This Former Hillary Staffer Is Building Aloe, A Self-Care App. Meet Amber Discko.

I know Amber via her kind and helpful Twitter presence (I *think* @Iano introduced us). So when she launched a recent Kickstarter for Aloe, a self-care app, it felt right to jump in and support her. As the project gained momentum I was surprised by two types of reactions: first, the large number of teens who really were into the idea, and second, the harassers who belittled the concept. As a friend, and now Aloe backer, I wanted to learn a bit more about Amber and Aloe, so Five Questions.


Hunter Walk: Besides the holder of an awesome name, who is Amber Discko?

Amber Discko: Professionally I’m a freelance digital strategist who most recently worked on the Hillary for America campaign, a creative strategist at Tumblr, and fun fact I was the community manager for Denny’s Diner back when it was innovative for a brand to be good on

Continue reading "This Former Hillary Staffer Is Building Aloe, A Self-Care App. Meet Amber Discko."

Should You Pay Deal by Deal, or Total Fund?

There are more than a few ways to organize a fund waterfall. Fund waterfalls are how all the investors get paid. The return comes in, and then all the distributions happen.

There are different ways to structure waterfalls, but the typical way is after all investments have exited, the investors (limited partners) get 80% and the managers (general partners) get 20% after the LPs are made whole.  Typically, the investing life of the fund will be 5 years, and the fund will continue to exist for another 10 years before every investment has exited.  Today, LPs are realizing returns from funds started as far back as 2002-2005.  Our current fund is structured this way.

Recently I read that more and more general partners want to be paid on a deal by deal basis.

This is more akin to “angel style” investing. Angels get paid on a deal when it Continue reading "Should You Pay Deal by Deal, or Total Fund?"

YCharts on the Inc 5000

YCharts has been named to the Inc 5000. It’s the best stock and ETF charting service on the internet.  You can do all kinds of things with it, and it’s easily imported to Excel.  That makes data really easy to share with clients.  What I particularly like is all the different ways you can do research on a stock.

YCharts gives you and edge and insights that you cannot get from other charting services.  The service is great for wealth management to explain strategy to clients and give them comfort they are doing the right thing.  I find it’s especially great for set ups for options trading.  They have been adding customers and scaling.

YCharts was one of the earliest Fin Continue reading "YCharts on the Inc 5000"

Should everyone be an angel investor? + some upcoming events

The biggest question I was asked about angel investing during my New York book tour was, “Can anyone be an angel investor?”

Today I want to try and answer that question and let you know about some upcoming events.

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First, some upcoming events:

This Tuesday, August 15th, I will be in Los Angeles speaking at Google in Venice (Google employees only) from 11:30AM-1:00PM.

Tuesday night, August 15th, I will be speaking at a public event, “Live Talks Los Angeles: An Evening with Jason Calacanis” at 8:00PM, which you can register for here:

I’ll be going to Stockholm, New York and Los Angeles in the fall. Frequently updated schedule here:

Second, “Can/Should everyone angel invest?”

I wrote the book “Angel” in order to detail the risks involved in angel investing, and share

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Shutting Down

The shut down of a company is final. It’s the end. There are similarities to every shut down of a company. Some investors get mad. They argue that it shouldn’t be shut down. The dream is still alive. If it’s some sort of earn out acquisition, other investors will argue that the terms are no good.

Joanne Wilson wrote a blog about quitting. She riffed off Arnold Waldstein’s blog about abandoning an idea. I needed a little inspiration this morning and they gave it to me.

Recently, two companies I were invested in had to make difficult decisions about whether to live or die.  One shut down, one didn’t.

There are lots of reasons to shut down.

  • The classic product market fit problem.
  • Company couldn’t raise money.
  • The vision wasn’t big enough.
  • The company was really a “me too” company to start with and it wasn’t unique.
  • The problem that Continue reading "Shutting Down"

Launched: Wim Yogurt

Quick crosspost from the Homebrew blogWim Yogurt launched, a startup out of NYC which has developed a kitchen appliance to make single-serve frozen yogurt in the comfort of your home. It’s good….. they’re selling (and shipping) now!

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On Being Early and Being Right

Over the past ten years or so, I have been relatively early to three highly nascent, wild wild west style industries: online poker, daily fantasy sports and bitcoin. In two of them – poker and bitcoin – I experienced significant professional and financial successes. In the other, daily fantasy, I lost my shirt. With bitcoin’s […]