20VC: Lessons from Investing $7.5BN at Softbank & Why Dumb Money has Gone, Why “LATAM is Under Construction” and the Next 10 Years Will Be the Best & Investing Lessons from Missing Nubank & OpenAI & Investing in FTX with Marcelo Claure and Shu Nyatta @ Bicycle Capital

Posted on 31st July 2023 by Harry

Marcelo Claure is the Founder & CEO of Claure Group, a multi-billion-dollar global investment firm. He is the Executive Chairman and Managing Partner of Bicycle Capital, a $500M Latin America-focused growth equity fund, and was appointed Chairman in Latin America of SHEIN, the global #1 on-demand fashion company in the world. Claure was also the CEO of SoftBank Group International where he launched SoftBank’s $8B Latin America Funds, and had direct oversight for SoftBank’s operating companies. As an entrepreneur, Marcelo built Brightstar from a small local distributor to the world’s largest global wireless distribution and services company. In addition, Claure led the turnaround of US wireless telecommunications company Sprint and helped orchestrate its US$195 billion merger with T-Mobile.

Shu Nyatta is the founder of Bicycle Capital. Before Bicycle, Shu was most recently a Managing Partner at SoftBank Group International, where he launched and managed two separate funds – the SoftBank Latin America Fund and the Opportunity Fund for early-stage investments in US-based founders-of-color. In the first part of his SoftBank career, Shu was a founding Partner of SoftBank’s Vision Fund. Several companies have retained him on their boards as an independent board member following his departure from SoftBank, including Lemonade (NYSE: LMND), Kavak and Tribal Credit. Shu also serves on the board of Endeavor Global – the leading global community of, by and for high-impact entrepreneurs.

In Today’s Episode Featuring Bicycle Capital We Discuss:

1. From Deploying $10BN at Softbank to Founding Bicycle Capital:

  • What was the founding moment for Marcelo and Shu in the founding of Bicycle?
  • What does Shu believe is Marcelo’s superpower? How has working with Marcelo changed the way he thinks?
  • Why does Marcelo believe that he is not a good investor? How does Shu make him better, specifically?

2. Lessons from Investing $10BN at Softbank:

  • What are 1-2 of the biggest lessons from investing $10BN over the last few years at Softbank?
  • How did missing OpenAI and Nubank impact how Shu and Marcelo think and invest today?
  • Why was losing $150M on Softbank’s FTX investment, the biggest lesson of Marcelo’s career?
  • What are Marcelo and Shu doing differently at Bicycle, having seen how it went at Softbank?

3. The Venture World is Changing:

  • Why do Marcelo and Shu believe the world of venture is changing? How is it changing most?
  • Why are founders going directly to LPs to raise rounds today, over going to VCs?
  • Do Marcelo and Shu believe that many VCs provide value?
  • Who will win in the next 10 years of venture? Who will lose?
  • Why do Marcelo and Shu believe you should not invest in founders that do not take your advice?
  • Do Marcelo and Shu agree with the statement that “the best founders do not need your help”?

4. LATAM is Under Construction: It is Time to Build:

  • What are the two reasons that the next decade will be the best ever for LATAM?
  • What are the biggest misconceptions about the LATAM tech market?
  • How do Marcelo and Shu answer the question of the lack of liquidity available with few M&A deals taking place and very few LATAM companies listing on the NASDAQ?
  • How do Marcelo and Shu evaluate the withdrawal of foreign capital from LATAM tech markets? Is it good or bad? Have a load of US funds lost money on early-stage LATAM deals?

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