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The Twenty Minute VC: Venture Capital | Startup Funding | The Pitch

The Twenty Minute VC takes you inside the world of Venture Capital, Startup Funding and The Pitch. Join our host, Harry Stebbings and discover how you can attain funding for your business by listening to what the most prominent investors are directly looking for in startups, providing easily actionable tips and tricks that can be put in place to increase your chances of getting funded. Although, you may not want to raise funding for a startup. The Twenty Minute VC also provides an instructional guide as to what it takes to get employed in the Venture Capital industry, with VCs giving specific advice on how to get noticed from the crowd and increasing your chances of employment. If that wasn't enough our amazing Venture Capitalists also provide their analysis of the current technology market, providing advice and suggestions on the latest investing trends and predictions. Join us so you can see how you can get BIG, powerful improvements, fast. Would you like to see more of The Twenty Minute VC, head on over to www.thetwentyminutevc.com for more information on the podcast, show notes, resources and a more detailed analysis of the technology and Venture Capital industry.
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Now displaying: 2016
Mar 11, 2016

Niccolo De Masi is the CEO & Chairman @ Glu Mobile, one of the world’s hottest gaming companies with title including the current No 1 Game in the App Store with the Kendall and Kylie Game, Glu is also the maker of the Kim Kardashian game and the likes of Deer Hunter and many more. Prior to Glu, Niccolo was CEO at mobile entertainment company Hands On Mobile and before that Niccolo was the CEO at London listed mobile entertainment company, Monstermob Group Plc.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) What does Niccolo make of the wildly unrealistic pricing applied to early stage startups today? What will result from this incredibly optimistic pricing?

2.) If Niccolo were a VC today, how would he respond to the impending implosion of the early stage startups? What are the best VCs currently doing and what can startups do to preserve as much value as possible?

3.) How central a role does first mover advantage become in a down turning market? Will we see large scale consolidation and if so what will the effects of this be? How can startups position themselves to be the consolidator not the consolidated?

4.) How do Glu pick the celebrities that are featured for their celebrity feature games? What are the KPI's? What are the requirements in terms of existing brand and audience for a celebrity game to be a success?

5.) Why are women better at establishing larger social following than men? What celebrities would Niccolo most like to have on Glu's platform who they currently do not have?

 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Niccolo 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!

 

Mar 9, 2016

Christian Hernandez is the Co-Founder and Partner @ Whitestar Capital in London. Prior to co-founding White Star Capital, Christian worked at Facebook and led the international expansion of the company’s Business Development, Platform and Developer Network groups. He previously held leadership roles in the U.S. and Europe at Google and Microsoft and started his career in technology at MicroStrategy, a startup he joined prior to its 1999 IPO. Christian has worked closely with entrepreneurs and leading VCs and has been an active angel investor and advisor.  He represents White Star on the Boards of KeyMeGlow MediaBloglovin’ and Hole 19. Christian also serves as a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Christian made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Having worked with the likes of Facebook, Google and Microsoft, how has Christian seen the ecosystem develop; for both the good and the bad?

3.) Moving to White Star specifically now, what is the thesis, investment mandate? Average cheque size, preferred sectors? Geography? Talking of geography, WSC has a transatlantic model with offices in both London and NYC, why is that? What are the benefits of having this spread?

4.) According to Mattermark, White Star have 38% of your portfolio in mobile, so what are Christians views on the evolution of mobile? How does he respond to Fred Wilson’s post about the mobile downtown and the difficulty in attaining and maintaining traction for mobile apps? What are Christian's thoughts on discovery?

5.) Where does Christian stand on the relationship between growth and revenue? Are there any cases where it can be beneficial to focus solely on growth? In today’s environment, with VCs moderating their valuations more, is it possible to raise on pure momentum growth?

6.) Christian recently wrote an article: ‘Hiring For The Future Of Your Company’, so what does he really mean by this? Is it not a little ironic coming from the VC scene, an inherently risky asset class who have a fundamental unwillingness to move away from the old hiring style of investment bank or consultancy, in many cases?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Christian's Fave Book: Physics of the Future

Christian's Fave Blog: MediumNuzzel

Christian's Most Serendipitous Investment: Keyme

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Christian 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!
Mar 7, 2016

Tom Tunguz is a Partner @ Redpoint Ventures, where he has invested in AxialDremioExpensifyElectric ImpLooker, and ThredUP. Before joining Redpoint, Tomasz was the product manager for Google’s AdSense social-media products and AdSense internationalization. Tom is also the author of the world famous blog and newsletter which can be found at http://tomtunguz.com

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Tom made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What does the huge drop in late stage saas valuations mean for the early guys? Does Tom expect them to hunker down? Take more time? Spend less cash?

3.) In recent years with the likes of Zenefits, we have seen the rise of Free Saas Enabled Marketplaces, why have we seen this rise, what are the benefits of adopting this strategy? Does the lack of predictability and lower (30%) gross margin not generate concern towards the model?

4.) Where does Tom see room for real innovation in SaaS? Is Tom excited about mobile enterprise?

5.) Question from Javier Soltero @ Microsoft: How have you approached developing your 'personal' brand and how that has made an impact in your development as an investor?

6.) Question from Eric ver Ploeg (episode 70) and Tak Lo (Episode 37): Where does Tom generate the ideas for articles and what does the idea creation process look like?’ What does the scheduling look like to churn our such high quality content on a daily occurrence?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Tom's Fave Book: Narcissus and Goldmund

Tom's Fave Blog: SaastrDavid Skok

Tom's Most Recent Investment: Dremio

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Tom 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!
 
Mar 4, 2016

Hiten Shah is one of the most prominent players in the data marketing industry having co-Founded both KissMetrics (raised $10m+ VC Funding) and Crazy Egg (bootstrapped), both wildly successful businesses serving some of the world's largest companies. Hiten is also an extremely successful angel investor with investments in the likes of Buffer, Mattermark and MessageMe (acquired by Yahoo.) In addition, Hiten is also a serial startup advisor having been an advisor with Linkedin, SlideShare and Wordpress' Automattic.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Hiten made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Why did Hiten decide to take VC funding for on startup and not the other? Did taking VC funding allow for much greater growth or make him less resourceful and creative?

3.) How have Hiten's entrepreneurial endeavours altered his attitude to investing? How does Hiten's large personal brand add to his investing style?

4.) Hiten has said before that he likes to ask founders 'what is their earliest most traumatic memory'? Why is that and what does Hiten learn from that?

5.) Question from Erik Torenberg @ ProductHunt: How does Hiten assess which startups he wants to spend time with as an advisor? 

6.) Question from Ryan Hoover @ ProductHunt: What is the most counter-intuitive advice for this starting a company?

Items Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

Hiten’s Fave Book: The War of Art

Hiten’s Fave Blog: 731 Users Reveal Why Slack Is So Addictive

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Hiten 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!

 

Mar 2, 2016

Jim Scheinman is the Founder and Managing Partner @ Maven Ventures, a leading seed stage consumer VC with investments in the likes of AngelListWealthFront and Altspace. Prior to founding Maven, Jim was a pioneer in the early days of the social media revolution as Head of Business Development and Sales at the first social networking site, Friendster. However, in 2005, Jim left Friendster to join co-founders Michael and Xochi Birch to launch Bebo as the first employee and Board member. Bebo later went on to become a unicorn for Jim, however, that was not his only unicorn as he was also an investor in Tango ($bn valuation) and NBCi (IPOd for 6bn.)

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Jim made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What was it like being in the midst of the social media revolution as it was taking place? How does Jim view the social scene today? Why does Jim think there is skepticism to investing in social?

3.) On consumer mobile Fred Wilson stated: ‘doing anything in the consumer mobile space is super hard. i can’t think of many consumer mobile apps that have gained massive traction and sustained it. can you?' So why is the space so hard? Is it not a monopoly play with the dominant incumbents? 

4.) How has Jim seen the consumer landscape develop over the last decade with the rise of mobile? How can you tackle the distribution challenges inherent within mobile? Does Jim agree that with mobile consumer product market fit is no longer enough to gain a large user base?

5.) What are the core elements of building a successful consumer business? What are the challenges? Is there a pareto’s principle on this, with 20% determining 80% of the returns?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Jim's Fave Book: The Boys In The Boat 

Jim's Fave Blog: MattermarkStrictly VCTechCrunch

Jim's Most Recent Investment: HomeMade

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jim 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!

 

Feb 29, 2016

Andy McLoughlin is a Partner with SoftTech VC, where he primarily invests in B2B, SaaS, developer tools and mobile applications. Prior to joining SoftTech, Andy was co-founder of London-based Huddle, under Andy’s leadership, Huddle became one of Europe’s most awarded and well-known technology startups, raising over $80M of venture funding to date. Since 2010 Andy has been a prolific angel investor building a portfolio covering 35 startups, mostly in the SaaS / B2B space. Just to name a few of the investments from his incredible portfolio Andy was an angel in the likes of BufferIntercomPipedrivePostmatesSecret Escapes, just to name a few.

In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Andy made his startup as an entrepreneur and then VC?

2.) What was it that made Andy make the move from the world of entrepreneurship to VC?

3.) As a seed stage investor, what does Andy make of the Series A crunch? How prevalent has it been for him as an investor? What is the optimal amount of runway founders should raise for?

4.) What does Andy think of the size and cadence of the first funding rounds that we are seeing now? What does he make of the rise of the second seed or the bridge round? Is it an indication of trouble?

5.) SoftTech are near the closing of Fund V, so what is the thesis and the mission going forward? What themes and spaces is Andy most excited by and why?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Andy's Fave Book:

Andy's Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Andy's Most Recent Investment:

 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Andy 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!
 

This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

Feb 26, 2016

Gary Liu is the CEO @ Digg, the incredibly famous platform that allows users to find, read and share the most talked about stories on the internet. Prior to joining Digg, Gary was an early employee at Spotify holding numerous positions including, Head of Spotify Labs and Global Director of Ad Product Strategy. Gary joined Spotify from AOL, where he was the Director of Sales Strategy and Operations at Patch. Before joining AOL, Gary was a business and sales operations leader at Google and Clickable.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Gary made his entry into the world of tech and later became CEO at Digg?

2.) What were Gary's biggest takeaways from his time at Google and being an early employee at Spotfiy? How has he adapted those learnings to his role now at Digg?

3.) What really happened at Digg? What went wrong? Why did Digg not live up to the early hype of being the darling of the internet age? How are Digg evolving to change this?

4.) In the vastly competitive space of content creation and distribution, how do Digg stand out and differentiate themselves from the plethora of options available to consumers?

5.) How do Digg try to engage and unite the community through the commenting process without alienating people through the potential for malicious posts and trolling?

6.) How does a platform like Digg plan to monetize content with the ever disappearing ad dollar? Does it concern Gary or does he see potential in other avenues?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Gary's Fave Book: J.D Salinger, The Catcher and The Rye

Gary's Fave Blog: Jon Russell, Asia Tech News Review

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Gary 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!

 

Feb 24, 2016

Adam Draper is a fourth generation venture capitalist and the Founder & CEO @ Boost VC, a specialised seed stage accelerator that invests in blockchain and virtual reality startups. Before starting Boost, Adam angel invested in 20 companies including Coinbase, Plangrid and Practice Fusion. During his angel investment period, Adam was also the Founder of Xpert Financial in his aim to revolutionise the financial markets for private companies.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Adam made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Why is Adam so bullish on the topics of bitcoin and virtual reality?

3.) What are the fundamental use cases for bitcoin and why have we not seen mass adoption on a global scale so far? What are the barriers to adoption?

4.) What is the investment attitude to the bitcoin and VR space? Does the volatility of the price in bitcoin affect the level of investment going into the sector?

5.) What would Adam like to see more of in the space? What is he most excited for and where does he see the most potential?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Adam's Fave Book: The Name Of The Wind

Adam's Fave Blog: Mugglenet

Adam's Most Recent Investment: Joystream

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Adam 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!
Feb 22, 2016

Tim Draper is the founding partner of leading venture capital firms Draper Associates and DFJ. Some of his Venture successes include Skype, Baidu, Tesla, Hotmail, Twitch.tv, and hundreds of others. Fun fact about Tim, it was his original suggestion to use viral marketing in web-based email to geometrically spread an Internet product to its market was instrumental to the successes of Hotmail, YahooMail, and Gmail and has been adopted as a standard marketing technique by thousands of businesses. His prominence is evident through his being named 100 most influential Harvard Alumni, and seven on the Forbes Midas List. He was named Always-On #1 top venture capital deal maker.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Tim made his way into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Having founded Draper Associates in 1985, how has Tim seen the investing landscape develop over time?

3.) Draper obviously invests across a variety of stage, but what is Tim's preferred stage? Where does he see the most opportunity for venture returns? Why?

4.) Of all the companies Tim has seen, which was the best pitch? Why? Which founder inspired Tim the most? Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?

5.) What is DraperU? What are the plans for the future? What is the vision? Why did Tim choose to do a reality show in StartupU? Has it been a very different experience being the lead in a TV show compared to investing in startups?

6.)Why is behind Tim's immense belief in Bitcoin. Why is this? When did Tim realize the potential? How long will adoption take?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Tim's Fave Book: The Startup Game by William DraperMichael Rothschild: Bionomics

Tim's Most Recent Investment: Laurel and WolfFavor Delivery

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Tim 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!
Feb 19, 2016

Niccolo De Masi is the CEO & Chairman @ Glu Mobile, one of the world's hottest gaming companies with title including the current No 1 Game in the App Store with the Kendall and Kylie Game, Glu is also the maker of the Kim Kardashian game and the likes of Deer Hunter and many more. Prior to Glu, Niccolo was CEO at mobile entertainment company Hands On Mobile and before that Niccolo was the CEO at London listed mobile entertainment company, Monstermob Group Plc.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Niccolo came to be CEO at one of the world's hottest gaming companies, Glu Mobile?

2.) How did Niccolo make the transition from feature phone business to smartphone business with Glu so successfully? How did Glu's public market status affect the transition?

3.) How important is transparency within organisations as a leader, whether it be Founder or CEO? What are the important elements to communicate with your team and your investors?

4.) Why are private market valuations so misaligned with the public market? What will happen to the plethora of newly made unicorns? 

5.) How does Niccolo source potential acquisition targets, what does he look for in, so called 'well valued assets'? What makes them well valued?

6.) What is Niccolo's turnaround strategy for his acquisition targets? How can Glu's platform elevate companies that are in distress?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Niccolo's Fave Book: The Rise and Fall Of The Great Powers 

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Niccolo 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!
Feb 17, 2016

Tyler Willis is probably one of the best angel investors around and has invested in seed stage companies that have gone on to raise from the likes of Index Ventures, Founders Fund, Khosla Ventures and others. Some of these investments include the likes of wildly popular ride sharing app Lyft, the incredible Patreon (now delivering 2m a month to creators) and Change.org which now has over 80m users.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Tyler made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Where does Tyler sit on investor specialisation? Is it best to have preferred sectors and round sizes?

3.) What elements are essential for Tyler pre investment and what can be tweaked later down the line?

4.) Question from Arielle Zuckerberg: How does Tyler evaluate customer acquisition so well? What is his approach to this with potential investments and portfolio companies?

5.) Why are people so negative on the future of innovation? Is Founders Fund's 'we expected flying cars and instead got 140 characters' fair?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Tyler's Fave Book: Innovator's Dilemma by Clayton Christensen

Tyler's Fave Blog or Newsletter: Mattermark Daily

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Tyler 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!
Feb 15, 2016

Arielle Zuckerberg, Partner @ Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers. Arielle Zuckerberg joined KPCB in 2015 and focuses on early-stage investments in the firm’s digital practice as part of the venture team. Arielle joined Kleiner from Humin, where she led product for the company’s mobile apps. She started her career as a product manager by day and Hackathon host by night at Wildfire Interactive, Inc., which was acquired by Google in 2012. After the acquisition, Arielle worked as a product manager on social ads at Google. Outside of KPCB, Arielle has made several angel investments across the food tech and health sectors in the likes of PartenderBitty Foods and The Ticket Fairy, just to name a few.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mattermark for providing all the data used in the show today and you can check out Mattermark Search here!

In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Arielle made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What has the move been like from angel to VC? What theories and investment theses are adjustable? How doe the fiduciary responsibility to your LP's adjust your risk profile when investing?

3.) Questions from Tyler Willis: How does Arielle evaluate new products? How does Arielle learn and how does Ariele come down on the learning curve on new things so quickly (new investor to KPCB in ~2 years, for example).

4.) Arielle has now spent her first few months in venture, what have been the biggest surprises? Biggest challenges? What is Arielle's fave part and what is her least fave part?

5.) How does Arielle see the AI space now? Where does she see room for innovation? Is there anything Arielle is concerned about?

6.) Now when doing research for this interview I came across Arielle's New Years Resolution list from 2012! So what are your new years resolutions for 2016? What are the goals you are aiming for?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Arielle's Fave Book: The Symposium by Plato

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Arielle 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!
Feb 12, 2016

Ryan Caldbeck is the Founder & CEO @ CircleUp, the online investing platform that allows you to invest in innovative consumer companies. They have raised funding from some of the best including USVMaveron and Canaan Partners (all past guests). Before Ryan founded CircleUp, he worked in consumer product and retail-focused private equity at TSG Consumer Partners and Encore Consumer Capital exposing him to many great consumer and retail businesses that were too small to obtain funding through the customary private equity channels. As a result, he decided to make funding available to these promising companies through CircleUp.

In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Ryan made the move from the world of VC to founding his own tech startup?

2.) Why is CircleUp marketplace investing, not crowdfunding? What does Ryan believe are the misnomers around the term crowdfunding?

3.) Where do you see this sector making sense and where does he think it is not so efficient? Why is it wrong for tech companies?

4.) One manjor aspect in the UK that this segment has struggled with is it’s ability to attract institutional investors to the sector. So with CircleUp, how are institutional investors getting into this market and is there anything more Ryan would like to see with this regard?

5.) To what extent does Ryan think this is disrupting private capital formation? Should VCs be concerned? What sector of the funding environment is most vulnerable to being disrupted by the rise of marketplace investing?

6.) How was the funding process for Ryan? CircleUp raised over $30m over several rounds with investors from our friends at USV and Maveron, how that came about and what Ryan would advise founders entering the process?

Items Mentioned In Todays Show:

Ryan's Fave Blog: AVC, Jeff JordanBill Gurley

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VC and Harry 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!

 

Feb 10, 2016
Dustin Dolginow is the General Partner @ Maiden Lane, the first online venture fund which uses AngelList as it's operating system, serving as the institutional capital partner to the best angel investors in the world. Dustin has made investments in the likes of GetablePipeDriveBeepi and many more incredible companies. Dustin is also a venture partner with Accomplice where he serves some of the best entrepreneurs on the planet. Prior to investing, Andy cut his teeth in the operations game with Social Swipe, which allowed merchants to gain more value from their transaction data.
 
Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Dustin made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What were Dustin's major takeaways from his operational experience and how has he applied them to his role investing with Maiden Lane?

3.) Where does Ryan you democratisation of funding going in the next five years? What direction does Dustin believe we are moving in?

4.) Dustin has said that 'capital is a crappy differentiator' so what value add should founders look for in their VCs? How are we seeing the VC value add evolve over time?

4.) How does Dustin sell Maiden Lane in the sea of seed funds that have emerged over the last few years? How important does Dustin think it is for VCs and funds to have personal brands? What is bigger the brand of the VC or the fund?

5.) What is it Dustin looks for in products? Are there any must haves? Any design requirements?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Dustin's Fave Book:

Dustin's Most Recent Investment:

 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Dustin 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!

 

Feb 8, 2016
Gil Penchina is the Founder @ Flight.vc, a network of AngelList syndicates that covers a wide range of sectors from SaaS to security from Israel to England. Gil also has the title of the largest raise for an AngelList syndicate, essentially turning himself into a one man fund. Some of Gil's investments include the likes of Paypal, Indiegogo, AngelList, Linkedin and many more. Prior to his investing career, Gil cut his teeth with operating roles at numerous companies including Ebay. We would also like to wish Gil the best of luck in his nomination for Angel Investor of The Year at tonight's Crunchies by TechCrunch. 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Gil made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) Why did Gil choose numerous syndicate approach over one huge syndicate? What are the benefits of having numerous specialized syndicates?

3.) What is included in Gil's sell of Flight as an investor? What is the driving force behind the success of Flight? What is the biggest challenge within this job as founder?

4.) How does Gil try and convince the startups that the syndicate method of investment is better for them? How does Gil portray his value add to startups?

5.) Does Gil insist on pro-rata rights? Should founders always grant them to early stage investors?Which VCs does Gil like to work with and what makes them a good VC?

6.) Where does Gil see the future of first AngelList? Will it replace the archaic system of VC? What are Gil's plans for his syndicates? Is Gil looking to move into Series A and B rounds? How do you plan to become the Fidelity of this asset class?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Gil's Fave Book:

Gil's Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Gil's Most Recent Investment:

 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Gil 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!
 

This episode was supported by Wunder Capital, the leading online investment platform that allows individuals to invest in large scale solar projects across the U.S. Wunder’s solar investment funds allow you to earn up to 11% annually, while diversifying your portfolio, curbing pollution and combating global climate change. Do well by doing good and sign up for a free account here and join the thousands of people that are already achieving their investment targets.

Feb 5, 2016
Kelly Peeler is the Founder and CEO of NextGenVest, the College Money Mentor for every student, helping students navigate the financial aid and student loan application process. While at Harvard, Kelly started Business Across Borders, a non profit that helps Iraqi students rebuild their own economy by starting their own companies and the International Women in Business Summit, bringing together top female college leaders. She was selected as one of the eight Kauffman Foundation Global Scholars, named by Goldman Sachs as one of the 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs, and named a White House #StartTheSpark Ambassador. Her TED Talk is called "How to Change the World as a Millennial - Don't be Stupid with Money" and can be found here.
 
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 Kelly made it into startups and what was the origin story for NextGenVest?

2.) How has the Fintech ecosystem evolved over the last 5 years? What does Kelly mean by Fintech 1.0 and the next phase of Fintech?

3.) How can emerging brands and in particular fintech brands build loyalty with the emerging millennial generation? What is the attention graph for millenials looking like?

4.) What does Kelly mean when she states a shift from financial organisation with Mint to financial efficiency today?

5.) What key determinants that have made Uber so successful can be used within Fintech startups to build the same trust and relationship?

6.) What is Kelly's view of startups taking a platform dependent approach? What are the benefits and what are the concerns?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Kelly's Fave Book:

 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Kelly 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!
Feb 3, 2016
Hadley Harris is the Founding General Partner at Eniac Ventures, the first seed stage venture fund focussed exclusively on mobile. Eniac's investments include the likes of Soundcloud, Airbnb, Elevate and many more incredible mobile first companies. Before Eniac, Hadley was a two-time entrepreneur in the mobile space, as an executive at Vlingo, acquired by Nuance Communications for $225m and after Vlingo he became CMO of Thumb, which was acquired by Ypulse. Hadley also worked at Charles River Ventures where he spent time helping with mobile investments while looking for a young startup to join. As if his portfolio does not prove enough of what a seed stage investing legend he is, he was also named by Business Insider as 'New York's Best Early Stage Investor'.
 
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 Hadley made it into startups and the investing industry?

2.) What does an engineering degree provide when investing? Why did Eniac decide to focus solely on mobile?

2.) How has Hadley seen the NY venture and startup scene develop over the last years? Does an ecosystem need anchor companies to be great? Ex-Googlers, and ex-Facebook, ex-LinkedIn, ex-Sun, etc. are so important to the Bay Area ecosystem. What are New York's anchor companies? How has that affected the ecosystem?

3.) What is it like helping companies like Soundcloud and Airbnb scale when in hyper growth mode? At the seed level, how important a role does valuation play when determining whether to invest or not?

5.) Why is raising a Series B so tough? Is it the embodiment of the funding barbell? Has NYC, like London, seen a rise in the second seed round?

6.) What are Hadley's thoughts on VC founder alignment? What are the common characteristics of the best founders that Hadley has worked with and invested in?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Hadley's Fave Book:

Hadley's Fave Blog or Newsletter:

Hadley's Most Recent Investment:

 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Hadley 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!
Feb 1, 2016
Martin Mignot is an early stage investor at Index Ventures where he specialises in SaaS, marketplaces and mobile. He is actively looking after Index's investments in Algolia, Blablacar, Capitaine Train, Deliveroo, Drivy, Rad, Swiftkey and TheFamily. He worked on 50+ transactions to date, including Assistly, Auxmoney, BaseCRM, Cloud.com, Codecademy, DimDim, Factual, Farfetch, Flipboard, Funding Circle, Gluster, HouseTrip, Just-Eat, Lookout, Nastygal, Notonthehighstreet, Onefinestay, PeoplePerHour, TrustPilot, Soluto and SoundCloud.  Prior to joining Index, Martin was in the TMT team at UBS Investment Bank and co-founded the beauty subscription business Boudoir Prive (acquired by Joliebox/Birchbox) and a student web radio service (www.rsp.fm).
 
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! 
 
Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) Where did it all start for Martin? What is the Martin Mignot story?

2.) How does Martin view venture as a career vs coming into it later on? Why does Martin think venture is now a viable career from the offset?

3.) Does Martin agree with Sheryl Sandberg’s statement, it doesn’t matter where you sit, as long as you have a seat on the rocketship? How important is valuation for Martin when making the decision?

4.) How Martin goes about sourcing the latest and greatest startups from the European ecosystem?

5.) How does Martin evaluate founders and consider their ability to execute on their plan, prior to making the investment?

6.) Talking of difficulty for startups attaining funding, what are your thoughts on VC founder alignment? You have said to focus before on the business and not the team, unless exceptional cases prevail, this is very strange for me to hear. Why is it you have adopted this stance and why do you feel it is best?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Martin's Fave Book:

Martin's Fave Blog or Newsletter:
 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Martin 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!
Jan 29, 2016

Jeff Seibert is an experienced serial-entrepreneur and currently Senior Director of Product at Twitter. Previously, Seibert was the CEO of Crashlytics, which he co-founded in 2011 with Wayne Chang. Crashlytics delivered crash analysis tools for iOS and Android apps via an SDK that reached 300 Million mobile devices worldwide. Crashlytics was acquired by Twitter in 2013 for $259m. In 2007, Seibert co-founded Increo and served as its COO and lead architect until its acquisition by Box in August of 2009. He subsequently oversaw the integration of Increo’s document preview and annotation technologies into the company's cloud-based content platform.

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 Jeff made his move into the wonderful world of tech?

 Today we are going to break up your story into 3 chapters:

1.) Acquisition by Box: 

  • What was it like going to Sand Hill Road to raise in 2009?
  • How much runway would Jeff advise for a startup and how can companies know whether a strategic acquisition is optimal or whether they should continue building with a further round?
  • Jeff has spoke before about being overly transparent with this team about the acquisition. What are the problems with being overly transparent and how can you balance the two?

 2.) Acquired by Twitter:

  • At what point did Jeff transition to thinking the acquisition by Twitter would be a beneficial and viable and why?
  • A reason for Jeff being favourable to the acquisition was Twitter's agreement of continued investment in the space. How can founders negotiate and ensure that this occurs with their acquisition? One of the mistakes stated about the acquisition by Twitter was the reporting structure. How can founders ensure that they are speaking to the VPs of engineering, CEOs etc and attain the support they need?

 3.) Life at Twitter:

  •  How life is following the acquisition? What are Jeff's plans for the future as Senior Director of Product at Twitter?
 
Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:
Jeff' Fave Book: How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
Jeff's Fave Blog or Newsletter: Daring Fireball
 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Jeff 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!
Jan 27, 2016

Ellie Wheeler is a Partner at Greycroft Partners where she focuses on investment opportunities in next-generation commerce, consumer mobile, and associated SaaS solutions. Ellie manages several investments for Greycroft, including BaubleBarFlashpoint Intel, Eloquii, and Plain Vanilla Games (QuizUp). Prior to joining Greycroft, Ellie worked in a similar role evaluating investment opportunities at Lowercase Capital with Chris Sacca. Before working with Lowercase, Ellie worked at Cisco where she was involved in multiple acquisitions and investments, including PostPath, Jabber, Xobni, and Tandberg. 

In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Ellie made her way into the wonderful world of tech and VC?

2.) What were Ellie's biggest takeaways from working with the legend that is Chris Sacca?

3.) As an investment focus of Ellie's, how does Ellie think the mobile commerce space has changed and how consumer behaviours are changing in the space?

4.) What are Ellie's views on push notifications? What are the Do's and Don'ts? What can be done to make push notifications more effective?

5.) Do wearables change the push notification space? What are Ellie's views on wearables with their investment in BaubleBar? Are consumers ready for them?

6.) Talking of wearables, how does Ellie respond to hardware investments? Typically a space VC shy away from? What are the problems for Ellie? What attracts her with hardware?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Ellie's Fave Book: The Power of One

Ellie's Most Recent Investment: Blinkist
 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Ellie 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!
 
Jan 25, 2016

Bryan Johnson is an entrepreneur and investor. He is the founder of OS Fund and Braintree, the latter of which was bought by eBay in 2013 for $800 million in cash. Bryan launched OS Fund in 2014 with $100 million of his personal capital to support inventors and scientists who aim to benefit humanity. His investments include endeavors to extend healthy human life to 100+ (Human Longevity), replicate the human visual cortex (Vicarious), mine an asteroid (Planetary Resources), reinvent transportation (Matternet), and reimagine food (Hampton Creek), among others.

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 Bryan made his start in the world of tech and how he has come to the OS fund today?

2.) What was the pivotal moment in Bryan's career? When was the turning point? What was was the hardest part of the entrepreneurial journey and how did Bryan conquer it?

3.) What is the main motivation behind the OS fund? Which areas does Bryan most want to solve and where does he see significant market opportunities?

4.) Does the longevity of return to Bryan's exits concern him? Most investments exit with 10 years, human lifespan startups take a little longer! What sort of time frame does Bryan have in mind when investing in these companies?

5.) What does Bryan really perceive synthetic biology to mean? Are we seeing improvements in this sector?

6.) The OS Fund have recently released a white paper detailing extensively their process for investing? Why did Bryan decide on this open source style of investing?

7.) What would Bryan like to see more of? Where does Bryan see a lot of people investing that he thinks is a mistake?

 
Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Bryan's Fave Book:

Bryan's Most Recent Investment:
 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Bryan 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!
Jan 22, 2016

James Beshara is the Co-Founder @ Tilt the micro-crowdfunding platform that allows you to receive funding from friends—changing the way collaborative funding works. Tilt has raised $37 million from 3 rounds of funding from the likes of Andreesen, SV Angel, Alexis Ohanian, Naval Ravikant and Sean Parker just to name a few. As for James Before co-founding Tilt, he studied Development Economics as an undergrad and then went on to build dvelo.org, a site for crowdfunding loans and donations to poverty-alleviation organizations in developing countries. In order to vote for who you think will win James and Harry's beer pong match, head over to @twentyminutevc on Twitter and vote using our poll.

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! 
 
Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:
 

1.) What were the origins of Tilt? How did James go from a micro loans collector in Africa to founder of one of SF's hottest startups?

2.) What does James make of the current crowdfunding landscape? What will it take for crowdfunding to go mass market?

3.) What are Tilt doing to make crowdfunding more bite sized and consumer friendly? How important is the on boarding process for Tilt? How are Tilt approaching customer retention? What are James' targets for the year ahead with Tilt?

4.) With investors like Andreesen, SV Angel, Naval Ravikant, Sean Parker just to name a few, what the investment journey like? I heard the first funding took 6-8 months and the series A took 6 days with a16z. What changed to turn it around?

5.) On PH LIVE James stated that founding a company is a destination less journey and although admirable I struggle with that from the investors perspective. How did James sell a startup in a pitch with no exit strategy?

6.) What was it that attracted James to the investors that he chose? What value add was James most attracted to?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:
James' Fave Book: 100 Years of SolitudeThe Power Of Now
 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and James 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!
Jan 20, 2016

James Cameron is an early stage investor at Accel where he focuses on enterprise software, security, fintech and marketplace businesses. Prior to joining Accel, he founded and ran BipSync, a SaaS-based research platform for investment management. James also spent time on the tech banking team at Morgan Stanley and as a corporate lawyer at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in London, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

 
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 James made his way into the world of startups and investing?

2.) How does James go about finding the needles in the haystack in the sea of amazing startups? Do James use data to find great companies? Do you think this will be a continuing trend, in terms of algorithmic deal sourcing?

3.) What cool stuff has James been seeing in the enterprise software and security sector? Does James think there are any underhyped or overhyped segments of these markets?

4.) One very dominant eco system for tech in general but specifically security is Israel, how do the UK and Israeli ecosystems differ? Is there anything we can do in the UK to harness the spirit encapsulated by the Israeli ecosystem?

5.) What are the catalysts or drivers of these communities’ growth? Do you agree with Marc Andreesen in saying we shouldn't think about building "The Silicon Valley of X" because the components that make up SV aren't repeatable and areas should instead specialize on specific verticals, like bitcoin or security. What do you think about that concept?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:
James' Fave Book: Crossing The Chasm 
James' Fave Blog or Newsletter: Adrian Colyer: The Morning Paper
James' Most Recent Investment: Doctolib
 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and James 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!
Jan 18, 2016

Fred Destin is General Partner at Accel in London where he focuses on consumer and software investments. He is the lead investor and board member at DeliverooPillpack (featured in ep: 89 with Eric Paley) and KNC. Prior to Accel, he was a partner at Atlas Venture where he worked with with companies like Zoopla (public), Secret Escapes, Integral Ad Science, Dailymotion (acquired by Orange), PriceMinister (acquired by Rakuten) and others.

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! 
 
Click To Play
 
In Today's Episode You Will Learn:

1.) How Fred made his way into the world of startups and investing?

2.) What is it like investing in rocketships like Deliveroo and PillPack?

3.) What are the reasons most startups fail at the seed stage? What are the most common reasons that founders get fired?

4.) Why does Fred believe raising a Series B so tough? Is it the embodiment of the funding barbell?

5.) What are Fred's thoughts on VC founder alignment? Why does Fred deliberately cause tension between a founder prior to making an investment? In what form does this take?

6.) When I asked Fred for topics he was interested in, he gave me a list and one of them, I have never had suggested before and it is ‘Why are VC’s so schizo’? What does Fred mean?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:
Fred's Fave Book:  Mikhail Bulgakov: The Master & Margarita
Fred's Fave Blog or Newsletter: The AtlanticTech.eu
Fred's Most Recent Investment: Deliveroo
 
As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Fred 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!

 

Jan 15, 2016

Matt Lieber is cofounder and President of Gimlet Media. In a previous life, Matt produced radio shows (On Point, Fair Game) and podcasts (Slate Culture Gabfest). He also worked as a management consultant at The Boston Consulting Group, where he focused on media and digital business. Then he chucked it all for Gimlet. He holds an MBA from MIT Sloan. 

In Today's Show You Will Learn:

1.) Matt reveals the origins of Gimlet?

2.) What were the dilemmas for Matt in raising Gimlet's round? What determinant made Matt realize raising was right? What advice would Matt give to founders who are unsure if they should raise or not?

3.) One of the main concerns with raising suggested by Alex Blumberg was that the company would feel like a totally different company, and by different ‘I mean worse’, to quote Alex. So how can a Founder maintain company culture as they grow excessively?

4.) Why did Matt decide to play it cool and not announce to VCs Gimlet were raising? Did Matt expect to get a term sheet as quickly and easily as he did? Were there any hiccups to the funding process? Were Gimlet tempted by any other offers? What value add about Tim O'Reilly made Gimlet most attracted to him?

5.) Question from Matt Hartman at Betaworks: How does Gimlet decide which new shows to create? Is it about creating new shows for an overlapping audience or to expanding audience demographics??

6.) Where does Matt see the future of podcasting going? Many do not believe in it’s potential to be a big business, what does Matt say? What are the challenges, what needs to happen to combat them?

Items Mentioned In Today's Episode:

Matt's Fave Book: Great Plains by Ian Frazier

Matt's Fave Blog: Stratechery by Ben Thompson

As always you can follow The Twenty Minute VCHarry and Matt on Twitter here!

Likewise, if you would like to see a more colourful side to Harry with many a mojito session, follow him on Instagram here!

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