20VC: Intercom’s Eoghan McCabe on What Makes A Truly Great CEO & What Founders Should Look For In Their Investors

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Eoghan McCabe is the CEO and co-founder of Intercom. The customer communications platform that has taken the SaaS world by storm in the last few years with 116m in VC funding from truly some of the world’s best including Bessemer, Social Capital and Index Ventures. Prior to Intercom, he founded Contrast, an award-winning software design consultancy, and co-founded Exceptional, a developer tool startup acquired in 2011 and now a part of Rackspace.

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In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Eoghan came to found Intercom?

2.) Question From Andy McLoughlin: What were the biggest lessons from your previous startups?

3.) How did Eoghan find the early fundraising process? How did he come to meet his angel investors? How did he get them to look beyond the product and invest in him?

4.) Eoghan raised his Series B just 6 months after his Series A. Why was this so quick? How did he select his investors?

5.) What separates good from truly great CEOs? How has Eoghan seen his own management style changed over the Intercom journey?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Show:

Eoghan’s Fave Blog: SaaStr, The Intercom Blog

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

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

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Cooley are the global law firm built around startups and venture capital.  Since forming the first venture fund in Silicon Valley, Cooley has formed more venture capital funds than any other law firm in the world, with 50+ years working with VCs. They help VCs form and manage funds, make investments and handle the myriad issues that arise through a fund’s lifetime. So to learn more about the #1 most active law firm representing VC-backed companies going public. Head over to cooley.comand also atcooleygo.com.

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: 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!

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!

Jason Calacanis: The World’s Greatest Angel Investor

Jason Calacanis is arguably the world’s greatest angel investor with over 60 investments including the likes of Uber (1st round), ThumbTack and Calm, just to name a few. Jason is also the Host of This Week In Startups, the world’s biggest startup podcast and Founder of Launch and Launch Festival, the world’s biggest startup festival.

In this interview we discuss, how Jason invested in Uber’s 1st round, what Jason looks for in startups, how Jason can tell whether a founder has got what it takes, which VC’s Jason most likes to work with, which entrepreneurs Jason most likes to invest in, what pisses Jason off more than anything, what inspires him more than anything, what industries will see the most disruption in the coming years, what makes a great entrepreneur and how startups can position themselves best for entering a round of funding.

Enjoy! All show notes, links and resources from this episode can be found at http://www.thetwentyminutevc.com and you can follow Harry, Jason and The Twenty Minute VC on Twitter.

Mentioned in Today’s Show:

 

Startup has lost it’s meaning!

 

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Startup, a term bandied round like funding in the tech bubble, but what does it really mean and has it lost it’s original meaning.

The standard belief is that a startup is a small company with potential for excessive growth with the cumulative goal of it becoming the next tech titan.

However, is that really correct? If so, should the mass of tech companies be attributed with the class of ‘startup’? Is Airbnb really a startup still? Hell no.

So if the likes of Airbnb and Uber are deemed to have lost their designer ‘startup’ status, what really is a ‘startup’ in today’s tech sector? Well everyone has very different definitions, however, it is my belief that a company may be judged to be a startup based on three different criteria:

  1. Valuation: If a company is worth more than $250 million, leave your startup status at the door.
  2. Revenue run rate: If this exceeds $35 million, sack the startup name and call yourself a tech company.
  3. Employee count: If you have over 100 employees it’s time to start targeting or avoiding the looming IPO.

If however, you do not exceed these limits. Awesome job. You can keep the startup badge on for all to see. Just to show an example, Timehop has team of 11 and at last round of funding (May 2014) was given a reported valuation of $200 million. Well done Timehop, you are officially still a startup.

 

5 reasons Uber is better than buying a car

Screen Shot 2014-11-16 at 12.35.101.) The average car in the UK now costs £27,219 ($42,649). The average uber journey is estimated to be £8.60. With those estimates you could take 3,250 uber journeys before it would amount to the initial cost of a car.

2.) Cars are in motion for an average of 4% of the day. The remaining 96% of the time they  sit there losing value.

3.) According to recent statistics 47 hours of lessons are required before a test should be taken. With that time you could learn an entirely new skill. For instance, you could learn to be a professional web developer in just 28 hours with this course:

https://www.udemy.com/complete-web-developer-course/?couponCode=harry99

4.) Maintenance: The average fuel expenditure is £2,600 per year, with a whopping £600 on insurance. Making the total maintenance excluding servicing £3,200. YIKES!

5.) The typical car on the road has 1.2 passengers, a partnership of Google’s driverless cars and Uber would allow the car to be on the road for 23/24 hours, reducing the number of cars by an estimated 4/5. Therefore not only is Uber awesome but it is environmentally friendly.