The Right Way To Mentor


This post is by Jeff Carter from Points and Figures


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I don’t know if you know Paul Martino from Bullpen Capital or not.  He and I are friends.  They recently launched a podcast and have been blogging about the late Bill Campbell.  He is a Silicon Valley icon.  Interesting guy.   Football coach at Columbia University which obviously has never been a threat to win a lot of games.  Left Columbia and didn’t have a traditional road to the tech business.  He was an ad guy, then worked at Kodak, and took a job at Apple after they ousted Steve Jobs.  Kodak once was one of the most innovative companies in the world.

One thing about coaches is they understand how to mentor.  There are many different styles of mentorship. Many different paths.  Some people like being coached by Bobby Knight and some people don’t.  There isn’t a “right” Continue reading “The Right Way To Mentor”

Facebook’s Libra Launch


This post is by jlk from The Barefoot VC


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The big news heading out of last week and into the upcoming week is Facebook’s long-awaited GlobalCoin (or Libra Coin), likely to be a stablecoin pegged to a basket of global currencies. Details of its initial consortium leaked late last week – industry website The Block broke the news of members who are contributing $10M each – these include Visa, Mastercard, Coinbase, Spotify, Women’s World Banking, Paypal, eBay, Farfetch, Mercado Libre, PayU, Stripe, Lyft and Uber. While more details will be revealed on June 18th, the listed members are expected to be operating “nodes’ on the network and will earn fees in return for validating transactions. A Facebook subsidiary called Calibra is also expected to run one of the nodes. Given recent regulatory scrutiny, it’s not a surprise that Facebook is building out a consortium to appear as decentralized as possible. A big question yet to be answered is who Continue reading “Facebook’s Libra Launch”

20VC: Why Historical Loss Ratios Are Simply Too High, Why Data Is The #1 Most Important Piece When Evaluating Effective Reserve Allocation & Why Nothing Is Truly Defensible Today with Jonathan Hsu, Co-Founder and General Partner @ Tribe Capital


This post is by Harry Stebbings from The Twenty Minute VC: Venture Capital | Startup Funding | The Pitch


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Jonathan Hsu is Co-Founder & General Partner @ Tribe Capital, one of Silicon Valley’s newest funds on the block being founded by Jonathan, Arjun Sethi and Ted Maidenberg. To date, Tribe has invested in the likes of Carta, Cover, Mode Analytics, Prodigy and SFOX. As for Jonathan, before founding Tribe he was a Partner @ Social Capital where he utilized data and technology to augment sourcing, evaluation of investment opportunities and the management and value add for portfolio companies. Before that he led the creation of the analytics and data science team at Facebook, including leading the hiring of 200 of the world’s leading data scientists and analysts.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Jonathan made his way from leading 200 data scientists at Facebook to the world of venture and founding his own firm in the form of Tribe Capital today?

2.) If we structure Continue reading “20VC: Why Historical Loss Ratios Are Simply Too High, Why Data Is The #1 Most Important Piece When Evaluating Effective Reserve Allocation & Why Nothing Is Truly Defensible Today with Jonathan Hsu, Co-Founder and General Partner @ Tribe Capital”

Secrets Of Sand Hill Road


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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One of the many great things about vacations is reading books. Vacation is the one time that I can really prioritize reading books (as opposed to everything else I read).

I just finished Scott Kupor‘s Secrets Of Sand Hill Road, a book for entrepreneurs about rasing capital from venture firms.

Scott makes the point numerous times in the book that the capital raising process is asymmetric for entrepreneurs in that they do it a few times in their career and VCs do it every day.

That is true for the pitch meetings, the negotiation process, and the post financing relationship too.

What Scott does in this book is break down every part of the process and explain it in plain english so that entrepreneurs can understand what’s going on and why it matters to them.

That last part is important, this book is written for entrepreneurs, not VCs.

Continue reading “Secrets Of Sand Hill Road”

Office Hours with Guillaume Cabane on June 27


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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Next week, on the 27th of June, Redpoint will host Office Hours with Guillaume Cabane. Guillaume is an exceptional marketer. He built the highly successful growth practices at Segment and Drift. He stands out because of his persistence at the cutting edge. I remember when he told me of how he used the Clearbit Reveal API to change the content of conversations in Drift pop-ups to meaningfully improve conversion. He’s always at the vanguard of using technology to drive awareness and demand for SaaS products.

Typically, Office Hours are hour long fireside chats with a speaker. We host them at our office in San Francisco and we gather questions from a small audience of about 30-40 people in a closed door format.

This time, we’re trying a new format. Over the course of two hours, we’ll invite four startups to conduct one-on-one office hours for 30 minutes with Guillaume and Continue reading “Office Hours with Guillaume Cabane on June 27”

The Problem With “Content”  


This post is by Om Malik from On my Om


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Everyone has a pet peeve. At least currently, mine is the word “content.” It falls in the category of words like “quality,” “luxury,” and “awesome” that have been overused and abused so much that they often feel like they have lost all meaning. “Content,” however, is a bit more insidious than these other examples.

“Content” is the black hole of the Internet. Incredibly well-produced videos, all sorts of songs, and articulate blog posts — they are all “content.” Are short stories “content”? I hope not, since that is one of the most soul-destroying of words, used to strip a creation of its creative effort.

You can tell a lot about a person and how they think about their work based on whether or not they use “content” to describe what they do. A photographer who says that he is creating “content” for his YouTube channel is nothing more than a marketer churning out fodder to fill the proverbial Internet airwaves with marketing noise. Continue reading “The Problem With “Content”  “

7 Stories worth reading this weekend


This post is by Om Malik from On my Om


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When the world’s most famous mystery writer vanished: As a lifelong fan of Agatha Christie and Hercule Poirot, I quite enjoyed this wonderful retelling of a story that turned her into the star of her own mystery.

The bean counters turned Boeing’s culture upside down: Are they responsible for the 737 MAX disaster? It is an interesting viewpoint. However, my bigger argument is that acquiescing to the tyranny of the quarterly results and rampant greed is the ruin of many erstwhile great companies.

The I in We: This is the story of WeWork, its founder Adam Neumann, and what is right and wrong with the tech unicorn phenomenon. I absolutely loved this story.

What is happening to streaming’s superstars?: Over the past three years, algorithms have started to take away market share from the world’s biggest artists in favor of a new group. Good analysis for Continue reading “7 Stories worth reading this weekend”

How & why to buy computers properly


This post is by Om Malik from On my Om


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in many places, computers are treated as capital equipment with a fairly long lifespan, and as devices that need operation but not maintenance. These attitudes may date back to the 1950s, when the first was fairly true and the cost of maintenance was hidden in the operational cost. Neither is true today. Computers are consumables that require regular, skilled care. Skipping this care is like not changing the oil in your car: you can get away with it for a little while, but at some point you’re in trouble. In fact, and as I explain below, it’s worse than dirty engine oil: not only are you at risk for a security incident, you end up in a maintenance trap.

Steven Bellovin, Professor of computer science at Columbia University and a security expert, believes that security of computers and computing infrastructure is hampered by the 1950s thinking. Patching, upgrading, and maintaining security Continue reading “How & why to buy computers properly”

Happy Father’s Day


This post is by Jeff Carter from Points and Figures


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Hope you have a great Father’s Day.  If you are close to your Dad, hope you see him.  If not, hope you get a chance to chat on the phone.  If your Dad is gone, he won’t be if you remember him.  Tell a story about him to someone today.

Mobile Ticketing


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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The Gotham Gal and I walked into the Musee de l’Orangerie yesterday and found a line of about 20 people waiting to purchase tickets to enter. The Gotham Gal whipped out her phone, went to the Orangerie website, and bought two tickets that were sent to her phone. It took her less than a minute to do it and we walked in. As we were leaving we noticed the ticket line had almost doubled. We shook our heads and made our way to our next stop.

The mobile phone we all have in our pocket or purse can do so many things but one of its superpowers is a point of sale terminal. Increasingly there is no reason to wait in line for tickets to anything. You can just get them on your phone.

I really like just in time ticketing with the phone. I have the NYC East River

Continue reading “Mobile Ticketing”

The Government Budgets


This post is by Jeff Carter from Points and Figures


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This morning when I woke up I saw this tweet by The Gotham Gal.

My friend Mark Glennon of Wirepoints wrote his monthly column on what just happened in Illinois. Illinois politicians are lying to the public again, and most of the media is enabling them. The media went to journalism school and not business school. There also aren’t a lot of math majors among journalists. They are bereft of principles. Springfield Republicans are enablers.  They just go along and get along.  They don’t provide a lot of leadership.

Newly elected mayor Lori Lightfoot said she is looking at raising all kinds of taxes to fill the budget hole left by almost a century of governing from corrupt Democratic Machine politicians.  People are already fleeing Chicago.  What’s going to happen Continue reading “The Government Budgets”

Failure to Execute vs Failure to Raise


This post is by hunterwalk from Hunter Walk


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14 for 14. Homebrew’s first fund (2013-2015) has 20 core investments of which 14 went market for a Series A. All 14 successfully completed this fundraise. The six who didn’t go out for a Series A either (a) shutdown/acquihired prior to this milestone [founder disagreement; lack of product traction], (b) exited due to an early M&A opportunity or (c) in one case, is currently an ongoing concern that hasn’t needed to raise additional capital.

I was thinking about this stat last month while preparing a slide deck for our annual LP meeting. As an industry we often say a startup “failed to raise” when a funding round doesn’t come together and while it’s factually correct, in some ways it strikes me as a downstream implication of a core issue: they didn’t fail to raise, they failed to execute. The company most likely did not accomplish the milestones required to move Continue reading “Failure to Execute vs Failure to Raise”

Bitcoin is a real energy hog


This post is by Om Malik from On my Om


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Researchers from the Technical University of Munich and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology took a look at how much energy was consumed by computers used to generate bitcoins and process transactions. Their conclusion:

in late 2018, the entire bitcoin network was responsible for 22-22.9 million tons of CO2 per year — similar to a large Western city or an entire developing country like Sri Lanka. Total global emissions of the greenhouse gas from the burning of fossil fuels were about 37 billion tons last year.  The researchers said about 68% of the computing power used to generate, or mine, bitcoins is in Asia, 17% is in Europe and 15% is in North America. [Fortune/AP]

The whole study is worth reading. (link)