20VC: Raising $126M Across 3 Rounds in Just 6 Months, Being the Youngest Founder of a Unicorn Company | But Everything Was Not as it Seemed: The Real Story of Vise: The Regrets, Mistakes and Mis-Hires with Vise’s Samir Vasavada

Posted on 28th June 2024 by Harry

Samir Vasavada is the Co-Founder & CEO of Vise, a technology-powered asset manager. Samir and his co-founder, Runik founded Vise from the Midwest at 16 years old. They bootstrapped the company before dropping out of high school and raising $128M in just 6 months from some of the best including Sequoia Capital and Founders Fund. The company achieved unicorn status when the pair turned 20 years old, making them the youngest founders of a $BN company at the time.

In Today’s Episode with Samir Vasavada We Discuss:

1. The Biggest Hiring Mistakes That Broke Us:

  • Why is hiring people who come with a playbook one of the most damaging things you can do?
  • Why is it impossible to build a remote company that performs the same as in person?
  • Why is it the worst thing to hire people who have a reputation they are obsessed with maintaining?
  • Why do you never want to hire people who join because of who your investors are?
  • Why does Samir regret not firing people faster? How much time is enough time to know?
  • Why is hiring in a hot market one of the most dangerous things you can do?

2. Fundraising: 3 Rounds and $126M in 6 Months:

  • Does Samir regret raising so much money so soon in the company life?
  • What did Samir do that he regrets doing, having had so much money so early?
  • How did the need for free food at an event lead to a term sheet and $50M from Sequoia?
  • Did Samir feel that he could talk to investors when things were going really badly?
  • Why does Samir believe that liquidation preference matters more than valuation?

3. The Depression, The Pressure and Wisdom From Jensen Huang:

  • What did Jensen Huang teach Samir when it comes to wealth and leadership?
  • How did Samir deal with the pressure of raising $126M in 6 months and being the youngest unicorn founder, ever at the time?
  • Was Samir hurt when people he thought were his friends, no longer stuck with him when the company was no longer “hot”?
  • What was Samir’s darkest time? How did he overcome and get out of it?
  • Does Samir blame his parents for the pressure they put on him from such a young age?

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