly Peeler, Founder & CEO @ NextGenVest

Kelly Peeler is the Founder and CEO of NextGenVest, the College Money Mentor for every student, helping students navigate the financial aid and student loan application process. While at Harvard, Kelly started Business Across Borders, a non profit that helps Iraqi students rebuild their own economy by starting their own companies and the International Women in Business Summit, bringing together top female college leaders. She was selected as one of the eight Kauffman Foundation Global Scholars, named by Goldman Sachs as one of the 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs, and named a White House #StartTheSpark Ambassador. Her TED Talk is called “How to Change the World as a Millennial – Don’t be Stupid with Money” and can be found here.
A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Kelly made it into startups and what was the origin story for NextGenVest?

2.) How has the Fintech ecosystem evolved over the last 5 years compared to the mass of consumer facing fintect startups today? What does Kelly mean by Fintech 1.0 and the next phase of Fintech?

3.) How can emerging brands and in particular fintech brands build loyalty with the emerging millennial generation? What is the attention graph for millenials looking like?

4.) What does Kelly mean when she states a shift from financial organisation with Mint to financial efficiency today?

5.) What key determinants that have made Uber so successful can be used within Fintech startups to build the same trust and relationship?

6.) What is Kelly’s view of startups taking a platform dependent approach? What are the benefits and what are the concerns?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Kelly on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: The Evolution Of Mobile & The Importance Of Follow On Funding with Hadley Harris @ Eniac Ventures

Hadley Harris is the Founding General Partner at Eniac Ventures, the first seed stage venture fund focussed exclusively on mobile. Eniac’s investments include the likes of Soundcloud, Airbnb, Elevate and many more incredible mobile first companies. Before Eniac, Hadley was a two-time entrepreneur in the mobile space, as an executive at Vlingo, acquired by Nuance Communications for $225m and after Vlingo he became CMO of Thumb, which was acquired by Ypulse. Hadley also worked at Charles River Ventures where he spent time helping with mobile investments while looking for a young startup to join. As if his portfolio does not prove enough of what a seed stage investing legend he is, he was also named by Business Insider as ‘New York’s Best Early Stage Investor’.
A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Hadley made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What does an engineering degree provide when investing? Why did Eniac decide to focus solely on mobile?

2.) How has Hadley seen the NY venture and startup scene develop over the last years? Does an ecosystem need anchor companies to be great? Ex-Googlers, and ex-Facebook, ex-LinkedIn, ex-Sun, etc. are so important to the Bay Area ecosystem. What are New York’s anchor companies? How has that affected the ecosystem?

3.) What is it like helping companies like Soundcloud and Airbnb scale when in hyper growth mode? At the seed level, how important a role does valuation play when determining whether to invest or not?

5.) Why is raising a Series B so tough? Is it the embodiment of the funding barbell? Has NYC, like London, seen a rise in the second seed round?

6.) What are Hadley’s thoughts on VC founder alignment? What are the common characteristics of the best founders that Hadley has worked with and invested in?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Hadley’s Fave Book:

Hadley’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Hadley’s Most Recent Investment:

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Hadley on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

Index’s Martin Mignot on Sourcing Rocketship Companies, Evaluating Founders and His Attitude Towards Risk At The Early Stage

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Martin Mignot is an early stage investor at Index Ventures where he specialises in SaaS, marketplaces and mobile. He is actively looking after Index’s investments in Algolia, Blablacar, Capitaine Train, Deliveroo, Drivy, Rad, Swiftkey and TheFamily. He worked on 50+ transactions to date, including Assistly, Auxmoney, BaseCRM, Cloud.com, Codecademy, DimDim, Factual, Farfetch, Flipboard, Funding Circle, Gluster, HouseTrip, Just-Eat, Lookout, Nastygal, Notonthehighstreet, Onefinestay, PeoplePerHour, TrustPilot, Soluto and SoundCloud.  Prior to joining Index, Martin was in the TMT team at UBS Investment Bank and co-founded the beauty subscription business Boudoir Prive (acquired by Joliebox/Birchbox) and a student web radio service (www.rsp.fm).
A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) Where did it all start for Martin? What is the Martin Mignot story?

2.) How does Martin view venture as a career vs coming into it later on? Why does Martin think venture is now a viable career from the offset?

3.) Does Martin agree with Sheryl Sandberg’s statement, it doesn’t matter where you sit, as long as you have a seat on the rocketship? How important is valuation for Martin when making the decision?

4.) How Martin goes about sourcing the latest and greatest startups from the European ecosystem?

5.) How does Martin evaluate founders and consider their ability to execute on their plan, prior to making the investment?

6.) Talking of difficulty for startups attaining funding, what are your thoughts on VC founder alignment? You have said to focus before on the business and not the team, unless exceptional cases prevail, this is very strange for me to hear. Why is it you have adopted this stance and why do you feel it is best?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Martin’s Fave Blog or Newsletter:
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Martin on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC FF 032: Jeff Seibert on Lessons From Being Acquired By Twitter & Box and Now Leading Twitter’s Consumer Product

Jeff Seibert is an experienced serial-entrepreneur and currently Senior Director of Product at Twitter. Previously, Seibert was the CEO of Crashlytics, which he co-founded in 2011 with Wayne Chang. Crashlytics delivered crash analysis tools for iOS and Android apps via an SDK that reached 300 Million mobile devices worldwide. Crashlytics was acquired by Twitter in 2013 for $259m. In 2007, Seibert co-founded Increo and served as its COO and lead architect until its acquisition by Box in August of 2009. He subsequently oversaw the integration of Increo’s document preview and annotation technologies into the company’s cloud-based content platform.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Jeff made his move into the wonderful world of tech?

 Today we are going to break up your story into 3 chapters:

1.) Acquisition by Box:

  • What was it like going to Sand Hill Road to raise in 2009?
  • How much runway would Jeff advise for a startup and how can companies know whether a strategic acquisition is optimal or whether they should continue building with a further round?
  • Jeff has spoke before about being overly transparent with this team about the acquisition. What are the problems with being overly transparent and how can you balance the two?

 2.) Acquired by Twitter:

  • At what point did Jeff transition to thinking the acquisition by Twitter would be a beneficial and viable and why?
  • A reason for Jeff being favourable to the acquisition was Twitter’s agreement of continued investment in the space. How can founders negotiate and ensure that this occurs with their acquisition? One of the mistakes stated about the acquisition by Twitter was the reporting structure. How can founders ensure that they are speaking to the VPs of engineering, CEOs etc and attain the support they need?

 3.) Life at Twitter:

  •  How life is following the acquisition? What are Jeff’s plans for the future as Senior Director of Product at Twitter?
Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Jeff’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Daring Fireball
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jeff on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Lessons From Working with Chris Sacca, The Rise Of Mobile Commerce and Improving Push Notifications with Ellie Wheeler, Partner @ Greycroft Partners

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Ellie Wheeler is a Partner at Greycroft Partners where she focuses on investment opportunities in next-generation commerce, consumer mobile, and associated SaaS solutions. Ellie manages several investments for Greycroft, including BaubleBar, Flashpoint Intel, Eloquii, and Plain Vanilla Games (QuizUp). Prior to joining Greycroft, Ellie worked in a similar role evaluating investment opportunities at Lowercase Capital with Chris Sacca. Before working with Lowercase, Ellie worked at Cisco where she was involved in multiple acquisitions and investments, including PostPath, Jabber, Xobni, and Tandberg.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Ellie made her way into the wonderful world of tech and VC?

2.) What were Ellie’s biggest takeaways from working with the legend that is Chris Sacca?

3.) As an investment focus of Ellie’s, how does Ellie think the mobile commerce space has changed and how consumer behaviours are changing in the space?

4.) What are Ellie’s views on push notifications? What are the Do’s and Don’ts? What can be done to make push notifications more effective?

5.) Do wearables change the push notification space? What are Ellie’s views on wearables with their investment in BaubleBar? Are consumers ready for them?

6.) Talking of wearables, how does Ellie respond to hardware investments? Typically a space VC shy away from? What are the problems for Ellie? What attracts her with hardware?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Ellie’s Fave Book: The Power of One

Ellie’s Most Recent Investment: Blinkist
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Ellie on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: Bryan Johnson @ OS Fund & Braintree on Investing In The Operating Systems Of Life & Why VC Should All Be Open Source

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Bryan Johnson is an entrepreneur and investor. He is the founder of OS Fund and Braintree, the latter of which was bought by eBay in 2013 for $800 million in cash. Bryan launched OS Fund in 2014 with $100 million of his personal capital to support inventors and scientists who aim to benefit humanity. His investments include endeavors to extend healthy human life to 100+ (Human Longevity), replicate the human visual cortex (Vicarious), mine an asteroid (Planetary Resources), reinvent transportation (Matternet), and reimagine food (Hampton Creek), among others.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Bryan made his start in the world of tech and how he has come to the OS fund today?

2.) What was the pivotal moment in Bryan’s career? When was the turning point? What was was the hardest part of the entrepreneurial journey and how did Bryan conquer it?

3.) What is the main motivation behind the OS fund? Which areas does Bryan most want to solve and where does he see significant market opportunities?

4.) Does the longevity of return to Bryan’s exits concern him? Most investments exit with 10 years, human lifespan startups take a little longer! What sort of time frame does Bryan have in mind when investing in these companies?

5.) What does Bryan really perceive synthetic biology to mean? Are we seeing improvements in this sector?

6.) The OS Fund have recently released a white paper detailing extensively their process for investing? Why did Bryan decide on this open source style of investing?

7.) What would Bryan like to see more of? Where does Bryan see a lot of people investing that he thinks is a mistake?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Bryan’s Most Recent Investment:
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Bryan on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC FF 031: James Beshara @ Tilt on Crowdfunding For A Mobile World, Finding The Perfect Co-Founder & Beer Pong!

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James Beshara is the Co-Founder @ Tilt the micro-crowdfunding platform that allows you to receive funding from friends—changing the way collaborative funding works. Tilt has raised $37 million from 3 rounds of funding from the likes of Andreesen, SV Angel, Alexis Ohanian, Naval Ravikant and Sean Parker just to name a few. As for James Before co-founding Tilt, he studied Development Economics as an undergrad and then went on to build dvelo.org, a site for crowdfunding loans and donations to poverty-alleviation organizations in developing countries. In order to vote for who you think will win James and Harry’s beer pong match, head over to @twentyminutevc on Twitter and vote using our poll.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) What were the origins of Tilt? How did James go from a micro loans collector in Africa to founder of one of SF’s hottest startups?

2.) What does James make of the current crowdfunding landscape? What will it take for crowdfunding to go mass market?

3.) What are Tilt doing to make crowdfunding more bite sized and consumer friendly? How important is the on boarding process for Tilt? How are Tilt approaching customer retention? What are James’ targets for the year ahead with Tilt?

4.) With investors like Andreesen, SV Angel, Naval Ravikant, Sean Parker just to name a few, what the investment journey like? I heard the first funding took 6-8 months and the series A took 6 days with a16z. What changed to turn it around?

5.) On PH LIVE James stated that founding a company is a destination less journey and although admirable I struggle with that from the investors perspective. How did James sell a startup in a pitch with no exit strategy?

6.) What was it that attracted James to the investors that he chose? What value add was James most attracted to?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and James on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC: James Cameron @ Accel on Building Great Startup Communities and The Rise of Enterprise and Cyber Security Software

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James Cameron is an early stage investor at Accel where he focuses on enterprise software, security, fintech and marketplace businesses. Prior to joining Accel, he founded and ran BipSync, a SaaS-based research platform for investment management. James also spent time on the tech banking team at Morgan Stanley and as a corporate lawyer at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in London, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How James made his way into the world of startups and investing?

2.) How does James go about finding the needles in the haystack in the sea of amazing startups? Do James use data to find great companies? Do you think this will be a continuing trend, in terms of algorithmic deal sourcing?

3.) What cool stuff has James been seeing in the enterprise software and security sector? Does James think there are any underhyped or overhyped segments of these markets?

4.) One very dominant eco system for tech in general but specifically security is Israel, how do the UK and Israeli ecosystems differ? Is there anything we can do in the UK to harness the spirit encapsulated by the Israeli ecosystem?

5.) What are the catalysts or drivers of these communities’ growth? Do you agree with Marc Andreesen in saying we shouldn’t think about building “The Silicon Valley of X” because the components that make up SV aren’t repeatable and areas should instead specialize on specific verticals, like bitcoin or security. What do you think about that concept?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
James’ Fave Book: Crossing The Chasm 
James’ Fave Blog or Newsletter: Adrian Colyer: The Morning Paper
James’ Most Recent Investment: Doctolib
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and James on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC: Fred Destin, General Partner @ Accel

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Fred Destin is General Partner at Accel in London where he focuses on consumer and software investments. He is the lead investor and board member at Deliveroo, Pillpack (featured in ep: 89 with Eric Paley) and KNC. Prior to Accel, he was a partner at Atlas Venture where he worked with with companies like Zoopla (public), Secret Escapes, Integral Ad Science, Dailymotion (acquired by Orange), PriceMinister (acquired by Rakuten) and others.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Fred made his way into the world of startups and investing?

2.) What is it like investing in rocketships like Deliveroo and PillPack?

3.) What are the reasons most startups fail at the seed stage? What are the most common reasons that founders get fired?

4.) Why does Fred believe raising a Series B so tough? Is it the embodiment of the funding barbell?

5.) What are Fred’s thoughts on VC founder alignment? Why does Fred deliberately cause tension between a founder prior to making an investment? In what form does this take?

6.) When I asked Fred for topics he was interested in, he gave me a list and one of them, I have never had suggested before and it is ‘Why are VC’s so schizo’? What does Fred mean?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Fred’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: The Atlantic, Tech.eu
Fred’s Most Recent Investment: Deliveroo
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Fred on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC FF 030: Gimlet Media’s Matt Lieber on The Future of Podcasting and Life @ Gimlet

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Matt Lieber is cofounder and President of Gimlet Media. In a previous life, Matt produced radio shows (On Point, Fair Game) and podcasts (Slate Culture Gabfest). He also worked as a management consultant at The Boston Consulting Group, where he focused on media and digital business. Then he chucked it all for Gimlet. He holds an MBA from MIT Sloan. 

CLICK TO PLAY

In Today’s Show You Will Learn:

1.) Matt reveals the origins of Gimlet?

2.) What were the dilemmas for Matt in raising Gimlet’s round? What determinant made Matt realize raising was right? What advice would Matt give to founders who are unsure if they should raise or not?

3.) One of the main concerns with raising suggested by Alex Blumberg was that the company would feel like a totally different company, and by different ‘I mean worse’, to quote Alex. So how can a Founder maintain company culture as they grow excessively?

4.) Why did Matt decide to play it cool and not announce to VCs Gimlet were raising? Did Matt expect to get a term sheet as quickly and easily as he did? Were there any hiccups to the funding process? Were Gimlet tempted by any other offers? What value add about Tim O’Reilly made Gimlet most attracted to him?

5.) Question from Matt Hartman at Betaworks: How does Gimlet decide which new shows to create? Is it about creating new shows for an overlapping audience or to expanding audience demographics??

6.) Where does Matt see the future of podcasting going? Many do not believe in it’s potential to be a big business, what does Matt say? What are the challenges, what needs to happen to combat them?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Matt’s Fave Book: Great Plains by Ian Frazier

Matt’s Fave Blog: Stratechery by Ben Thompson

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VC, Harry and Matt on Twitter here!

Likewise, if you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, follow him on Instagram here!

matt hartman dyb, alex, surpisingly awesome adam mckay and adam davidson, chis sacca, matt mazzeo

 

20 VC: Investing in Hardware and The Future of IOT with Kate Shillo, Director @ Galvanize Ventures

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Kate Shillo is Director @ Galvanize Ventures, a prolific seed fund which acts as the the investment arm of Galvanize — a collection of “tech campuses” that offer coworking space and educational programs in order to encourage continuous learning and helping others to grow. within Galvanize, the organization focused on continuous learning and helping others to grow. To date Galvanize ventures have made an astonishing 48 investments in 2 years. Prior to Galvanize, Kate helped Ken Lerer launch Lerer Ventures, now called Lerer Hippeau Ventures due to the addition of Eric Hippeau who was only the show only recently, there Kate lead the investments in the likes of Venmo and Paperless Post.
A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Kate made her way into the world of startups and investing?

2.) What were the biggest takeaways from Kate’s time at Lerer Hippeau Ventures and working with the amazing Ken Lerer?

3.) What was it about Galvanize that made Kate  leave LHV and Kate provides a brief synopsis on Galvanize Ventures? Sectors? Stage? Geography?

4.) With 42 investments since Feb 2014. What is the strategy at Galvanize? Galvanize’s sector weighting is largest in mobile, how does Kate view the space and how would Kate respond to the likes of Fred Wilson stating consumer mobile is very difficult with difficult customer acquisition and then even harder, customer retention?

5.) How has the process been for Kate in establishing the fund? What are Kate and Galvanize’s key differentiators to the sea of other NYC seed funds? How does Kate  approach deal sourcing at Galvanize? If investing outside the Galvanize community, what channels are the preferred channels?

6.) Why is Kate so excited about hardware? Where does Kate see the future of IOT going? Is crowdfunding an option for hardware startups?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Kate’s Fave Book: The God of Small Things
Kate’s Fave Mobile Apps: Slack, Sunrise Calendar, Moments, TwoDots, Panna, Wildcard
Kate’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: AVC, Ben Evans
Kate’s Most Recent Investment: Msg.ai
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Kate on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC: David Tisch @ Box Group on The Future of Consumer Mobile, Developing Pattern Recognition and FOMO

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David Tisch is the Managing Partner of BoxGroup, one of New York most prolific seed investors with investments in over 120 seed-stage technology companies including Vine, Sunrise Calendar, Warby Parker, Harry’s, Oscar, Meerkat, and Zady. As of 2014, David is also the Co-Founder of Spring, an app that allows the worlds best brands to sell directly to consumers on mobile, with his brother Alan who is the CEO. Prior to Box and Spring, David co-founded TechStars NYC, and was named to NYC Mayor Bloomberg’s Advisory Council on Technology.
A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How David made his way into the world of startups and investing?

2.) Having started Box in 2008, how has David seen the NY venture and startup scene develop over the last years? Matt Hartman @ Betaworks: how has that impacted the type of investments you make? Has it changed your thesis, theme, or any other aspect of how you invest? Kanyi Maqubela @ Collaborative: Does an ecosystem need anchor companies to be great? What are New York’s anchor companies?

3.) What is the vision with Box? Is this a fund that lasts through the ages? Last year I heard you made 3 hires, is this a sign of a desire to create the NYC fund? At Box you have a weighting towards mobile consumer tech, how do you respond to Fred Wilson’s post about the mobile downtown and the difficulty in attaining and maintating traction for mobile apps?

4.) What was the motivation behind moving into the world of entrepreneurship with Spring? What aspects of Alan’s and Box as a product has contributed to it’s massive success?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
David’s Fave Productivity Tools: Captio 
David’s Most Recent Investment: Nucleus: The Smart Home Wireless Intercom
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and David on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC FF 029: VC vs Angel Funding & The Future of E-Commerce with Ivan Mazour, Founder @ Ometria

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Ivan Mazour is a serial entrepreneur, investor and author. He is the CEO and Founder of Ometria – a predictive analytics and marketing platform built specifically for retailers, letting them use data to increase revenues and provide an improved customer experience. Alongside this main role, he is also the Founding Partner of Innova Kapital – an early stage VC firm investing in UK-based technology startups, including companies like YPlan and organisations like Entrepreneur First. Ivan also writes a popular blog called “A Young Entrepreneur in London”.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Ivan progressed from making 30+ investments to founding one of Europe’s hottest startups?

2.) Considering Ivan’s recent fundraising, what does Ivan think of the recent funding environment and landscape? How was it raising venture funding now?

3.) What was the difference between raising an angel round to raising a VC round? Did Ivan have to adapt your pitch accordingly? Do they have differing desires and expectations?

4.) Having raised both VC and angel money recently for Ometria, how has that led Ivan to view his own investing style? Is there anything Ivan looks for or at differently now he has experienced fundraising from the other side?

5.) What have been the hardest and most challenging aspects of growing Ometria? How did Ivan overcome them?

6.) Taking futuristically now on the sector of e-commerce, where does Ivan see the future of technology integrating with retail? Will we see an end to bricks and mortar stores?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Ivan’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Saastr
Ivan’s Fave Productivity Tools: ToDoist, Google Keep, Google Hangouts
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Ivan on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC: Philipp Moehring, Head of AngelList Europe on Scaling Seed Stage Funding and Why 500 Is Not Your Traditional VC

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Philipp Moehring is Head of AngelList Europe and their first European hire, a role he has had since Jan 2014. Whilst being Head of AngelList Europe, he is also Venture Partner for 500 Startups and prior to 500 and AngelList, Philipp was a Principal at Seedcamp and has been involved in more than 100 startups since becoming an investor. For anyone looking to join an AngelList syndicate, absolutely check out Philipp’s here!
A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Philipp made it into startups and investing with AngelList and now 500?

2.) In a recent post Philipp said that management consulting, investment banking and accounting were the worst backgrounds for VCs. Why do you think this and where would you like to see the new breed of VCs emerging from?

3.) Considering your work with AngelList, how do you think the US investing scene differs from the European? Why are we seeing this sudden influx of US capital into European markets? What is driving this influx?

4.) The recent £400m that AngelList received from CSC, Philipp tells us a little more about this and what it means for European companies?

5.) How does Philipp’s role with 500 integrate with the AngelList model? How does Philipp split the time? Is Philipp ever concerned that with the dominance of syndicates in the years to come, VCs will become non existent?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Philipp’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Brad Feld’s: Feld Thoughts
Philipp’s Biggest Productivity Tips: SelfControl (Mac)
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Philipp on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20 VC: Morten Lund on Skype, Bankruptcy, Fintech and Why “Banks Are Full Of Lots Of Stupid People Doing Nothing”

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Check out The Two Minute Takeaway from our chat with Morten for the key facts and themes discuss in the episode.

Morten Lund, best know for his seed investment in Skype, he has also founded and co-invested in more than 100 startups including the likes of Airhelp who you might recognize as we interviewed their CEO Nicolas Michaelsen in episode check 32, as well as Bullguard, Maxthon and many more. In today’s incredible interview we talk about the story behind his skype investment, how he went from $150m to bankruptcy moving to the present both with his work with Coders Trust helping coders in developing countries to improve their lives to his rocketship journey with one of the world’s most exciting fintech companies in Tradeshift, who have raised a total of over $200m.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Morten got into the technology industry and the world of investing?

2.) How did Morten’s investment in Skype come about? How did Morten deal with the bankruptcy and how it changed him as a person?

3.) How does Morten view the current state of European fintech? Where are the significant market opportunities that are yet to be exploited?

4.) Following Morten bankruptcy, he only works with “really cool people”. So what makes Morten like someone and believe in them?

5.) How did TradeShift come about from Morten’s basement? What was the a-ha moment? What has driven the immense success with over $200m invested? What is the future for the company and the future of money?

6.) Looking forward, what is Morten’s main goal and aspiration and how does he plan on attaining it?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Morten’s Fave Book: Shantaram
Morten’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: The Economist
Morten’s Most Recent Investment: Hippocorn
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Morten on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

20VC FF 028: Where To Start Your Startup and Single Founder vs Co-Founder Model with Richard Hanson, Co-Founder & CEO @ HiringScreen

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Richard Hanson is CEO and co-founder of HiringScreen, where rocket science meets recruitment. Founded in Jan 2015 in Hong Kong, HiringScreen has raised over $800,000 from a number of investors with plans to expand into the Philippines and Indonesia. Before founding HiringScreen, Richard was an award winning headhunter and recruitment consultancy owner. A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) What were the origins of Hiring Screen? What was the a-ha moment for Richard?

2.) What advice would Richard give to founders contemplating entering accelerators? What should they look for and why should they be wary of?

3.) Why does Richard believe that a startup with multiple founders is more beneficial than single founder startups? What would he suggest someone looking to find a co-founder is to do?

4.) Why did Richard start Hiring Screen in Hong Kong? What are Richard’s views on Asia’s emerging tech scene? What advice would Richard give to a founder deciding where to start a startup?

5.) What has been the most challenging element of growing Hiring Screen? How did Richard overcome it and alter the company from there?

6.) If Richard were to found Hiring Screen again, what would he do differently? Is there anything he wishes he had known before the process?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Richard’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Calacanis, Feld Thoughts
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Richard on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
I would like to say a huge thank you to our sponsor for today’s show: LoyaltyBay. Have you ever wished more of your website visitors would convert into a sale, signup or referral? If so, you need Loyalty Bay. With their saas conversion optimizer tool they increase any conversion metric by offering potential customers a choice of personalised rewards to get them to convert. They work with large enterprises like Virgin Media through to startups and have increased conversions on average by over 100%. Free 30 day trial at www.loyaltybay.co.uk

20 VC: How To Say No Fast and Efficiently and Why UX Must Always Be At The Core Of What You Do with Sitar Teli, Managing Partner @ Connect Ventures

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Sitar Teli is Managing Partner at Connect Ventures and has been a venture capitalist for eight years, focusing on early-stage investments in both consumer and B2B companies. Previously with Doughty Hanson Technology Ventures, where she led their Series A round in SoundCloud, she has experience with content, gaming and ecommerce startups. Sitar has a dual degree in Mechanical Engineering and Economics from Duke University.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:
1.) How did Sitar make her way into the wonderful world of VC?
2.) How does Sitar approach the difficult task of saying no to entrepreneurs? What is the framework she has adopted over her 8 years in venture?

3.) There are a large amount of sources of capital for business in the seed stage, why did Sitar believe this was the stage with the most opportunity? Is too much capital chasing too few deals?

4.) With the increasing prominence of crowdfunding, is it a viable alternative to VC? Is Sitar concerned that quality deal flow is being lost to Crowdfunding?

5.) What is driving the growth of the European tech startup scene?

6.) Prior to making investments such as that of Citymapper, one obviously has to look at the team and the product. So what do you look for in a founder and what to you makes a great product?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Sitar’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Benedict Evans Newsletter
Sitar’s Fave Apps: Outlook, Sunrise, Citymapper
Sitar’s Most Recent Investment: Knyttan
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Sitar on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
Have you ever wished more of your website visitors would convert into a sale, signup or referral? If so, you need Loyalty Bay. With their saas conversion optimizer tool they increase any conversion metric by offering potential customers a choice of personalised rewards to get them to convert. They work with large enterprises like Virgin Media through to startups and have increased conversions on average by over 100%. Free 30 day trial at www.loyaltybay.co.uk

20 VC: The Ultimate Guide To Marketplaces with Boris Wertz, Founding Partner @ Version One Ventures

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Boris Wertz is one of the top tech early-stage investors in North America and the founding partner of Version One.  He is also a board partner with Andreessen Horowitz. Before becoming an investor, Boris was the COO of AbeBooks.com which sold to Amazon in 2008. He was responsible for marketing, business development, product, customer service and international operations – leading a team of 60 people. In 2005, he was named the Pacific Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year.

A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:
1.) How did Boris make his way into the wonderful world of VC?

2.) Why have we seen a mass re-emergence of the marketplace model now?

3.) What was the objective in writing Version One’s book, A Guide To Marketplaces? What did Boris feel the public needed to know that was not already known?

4.) For an entrepreneur looking to move into the marketplace sector, how can they select the right market, are there any essential components they must consider?

5.) The book discusses the benefits of both direct and indirect network effects for marketplaces but in the early days what should startups focus on; demand or supply? How should they go about addressing this element?

6.) What are the core required elements of scaling a marketplace?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Boris’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: AVC by Fred Wilson 
Boris’s Most Recent Investment: Headout
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Boris on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
Have you ever wished more of your website visitors would convert into a sale, signup or referral? If so, you need Loyalty Bay. With their saas conversion optimizer tool they increase any conversion metric by offering potential customers a choice of personalised rewards to get them to convert. They work with large enterprises like Virgin Media through to startups and have increased conversions on average by over 100%. Free 30 day trial at www.loyaltybay.co.uk

20 VC: Are Unicorns Necessary To Make Big Returns and The Series A Crunch with Sumeet Shah @ Brand Foundry Ventures

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Sumeet Shah is an investor @ Brand Foundry Ventures, who have investments in the likes of Warby Parker, Birchbox and Contently. Sumeet himself is pivotal in sourcing and managing new opportunities at Brand Foundry with over 6 years of experience across the startup and private equity industries, formerly running new business strategies at Gist Digital and handling business development and project work at Gotham Consulting Partners.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Sumeet made his way into the wonderful world of VC?

2.) What stage is Brand Foundry active in? Does Sarah Lacy’s analysis of a ‘Series A Crunch’ concern Sumeet? Has he seen a widening in the gap between the amount that raise seed to then go onto raise Series A?

3.) What does Sumeet believe are the key pieces to run a successful business? In the first 100 days, what are the most important elements to focus on?

4.) Sumeet recently tweeted ‘To All Startups, the most helpful investor is not always the largest’. How can startups determine who is the most helpful? What should startups expect from their investors? What does Sumeet believe makes the best investor?

5.) What would Sumeet say is his biggest strength as an investor and what would he most like to improve upon? As a seed investor, how does Sumeet respond to Aileen Lee’s suggestion that in investing you can only make really money when invested in unicorns?

6.) Is Sumeet bullish on the future of NYC tech? What are the strengths of NY? Where is it booming? Are there any elements of SF, Sumeet would like NY to have?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Sumeet’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Term Sheet by Dan Primack, Strictly VC

Sumeet’s Fave Book: Things A Little Birdy Told Me by Biz Stone

Sumeet’s Most Recent Investment: Lola: A Better Month Awaits You

As always you can follow Harry, The Twenty Minute VC and Sumeet on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

Have you ever wanted to know who someone is simply from an email address?
With Loyalty Bay’s Super Users product now you can. Simply input an email address and it will go off and find publicly available profile information i.e. Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter etc for that email address. This is incredibly powerful in building a richer data profile on your users for marketers and business development people alike. Free 30 day Trial. Check out www.loyaltybay.co.uk

 

20 VC: Running Lerer Hippeau Ventures Like A Startup with Eric Hippeau, Managing Partner @ Lerer Hippeau Ventures

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Eric Hippeau is a Managing Partner at Lerer Hippeau Ventures. He is the chairman of RebelMouse and co-founder of NowThis Media. Previously, Eric was the Chief Executive Officer of The Huffington Post and a Special Partner at Softbank Capital, where he served as Managing Partner. Prior to Softbank Capital, Eric was Chairman and CEO of Ziff-Davis, which was the largest media company serving the technology sector. He serves on the Board of various private and public companies, including Buzzed & Starwood Hotels and Resorts.
A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:
1.) How did Eric make his way into the world of tech and venture?
2.) Question from Eric Paley: How does Eric compare the role of VC to the role of operator and does Eric think each draws on the same skills and strengths?

3.) What does Eric think makes a great VC and what makes a great operator? Are there any commonalities in the individuals he has come across?

4.) Eric reveals the best pitches he has seen and what made them so effective and flips the coin to discuss the worst pitches and what not to do when pitching a VC?

5.) Eric has made many investments in adtech and content, an area most VCs are hesitant of. So why are VCs hesitant of this space and why does Eric think he and Ken have been able to master it and produce great returns?

6.) With Eric’s experience as CEO at Huffington Post, how does Eric view the changes to the media landscape and what are his predictions and concerns for the next few years?

 

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Eric’s Fave Book: The Lord of The Rings
Eric’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Strictly VC, Dan Primack: Termsheet
Eric’s Most Recent Investment: The Drone Racing League
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Eric on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
Have you ever wanted to know who someone is simply from an email address?
With Loyalty Bay’s Super Users product now you can. Simply input an email address and it will go off and find publicly available profile information i.e. Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter etc for that email address. This is incredibly powerful in building a richer data profile on your users for marketers and business development people alike. Free 30 day Trial. Check out www.loyaltybay.co.uk

20 VC FF 027: Risk, Incentive and Opportunity in Starting A Company with Daniel van Binsbergen, Founder @ Lexoo

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Daniel van Binsbergen is CEO and co-founder of Lexoo, an online marketplace that connects businesses with lawyers. Founded in 2014 in London, Lexoo has raised over $1.7M from a number of investors, including Forward Partners. Before founding Lexoo, Daniel was a senior associate at an international law firm, working in London and Amsterdam. A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data displayed in today’s show and you can find out more about Mattermark here! 
In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) What were the origins of Lexoo? What was the a-ha moment for Daniel?

2.) Was Daniel nervous about leaving the security of the legal profession to found a startup? What does Daniel advise people who want to make the leap but are not sure if it is worth risking everything?

3.) Why is there a divergence between the advancement of tech and the lacking progression of the legal space?

4.) Why did Daniel start Lexoo in a completely no tech, manual way? How was that? What would Daniel advise fellow founders who do not have the technical skills to build their idea?

5.) How did Daniel meet his investors? How did he find the fundraising experience? What was the challenging and surprising elements of the journey?

6.) If Daniel were to found Lexoo again, what would he do differently? Is there anything he wishes he had known before the process?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:
Daniel’s Fave Book: The Mom Test by Rob Fitzpatrick 
Daniel’s Fave Blog or Newsletter: Mattermark, Seth Godin, James Altucher
Daniel’s Must Have Software: Sunrise, Trello
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VC, Harry and Daniel on Twitter here!
If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!
I would like to say a huge thank you to our sponsor for today’s show: LoyaltyBay. Have you ever wished more of your website visitors would convert into a sale, signup or referral? If so, you need Loyalty Bay. With their saas conversion optimizer tool they increase any conversion metric by offering potential customers a choice of personalised rewards to get them to convert. They work with large enterprises like Virgin Media through to startups and have increased conversions on average by over 100%. Free 30 day trial at www.loyaltybay.co.uk

20 VC 097: Betting Big On Consumer Fintech with Matthew Bradley, Investor @ Forward Partners

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Matthew is an Investor at Forward Partners: a super-early stage London VC. Forward Partners invests in solo-founders, idea stage and seed stage eCommerce, marketplace and related software businesses providing them with funding, office space and the support of an expert in-house engineering, product and growth team. Before becoming a VC, Matthew had varying degrees of success (!) with retail and security tech start-ups. He began his career in Sales, Structuring and Trading at investment banks. He holds a BA in Economics and Politics and an MBA from SDA Bocconi. A huge thank you to Mattermark for all the data discussed in today’s show and you can find them here! 

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Matt make his way into the world of VC? What would he advise someone wanting to get into the industry?

2.) How does Forward Partners differentiate themselves in such a sea of seed funds? What is unique about their model?

3.) What are the key activities that entrepreneurs can do to build a successful business, ready for Series A? What would Matt advise someone who has an idea but no technical skills?

4.) What are the nuances and complexities of the early stage funding environment? How do Forward approach and overcome them? Are there any common misconceptions?

5.) What are the similarities and differences between the US and the UK with regards to start-up attractiveness? Where would Matt choose to found his startup if he were a founder?

6.) Considering YC’s recent intake, where does Matt see growth areas in consumer facing startups?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Matthew’s Fave Book:  Mikhail Bulgakov: The Master & Margarita

Matthew’s Fave Newsletter: Mattermark Daily, The Equity Kicker, First Round Review

Matthew’s Most Recent Investment: Live Better With

As always you can follow HarryThe Twenty Minute VC and Matthew on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

I would like to say a huge thank you to our sponsor for today’s show: LoyaltyBay. Have you ever wished more of your website visitors would convert into a sale, signup or referral? If so, you need Loyalty Bay. With their saas conversion optimizer tool they increase any conversion metric by offering potential customers a choice of personalised rewards to get them to convert. They work with large enterprises like Virgin Media through to startups and have increased conversions on average by over 100%. Free 30 day trial at www.loyaltybay.co.uk

 

20 VC 096: Developing The Idea Muscle and VCs Providing More Than Just Money with Dharmesh Raithatha, Partner @ Forward Partners

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Dharmesh Raithatha is the Product Partner at Forward Partners. He works with idea stage investments on product, growth and business strategy. He has a passion for User Research, Lean UX and using data to inform decision making. Dharmesh has over 15 years in product roles for companies like Mind Candy and the BBC. He has founded 2 startups and successfully sold one. A special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in today’s episode and can find out more about Mattermark here! 

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did Dharmesh make his way into the world of VC?

2.) How has Dharmesh’s startup driven past, altered his investment pattern? What are the benefits and weaknesses to this kind of operational experience?

3.) At Forward there Open Office Hours where people come and share ideas, so what is it about the ideas you like that make them good, what makes the bad ones bad?

4.) What are Dharmesh’s tips or advice for idea creation and brainstorming?

5.) What would Dharmesh advice non-technical people looking to found a tech startup?

6.) What does Dharmesh believe makes a great founder? Has he seen any commonalities in the great founders he has worked with?

7.) What should teams focus on in the first 100 days of their startup? What is the 20% that produces 80% of the results?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Dharmesh’s Fave Book:  How To Create A Product Customers Love by Marty Cagan

Dharmesh’s Fave Newsletter: Silicon Valley Product Group

Dharmesh’s Most Recent Investment: The Gifting Company

As always you can follow HarryThe Twenty Minute VC and Dharmesh on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

Free Conversion Rate Optimisation Ebook Download Here!

I would like to say a huge thank you to our sponsor for today’s show: LoyaltyBay. Have you ever wished more of your website visitors would convert into a sale, signup or referral? If so, you need Loyalty Bay. With their saas conversion optimizer tool they increase any conversion metric by offering potential customers a choice of personalised rewards to get them to convert. They work with large enterprises like Virgin Media through to startups and have increased conversions on average by over 100%. Free 30 day trial at www.loyaltybay.co.uk

 

20 VC FF 026: Ryan Hoover, Founder @ ProductHunt on Relationship Building, Habit Forming and The Vision for ProductHunt

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Ryan Hoover is the Founder and CEO @ ProductHunt, winner of TechCrunch “Best New Startup 2014”. ProductHunt is a community of people sharing, upvoting, and geeking out about new technology products, games, and books. Before Product Hunt, Ryan was an EIR at Tradecraft and Director of Product at PlayHaven. As a writer, Ryan has contributed to Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products by Nir Eyal and written many essays, including features for TechCrunchForbes, Pando, Fast Company, and The Next Web. He writes about startup trends, product designs, and production growth on his blog, ryanhoover.me.

I would like to thank Mattermark for providing all the data and analysis for this interview and you can check them out here!

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did ProductHunt get started and what was the a-ha moment for Ryan in the founding of ProductHunt?

2.) PH has gone from a newsletter to friends to a a16z backed startup with employees around the globe. What have been the drivers of PH’s success?

3.) PH harness the crowd for feedback on everything from designs to features. Why does Ryan prefer this open sourced feedback approach? What are the benefits? What would Ryan suggest to founders looking to adopt a similar feedback style?

4.) Question from Matt Hartman at Betaworks: Considering Ryan’s work with Nir Eyal on Hooked, are there elements of Hooked that Ryan baked into the infrastructure of PH and what were they?

5.) How has Ryan created such a close and intimate relationship with his audience? What are the tools and strategies that Ryan uses to build that community? What advice does Ryan give for people looking to network and make a community around them?

6.) Where does Ryan see PH in 5 years time? What is his vision for the PH platform? How does a platform such as ProductHunt plan to monetise?

 

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Ryan’s Fave Book: The Art of Game Design: A Book Of Lenses

Ryan’s Fave Podcasts: TWIST by Jason Calacanis, Startup: Gimlet Media, Mystery Show: Gimlet Media

As always you can follow HarryThe Twenty Minute VC and Ryan on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

 

20 VC 095: How VCs Find Startups and How To Add Value Once Invested with David Teten @ ff Venture Capital

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David Teten is a Partner at ff Venture Capital and is also Founder and Chairman of Harvard Business School Alumni Angels of Greater New York, the largest angel group in New York. David is currently co-leading the first study on “how to disrupt the investing industry.”  He led the first-ever study of best practices of venture capital and private equity funds in originating new deals (#1 all time most-read study in the Journal of Private Equity) and the first-ever study of VCs in creating portfolio company value.  He has published in Harvard Business Review, Institutional Investor, and other leading publications. David’s blog is one of the most extensive and actionable blogs there is, seriously you have to check it out and it can be found at teten.com.

I would like to thank Mattermark for providing all the data and analysis for this interview and you can check them out here!

CLICK TO PLAY

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How did David make the move into the world of vc and technology?

2.) What is David’s approach to deal sourcing? What strategies would he recommend to other VCs to find the best startups and entrepreneurs?

3.) What does David think are the most effective ways that VC and PE funds are helping to increase portfolio company value?

4.) How should an entrepreneur evaluate how value-added a VC can be? Are there any signs that one VC has more value add than another?

5.) Is VC moving to the operational model in terms of headcount, with the moves of firms like a16z who provide extensive services as additional value add?

5.) Why did David and ff invest in Indiegogo? Is it not an alternative finance method that is competing with VC? Has David notice a loss in deal flow to AngelList?

 

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

David’s Fave Book: Edward Tufte: Graphical Communication of Quantitative Data

David’s Fave Blog: PandoDaily

ffVC’s Most Recent Investment: Skycatch

As always you can follow HarryThe Twenty Minute VC and David on Twitter here!

If you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, you can follow him on Instagram here!

 

 

 

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