Invest Like the Best with Patrick O'Shaughnessy

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Minh
 Aug 15, 2018
Densed, high speed, high quality knowledge. Thanks Patrick, for this.

Description

Exploring the ideas, methods, and stories of people that will help you better invest your time and money. Learn more and stay-up-to-date at https://joincolossus.com/

Episode Date
Ernie Garcia - Disrupting the Auto Buying Experience - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 45]
01:13:52

My guest today is Ernie Garcia, co-founder and CEO of online used car platform, Carvana. Ernie launched Carvana in 2012, and less than a decade later, the business commands a $60 billion valuation while selling a used car every other minute.

 

Our conversation covered a lot of ground. We discussed effective decision-making, what it means to be a long-term thinker, and what Ernie sees as the defining features of attractive markets. We then went deep on Carvana itself, covering the original insight, logistics operations, and counter-intuitive decisions Carvana took as they set about building the brand. I think you’ll find Ernie’s insights and energy infectious. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Carvana CEO, Ernie Garcia.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by SnackMagic. SnackMagic is the only 100% customizable snack and swag service that allows recipients to build their own snack stash. Whether you want to thank your global team, need goodie bags for your upcoming hybrid event or want to stock your office pantry, the menu of over 1,000 types of snacks and sips covers just about every preference. To learn more and get 10% off your first order with code Patrick at snackmagic.com/patrick.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2, HIPAA or ISO 27001 reports at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

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Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:10] - [First question] - Defining average decision quality and he weaves it into his business

[00:05:40] - How he would assess average decision quality in another company

[00:07:04] - What company culture means to him and building it at Carvana

[00:08:45] - Key features of a market that is desirable to step into as an entrepreneur

[00:10:06] - Various levels of complexity faced in automotive retail

[00:13:51] - Reality Has A Surprising Amount Of Detail; The genesis idea that led to Carvana

[00:17:52] - Critically new things delivered to customers when buying a used car

[00:20:43] - Dealership unit economics vs logistics platform economics and what drives gross profit per unit

[00:24:47] - What is an IRC center, the hub and spoke model, and the skeleton of Carvana

[00:28:44] - The size and scope of one of their fulfillment centers and cost savings involved

[00:30:29] - How the spoke component works and ways it will be improved over time

[00:32:39] - Defining what being a long term thinker means to him

[00:35:50] - The story behind the Carvana car vending machine

[00:39:49] - His thinking on the dual-layer nature of customer experience and communication

[00:41:59] - Mistakes and failures made while learning to become good communicators

[00:44:21] - Great companies get a lot done very fast

[00:48:56] - Infrastructure set in place to maintain their pace as they scale 

[00:51:50] - The embedded formula used for teams to communicate what they want to do

[00:52:50] - What it felt like as a leader going through the pandemic

[00:58:24] - Whether or not COVID-19 has permanently impacted the consumer landscape

[01:00:03] - Businesses, leaders, and things he’s studied that others could learn from

[01:01:55] - Surprising new things arising in the automotive and transport industries

[01:05:23] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him



Aug 05, 2021
Karen Karniol-Tambour - All Things Macro - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 237]
01:19:02

My guest today is Karen Karniol-Tambour, Partner and Co-CIO for Sustainability at Bridgewater Associates. You will quickly understand why Ray Dalio described Karen as a “vacuum cleaner of learning” - our conversation covered a variety of market themes, and Karen goes deep on each of them. We touch on inflation, monetary policy, currencies, retail investors, ESG, and how each of these levers has become more important for investors to understand. Karen has a rare skill for making complex ideas seem simple, and I love the frameworks she uses to deconstruct big, important issues. She does such a good job of explaining what’s changed, why it matters, and what to do about it. I hope you enjoy my great conversation with Karen Karniol-Tambour.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick".

 

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Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:39] - [First question] - How Bridgewater invests and the experiences that led her there

[00:06:47] - What working with Daniel Kahneman felt like and learning his perspective

[00:08:09] - An example of holding herself to accumulating and stress testing data

[00:10:17] - Important variables to consider when seeking returns in large-scale bets

[00:14:18] - What we should be thinking about in terms of inflation as we look to the future

[00:20:07] - How she thinks about inflation and how she defines it

[00:22:57] - Relevant asset classes that can protect or help diversify against inflation

[00:26:14] - What still largely confuses her about inflation and its many facets

[00:28:05] - Her philosophy and model for understanding the system of currency

[00:33:21] - How investors should think about the US dollar 

[00:35:50] - Whether or not owning an unhedged global equity index gives you currency exposure

[00:37:07] - The fundamental nature of equity markets and household balance sheets

[00:41:37] - Ways the growing wave of retail investors will impact prices and returns 

[00:43:53] - How she’s evolved her valuation approach given our new investor landscape

[00:45:43] - The good and bad roles ESG might play for investors going forward

[00:50:36] - Potential concerns around the growing trend of ESG writ large

[00:53:51] - Thoughts on the 60/40 portfolio and whether or not it’s still worth using

[00:55:32] - Designing a default diversified portfolio in light of markets today

[00:57:45] - Aspects of the global market economy today people should be talking about more

[01:01:15] - Ways she investigates a new topic and how it has evolved over time

[01:04:14] - Variables that matter in investment teams and company cultures

[01:06:53] - How she would approach cryptocurrency and what’s interesting about them

[01:09:08] - A rosey and gloomy take of what the world could look like in a decade

[01:12:37] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for her

 

Aug 03, 2021
Sebastian Mejia - Mastering On-Demand Convenience - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 44]
56:13

My guest today is Sebastian Mejia, co-founder and president of Rappi. Founded in Bogota, Colombia in 2015, Rappi set out to create an on-demand convenience store and has expanded into nine countries and over 200 cities. In our conversation, Sebastian and I discuss what differentiates Rappi from US-based delivery apps, how the company evolved early by understanding their customers’ behavior, and how the business balances growth vs. unit economics. I loved hearing Sebastian’s views of the value of brands in an increasingly app-based world, the importance of being hyper-local for any delivery-based business, and how fungibility is a key characteristic of any rewards program. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Sebastian Mejia.

 

Before we transition to the episode, I also wanted to highlight our newest series, Business Breakdowns. Each week, we do a deep dive into an individual business to understand what makes it tick. Find more information on joincolossus.com or search for and sign up to the Business Breakdowns feed on your preferred podcast player.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by Dell Technologies. When you call a Dell Technologies Advisor, they’re focused on you - ready to give advice on everything from laptops to the cloud to keep your small business ready for what’s next. Call an advisor today at 877 ASK DELL, and do more with modern devices and Windows 10 Pro.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Versett. Versett designs, builds, and scales digital platforms for some of the world's most ambitious companies. If you require a high-performance team to tackle a hard or ambiguous problem, then Versett is the firm to call. To check them out, visit versett.com/patrick

 

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Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:54] - [First question] - What the Rappi is their current scale and user base 

[00:05:30] - The early-stage problems they encountered when building their platform 

[00:08:43] - Building the initial network dynamics and unit economics of couriers  

[00:12:35] - Solving the data collection and integration needed to power Rappi 

[00:15:22] - Defining what local means  and the difference between units and zones

[00:17:33] - Other active companies that offer a similar service  

[00:18:27] - Thoughts on making money in such a diversified supply chain

[00:22:57] - The moment they realized they were starting to feel scale effects for the first time

[00:25:11] - Questions they’re asking themselves as they continue to grow

[00:28:20] - Streaming consumer goods and how they’ll change consumer behavior

[00:31:45] - Impacts on brands Rappi might have with larger user adoption

[00:34:34] - Unique attributes and opportunities in Latin American markets today

[00:38:45] - Observations of early investors and questions investors as him often

[00:40:17] - The value unlock of having a subscription model akin to Amazon prime

[00:44:47] - How crypto and blockchain technology might benefit Rappi users

[00:47:16] - His perspective on crypto in Latin America today compared to the US 

[00:48:09] - Their work in financial services

[00:47:30] - Possible reasons why Rappi might not succeed in the future

[00:50:30] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

 

Jul 29, 2021
Carl Kawaja - Wisdom from Decades of Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 236]
01:28:11

Today’s conversation is one of my all-time favorites, with someone I’ve come to respect deeply in the field of investing. My guest is Carl Kawaja, who has served as a portfolio manager at Capital Group for decades. Capital Group is among the most respected shareholders in the world, with over $2T of assets, and listening to Carl, you’ll hear why.

 

In our conversation, we cover Carl’s criteria for building conviction around long-term holdings, why he views uncertainty and ambiguity as healthy, and why tolerating failure is key to great investing career. Throughout our discussion, Carl connects his lessons through a variety of direct experiences, personal analogies, and broader frameworks. I love his ability to talk in the weeds about his investments in Vale and TSMC and then quickly shift to his broader thematic views like “The Empire Strikes Back.” I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Carl Kawaja.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Robinhood, Marqeta, Grab, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick".

 

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Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:38] - [First question] - The two companies he has owned the longest and what they’ve taught him as an investor 

[00:16:37] - Discussing his investment style through the lens of simplicity  

[00:24:35] - A time where he worked to try and create a simplified equation but couldn’t 

[00:30:59] - Discussing his investment style through the lens of echolocation and ambiguity 

[00:36:03] - Thoughts on whether buying well or holding well is more difficult

[00:40:40] - Capital Group’s history and his river-rafting analogy in regards to the company

[00:47:48] - What he means by “The Empire Strikes Back” and relevant market themes

[00:54:50] - A brief summary of “The Empire Strikes Back”

[00:58:42] - Common reasons that he may have gotten something really wrong 

[01:03:34] - Impressions made on him by the poet Rilke

[01:09:00] - The work of Brunello Cucinelli and the nature of quality 

[01:13:08] - Advice for new investors who want to step into the field and set themselves up for success

[01:13:54] - The Visual Display of Quantitative Information 

[01:17:39] - What he’s learned about kindness

[01:19:54] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him

Jul 27, 2021
Stewart Butterfield - We Don’t Sell Saddles Here - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 43]
01:06:48

My guest today is Stewart Butterfield, founder and CEO of Slack. Stewart’s 2014 essay “Why We Don’t Sell Saddles Here” had a massive impact on my own business journey, which made this discussion extra special. During our conversation, we discuss the concept of owner’s delusion, how to frame the boundaries between product and market, and the challenge of changing people’s mental models and behavior when introducing innovative products. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Stewart.

 

Before we transition to the episode, I also wanted to highlight our newest series Business Breakdowns. Each week, we do a deep dive into an individual business to understand what makes it tick. For more information go to joincolossus.com or search for and sign up to the Business Breakdowns feed on your preferred podcast player.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by Dell Technologies. When you call a Dell Technologies Advisor, they’re focused on you - ready to give advice on everything from laptops to the cloud to keep your small business ready for what’s next. Call an advisor today at 877 ASK DELL, and do more with modern devices and Windows 10 Pro.

 

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This episode is brought to you by LinkedIn Jobs. With LinkedIn, you get access to an active community of professionals with more than 722 million members worldwide. LinkedIn is the easiest place in the world to post a job and message qualified candidates. Getting started is easier than ever, and now you can do this all from your mobile device.

 

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Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:51] - [First question] - Discussing his essay We Don’t Sell Saddles Here  

[00:06:19] - Important contrast between innovation and the product

[00:06:46] - Who Do You Want Your Customers to Become? 

[00:08:07] - His thoughts on marketing from both ends and how he’s gotten better at it

[00:10:45] - What across Slack’s history has been the most successful market messaging creation strategy

[00:13:43] - The 5K contest and how it taught him about the design unlock of limitations

[00:17:44] - How limitations and constraints can power and incentivize innovation 

[00:21:21] - Why both of his attempts to build videogames ended up as consumer software

[00:27:55] - Whether or not there is still white space in digital communication software

[00:30:15] - The dynamic between effective communication and building communication tools

[00:34:02] - A future of digital-first companies and what that might look like

[00:40:15] - Leadership and Self-Deception and what self-deception means to him

[00:43:39] - Examples of self-deception he underwent that he was able to learn from

[00:46:59] - Mastery and its importance in the world of business

[00:48:59] - Why hippies and APIs may have a tighter correlation than we think 

[00:54:01] - Whether or not technology is fundamentally amoral 

[00:56:10] - Interesting and open questions about the future that remain unanswered 

[00:58:33] - His current creative outlets that he engages with the most 

[00:59:24] - Yahoo Resignation Letter and why he wrote it the way he did

[01:00:31] - Lessons for investors and builders that he’s learned from building Slack

[01:03:07] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him 

[01:04:27] - Why a philosophy primer would be beneficial for virtually everyone

Jul 22, 2021
Steve Mandel - Investing Behind Change - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 235]
01:10:23

My guest today is Steve Mandel, founder of Lone Pine Capital, one of the most successful hedge fund and investment firms of this generation. In our conversation, we discuss how the investing business has evolved since Steve’s start in the 1980s, why it’s so difficult to drive alpha by shorting stocks today versus 20 years ago, and why Steve still loves to get into the guts of a business. Steve shares his lessons through a variety of great stories, which made this such a fun experience. Please enjoy my conversation with Steve Mandel.

 

Before we transition to my interview with Steve, I’d also like to highlight the newest Colossus show, Business Breakdowns. If you like Steve’s idea of getting into the guts of a business, this is the show for you. Please find a list of our episodes at joincolossus.com and subscribe to Business Breakdowns on your preferred podcast player.

 

I hope you enjoy my conversation with Steve Mandel. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Robinhood, Marqeta, Grab, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Hall Capital Partners. Hall Capital is always looking for exceptional investment talent at any stage and size, so if you are raising capital or looking for a career change in the San Francisco or New York areas, you should check them out at hallcapital.com or e-mail at invest@hallcapital.com.

 

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Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:36] - [First question] - His first encounter with Walmart

[00:05:51] - What about Sam Walton made him worth idolizing 

[00:08:14] - The juxtaposition of business to management quality

[00:10:57] - Why a career in retail influenced the lens he sees the investing world through

[00:11:23] - What bad company culture in retail looks like

[00:12:33] - Aspects of Walmart’s culture that could be applied to other companies

[00:13:54] - Defining the core essence of retail company culture

[00:15:02] - How long it used to take for a stock to properly reflect new information

[00:16:40] - The nature of edge and what it looked like back then

[00:21:09] - Investing behind change and assessing trends

[00:23:06] - Scars and stories from just how vicious short markets can be

[00:26:32] - Thoughts on building an enduring firm and how it’s evolved over time 

[00:32:14] - The process and decision to remove himself from the day-to-day operations

[00:33:55] - Lessons learned over time about what separates good from bad analysts

[00:34:42] - Where to start looking when getting into the guts of a business

[00:36:31] - What is most exciting when you’re inside the guts  

[00:39:19] - Interesting aspects about payments today writ large

[00:42:15] - Broad trends around change in consumer trends 

[00:43:02] - How he views software businesses looking forward as an investor

[00:45:14] - Great managers and their emphasis on analyzing their competitive advantage

[00:48:02] - Ways that pace as a variable has changed in importance

[00:49:27] - What he thinks we’ll look back on as silly in how markets currently operate

[00:50:33] - Whether or not all markets becoming 24/7 will be a good thing

[00:51:59] - Big iconic business stories that newcomers should study

[00:56:06] - Whether or not business building is an art form

[00:57:38] - Key levers that typically always matter for a business

[00:59:53] - Other major aspects of the world that are important to consider

[01:01:13] - How his personal motivations morphed over the years and what has changed

[01:02:55] - Valuable lessons learned about the inputs and outputs of education

[01:04:15] - Advice for would-be future investment analysts

[01:05:46] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jul 20, 2021
Spenser Skates - Challenging Big Ideas - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 42]
58:16

My guest today is Spenser Skates, CEO and co-founder of Amplitude Analytics. Spenser founded Amplitude in 2012 with a thesis that building the best product requires, deep cross-functional understanding of customer behavior. During our conversation, we discuss Spenser’s long history in programming and how his early experiences tie into his work today. We also explore the nuances of equity compensation, how different VCs can play a role in the success of a startup, and Spenser’s desire to see more direct listings vs. IPOs. While many founders follow the path of others, it is clear Spenser takes time to challenge the status quo.

 

Before we transition to the episode, I wanted to highlight our newest series, Business Breakdowns. In this episode, you will hear how Spenser’s team worked with the meditation app, Calm, to optimize for customer growth. It was particularly interesting to hear this story after listening to the Calm breakdown. Find episodes of Business Breakdowns on your preferred podcast provider or on joincolossus.com

 

I hope you enjoy my conversation with Spenser Skates.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to by Dell Technologies. Upgrade your business during Dell Technologies’ Black Friday in July event. Get savings up to 50% off AND take your office with you with Windows 10 Pro. To learn more, call a Dell Technologies Advisor at 877-ASK-DELL or check out the deals at https://www.dell.com/en-us/work/shop/deals.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2, HIPAA or ISO 27001 reports at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

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Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:15] - [First question] - How he won the Battlecode tournament at MIT twice

[00:06:43] - A few key insights that helped him win the tournaments

[00:08:34] - Lessons learned at MIT and the road to starting Amplitude

[00:13:57] - A typical customer experience when using Amplitude 

[00:17:17] - How their platform extrapolates key data points in user data that others don’t

[00:19:03] - His most productive mistakes made while building the company 

[00:21:10] - The strange history of equity and his thoughts on how it should be used 

[00:28:08] - The recent changes in the vesting schedule for newly issued equity 

[00:29:59] - Lessons learned from working with some of the best investors out there

[00:36:20] - His thoughts on the IPO process and going public writ large

[00:41:04] - The role the SEC plays and his perspective on SPACs 

[00:44:01] - Differences in direct listings compared to traditional IPOs 

[00:48:36] - His thoughts on dual-class structures and corporate governance 

[00:50:11] - Hopes for Amplitude as he looks five years into the future

[00:52:03] - The potential value unlock of smart software for end-users  

[00:55:08] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him

Jul 15, 2021
David Sacks - How to Operate a SaaS Startup - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 234]
01:01:33

My guest today is David Sacks, General Partner at Craft Ventures and founding COO of PayPal. During our conversation, we explore what differentiates Enterprise SaaS from DTC subscriptions, what makes for a magical product launch event, and what key growth metrics David uses to measure success. David has written extensively on his idea of operating cadence, and we explore how that applies to the various functions within an organization. As time goes on, I am more and more impressed at the talent that existed within the original PayPal mafia, and I couldn’t help but ask David to highlight the superpowers for a few of his early partners. This was an incredibly informative conversation with fun threads throughout. Please enjoy my conversation with David Sacks.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Robinhood, Marqeta, Grab, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick".

 

------

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:30] - [First question] - Defining what it means when a company can explode

[00:05:39] - What it would look like if a company didn’t have what it takes to explode

[00:06:17] - Key factors that make for a strong product hook

[00:08:51] - Whether or not there has been a divergence at the early stage of B2B investing compared to B2C

[00:11:36] - Reasons why products that make people collaborate are always stronger

[00:14:14] - Nuances between team subscriptions and team product use

[00:15:37] - Describing the burn multiple metric and how it can be applied to companies

[00:18:18] - The gross margin problem and issues for businesses in this area writ large

[00:22:34] - Common practices amongst sales programs that have and haven’t worked

[00:24:22] - What about new founders makes him most excited

[00:25:58] - Explaining cadence and why he groups product and marketing as one bucket and sales and finance as another

[00:30:44] - The anatomy of a great product launch 

[00:32:17] - Ways in which external dependencies can be landmines for growing companies

[00:34:06] - Whether or not he’s willingness to invest in a business with regulatory variables

[00:36:59] - What he’s seen in company culture that breaks a company as they scale

[00:39:55] - Things a founder actually does in order to reign in and tame their culture

[00:42:08] - Unique traits of founders who are both investors and operators

[00:44:12] - Peter Thiel’s superpower 

[00:44:57] - Max Levchin’s superpower

[00:45:38] - Elon Musk’s superpower

[00:46:07] - Roelof Botha’s superpower

[00:47:15] - Reid Hoffman’s superpower 

[00:47:43] - Keith Rabois’ superpower 

[00:48:41] - What zones of change in the world have his attention writ large

[00:51:43] - Why teams want to be pushed and how we can apply that to business

[00:55:25] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jul 13, 2021
David Vélez - Building the Branchless Bank - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 41]
56:44

My guest today is David Vélez, founder and CEO of Nubank, the world’s largest digital bank with over 40 million customers. In our conversation, David talks about his venture capital background at Sequoia and how that led him down an entrepreneurial path in Latin America. We also talk about the pros and cons of building a digitally native business and what gets him most excited about innovation and technology in emerging markets.

 

Before we start the episode, I would also like to highlight our newest Colossus show, Business Breakdowns. Since launching in early April, we have published over 15 Breakdowns and continue to release a new episode weekly. To learn more, check out joincolossus.com. I hope you enjoy my conversation with David Vélez.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to by Dell Technologies. Dell Technologies and Windows can help you upgrade your business tech with its Small Business Month specials. Save up to 45% on PCs with Windows 10 Pro— plus business docks, monitors & more. To learn more, call a Dell Technologies Advisor at 877-ASK-DELL or check out the deals at https://www.dell.com/en-us/work/shop/deals

 

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This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2, HIPAA or ISO 27001 reports at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:55] - [First question] - Why Berkshire Hathaway took such an interest in Nubank

[00:04:46] - Key differentiators between Nubank and other incumbent banks

[00:07:11] - Onboarding user experience and overview of customer acquisition

[00:10:38] - The original problem Nubank wanted to solve and how they approached it

[00:15:32] - Lessons from working at Sequoia about great FinTech businesses

[00:19:18] - What parts of his personality and life experience worked its way into NuBank

[00:23:18] - Obstacles that needed to be overcome in order to serve the Brazilian public

[00:27:52] - Transparency and patience needed to overcome a complicated problem

[00:31:11] - Nubank’s business economics compared to other banks

[00:34:46] - Overview of rewards programs and why customers like them so much

[00:37:27] - Best questions asked that explained Nubank’s market opportunity

[00:42:02] - Second layer unit economics of the company and where to look for them

[00:45:51] - How far we are into the Latin American technological ecosystem’s development

[00:47:24] - Lessons learned from some of the worst decisions he’s made as a founder

[00:51:30] - What he’s most excited about for the future

[00:54:19] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jul 08, 2021
Balaji Srinivasan - Optimizing Your Inputs - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 233]
01:45:32

My guest today is Balaji Srinivasan, a serial entrepreneur and angel investor. Balaji is known to challenge conventional wisdom, and he lives up to his reputation in this conversation. We discuss a wide variety of topics, including advancements in health tracking, ways to evaluate your own information diet, and how technology is driving decentralization and what that could mean for countries, corporations, and individuals.

 

Before we transition to the episode, if you enjoy this conversation with Balaji, I’d recommend the Ethereum episode on our newest show, Business Breakdowns. You can find that episode and more on your favorite podcast player or at joincolossus.com. Please enjoy my conversation with Balaji Srinivasan.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Marqeta, Oatly, Grab, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick".

 

------

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:30] - [First question] - Thoughts on information diets and how they influence individuals

[00:21:37] - Ways to optimize your diet by reading the source material and consuming less news

[00:26:40] - Understanding the informational supply chain and tracing data back to the origin

[00:41:07] - Modern cities, the nature of a group of individuals, and what sovereignty may mean in the coming years

[00:53:52] - Key ingredients and main components needed for a successful startup city

[01:11:35] - Social impacts from everyone becoming an investor and how it ties into everything

[01:25:49] - Recommendations and a personal prescription for longevity, health, and wealth

[01:37:32] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jul 06, 2021
Michael Mayer - Business Boss Battles - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 40]
01:01:49

My guest today Michael Mayer, is the founder and CEO of Bottomless, a company that automatically replenishes your coffee supply where I am both an excited investor and customer. Today’s conversation is about tactical lessons Michael has learned while building the business. We talk about identifying an addressable problem, how to avoid solving for bottlenecks that don’t yet exist, and how to iterate through problems before scaling. As yet another example of a self-taught entrepreneur, it’s inspiring to hear Michael’s mindset for problem-solving. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Michael Mayer. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

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This episode is brought to by Dell Technologies. Upgrade your business during Dell Technologies’ Black Friday in July event. Get savings up to 50% off AND take your office with you with Windows 10 Pro. To learn more, call a Dell Technologies Advisor at 877-ASK-DELL or check out the deals at https://www.dell.com/en-us/work/shop/deals.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2, HIPAA, or ISO 27001 reports at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:45] - [First question] - How he got into this space in the first place and found the problem Bottomless would eventually solve

[00:08:43] - What he would do better the second time if he had to find a problem and narrow his focus all over again

[00:09:49] - The most notable lessons learned about data legibility beyond the scale

[00:10:15] - Seeing like a State: How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed

[00:13:01] - Overview of building the first Bottomless hardware prototype 

[00:14:29] - First steps of physically assembling the first scale and learning fabrication

[00:17:40] - Roughly how long it would take to build scales in the beginning

[00:18:30] - How long the company was bootstrapped 

[00:20:41] - Making the pivot to seeking out investor support

[00:29:03] - The often overlooked role of social capital as a startup founder

[00:31:00] - Importance of following niches and passions

[00:32:15] - His philosophy in successfully scaling the production side of the company

[00:34:45] - Lessons learned from bottlenecks and their utility in founder growth

[00:36:52] - The problem of supplier legibility and improving it

[00:40:14] - Understanding USPS predictability as a product input

[00:43:03] - Always problems to solve and the fractal nature of them

[00:46:13] - Challenges of hiring staff in the tech space

[00:50:15] - Lessons learned about personal bottlenecks and the need to evolve alongside your company

[00:52:21] - Monitoring your informational inputs and their role in shaping your mindset

[00:55:58] - Closing thoughts on the business boss battles founders face

[00:57:38] - Why society writ large should perceive starting a company as status-enhancing

[00:59:44] - What bottlenecks for Bottomless may present themselves in a year from now

 

Jul 01, 2021
Marc Andreessen - Making the Future - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 232]
01:19:42

My guest today is Silicon Valley icon, Marc Andreessen. Before co-founding the legendary venture capital firm, Andreessen Horowitz, Marc was an early pioneer of the internet. At age 22, he built Mosaic, the first widely adopted web browser and the technology that underpinned Netscape Communications. Marc was an early proponent of cloud computing, social networks, and the software business model. In each case, Marc seemed to be well ahead of the crowd. During our conversation, we explore how software is making the world better, how slow sectors like education, healthcare, and housing are eating the economy, and Marc’s vision of the future for A16Z. Please enjoy my conversation with Marc Andreessen.

 

Before we transition to the episode, I wanted to highlight our newest series, Business Breakdowns. Each week we do a deep dive into an individual business to understand what makes it great. Find more information on joincolossus.com or search for and sign up to the Business Breakdowns feed on your preferred podcast player.                                        

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

------

 

This episode is brought to you by Paxos. Paxos offers your customers crypto buying, selling, transferring, and more with easy to integrate APIs. Whether you’re a small fintech or a large financial institution, Paxos takes care of everything in the backend – from licensing and compliance to custody and exchange. You can start offering crypto to your customers within months. To learn more, visit paxos.com/patrick.

 

------

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:04:10] - [First question] The ways in which software is eating the world

[00:06:25] - The power of transitioning from atoms to bits and its impacts

[00:09:57] - Potential downsides and credible concerns as we shift into an automated world 

[00:16:00] - Major impediments of productive growth over the coming decades  

[00:23:12] - Real change versus false change due to COVID-19 writ large 

[00:30:06] - Thoughts on the rising cost of post-secondary education in light of the internet

[00:37:03] - Why doesn’t Google have their own university and if they might in the future

[00:41:30] - Whether or not an entrepreneurial focus on generally slower sectors may produce excess returns

[00:44:17] - Thoughts on hardware, its unit economics, and its role in shaping society

[00:47:52] - How to think about investing in immensely complicated, large-scale projects

[00:54:10] - What they’re building at A16Z, a new crypto fund, and where their sights are set

[01:03:09] - East coast investing styles and things we can borrow from them

[01:06:01] - Potential plans to step into the public equity space 

[01:11:09] - Defining why it’s time to build and the imperative it sets

[01:15:13] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jun 29, 2021
Will Ahmed - Optimizing Human Performance – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 39]
01:11:26

My guest today is Will Ahmed, founder of fitness wearable company WHOOP. What started as a business plan in 2011 has evolved into the 24/7 health-tracking device you’ll often see on athletes across professional sports. During our conversation, Will and I discuss how his own backstory ties into the founding of WHOOP, the key design decisions they made in the ultra-competitive wearables market, and how the company grew slowly before inflecting in recent years. Will shares awesome details on health tracking and what it might look like in the future as a preventative tool rather than simply a tracking tool. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Will Ahmed.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for e-commerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience.

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad, to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

 

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:45] - [First question] - The founding story of WHOOP

[00:05:45] - Narrowing in on the problem to focus on solving 

[00:08:58] - Overview of analyzing and quantifying recovery, strain, and sleep

[00:15:52] - Downsizing the problem set to deliver an affordable solution

[00:18:48] - What he’s learned about hardware product road mapping

[00:21:43] - How many people wear their WHOOP all-day

[00:22:05] - Early lessons from taking their wearable tech product to market

[00:26:25] - Ways in which they landed their first high-profile athletic brand ambassadors

[00:27:55] - Interesting methods that proved successful in their marketing tactics

[00:32:06] - Observations of making the switch to a subscription service

[00:34:00] - Why big apparel companies failed where WHOOP didn’t

[00:35:20] - Changes in behavior from users who learn about their habits using WHOOP

[00:40:18] - His philosophy on business partnerships and how he developed it

[00:44:56] - How he ended up with a paddle from the Navy Seals

[00:47:13] - Ways WHOOP stays ahead and upcoming trends in the wearable tech space

[00:50:13] - Data beyond HRV that will become more accessible and affordable to track 

[00:51:09] - The extent that data and software relative to hardware are a key part of WHOOP

[00:53:06] - Lessons learned about effective leadership on a personal level

[00:56:13] - Notable differences in his leadership style from then compared to now

[00:57:34] - Thoughts about business defensibility in such a competitive space

[00:59:44] - Reasons behind why WHOOP products don’t have a screen

[01:02:13] - Valuable lessons for other entrepreneurs when studying WHOOP’s story

[01:05:03] - Systems in place that allow for their speed and pace of growth

[01:06:31] - What makes a day of work fun for him

[01:08:39] - Why we shouldn’t measure our steps

[01:10:01] - What is the kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jun 24, 2021
Howard Marks - Embracing the Psychology of Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 231]
58:10

My guest today is Howard Marks, co-founder of Oaktree Capital, a leading investment manager, and one of the world’s largest distressed debt investors. In our conversation, we discuss takeaways from the market selloff and rapid recovery in 2020, the importance of assessing both quantitative and qualitative factors in markets, and the benefits Howard has realized from a career of writing. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Howard Marks. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

------

 

This episode is brought to you by Paxos. Paxos offers your customers crypto buying, selling, transferring, and more with easy to integrate APIs. Whether you’re a small fintech or a large financial institution, Paxos takes care of everything in the backend – from licensing and compliance to custody and exchange. You can start offering crypto to your customers within months. To learn more, visit paxos.com/patrick.

 

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:40] - [First question] - Ideas he has that he feels will stand the test of time

[00:04:39] - Defining the difference between risk and uncertainty and a frame of mind to have around uncertainty as an investor

[00:05:31] - Equity and debt investing as the businesses of what could go right or wrong

[00:07:01] - How exciting equity up runs can lead to analytical blindspots

[00:09:10] - Ways in which the last 18 months stacked up against his market experience

[00:11:57] - Ways we can change our model of the world going forward to avoid a crisis

[00:15:04] - Why psychology is important to consider over data during market extremes

[00:17:46] - Reflections and lessons from discussing the concept of value with his son

[00:27:33] - Spirited disagreements he and his son continue to have about markets

[00:31:46] - What he’s learned about writing well and the utility of doing so

[00:40:39] - Lessons that are better experienced in investing than reading about them

[00:43:35] - Daring to be great and the willingness to be wrong, alone or different

[00:50:24] - Embracing mystery and the joys it can bring

[00:53:28] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jun 22, 2021
Christina Cacioppo - Building the New Standard in Security – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 38]
01:03:46

My guest today is Christina Cacioppo, founder of Vanta, a security and compliance software business founded in 2017. In our conversation, Christina brings to life the idea of “finding a problem that exists and fixing it.” We dive into the experiences that led her to launch Vanta, the strategy she took to build, price, and distribute the product, and we touch on her lessons from running a growing organization. I always admire the drive that founders have when they set off to build something -- Christina fits that mold, and you will hear about how she embarked on a self-taught journey early in her career. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Christina.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for e-commerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience.

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad, to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:44] - [First question] - How she first found her interest in business

[00:04:09] - Early days exploring business for the first time

[00:07:09] - Lessons learned from USV that have been applied to Vanta

[00:07:42] - The next stage of her learning journey after USV

[00:09:20] - Making a massive pivot in life and teaching herself to code

[00:10:53] - The four-year road that lead to building Vanta

[00:12:39] - First encounters with the software security problem space

[00:15:21] - Origins of SOC 2, what it means, and what it does

[00:17:11] - What software security means writ large

[00:19:32] - Who demands a SOC 2 and why

[00:20:57] - How Vanta improved a broken process and productized it

[00:23:33] - What V1 of Vanta looked like

[00:26:30] - Understanding the value of using spreadsheets first

[00:27:48] - From static to streaming and finding product-market fit

[00:29:22] - Monitoring whether or not a company is SOC 2 compliant in real-time

[00:32:19] - Auditors that still exist in the compliance space today

[00:33:39] - The pace of onboarding new clients onto the Vanta software 

[00:34:53] - Figuring out a price point for the service Vanta offers

[00:37:06] - Developing the business model and scaling it

[00:39:18] - Lessons learned and innovations created about effective sales organization

[00:41:52] - Hardest hills to climb in building Vanta

[00:43:17] - Building competitive advantage into the framework of the business

[00:46:07] - Overview of the frontier of software security

[00:47:43] - General thoughts on competitive advantage as a whole

[00:49:43] - Quality control of decision making in Vanta

[00:50:40] - Downstream effects of structural and organizational business design

[00:52:30] - Hard lessons learned going from being academic to pragmatic

[00:53:36] - What the future could look like for Vanta based on its current trajectory

[00:54:26] - What her information diet consists of lately 

[00:55:27] - Areas she’s interested in currently but learning more than being proficient 

[00:56:59] - Ways in which she’s become a better leader

[00:57:46] - Unique factors about what makes Vanta tick

[00:58:45] - Negative advice to would-be founders out there

[01:00:22] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for her

[01:02:44] - Major insights learned from living in Rwanda, Thailand, and Uganda

 

Jun 17, 2021
John Harris - Resilience and Imagination - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 230]
59:40

My guest today is John Harris, Managing Partner of Ruane, Cunniff & Goldfarb, where the flagship Sequoia Fund has an incredible 50-year track record running a highly concentrated portfolio of equities. In our conversation, we cover John’s approach to finding businesses that can be owned for the long-term, what goes into their diligence process, and the importance of resilience for investors. I think many of the stock pickers will enjoy many of the points on good management, good businesses, and using imagination. I hope you enjoy my conversation with John.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

------

This episode is brought to you by Paxos. Paxos offers your customers crypto buying, selling, transferring, and more with easy to integrate APIs. Whether you’re a small fintech or a large financial institution, Paxos takes care of everything in the backend – from licensing and compliance to custody and exchange. You can start offering crypto to your customers within months. To learn more, visit paxos.com/patrick.

 

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:48] - [First question] - How markets undervalue long-duration growth of companies

[00:07:21] - Why should one even do DCFs at all

[00:10:01] - Defining homework when studying a business and what getting better as you do your homework tends to look like

[00:12:24] - How the market still underestimates how the quality of a company reduces risk

[00:15:09] - Reinvestment opportunity and risk and why they’re important for long term returns

[00:17:14] - Lessons learned owning Google stock options for over a decade

[00:22:02] - Skill versus luck when it comes to investing psychology

[00:24:32] - Perspectives on big market cap companies in a portfolio when success often comes from smaller-cap non-linear growth 

[00:26:47] - Features of the current market landscape that he finds interesting

[00:31:24] - What buying behavior looks like in the demand side of the business equation

[00:34:10] - Discovering a company that served the customer and was a delight to discover

[00:37:58] - Analysing getting one's hands dirty to get a competitive advantage in serving the customer

[00:39:24] - The hardest episode of his investing career and what he learned from it

[00:43:03] - Reasons why a company succeeded after doing a deep dive but not buying in

[00:43:54] - One of the CEOs he finds most remarkable

[00:47:20] - Examples of businesses where scale isn’t the driver of competitive advantage

[00:49:50] - A company they owned that did well but didn’t have the strongest company culture

[00:50:56] - His view on the investment industry today writ large

[00:52:16] - Ways investors could expand their imagination when analyzing businesses

[00:53:07] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Jun 15, 2021
Florian Hagenbuch and Mate Pencz - Everything Will Be Bought Online – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 37]
57:02

My guests today are Florian Hagenbuch and Mate Pencz, co-founders of Loft. Based in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Loft is a digital platform designed to bring Latin American real estate into the e-commerce age. The 3-year-old startup scaled to over $150mm in annualized revenue in 2020 and is on track for multiples higher this year. We dive into the market opportunity in Brazilian real estate and how that differs from the US market, the value proposition for iBuying across the US and Latin America ecosystems, and touch on the potential for Loft to expand from real estate into adjacent services such as mortgages. Florian and Mate are second-time founders and have some great lessons shared throughout the episode. Please enjoy my conversation with Florian and Mate.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for e-commerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience.

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad, to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:52] - [First question] - Why Latin America currently presents such a unique opportunity for modern technology companies

[00:04:38] - What the market looked like when they started Loft

[00:07:20] - How they approached gathering data that wasn’t available or accessible in order to develop the company infrastructure

[00:09:39] - How the process of buying a home used to be in São Paulo versus today

[00:12:19] - What Loft’s hard work unlocks for consumers and home buyers

[00:14:06] - What iBuying feels like writ large and more specifically in real estate

[00:18:07] - Analysis of an iBuying real estate transaction from start to finish

[00:20:09] - The role machine learning plays in property valuation and building that feature  

[00:22:50] - Defining their business model and being a fulfillment center aggregator 

[00:24:47] - Notable characteristics of the iBuying market in the United States 

[00:27:00] - How they think about the competitive advantage extensions of Loft 

[00:29:53] - Exciting opportunities for the FinTech broadly in Latin America 

[00:32:47] - Deciding on what it is they want to tackle next as they grow the company 

[00:34:13] - Thinking about the value proposition to customers and how they market it 

[00:35:50] - Lessons learned about building businesses early on that were applied to Loft

[00:40:12] - What led them to finding their early product-market fit 

[00:42:48] - Calibrating and defining their ambitions for Loft out of the gate 

[00:45:05] - Important and interesting trends in the business world today writ large 

[00:48:43] - Further lessons and key challenges around building and scaling Loft 

[00:52:24] - The kindest things that anyone has ever done for them

Jun 10, 2021
Gabriel Leydon - Designing Digital Economies - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 229]
01:17:46

My guest is Gabe Leydon, who is the co-founder and former CEO of MZ, also known as Machine Zone, the company behind huge games such as Mobile Strike and Game of War. Gabe has spent the last 20 years designing video games and is one of the most original thinkers I have talked to in a long time. In our conversation, we cover why great design can be a bad sign that we’d run out of ways to innovate, the most important lessons from human psychology for building games and products, and why products which are busted or breaking but still booming can be great investment opportunities. This conversation rewired my brain on many levels, so I’m excited for you to listen. Take the red pill with us, and please enjoy my conversation with Gabe Leydon.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

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This episode is brought to you by Paxos. Paxos offers your customers crypto buying, selling, transferring, and more with easy to integrate APIs. Whether you’re a small fintech or a large financial institution, Paxos takes care of everything in the backend – from licensing and compliance to custody and exchange. You can start offering crypto to your customers within months. To learn more, visit paxos.com/patrick.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:59] - [First question] - Thoughts on the importance of design and the role it plays in capitalism writ large

[00:07:26] - Huxley’s vision of the future versus Orwell’s - Amusing Ourselves to Death

[00:10:49] - A question about game design in interviews that no one can answer well

[00:18:27] - What about his early experiences that allowed him to be good at answering that question when others could not

[00:26:35] - Another example to further explain the nature of meta software design mechanics

[00:29:44] - Characteristics of what drives players to spend money in games

[00:34:46] - Defining heroic spending and the group dynamics of spending gamification

[00:38:18] - Skill set required to design an economy and what makes it so difficult

[00:41:27] - Cosmetic purchases as a revenue stream in North American video games

[00:43:56] - What he’s learned about human psychology through his design work

[00:45:48] - How the technological infrastructure developed in building video games overlap in performance marketing

[00:48:44] - His experience with the RT platform and some of the technologies he’s built

[00:55:49] - Celebrity NFTs and a shift to becoming virtual manufacturers in the future

[00:59:58] - What businesses can do now to prepare for and adapt to NFTs

[01:01:03] - Why we need AI more than think we might

[01:04:32] - What he plans to do with his skillset if the world becomes increasingly gamified

[01:05:40] - Companies with poor design may be indicative of an attractive acquisition

[01:08:11] - How differing cultural perspectives on video game design permeate into NFTs

[01:08:46] - Defining the Chinese item box approach to in-game player rewards

[01:11:24] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him

Jun 08, 2021
Assaf Wand - Innovation in Static Industries – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 36]
57:46

My guest today is Assaf Wand, CEO, and co-founder of Hippo, a homeowner insurance startup founded in 2015. In March 2021, Hippo announced a SPAC merger, valuing the business at over $5bn. In our discussion, we cover how Hippo approached innovation in the highly regulated insurance industry, unique strategies for building brand trust, and how direct relationships with homeowners has opened up Hippo's business model to a wide range of opportunities. I was excited to speak with Assaf, given his experience as a serial entrepreneur, and he did not disappoint. Please enjoy my conversation with Assaf Wand.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for e-commerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience.

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad, to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:44] - [First question] - His philosophy on business

[00:04:04] - His first experience in entrepreneurship

[00:05:03] - Lawyers vs entrepreneurs

[00:07:03] - Major lessons taking risk in entrepreneurship

[00:11:14] - Importance of speed in business

[00:15:02] - Increasing urgency into the business as a leader

[00:18:59] - What the insurance sector was like at the start of Hippo

[00:24:49] - Steps he took to bootstrap trust

[00:27:03] - Convincing partners

[00:29:04] - Building the products and distribution

[00:32:49] - Thoughts on innovators dilemma

[00:35:00] - Flaws within the insurance industry

[00:34:57] - Vision for the firm 

[00:37:44] - Importance of culture in company building

[00:41:19] - Storytelling as an essential piece of company building

[00:41:50] - Building and managing a roadmap

[00:43:19] - What does it mean to respect the customer

[00:46:11] - Defensibility of the insurance industry

[00:49:34] - Rewards of the trench warfare of entrepreneurship

[00:53:33] - The feeling of getting wealthy 

[00:55:29] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Jun 03, 2021
Dennis Lynch - Delivering Alpha in Adapting Markets - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 228]
01:10:59

My guest today is Dennis Lynch, Head of Counterpoint Global, where he oversees over $100bn in AUM and boasts one of the strongest track records of any public investor. In our conversation, we cover Dennis's unique approach to building a research team, how misclassification of companies often creates the highest upside opportunities, and how Dennis has adapted his investment process over the past 20 years. I think Dennis defines what it means to be intellectually honest, and you will hear that in his answers throughout our discussion. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Dennis Lynch.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

 

(for me-  )

 

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

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This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company (MITIMCo), the endowment office of MIT. MITIMCo seeks to find people who are focused on achieving exceptional long-term investment returns, partner with these firms early, and stick around for the very long term.

 

MITIMCo is also searching for an exceptional new teammate to join their internal investment team. Visit mitimco.org to learn more – click “Join” to learn more about the Global Investor Role on MITIMCo’s team or and click “Emerging Managers” to learn more about their emerging manager activities.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:47] - [First question] - How he would teach potential students to be investors

[00:04:26] - The Money Game

[00:04:40] - Moneyball

[00:05:59] - Pros and cons of volatility when investing

[00:08:55] - Emotional response to volatility

[00:12:44] - Training to have a better temperament

[00:14:20] - What is his investing game

[00:15:17] - The Ethical Algorithm

[00:16:44] - How time horizon impacts their investment strategy

[00:20:53] - Assessing a company’s earnings power

[00:26:12] - Shifting business models vs. evolving within a business model

[00:32:32] - Understanding how to invest in disruptive businesses

[00:35:26] - Why he’s skeptical on Growth and Value investing strategies

[00:38:42] - Expectations Investing

[00:38:55] - How his view of assessing businesses has changed

[00:43:56] - Defining unit economics

[00:45:41] - Taking on uncertainty risk in the portfolio 

[00:50:38] - The business that taught him the most; Amazon

[00:53:32] - Dealing with massive amounts of change

[00:56:01] - The Big Short

[00:59:46] - Interest in psychedelic research

[01:01:02] - What has changed the most in investing from when he started

[01:04:19] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Jun 01, 2021
Henrique Dubugras - Building the Financial Center of Gravity – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 35]
01:00:25

My guest today is Henrique Dubugras, co-founder and CEO of Brex, an all-in-one finance account for businesses. Brex recently raised funding at a valuation of over 7 billion dollars despite being founded only four years ago. In our conversation, we cover Brex’s transition from a credit card for start-ups to the central account for businesses, why building that central account was orders of magnitude more difficult than expected, and the difference between building a business in Brazil and the US. We also discussed Henrique’s term horizon for building Brex and how that impacts his decision-making for the business. Please enjoy my conversation with Henrique Dubugras.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to by Dell Technologies. Dell Technologies and Windows can help you upgrade your business tech with its Small Business Month specials. Save up to 45% on PCs with Windows 10 Pro— plus business docks, monitors & more. To learn more, call a Dell Technologies Advisor at 877-ASK-DELL or check out the deals at dell.com/en-us/work/shop/deals.

 

-----

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

 

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:53] - [First question] - The state of the B2B financial world before Brex

[00:06:29] - How such a high margin space was generally underserved

[00:08:24] - What the first version of the Brex card looked like

[00:10:48] - How long it took to build and launch their infrastructure

[00:11:13] - Why market penetration is so low for cards in B2B businesses

[00:13:14] - How he thinks about this landscape in Brazil versus the US

[00:14:55] - What interchange and high margins allows him to pass on to the consumer

[00:16:23] - Brex’s first revenue event

[00:17:38] - What the biggest hurdle was to overcome when they launched

[00:19:02] - Key marketing strategy early on and what made it successful

[00:21:16] - Continued distribution lessons they learned from their initial success

[00:22:39] - Building an effective sales force to push their product

[00:24:41] - What makes the current landscape so fertile for fintech businesses

[00:27:12] - Analysis of their unique funding round dynamics

[00:28:42] - Their second product and the insight that lead to that decision

[00:31:05] - Darkest moments while trying to build their central account

[00:31:50] - What their central account allows them to facilitate writ large

[00:35:27] - Notable differences between entrepreneurship in Brazil versus the US

[00:38:55] - Observations on inefficiencies in the US startup space

[00:40:16] - Pros, cons, and costs of being largely remote

[00:41:50] - Keys to building a successful hiring pipeline

[00:44:05] - Lessons learned about decision making and optimization

[00:45:39] - Developing an effective skill set to convince other people of anything

[00:47:35] - What excites him about being a part of Brex lately

[00:49:13] - What excites him about the future in general

[00:50:39] - His business philosophy and the set of principles that guide him 

[00:52:03] - Nuances that make focusing on a single problem so attractive

[00:53:51] - Long term infrastructure decisions that will pay off in the end

[00:55:12] - Thoughts and hi perspective on cash flow in general

[00:58:18] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

May 27, 2021
Justin Fishner-Wolfson - Secondary Investing in Private Markets - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 227]
01:07:07

My guest today is Justin Fishner-Wolfson, founder of 137 Ventures, a venture capital fund focused on providing liquidity solutions to founders, investors, and employees of private businesses. In our conversation, we discuss what early career experiences led Justin to start 137 Ventures, the counter-intuitive information asymmetry between public and private markets, and the interesting trend of digitization in the physical world. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Justin.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

 

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

------

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:47] - [First question] - Why he started 137 Ventures and what’s unique about it

[00:05:31] - Overview of secondary equity markets in the tech sector

[00:07:06] - Step by step process of how a secondary market investment works

[00:09:37] - Scale of secondary transactions in markets today

[00:10:19] - Valuations of secondary transaction rounds versus primary ones

[00:11:37] - Defining great in private market investments and the competitive landscape

[00:13:13] - Why there seems to be more information available in private markets

[00:16:23] - How better capital allocation may result from less asymmetry

[00:19:14] - What excites him about companies when meeting them for the first time

[00:20:34] - Example of applying his philosophy of investing in a defensible business

[00:22:20] - Counter positioning and inversion models to gain an advantage

[00:24:17] - Lessons learned from Palantir about unlikely competitive advantage 

[00:25:57] - Building good businesses when selling them to the government

[00:26:59] - What technology means in the current era

[00:28:34] - Methods for evaluating potential sources of defensibility and a lack thereof

[00:30:30] - Considering focus and expansion when scaling

[00:32:52] - Shared qualities of entrepreneurs who build these types of businesses

[00:33:50] - The business that individually taught him the most writ large

[00:35:01] - Defensabilities that might appear beyond the seven powers framework

[00:36:21] - Thoughts on what seems to be craziest in the world today

[00:37:15] - What’s surprising on the low end of the valuation side

[00:38:11] - Interesting business models and ones he’s averse to 

[00:40:31] - Constructing a portfolio with companies that have a customer focus

[00:41:21] - Additional companies in their portfolio that aren’t of a similar model 

[00:42:08] - Lessons learned from SpaceX’s growth

[00:44:46] - Watching a SpaceX launch in person

[00:46:03] - Advice for entrepreneurs when seeking capital and capital partners

[00:48:04] - Investors he finds most impressive that he knows well

[00:49:26] - Defining the cost of capital and what it means to him as a venture investor

[00:50:56] - Is giving entrepreneurs too much money dangerous?

[00:54:14] - What great capital allocation looks like to him

[00:55:29] - Accelerating learning curves with tighter feedback loops

[00:55:57] - Useful metrics for customer acquisition and retention

[00:57:06] - Whether or not investing firms can and should behave defensibly

[00:59:13] - What is going in the world that has his attention lately

[01:02:06] - Key factors that have allowed him and his firm to succeed

[01:03:47] - What he thinks about when his mind isn’t focused on investing

[01:04:08] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

 

May 25, 2021
Peter Reinhardt - Learning How to Sell – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 34]
01:02:27

My guest today is Peter Reinhardt, co-founder and CEO of Segment, the market-leading data customer data platform that was acquired by Twilio last year. In our conversation, we cover the fascinating journey of Segment from an education feedback tool to the business it is today, Peter’s sales philosophy on meeting the customer where they are and not where you think they should be, and why revenue operations, or RevOps, is underrated for any business. This was an incredibly honest conversation on company building that any builder can learn a lot from. Please enjoy my conversation with Peter Reinhardt.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to by Dell Technologies. Dell Technologies and Windows can help you upgrade your business tech with its Small Business Month specials. Save up to 45% on PCs with Windows 10 Pro— plus business docks, monitors & more. To learn more, call a Dell Technologies Advisor at 877-ASK-DELL or check out the deals at dell.com/en-us/work/shop/deals.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:47] - [First question] - What Segment currently does for its customers

[00:03:37] - How this industry looked before Segment came along

[00:04:30] - Overview of a simple data flow and the utility of capturing user data

[00:05:55] - Insights that lead to developing the structure for a central data pipeline

[00:07:52] - Why other companies don’t just build their own data collection API

[00:10:04] - Early days of building the company and finding success outside their initial idea

[00:12:29] - Pivoting from classroom software to providing software the world needed

[00:16:17] - What Technology Wants 

[00:17:06] - Sign that validated becoming a B to B software company

[00:19:49] - Challenging moments trying to scale Segment after bootstrapping the startup

[00:24:58] - Getting customers to articulate your value proposition helps grow your sales

[00:26:42] - Deciding what would be sold and what would remain open source

[00:28:05] - Structuring and developing an enterprise sales team and sales model

[00:30:23] - Overview of a 2 million dollar  per sales person contract and how it’s allocated

[00:31:38] - How it feels to be participant in the SaaS industry

[00:34:02] - Lessons learned about revenue operations and how underappreciated it is

[00:36:39] - Backwards efficiency and companies who use products to bootstrap scale economics

[00:38:51] - Focusing on customer acquisition cost to maximize scale efficiency

[00:40:52] - Potential disruptors to economies of scale

[00:42:21] - Lessons learned from achieving massive scale and being acquired by Twilio

[00:45:40] - Behind the curtain view of current data use trends

[00:48:49] - His perspectives on the data privacy landscape and their implications writ large

[00:51:48] - Legitimate businesses that will be hurt by changes in data privacy standards

[00:53:11] - How data privacy standards may affect everyday merchants

[00:54:03] - The worst advice he’s heard given to new entrepreneurs

[00:56:20] - Impactful advice received along the way when growing Segment

[00:56:47] - What has him most excited about the future

[00:57:13] - Lessons learned about leadership from Jeff Lawson and his own experience

[00:58:51] - The hardest changes he’s had to make as a leader

[01:00:20] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

 

May 20, 2021
Brent Beshore - Learnings from a Year of Unexpected Events - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 226]
01:08:36

My guest today is Brent Beshore. For those that don’t know Brent from his frequent appearances on this podcast, he runs Permanent Equity Fund and has been a close personal friend for the past five years. Brent and I revisit our conversation from the heart of COVID to touch on key lessons learned and where that leaves us today. Brent sits at a unique touchpoint of the economy, so I particularly enjoyed his anecdotes on inflation and how to operate around these dynamics. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Brent.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:52] - [First question] - Why last year ended up being so bullish

[00:07:14] - Deal dynamics of the current landscape

[00:09:54] - Lessons learned about managing a team through the pandemic

[00:14:39] - Observations on the housing market and the pool industry

[00:18:56] - Current labor force dynamics of trades 

[00:21:18] - Considering labor dependency when investing in new businesses

[00:23:10] - His perspectives on the future of tech through his investment lens

[00:25:50] - Seeking out traditional businesses that reinvent age-old frameworks 

[00:27:50] - Key stages of the art and science of evaluating and acquiring a company

[00:31:45] - How much information he wants to know before making an initial offer

[00:34:25] - Psychology of structuring and aligning incentives post-acquisition 

[00:37:41] - What defines a great deal negotiator

[00:40:05] - His most creative act when structuring a deal that didn’t work out as well

[00:42:17] - Hist most creative structuring act that proved useful for the upside

[00:43:34] - Notable changes in large-cap private equity markets

[00:45:41] - Skills he feels he can improve on over the coming five years

[00:48:30] - Coaching small companies on how to recruit top tier talent

[00:52:49] - How to effectively get people to say yes to job offers and openings

[00:54:19] - Absolute and relative changes in the opportunity set of small to mid-cap markets

[00:57:40] - Lessons learned from strong support networks and onramps of upward mobility

May 18, 2021
Jeremy Cai - Manufacturer to Customer – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 33]
50:50

My guest today is Jeremy Cai, founder, and CEO of Italic, a subscription marketplace for consumer goods that works directly with manufacturers. I was introduced to Jeremy by my friend Blake Robbins and was dying to better understand the Italic business model. In our conversation, we discuss the Italic business model, the evolving role of manufacturers in supply chains, and the concept of building the next generation “everything store.” I love learning and discovering new business models, and this was fun to dig into. Please enjoy my conversation with Jeremy Cai.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to by Dell Technologies. Dell Technologies and Windows can help you upgrade your business tech with its Small Business Month specials. Save up to 45% on PCs with Windows 10 Pro— plus business docks, monitors & more. To learn more, call a Dell Technologies Advisor at 877-ASK-DELL or check out the deals at dell.com/en-us/work/shop/deals.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:45] - [First question] - Overview of Italic’s business model

[00:04:51] - Why comparing Italic to Costco isn’t completely accurate

[00:10:06] - His initial experience with manufacturers and how that world works

[00:15:21] - Direct to consumer commerce and the power of a brand’s story

[00:20:06] - Where manufacturers find the cash to effectively manage their inventory

[00:25:26] - How design and R & D are handled by manufacturers in the current era

[00:29:36] - Educated consumers and emotional versus rational buying decisions 

[00:31:12] - Analyzing Italic’s five-step master plan and what needed to be built first

[00:35:42] - Becoming more than just an aggregator and a platform

[00:38:01] - Lessons learned from building Italic so far

[00:39:02] - Other modern business models he finds interesting

[00:43:26] - What Not Pot is and lessons learned from building it

[00:44:51] - Observations about consumer behavior in his managed marketplace

[00:48:07] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

May 13, 2021
Eli Dourado - Frontiers for Productivity - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 225]
56:11

My guest today is Eli Dourado, economist and senior research fellow at the Center for Growth and Opportunity at Utah State University. In our discussion, we touch on the ongoing stagnation in labor productivity, the system constraints, and some of the innovative technologies that could reverse this trend. While Eli identifies as an economist, his wealth of knowledge on biotech innovation, alternative energy, and the space opportunity are sure to leave you craving more. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Eli. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company – MITIMCo, the endowment office of MIT. MITIMCo seeks to find people who are focused on achieving exceptional long-term investment returns, partner with these firms early, and stick around for the very long term. 

 

MITIMCo is also searching for an exceptional new teammate to join their internal investment team. Visit mitimco.org to learn more – click “Join” to learn more about the Global Investor Role on MITIMCo’s team or and click “Emerging Managers” to learn more about their emerging manager activities.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:28] - [First question] - Why he’s interested the great stagnation

[00:05:41] - Is a fair analog for total factor productivity technology?

[00:07:29] - Leading theories for the stagnation in TFP

[00:09:05] - Analysis of why growth is good, and stagnation is bad

[00:10:19] - Rate limiters that are a key part of calculating stagnation

[00:11:43] - Signs that we may be returning to a higher degree of TFP returning

[00:12:24] - Exciting developments like MRNA in biotech that may lead to an explosion of innovation

[00:16:16] - Functions of a protein and their role in advances in biotech

[00:17:55] - What CRISPR is and what it unlocks for the future of humanity

[00:19:31] - The pace of progression when rolling our clinical trials of cellular engineering

[00:21:36] - How biotech may play a role in TFP as a proxy for progress and growth

[00:22:51] - Interesting observations about potential innovation in the energy sector

[00:24:10] - What currently requires energy that could be optimized if they had a lower energy cost

[00:25:34] - Sources that could provide cheaper and more efficient energy

[00:27:13] - Sage Geosystems and the future of the geothermal space

[00:27:43] - The importance of batteries in the modern era

[00:29:02] - Why energy should be a more pivotal focus in our future

[00:29:41] - What’s interesting in the world of transportation writ large

[00:31:02] - Boom’s story, supersonic air travel, and why concord shut down

[00:34:55] - Mach 5 and March 12 supersonic air travel

[00:36:19] - Second-order effects of reducing the time cost of air travel

[00:38:19] - Liftoff, SpaceX, and the future of the space sector

[00:43:07] - Other key players in space people could study; Blue Origin and Relativity Space

[00:45:15] - What will we do in space once we can travel there cheaply

[00:46:39] - What he’s most curious about in IT that could drive productive societal growth

[00:50:07] - Ethereum and how a decentralized blockchain could change the world 

[00:51:19] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him




May 11, 2021
James Reinhart – Lessons in Process Power – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 32]
52:43

My guest today is James Reinhart, founder, and CEO of thredUP, an online thrift marketplace. thredUP’s online store is distinct in the way the company touches every product, processing every piece of clothing at their own facilities instead of focusing solely on being a marketplace connecting buyers and sellers. We talk about the competitive advantages of building processing plants from the ground up, how James turned thredUP from having negative gross margins to very strong unit economics, and the future of retail more broadly. I hope you enjoy this conversation with James Reinhart.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to by Dell Technologies. Dell Technologies and Windows can help you upgrade your business tech with its Small Business Month specials. Save up to 45% on PCs with Windows 10 Pro— plus business docks, monitors & more. To learn more, call a Dell Technologies Advisor at 877-ASK-DELL or check out the deals at dell.com/en-us/work/shop/deals.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Eight Sleep. Eight Sleep's new Pod Pro Cover is the easiest and fastest way to sleep at your perfect temperature. Simply add the Pod Pro Cover to your current mattress and start sleeping as cool as 55°F or as hot as 110°F. To embrace the future of sleep and get $150 off your new mattress, go to eightsleep.com/patrick or use code "Patrick."

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:47] - [First question] - An overview of thredUP

[00:03:44] - Origination of the idea

[00:04:43] - Initial reactions to the concept

[00:05:22] - Early days trying to acquire the first customers

[00:07:32] - The evolution of their margins

[00:11:04] - Providing convenience for the customer

[00:13:01] - Lessons on working capital and inventory 

[00:14:27] - How consumers use the money they receive within the platform

[00:15:47] - The evolution of the operations of the business and scaling

[00:20:20] - When it’s time to shift from human capital to automation

[00:22:00] - The Innovation Stack: Building an Unbeatable Business One Crazy Idea at a Time

[00:22:39] - Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance

[00:23:15] - Removing the hurdles for acquiring more buyers 

[00:27:19] - Convincing investors on this concept

[00:30:44] - The most difficult time for him psychologically in creating the business

[00:31:56] - How he thinks about capital allocation

[00:32:12] - The Startup Way: How Modern Companies Use Entrepreneurial Management to Transform Culture and Drive Long-Term Growth

[00:33:51] - Overview of the clothing landscape and what would surprise most people

[00:38:00] - Expanding their business from here 

[00:40:36] - Improving how the raw material is sourced for apparel

[00:42:45] - The nature of work 

[00:42:56] - Dustin Moskovitz Podcast Episode

[00:49:04] - What he’s most excited about for the future

[00:50:35] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

May 06, 2021
Andrew Sugrue - Investing in Paradigm Shifts - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 224]
01:02:18

My guest today is Andrew Sugrue, co-founder, and partner at Avenir Growth Capital. Avenir is a growth equity firm focused on backing category-defining businesses. In our conversation, we cover Andrew’s investing career, what he learned from Julian Robertson, how counter-positioning could drive unique distribution, and the difference between good and bad growth. We also spend time examining the business model of two of Andrew’s portfolio businesses, SavageXFenty and Latch. There are so many great lessons for investors and operators to take away from Andrew. Please enjoy my conversation with Andrew Sugrue.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company – MITIMCo, the endowment office of MIT. MITIMCo seeks to find people who are focused on achieving exceptional long-term investment returns, partner with these firms early, and stick around for the very long term. 

 

MITIMCo is also searching for an exceptional new teammate to join their internal investment team. Visit mitimco.org to learn more – click “Join” to learn more about the Global Investor Role on MITIMCo’s team or and click “Emerging Managers” to learn more about their emerging manager activities.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:31] - [First question] - His journey leading up to his current firm

[00:05:55] - Lessons learned from time spent with Julian Robinson

[00:07:54] - The chip on his shoulder that helped keep him driven

[00:08:40] - Transforming his early motivators into a sustainable career-long fuel

[00:10:46] - The first things in mind when approaching a new business or person

[00:14:00] - Analysis of Savage Lingerie and learning about how that sector operates 

[00:20:27] - Amazon producing a one-hour special Savage infomercial 

[00:23:16] - Lessons learned from Savage that can be applied to other direct to consumer brands

[00:25:04] - Having a celebrity at the forefront of your brand

[00:26:41] - Levers and overview of apparel company income statements and how they can shape the way you grow and operate the business

[00:30:08] - Apparel companies always being tied to identity

[00:31:03] - Analysis of Latch and learning about the relationship between hardware and software

[00:33:40] - How Latch works and why you might need it

[00:38:56] - Other businesses that may benefit from understanding the events that drive demand and using it as an opportunity for customer acquisition

[00:40:12] - The concept of density of demand and the power behind it

[00:41:33] - Other areas of operations density of demand could be applied 

[00:44:11] - Shared components that unite Avenir’s portfolio companies 

[00:46:14] - How he thinks about the world of private investment, having lived such a diverse career 

[00:50:22] - Developing relationships growing such a concentrated portfolio

[00:51:35] - Macro thoughts on the state of investing today

[00:52:59] - Defining and identifying characteristics of bad growth

[00:54:05] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

May 04, 2021
Alyssa Ravasio - Supply, Demand, and the Outdoors - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 31]
01:02:50

My guest today is Alyssa Ravasio, co-founder and CEO of Hipcamp, a platform to discover and book your next camping trip. I was excited for this conversation as it combines two of my favorite passions – the outdoors and internet marketplaces. In our discussion, we cover how Alyssa bootstrapped demand in the early days of Hipcamp, the importance of creating not just great experiences but magical ones, and the evolution of Hipcamp’s business model. After listening to this episode, I’m sure the first thing you’ll want to do is get outside in nature. Please enjoy my conversation with Alyssa Ravasio.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2 report at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick.

 

-----

This episode is brought to you by DigitalOcean. DigitalOcean provides founders and creators with the platform they need to get their website and apps off the ground, all with low-bandwidth pricing to save them money over other cloud providers.

 

If you are looking for the best place to build web apps or API backends on robust infrastructure, DigitalOcean is the place for you. They provide a fully managed solution that handles your infrastructure, operating systems, databases, and other dependencies on their new App Platform product. App Platform makes it easy to build, deploy, and scale apps. Get started for free at do.co/founders.

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

Show Notes

[00:02:57] - [First question] - The original insight that led to founding Hipcamp

[00:06:15] - What she studied in college and primary lessons learned there

[00:08:18] - Specific features of studying the internet that influenced her trajectory

[00:10:14] - Deciding what to attack first when developing Hipcamp’s infrastructure

[00:14:12] - Dimensions and market size of the outdoor industry

[00:15:48] - Organizing fragmented data into a useable schema and data set

[00:18:24] - What customers cared about most in the early days of Hipcamp

[00:20:00] - Managing focus and liquidity of the initial marketplace

[00:22:58] - Helping landowners manage the logistics of their property placements

[00:25:16] - Liability insurance in the outdoor industry

[00:27:35] - The biggest challenge faced in developing an outdoor marketplace

[00:30:03] - Amplifying and accelerating naturally grooved distribution

[00:32:32] - Identifying the top correlates of making magic happen

[00:34:55] - An ideal future for Hipcamp five years from now

[00:38:28] - What bad supply looks like and creating quality standards 

[00:42:08] - Their business model and revenue stream

[00:44:45] - Deciding on their take rate and the debate around booking fees

[00:46:14] - Lessons learned along the way as a leader

[00:47:42] - Unit economics from the host’s perspective

[00:52:33] - The most interesting businesses built on top of Hipcamp

[00:53:35] - Why is Hipcamp’s mission so important to her

[00:57:11] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for her



Apr 29, 2021
Josh Buckley - Identifying Legendary Start-ups - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 223]
59:30

My guest today is Josh Buckley. Josh is the new CEO of Product Hunt and an investor in many breakout companies like Rippling, Lattice, Boom Supersonic, and Relativity Space. In our conversation, we cover how video game companies are at the forefront of new business models, what current companies can learn from video game companies, Josh’s investing philosophy, and the three things he looks for when trying to identify the next legendary startup. Josh’s long experience operating his video game business, Mino Games, gives him such an interesting perspective as an investor, and I really enjoyed exploring that with him. Please enjoy my conversation with Josh Buckley.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics, and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:56] - [First question] - His start as an entrepreneur in online game

[00:05:09] - His parent's reaction to selling his first company at fifteen

[00:05:57] - Starting a second video game company 

[00:07:40] - The video game industry being ahead of the curve in performance marketing, distribution, and operations

[00:08:49] - Notable two year lag between gaming innovation and other consumer sectors

[00:10:50] - What is happening today in gaming that may be a glimpse into the future

[00:12:41] - Key elements for creating a great gaming experience

[00:15:29] - Building a meta game on top of the game itself to maximize engagement

[00:17:23] - Monetizing free to play games through in-game purchases

[00:20:25] - The most portable idea from fifteen years in gaming that can be applied to business

[00:22:02] - A future shift towards usage-based pricing models

[00:23:03] - His overall investment philosophy and strategy

[00:26:45] - Example of small a market with a high growth rate

[00:27:38] - Key elements of system elements and design when evaluating a business

[00:31:07] - What a flywheel looks like and investing in one such as  Next Health 

[00:33:24] - Working core actions versus giving credit ones that aren’t yet working but may drive desirable outcomes

[00:34:13] - Why don’t more investing firms have a flywheel?

[00:39:04] - Product Hunt as a standalone business and part of a self-reinforcing ecosystem

[00:40:17] - Emerging systems and ecosystem edges in the digital landscape

[00:42:17] - Potential barriers for crypto becoming widely adopted in a variety of ways

[00:44:29] - New frontiers and platform shifts like crypto that may unlock new doors for companies

[00:45:13] - Which person has rewired his brain in his lifetime the most

[00:47:13] - Weirdness around Stripe and Plaid when he first encountered them

[00:48:37] - Meta games people in the industry are playing or should be playing

[00:51:25] - Controversial ideas around the business world today writ large 

[00:54:01] - Implications of shifting primarily towards a digital world

[00:54:14] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

 

Apr 27, 2021
Thomas Tull - New Physics of Business - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 30]
58:13

My guest today is Thomas Tull, the founder of Tulco LLC, an investment holding company that invests in businesses with high growth potential and helps them apply machine learning and data analytics. Thomas is also the founder and former CEO of Legendary Entertainment, the production company behind the Dark Knight, Hangover, Inception, 300, and many more iconic movies which he sold in 2016. In our discussion, we cover the movie industry’s value chain, the recipe for trying to make a successful movie and how Legendary pioneered the use of data analytics to improve those odds, and Thomas’ concept of the new physics of business and why it matters for what he’s now building at Tulco. Please enjoy my conversation with Thomas Tull.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2 report at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick.

-----

This episode is brought to you by DigitalOcean. DigitalOcean provides founders and creators with the platform they need to get their website and apps off the ground, all with low-bandwidth pricing to save them money over other cloud providers.

 

If you are looking for the best place to build web apps or API backends on robust infrastructure, DigitalOcean is the place for you. They provide a fully managed solution that handles your infrastructure, operating systems, databases, and other dependencies on their new App Platform product. App Platform makes it easy to build, deploy, and scale apps. Get started for free at do.co/founders.

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

Show Notes

[00:03:06] - [First question] - His overarching career philosophy and theme

[00:04:07] - Attacking a previously established industry in a new way

[00:05:20] - The origin story of Legendary and stepping into the film industry

[00:07:56] - Stakeholders involved in producing a movie and pre-existing profit pools when Legendary was founded

[00:12:44] - Topline and downstream revenue distribution of intellectual property from then versus now

[00:19:46] - Lessons learned about intellectual property writ large  

[00:19:03] - What makes Chris Nolan such an exceptional storyteller

[00:23:42] - Power and defensibility of cinematic universes and transmedia storytelling

[00:22:21] - Applying quantitative data analysis to film production and marketing

[00:25:55] - Competitive frontiers in movie studios and his advantageous skillset

[00:28:10] - Potential investment opportunities in media or media adjacent businesses

[00:29:26] - Interesting new tools that could be developed in entertainment technology

[00:31:00] - His favorite mind-blowing and awe-inspiring movies

[00:32:41] - Telling Jackie Robinson’s story in the film, 42

[00:35:30] - Jackie Robinson and Chadwick Boseman’s quiet dignity

[00:36:56] - Building the holding company Tulco 

[00:39:02] - The new physics of business that can’t be ignored

[00:42:40] - Modern velocity in the current era of business

[00:46:03] - Interweaving an antifragile mindset into the company culture

[00:47:55] - Who Tulco Labs is and what they do

[00:49:12] - What gets him most excited about exploring a new business for the first time

[00:50:48] - Unique characteristics he seeks out in a management team

[00:52:31] - Trends that make him feel worried about the future

[00:57:47] - Trends that make him feel optimistic about the future

[00:58:49] - An important lesson learned from his career on a personal level

[01:00:15] - The kindest thing anyone’s ever done for him

Apr 22, 2021
Paul Enright - The Buy Side Primer - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 222]
01:25:59

My guest today is Paul Enright, managing partner at Krainos Capital, his family office. Before running his own family office, Paul worked on the buy-side at Viking Global for over a decade managing their consumer and technology portfolios and before that at Morgan Stanley on the sell-side.

 

I thought Paul would be the perfect person to help me demystify the world of high finance – explaining the difference between the buy-side and sell-side, how long/shorts differ from long onlys, and walking through the various jobs in the investing world. In addition to setting that foundation, we also cover the evolution of the buy-side, what makes someone a great researcher verse a great stock picker, and various portfolio construction methodologies. Paul brings such a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table. I think this episode will be enjoyable for investing novices and professionals alike.

 

Please enjoy my conversation with Paul Enright.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company – also known as MITIMCo, the endowment office of MIT. MITIMCo seeks to find people who are focused on achieving exceptional long-term investment returns, partner with these firms early, and stick around for the very long term. MITIMCo doesn’t care how small, new, or un-institutional your firm is if you have the potential to generate amazing results that support MIT’s pursuit of world-class education, cutting-edge research, and groundbreaking innovation.

 

Despite their willingness to invest early, they do not ask for GP economics, and they commit their initial capital for ten years.

 

Visit www.mitimco.org and their new emerging managers page to learn more.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:39] - [First question] - His history in both the buy and sell side

[00:05:20] - Different types of roles on the buy side and sell side

[00:06:48] - Interest sets that best align with being a buyer or a seller

[00:07:57] - The emotional experience of being on the buy side and exposed to risk

[00:08:53] - How the nature of buying and portfolio construction has changed 

[00:10;15] - What Regulation Fair Disclosure (Reg FD) is

[00:12:46] - Key terminology and definitions of long-only and long-short funds

[00:17:40] - Varying clusters of long-short funds and defining each type

[00:21:48] - Differences in exposure between a platform model versus a traditional long-short stock picking sense

[00:25:16] - Skill sets that are most important to have when navigating this space

[00:29:03] - What is good and what is great when it comes to “digging”

[00:31:20] - Why the quality of one’s analysis matters

[00:33:10] - Having a potential edge when deciding based on someone else’s analysis

[00:35:19] - Foundational building blocks of an effective pitch 

[00:37:20] - Finding wrongly identified stocks and reaping the rewards

[00:40:49] - Overview of good portfolio construction and lessons learned over the years

[00:44:06] - Why hedge funds tend to traffic heavily in T.M.T. and consumer sectors

[00:45:53] - Elements that strike him as great in a business

[00:48:05] - A business that once seemed great but has since faded away

[00:49:22] - Why hedge-fund managers seem to always make the most money

[00:53:50] - What a well run firm looks like

[00:56:39] - Characteristics that may make you well suited for a career in fund management

[01:00:23] - Why quality mentors and portfolio managers are so important when deciding where you want to work

[01:01:38] - What interests him mosts in markets today

[01:05:20] - Useful frameworks and formulas used when approaching a new business

[01:08:15] - Interesting features about telecom businesses and what defines them

[01:10:45] - The future of the modern world’s internet infrastructure

[01:14:44] - Abundance vs zero-sum and fixed vs growth mindsets 

[01:18:12] - The kindest thing anyone’s ever done for him



Apr 20, 2021
Trevor McFedries - Building Web 3.0 - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 29]
01:05:19

My guest today is Trevor McFedries, the founder of technology startup Brud and the creator of virtual pop star Miquela, a Gen Z icon with millions of fans worldwide. Trevor’s background is fascinating - he worked as a DJ and producer, toured with Katy Perry, worked at Spotify, and done just about every interesting thing I can imagine. In our conversation, we discuss the music-industrial complex, the creation of Miquela, and what Web 3.0 will mean for creators and builders in the future. I hope you enjoy this conversation with Trevor McFedries.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2 report at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick.

-----

This episode is brought to you by DigitalOcean. DigitalOcean provides founders and creators with the platform they need to get their website and apps off the ground, all with low-bandwidth pricing to save them money over other cloud providers.

 

If you are looking for the best place to build web apps or API backends on robust infrastructure, DigitalOcean is the place for you. They provide a fully managed solution that handles your infrastructure, operating systems, databases, and other dependencies on their new App Platform product. App Platform makes it easy to build, deploy, and scale apps. Get started for free at do.co/founders.

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:54] - [First question] - What unites the diversity of his career

[00:03:39] - What inspired him to pivot away from football and step into creative arts

[00:05:50] - Lessons learned from being a touring DJ and producer that apply to the creative tech sector

[00:07:40] - A view of the music industrial complex from the inside

[00:08:57] - How the internet deciding who becomes popular affected already established artists

[00:10:57] - Interesting opportunities in the music landscape in 2021

[00:11:40] - Time spent at Spotify and the spark of insight that led to founding Brud

[00:16:02] - The sequence of creating a digital artist like Lil Miquela

[00:19:02] - What it feels like to be “othered”

[00:20:24] - Embracing one's intersections and applying it to a business model

[00:21:18] - The team behind Lil Miquela and her design process

[00:25:49] - Ingredients required for building a great narrative 

[00:28:35] - What social media platforms matter today, and the state of the social landscape

[00:32:21] - Expanding Lil Miquela’s world and digital media monetization

[00:36:32] - Differences between web 2.0 and 3.0 that may directly affect creators

[00:38:27] - Ways innovations like NFTs make spawn new network participants

[00:39:49] - Programmable art and media experiences

[00:41:03] - The most cutting-edge ideas in the digital persona space

[00:43:21] - Technology that wasn’t available that had to be built to enable new experiences 

[00:45:49] - One of the hardest decisions he’s had to make in Brud’s history

[00:47:16] - The furthest they’ve ever pushed the envelope

[00:48:06] - What’s the thing that keeps him going every day

[00:50:12] - Finding cultural white space and inventing a character that could speak to investing to inspire new generations

[00:52:01] - Units of media contribution and creative container experimentation

[00:53:27] - What has him the most excited about the future of his industry

[00:54:32] - Missing technological components that could inspire new digital creatives

[00:56:53] - Work ethic through the lens of developing a jump shot

[00:59:00] - One business lesson that he believes in deeply

[01:00:05] - The kindest thing anyone’s ever done for him

Apr 15, 2021
Chris Dixon - The Potential of Blockchain Technology - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 221]
01:12:44

My guest today is Chris Dixon, a general partner at Andreessen Horowitz. Chris is a prolific investor and thinker, having been an entrepreneur, angel investor, and is now focused on investing in the crypto and blockchain space for Andreessen. Our conversation focuses on Chris's overall thesis for investing in the cryptocurrency space, the opportunities and limitations of blockchain applications, and why this is the most interesting area for investing and building over the next ten years. What's exciting to me is blockchain technology's ability to help us re-imagine old business models and catapult them into the 21st century – and we cover a lot of them. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Chris Dixon.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:56] - [First question] - His overall crypto investing philosophy

[00:06:37] - New opportunities presented by blockchain technology

[00:15:31] - Permanent limitations and shortcomings of blockchains

[00:18:32] - Evolution of DeFi and crypto currencies

[00:21:11] - Whitepapers: Bitcoin, Ethereum, MakerDAO 

[00:22:08] - How to take out a loan using the Maker protocol

[00:23:22] - Utility of Dai and stablecoins

[00:29:14] - How the DeFi network will reinvent the future

[00:39:53] - Uniswap, tokens, and fundamentally redefining leverage

[00:36:29] - The Company: A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea

[00:38:00] - Developer and entrepreneurial incentives for building blockchain technology

[00:39:46] - BitClout, Rally and the early days of social tokens

[00:46:38] - Demand curve and value creation efficiency in a digital creator economy

[00:47:24] - NFTs and a Thousand True Fans

[00:54:49] - Polkadot, Solana, Cosmos and programmable blockchains

[00:58:03] - The most exciting moment for him in the last year

[01:00:19] - Decentralized autonomous organizations

[01:02:46] - The single thing that has him most excited about the future of this space

[01:05:18] - The Next Big Thing Will Start Out Looking Like a Toy



Apr 13, 2021
Shopify: The E-commerce On-Ramp - [Business Breakdowns, EP. 01]
01:03:38

Welcome to the first episode of our newest show, Business Breakdowns, featuring deep-dive conversations on individual businesses. In each episode, we will dissect a new company with investors and operators that know it best. 

 

We’ve already released the first three episodes on Shopify, Chipotle, and Alibaba. Subscribe to Business Breakdowns through the podcast player of your choice: 

 

Leave us a 5-star rating on Apple Podcasts if you like the show!

 

-----

 

Today we will be diving into Shopify. Shopify was founded in 2004 by Tobi Lütke and Scott Lake around their original problem of why it's so hard to build an online business when they struggled to open an online snowboard equipment store. Today, Shopify's goal is to make commerce better for everyone, and it's used by more than 2 million merchants to run their online businesses. It's essentially an on-ramp for people looking to sell online. 

 

To help us break down Shopify, I'm joined by co-host Zack Fuss and our guest Alex Danco, who works on the Money team at Shopify.

 

To really understand Shopify, you have to understand its different business units -- Core, Merchant Services, Ecosystem, and the new Shop platform -- and the role they each play in making commerce easier and better for merchants. We begin this breakdown by covering each of those business units and how they compare to Apple's business lines. We then dive deep into how Shopify makes money through the first and second derivative of their merchant success and how Shopify thinks about friction in e-commerce. We close with an incredible analogy of Shopify and StarCraft and the tools that Shopify has built into the still-nascent world of e-commerce.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. We created Business Breakdowns to uncover the lessons and frameworks behind every business, and that's what makes Tegus our perfect launch partner. Much of the foundational prep for these episodes starts with research on the Tegus platform. 

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 15,000 calls on Coinbase, Hinge Health, Farfetch, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. If you're ready to go deeper on any company and you appreciate the value of primary research, head to tegus.co/breakdowns for a free trial.

-----

Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Business Breakdowns, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @JoinColossus | @patrick_oshag | @jspujji | @zbfuss

 

Show Notes

[00:04:03] - [First question] - What Shopify is as a product

[00:05:58] - Product pillar 1: Core
[00:07:58] - Product pillar 2: Merchant services
[00:10:02] - Product pillar 3: Ecosystem

[00:12:04] - Product pillar 4: Shop

[00:14:08] - The evolution of commerce with the rise of the internet

[00:21:01] - Differences between high and low trust commerce

[00:25:48] - The role of friction and trust in stakeholder variety

[00:30:18] - Overview of all four product pillars’ business models

[00:33:10] - Shopify App Store

[00:34:16] - How Shopify competes and partners with their competitors

[00:36:53] - Shop Pay expands to Facebook and Instagram

[00:38:49] - Key areas where Shopify will continue to grow across their product pillars

[00:42:52] - Affirm, Klarna, Afterpay

[00:43:56] - Potential pitfalls of having such a high self-imposed quality bar 

[00:45:12] - Conway’s law
[00:45:12] - Aggregators versus platforms

[00:53:35] - Unique marketing aspects for Shopify’s sales and marketing with their subscription model 

[00:56:37] - Shopify: A StarCraft Inspired Business Strategy

 

Apr 09, 2021
Tony Xu - A Human and Math Problem - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 28]
01:04:41

My guest today is Tony Xu, co-founder, and CEO of DoorDash. Tony started DoorDash 7.5 years ago, and today it is one of the largest food delivery and logistics platforms globally, with operations in the US, Canada, Australia. In our conversation, we discuss the initial problem that DoorDash set out to solve, DoorDash’s counterintuitive approach to building their product, and the surprising benefits of capital constraints in DoorDash’s early days. DoorDash’s business model is an equal parts logistics nightmare and a human coordination problem, or as Tony puts it, a human and math problem. After talking to Tony, I feel his personality makes him a great candidate to solve those problems.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2 report at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick.

-----

This episode is brought to you by LinkedIn Jobs. With LinkedIn, you get access to an active community of professionals with more than 722 million members worldwide. LinkedIn is the easiest place in the world to post a job and message qualified candidates. Getting started is easier than ever, and now you can do this all from your mobile device.

 

When your business is ready to make that next hire, find the right person with LinkedIn Jobs. And now, you can post a job for free. Just visit linkedin.com/fieldguide to post a job for free. Terms and conditions apply.

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:07] - [First question] - The catalytic moment that inspired Tony to build DoorDash

[00:06:33] - Network density and its role in scalability

[00:09:15] - Solving a math and sales problem simultaneously

[00:11:33] - Becoming aware of multiple problem sets for restaurant owners

[00:14:34] - Designing a team to quantify friction and turn it into useable data

[00:16:49] - How to approach difficult problems and compartmentalize them in a practical way

[00:18:38] - Accounting for high-level variance in long-term goals

[00:21:54] - Factoring in time horizons for variance and planning for the future

[00:23:08] - Slowing down an action process to minimize a high-consequence decision

[00:26:48] - Generating demand after completing their software infrastructure

[00:28:15] - Strategic choices between network health and unit economics

[00:30:32] - Why DoorDash struggled to raise financing in their seed-stage

[00:32:23] - Solving a small fraction of a larger logistics problem

[00:35:00] - Differences between local commerce and distribution centers 

[00:36:44] - Creating the DashPass subscription service and how premium experiences influence user behavior

[00:38:34] - Advantages and potential diminishing returns in servant leadership

[00:40:41] - His broader philosophy on leadership and how it’s changed over the years

[00:44:55] - Creating an incentive-aligned culture of ownership at scale

[00:47:02] - The most surprising lessons learned about company building

[00:50:38] - Unexpected positive outcomes that may emerge in other areas due to DoorDash’s growth in the coming years 

[00:53:44] - Will DoorDash’s presence change behavioral patterns in where people choose to live or start their business?

[00:55:36] - What has him most excited for the future

[00:56:55] - Kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Apr 08, 2021
Mike Kerns and Jesse Jacobs - Content to Commerce - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 220]
01:11:15

My guests this week are Jesse Jacobs and Mike Kerns, co-founders and partners at The Chernin Group, TCG, a multi-stage investment firm dedicated to building consumer businesses. Many think of TCG as some of the best media investors in the world, and in this discussion, you’ll quickly see why. In our conversation, we cover how TCG identifies creators that they can help build businesses with, how established companies should think about influencers and media today, and what innovations they are most excited for in the creator space. As I become more heavily involved in building new media properties, Jesse and Mike are always my first point of call for advice, and I’m so excited to share this with you. Please enjoy my conversation with Jesse Jacobs and Mike Kerns.

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. If you've been scrambling to keep up with the deluge of IPOs and SPACs these days, Canalyst has models on Coinbase, Roblox, Qualtrics and everything in between. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/patrick.

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company – also known as MITIMCo, the endowment office of MIT. MITIMCo seeks to find people who are focused on achieving exceptional long-term investment returns, partner with these firms early, and stick around for the very long term. MITIMCo doesn’t care how small, new, or un-institutional your firm is if you have the potential to generate amazing results that support MIT’s pursuit of world-class education, cutting-edge research, and groundbreaking innovation.

Despite their willingness to invest early, they do not ask for GP economics, and they commit their initial capital for ten years.

Visit www.mitimco.org and their new emerging managers page to learn more.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:32] - [First question] - The history of TCG 

[00:04:30] - iFilm (Discontinued)

[00:07:08] - Full Screen

[00:07:13] - Crunchyroll

[00:10:46] - Uniting properties across all of TCG’s brands
[00:11:14] - Barstool, MeatEater
[00:12:00] - Headspace, Food 52, Hodinkee, Surfline

[00:14:03] - Accidental businesses and pre-commercial success
[00:14:53] - Exploding Kittens

[00:16:05] - Evaluating the potential of a new pitch

[00:19:12] - Testing, tracking and understanding media brand conversions

[00:21:13] - The most important things happening in media in 2021
[00:25:12] - Analysis of MeatEater from content to commerce

[00:27:22] - First Lite

[00:29:21] - Replacing your own sponsors with owned companies

[00:30:11] - Analysis of Hodinkee from content to commerce

[00:33:42] - What sparked the resurgence of interest in collectibles

[00:38:05] - Hands on investing in the intersection of media, finance and tech 

[00:40:05] - Comcast 

[00:41:02] - Surprising discoveries in the sports collectibles space

[00:43:06] - NFTs and their role in generating capital for media companies

[00:44:25] - Sorare

[00:45:22] - JPG File Sells for $69 Million, as “NFT Mania” Gathers Pace

[00:47:23] - How to adapt to the NFT space as a business seeking equity

[00:51:12] - The valuation landscape of today

[00:55:25] - Defining success when working with an influencer

[00:58:48] - Upcoming trends they’re most excited about in the world

[01:01:40] - Roblox

[01:02:00] - Mr Beast, Beastburger

[01:02:47] - Pokemon Go

[01:04:01] - The kindest things anyone’s ever done for them

Apr 06, 2021
Business Breakdowns - Trailer
02:44

Welcome to Business Breakdowns, a new Colossus podcast featuring deep-dive conversations on individual businesses. In each episode, we will dissect a new company with investors and operators that know it best. We believe every business has secrets and lessons to learn from, and these conversations are designed to deliver that content in an entertaining and narrative format.

 

The series launches today with Shopify, so check out the links below and give it a listen. 

 

Subscribe to Business Breakdowns via: 

 

Leave us a 5-star rating on Apple Podcasts if you like the show. 

 

With each new episode, we will be releasing full episode transcripts, show notes, and the best content we could find on that business from across the internet. Check out www.joincolossus.com for more. 

Apr 05, 2021
Jesse Pujji - A Primer on Performance Marketing - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 27]
01:34:23

My guest today is Jesse Pujji, the Founder & CEO of Gateway X, a holding company that builds, buys, and invests in companies that are driving the direct-to-consumer landscape. Prior to Gateway X, Jesse was the CEO and co-founder of Ampush, a performance marketing business helping power customer acquisition across some of the world's biggest brands. Jesse is my go-to person for all things performance marketing and customer acquisition, so we decided to record this episode to bring his incredible lessons to a wider audience. It also dovetails nicely into the series of episodes we are making called Primers, where we take our audience from a 0 to a 7 on just about any topic. In this Primer with Jesse, we dive into how revenue mechanics affect ad campaigns, why long sales funnels often offer the greatest opportunities for differentiation, and the various channels and strategies available for performance marketing. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Jesse Pujji.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to get and maintain your SOC 2 report at a fraction of the typical cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick.

-----

This episode is brought to you by LinkedIn Jobs. With LinkedIn, you get access to an active community of professionals with more than 722 million members worldwide. LinkedIn is the easiest place in the world to post a job and message qualified candidates. Getting started is easier than ever, and now you can do this all from your mobile device.

 

When your business is ready to make that next hire, find the right person with LinkedIn Jobs. And now, you can post a job for free. Just visit linkedin.com/fieldguide to post a job for free. Terms and conditions apply.

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:58] - [First question] - Overview of Jesse’s career and starting Ampush

[00:12:11] - Red Ventures

[00:13:11] - The four components of performance marketing

[00:17:47] - Time and other variables in between impressions and revenue events

[00:23:12] - Understanding the dimensions of a business and their offering

[00:25:32] - Common misunderstandings businesses have about their marketing

[00:27:17] - Major changes in the Facebook and Google digital marketing ecosystems

[00:29:27] - Direct response marketing vs brand marketing
[00:35:08] - The importance and impact of effective messaging

[00:37:28] - The differences between good and bad conversions

[00:40:56] - Does alpha still exist, is it worth looking for, and does beta have a place

[00:43:25] - Fundamentals of a high performing marketing organization

[00:50:04] - Attention aggregators of marketing agencies
[00:50:18] - Nerdwallet - Thumbtack 

[00:51:22] - Product channel fit

[00:52:11] - PebblePost
[00:53:58] - Lessons learned from working with Uber

[00:55:42] - Retention marketing
[00:57:31] - Upcoming frontiers of performance marketing

[01:01:15] - Overview of Nerdwallet
[01:03:36] - How Jesse’s time at Ampush has shaped his investment lens
[01:07:20] - Lessons from bootstrapping a business vs venture capital funding

[01:17:05] - The entrepreneurial execution loop and operating cadence 

[01:29:20] - Kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Apr 01, 2021
Kanyi Maqubela - Dawn of the 21st Century - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 219]
01:09:49

My guest today is Kanyi Maqubela, co-founder of seed-stage VC firm Kindred Ventures, which he started with his partner Steven Jang in 2019. Before founding Kindred Ventures, Kanyi was a general partner at Collaborative Fund. In our conversation, we discuss the parallels between today and the Roaring ’20s of the last century, the misunderstood risk curve of seed investing, and dive deep into how Kanyi evaluates founders and businesses at the earliest stage of company formation. We also discuss Kanyi’s experience teaching the Design Your Life class at Stanford and how some of those principles convinced him to take the leap to start his own fund. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Kanyi Maqubela.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

This episode is brought to you by NordVPN. NordVPN is the best VPN to keep your internet experience private.

 

It has over 5,500 servers in 60 countries to ensure super-fast internet while protecting your information no matter where you are. As working from home and remote work become more prevalent, now is the time to protect your personal and business information without any data logging.

 

NordVPN works on all popular platforms, including Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS, and supports up to 6 simultaneous connections across your devices.

 

To get started, go to nordvpn.com/patrick or use code PATRICK to get a 2-year plan plus 1 additional month with a huge discount and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:04:11] - [First question] - Understanding the roaring 20s and their potential resurgence

[00:06:14] - Seed-stage investing today compared to a few years ago

[00:09:02] - Lessons learned from studying the 1920s 

[00:11:52] - Supply chain infrastructure in the 21st century

[00:14:49] - His investment philosophy and what influenced it

[00:17:47] - Defining the risk curve and early-stage divergence

[00:21:31] - Assessing risk in seed-stage investing

[00:23:32] - Other moments that influenced Kanyi’s investment philosophy

[00:26:50] - Assisting early-stage companies as a VC 

[00:29:31] - How he approaches VC differently than traditional US VCs

[00:31:55] - Non-consensus ways and unique views when evaluating founders

[00:35:19] - Domain insight and its importance

[00:36:53] - What he looks for in a company when considering investing in them

[00:38:17] - Assessing a team in whether or not they have characteristics of longevity

[00:40:59] - Questions he most enjoys asking people

[00:42:24] - What makes for a good problem space

[00:44:26] - Early-stage crypto investing

[00:47:27] - How the crypto space and NFTs will change and influence other sectors

[00:50:37] - Emerging trends that are catching his attention

[00:54:20] - The potential for upward mobility in the coming decade

[00:56:30] - Teaching the Design Your Life course

[01:01:21] - Advice for modern investor-operators

[01:03:26] - If he could change one major thing in the industry

[01:06:57] - The biggest lesson learned from Obama’s campaign

[01:07:44] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Mar 30, 2021
Roxanne Petraeus - Modernizing Compliance - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.26]
56:02

My guest today is Roxanne Petraeus, co-founder and CEO of Ethena, a modern compliance platform for businesses. Roxanne’s background is pretty incredible, before starting Ethena she was a Rhodes Scholar, served in the US Army, and worked at McKinsey. In our conversation, we cover the lessons Roxanne ported over from her military career to building a business, how she’s trying to make compliance training not suck, and the woeful state of funding female founders in VC today and what can be done about it. Far from a boring conversation about compliance, this was an incredible discussion with one of the best founders I’ve met recently. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Roxanne Petraeus.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for e-commerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. 

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders

-----

This episode is brought to you by DigitalOcean. DigitalOcean provides founders and creators with the platform they need to get their website and apps off the ground, all with low-bandwidth pricing to save them money over other cloud providers.

 

If you are looking for the best place to build web apps or API backends on robust infrastructure, DigitalOcean is the place for you. They provide a fully managed solution that handles your infrastructure, operating systems, databases, and other dependencies on their new App Platform product. App Platform makes it easy to build, deploy, and scale apps. Get started for free at do.co/founders.

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:29] - [First question] - What Ethena does

[00:06:31] - Lessons from her military career

[00:09:13] - Good and bad elements of leadership training from the military 

[00:11:35] - The problem of what sucks in compliance training

[00:14:33] - The enablement of bad behavior among people with power

[00:17:56] - The original idea for Ethena and bringing it to market

[00:21:15] - Determining who is the right person to serve first 

[00:24:03] - Lessons for building good software 

[00:26:21] - How they have adapted to working in and around regulation

[00:29:31] - Getting other companies to buy into the product

[00:34:45] - Creating effective content and measuring that effectiveness

[00:38:13] - Darker sides of growing the business and raising money

[00:39:57] -  How ‘the Motherhood Penalty’ Plays Out for Startup Founders

[00:43:12] - Fixing the problems with bias in venture capital investing

[00:46:57] - What is the outlook and long-term vision for the business

[00:50:38] - What has her most excited for the future

[00:51:53] - Most interesting about the Rhodes Scholar program

[00:54:02] - Kindest thing anyone has done for her

 

Mar 25, 2021
Jesse Walden - A Primer on NFTs - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 218]
47:35

My guest today is Jesse Walden, the founder of Variant, an early-stage venture firm investing in crypto networks and platforms building the ownership economy.

 

With all the hype surrounding NFTs, I wanted to talk to Jesse about them, given his background in the music industry and his focus on the creator and ownership economy. The conversation did not disappoint. We discuss the basics of what an NFT is, what new creative paradigms they might unlock, and where we are in the NFT hype cycle.

 

This episode is the first in what will likely become its own show we are calling Primers. Our goal for primers is to bring investors and operators from a zero to a seven understanding of a topic, concept, or industry. The goal here is for the education around these topics to be fast and entertaining. I hope you enjoy this discussion with Jesse Walden and hopefully the first of many Primers to come.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

This episode is brought to you by NordVPN. NordVPN is the best VPN to keep your internet experience private.

 

It has over 5,500 servers in 60 countries to ensure super-fast internet while protecting your information no matter where you are. As working from home and remote work become more prevalent, now is the time to protect your personal and business information without any data logging.

 

NordVPN works on all popular platforms, including Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS, and supports up to 6 simultaneous connections across your devices.

 

To get started, go to nordvpn.com/patrick or use code PATRICK to get a 2-year plan plus 1 additional month with a huge discount and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:04:19] - [First question] - Simple definition of an NFT

[00:05:22] - What distinguishes NFTs from each other 
[00:06:24] - The value chain of a song, and who owns it

[00:12:07] - Monetization and royalties on traded tokens

[00:15:02] - Consumer incentives for purchasing NFTs

[00:19:19] - Long-term passive income and media legos

[00:22:23] - Technical breakdown of minting, hosting, and storing tokens

[00:24:28] - Verification of token ownership on the blockchain

[00:25:58] - NFT marketplaces and aggregators

[00:27:06] - Opensea.io 

[00:27:21] - Foundation.app 

[00:29:46] - Innovations inspired by the NFT explosion

[00:31:01] - Mirror.xyz 

[00:32:26] - NBA Topshot

[00:32:57] - Crypto Punks

[00:23:24] - Nifty Gateway

[00:34:30] - Physical cultural assets in the digital landscape

[00:36:02] - Legacy brands exploring digital goods and tokenized ownership

[00:38:37] - NFTs becoming the port of entry of all media
[00:39:39] - An ownership economy in second generation internet platforms

[00:41:02] - Uniswap
[00:42:41] - The “hype cycle” of NFTs and incoming market correction
[00:44:18] - Lessons for investors in the NFT space

[00:45:15] - Lessons for buildings in the NFT space

[00:45:54] - Resources to continue learning about NFTs
[00:45:54] - NFTs make the internet ownable by Jesse Walden
[00:46:20] - NFTs and a thousand true fans by Chris Dixon
[00:46:13] - A beginner’s guide to NFTs by Linda Xie

Mar 23, 2021
Jonathan Goldberg - Capturing Carbon - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 25]
50:04

My guest today is Jonathan Goldberg, the founder, and CEO of Carbon Direct, a company focused on advising and investing in carbon removal at scale. Jonathan started his career in the commodities division of Goldman Sachs and then went on to start a commodity hedge fund, BBL Commodities. In our conversation, we cover the state of the carbon problem today, the importance of global carbon standards and carbon taxes, and the future of carbon capture and removal technologies. This was a masterclass on all things carbon-related. Please enjoy my conversation with Jonathan Goldberg. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for e-commerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. 

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders

-----

This episode is brought to you by DigitalOcean. DigitalOcean provides founders and creators with the platform they need to get their website and apps off the ground, all with low-bandwidth pricing to save them money over other cloud providers.

 

If you are looking for the best place to build web apps or API backends on robust infrastructure, DigitalOcean is the place for you. They provide a fully managed solution that handles your infrastructure, operating systems, databases, and other dependencies on their new App Platform product. App Platform makes it easy to build, deploy, and scale apps. Get started for free at do.co/founders.

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:25] - [First question] - Overview of his career

[00:06:02] - The start of his commodities trading strategy and its evolution 

[00:09:08] - Key strategies for making money as a commodities trader

[00:10:41] - Opportunity to trade commodities today 

[00:11:39] - Making the shift to carbon capture work

[00:15:04] - Range of consequences for elevated carbon emissions and biggest buckets of carbon

[00:18:52] - An outline of the Paris Climate Accord and other agreements on climate change

[00:20:26] - Ways to remove carbon from the atmosphere

[00:23:46] - The technology to remove carbon and incentives to invest in this technology

[00:26:19] - Corporate participation in the carbon trade 

[00:28:35] - Balance of natural vs man-made solutions 

[00:31:53] - Making money without the altruistic goals

[00:33:43] - Trends in the fossil fuel industry 

[00:36:41] - Convenient ways for consumers to switch to clean energy products

[00:39:57] - The geopolitical will to shift towards cleaner energy

[00:41:58] - Primary consequences of not making this shift

[00:44:25] - The important role of regulation 

[00:46:01] - Thinking through the investing side of combating climate change

[00:48:59] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Mar 18, 2021
Marissa King - The Science of Social Networks - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 217]
58:07

My guest this week is Marissa King, a professor of organizational behavior at the Yale School of Management. I was fascinated by Marissa's work after coming across her book, Social Chemistry: Decoding the Elements of Human Connection, earlier this year. Our conversation covers the three types of social networking styles, the surprising impact of COVID on social networks, and what her research tells us about building high-performing teams. This episode covers many topics I haven't explored before that I find fascinating. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Marissa King.   

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

------

This episode is brought to you by NordVPN. NordVPN is the best VPN to keep your internet experience private.

 

It has over 5,500 servers in 60 countries to ensure super-fast internet while protecting your information no matter where you are. As working from home and remote work become more prevalent, now is the time to protect your personal and business information without any data logging.

 

NordVPN works on all popular platforms, including Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS, and supports up to 6 simultaneous connections across your devices.

 

To get started, go to nordvpn.com/patrick or use code PATRICK to get a 2-year plan plus 1 additional month with a huge discount and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:04:04] - [First question] - Origin of her career and topics she is focused on

[00:04:06] - Social Chemistry: Decoding the Patterns of Human Connection

[00:04:09] - Priya Parker Podcast Episode

[00:05:41] - Why the focus on Autism and some of the trends around it

[00:08:07] - Prevalence of mental health and substance abuse vs. raised awareness

[00:09:16] - The eureka moment for her in this research

[00:10:16] -  Pattern in growing large social movements

[00:11:43] - The Expansionists group and their role in large social movements

[00:14:31] - Acid test for the Brokers group

[00:15:35] - How she developed the categories of people that drive social movements

[00:17:35] - Most memorable moments of discovery in the development of these categories

[00:18:58] - Important categories for overall network science

[00:20:20] - Behavioral changes we can make to improve the nature of our social connections

[00:23:21] - The pitfalls for each group and how they can invest in their own network

[00:25:29] - Conveners and what they need to improve 

[00:26:34] - Downside of being a broker

[00:27:58] - The attachments styles of secure, anxious, or avoidant

[00:30:07] - Velocity of interactions possible today and what it means for research

[00:32:02] - How men and women develop networks differently

[00:33:55] - What is unique in organizational behavior through the lens of her research

[00:36:19] - Best practice for creating high output interactions

[00:37:33] - Putting together the perfect team

[00:38:42] - Largest pitfalls in putting together a good team

[00:40:00] - Role of conversation in effective network building

[00:41:15] - Being a great listeners and distractions

[00:42:47] - Eric Maddox Podcast Episode

[00:43:41] - Good policy for running a network, being attentive to the network

[00:46:40] - The power of touch

[00:48:39] - How movements become societal and what role technology has played

[00:52:46] - How this applies to a business

[00:53:34] - Biological underpinnings of Dunbar’s number

[00:57:13] - Kindest thing anyone has done for her

 

Mar 16, 2021
Jonathan Neman - Building the Modern Restaurant - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 24]
53:49

My guest this week is Jonathan Neman, the co-founder and CEO of Sweetgreen. Sweetgreen is a fast-casual restaurant chain that Jonathan co-founded in 2007 during their senior year at Georgetown when he realized they couldn't find a healthy, affordable, and convenient place to eat. Today, Sweetgreen operates in 11 markets and will have about 160 restaurants across the US by the end of 2021. In our conversation, we cover the origins of Sweetgreen and how it builds a direct relationship with its customers, how Jonathan thinks restaurants should work with marketplaces like DoorDash, and the economics of operating restaurants. While Sweetgreen is primarily a restaurant concept, Jonathan brings a tech-first mindset to the food industry, focusing less on single-store economics and more about customer lifetime value and the importance of owning the relationship with the customer. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Jonathan Neman.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for e-commerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. 

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders

-----

This episode is brought to you by LinkedIn Jobs. With LinkedIn, you get access to an active community of professionals with more than 722 million members worldwide. LinkedIn is the easiest place in the world to post a job and message qualified candidates. Getting started is easier than ever, and now you can do this all from your mobile device. 

 

When your business is ready to make that next hire, find the right person with LinkedIn Jobs. And now, you can post a job for free. Just visit linkedin.com/fieldguide to post a job for free. Terms and conditions apply. 

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:04] - [First question] - The origins of Sweetgreen

[00:05:47] - Something they did from a position of naivete, working their supply chain

[00:07:18] - Most common reason restaurants go wrong

[00:08:35] - Building the first restaurant and lessons along the way 

[00:12:22] - Effective menu building

[00:14:36] - The Sweetgreen network and how they view the restaurant as a network

[00:21:05] - What their digital business means compared to other restaurant businesses

[00:23:55] - How they have improved at converting people into their ecosystem

[00:27:40] - Creating win-win partnerships

[00:29:12] - The pros/cons of the marketplaces in the food industry

[00:32:58] - The general economics of a restaurant

[00:36:58] - Allocating capital differently when the focus is the customer and not the store

[00:39:36] - How tech trends aimed at improving personal health plays into Sweetgreen’s plans

[00:45:11] - Their focus on sustainability for the business

[00:47:56] - The core values of ‘Add the Sweet Touch’ and ‘Live the Sweet Life’

[00:50:18] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

[00:51:38] - Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets to Success, One Relationship at a Time

Mar 11, 2021
Josh Wolfe and Tony Thomas - The Past, Present, and Future of Defense – [Invest Like the Best, EP. 216]
01:25:45

My guests today are Josh Wolfe and Tony Thomas, better known as T2. Josh is the co-founder and General Partner at Lux Capital. T2 is now a venture partner alongside Josh at Lux Capital, after serving for almost 40 years in the US military and becoming a 4-star general and the 11th Commander of US Special Operations Command. Our conversation focuses on the technology frontier in defense as well as the geopolitical threats that the US faces. We talk about everything from semiconductors and autonomous weapons systems to the moral dimensions of investing in defense technology. I hope you enjoy this fascinating conversation with Josh Wolfe and Tony Thomas.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company – also known as MITIMCo, the endowment office of MIT. MITIMCo seeks to find people who are focused on achieving exceptional long-term investment returns, partner with these firms early, and stick around for the very long term. MITIMCo doesn’t care how small, new, or un-institutional your firm is if you have the potential to generate amazing results that support MIT’s pursuit of world-class education, cutting-edge research, and groundbreaking innovation.

 

Despite their willingness to invest early, they do not ask for GP economics and they commit their initial capital for ten years.  

 

Visit www.mitimco.org and their new emerging managers page to learn more.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:46] - [First question] - Overview of Tony Thomas’s career

[00:06:36] - His focus on the information wars and truthiness

[00:08:50] - How Josh and Tony met

[00:12:27] - Experiencing the slow pace of technology growth within the Department of Defense

[00:15:51] - History of businesses selling to and engaging with the government

[00:23:52] - Consensus of the threats we face today 

[00:28:55] - Most important competitive frontier today 

[00:35:09] - The lessening of kinetic warfare

[00:46:51] - State of the drone technology and industry 

[00:52:56] - Mapping the arctic and the geopolitical ramifications

[00:54:31] - The frontier of space 

[00:59:26] - What shouldn’t be unmanned technology 

[01:02:31] - The cutting edge of simulation technology 

[01:06:50] - The most important thing to know about the future of semiconductors

[01:11:36] - The moral lens of working with and investing in defense companies

[01:20:53] - Traits of the most exceptional soldiers he’s served with

[01:23:53] - Kindest thing anyone has done for Tony

Mar 09, 2021
Matteo Franceschetti – Modernizing Sleep – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 23]
43:21

My guest today is Matteo Franceschetti, the founder and CEO of Eight Sleep, a smart mattress company. I’m a customer of Eight Sleep and this was one of the most unique founder conversations I’ve had on the show, in both the focus on the product and the exploration of sleep. We talk about which biometrics matter, how hard it is to start a hardware company and launch manufacturing overseas, how Matteo manages his own sleep, and the massive potential for preventative health companies like Eight Sleep may have in the future. I hope you enjoy this conversation with Matteo Franceschetti. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo. Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for ecommerce. With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. 

 

See why Klaviyo is trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders

-----

This episode is brought to you by LinkedIn Jobs. With LinkedIn, you get access to an active community of professionals with more than 722 million members worldwide. LinkedIn is the easiest place in the world to post a job and message, qualified candidates. Getting started is easier than ever and now you can do this all from your mobile device. 

 

When your business is ready to make that next hire, find the right person with LinkedIn Jobs. And now, you can post a job for free. Just visit linkedin.com/fieldguide to post a job for free. Terms and conditions apply. 

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.   

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:36] - [First question] - Origins of the Eight Sleep business

[00:03:21] - Designing and testing the original product

[00:04:17] - Goal of the product

[00:05:19] - How temperature can improve sleep

[00:06:28] - Accuracy of the sensors in this product

[00:08:30] - Valuable inputs for health that they measure, HRV (heart rate variability)

[00:09:59] - Amount of research on the variables they measure and impact on health

[00:11:45] - Hardest data for them to measure in their mattress

[00:14:03] - Early challenges to launching the business

[00:15:27] - Lessons from the early manufacturing process

[00:16:50] - Working through the potential business models

[00:17:56] - Goal of less sleep and reducing light sleep

[00:19:45] - Behavior changes he’s made as a result of understanding his sleep more

[00:21:08] - How alcohol/caffeine impacts sleep

[00:22:01] - How food impacts sleep

[00:23:01] - Why glucose spikes are bad for sleep

[00:23:40] - Challenges in the business after the crowdfunding stage

[00:25:34] - Marketing lessons from a high price point and infrequently purchased product

[00:26:42] - Most exciting day in the researching phase

[00:27:48] - Turning an infrequent purchase into a frequent sale

[00:28:54] - What it’s like to work with his wife

[00:30:03] - Future of the quantified self-movement

[00:31:23] - The hardest challenge in the business

[00:32:13] - Most valuable things he’s learned as a fan of Formula 1 racing

[00:33:41] - Future of the mattress business

[00:35:28] - Other businesses he has learned from

[00:36:40] - Lessons from the data part of the business

[00:38:26] - Collecting more data from their customers without being intrusive

[00:39:56] - What he’s learned through Apple Health 

[00:41:39] - What has him excited for the long term future of Eight Sleep

[00:42:32] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Mar 04, 2021
Jack Clark - Grateful for Everything, Entitled to Nothing – [Invest Like the Best, EP. 215]
42:26

My guest today is Jack Clark, head coach of the University of California Varsity Rugby team. Jack has one of the highest winning percentages not only at the collegiate level but in sports history, winning an incredible 90% of games since his start as a coach in 1984. That includes a 98 game winning streak from 1990 to 1996 and a 115 game winning streak from 2004 to 2009. In our conversation, we dive into how Jack builds high-performing teams, the shared vocabulary he creates across his organization, and his work with companies applying what he's learned on the field to operating businesses. Please enjoy this conversation with Jack Clark. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company. MITIMCO is the endowment office of MIT. New and small investment funds listen up. MITIMCO is looking to find investors starting funds today.

 

MITIMCO is partnership-driven, long-term focused, and has an extensive history of backing investors early in their careers. These partners are key in delivering the outstanding investment returns required to support MIT's pursuit of world-class education, cutting-edge research, and groundbreaking innovation. MITIMCO is focused on finding and partnering with the best investors across the globe, no matter the market environment. No firm is too small, too young, or too non-institutional.

 

If you or someone you know is currently in the process of starting a fund or recently launched, please email partner@mitimco.org or discover more on their website at mitimco.org/partner.

------

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:44] - [First question] - Overview of his playing and coaching career

[00:06:02] - The importance of creating a set of values for a team

[00:07:53] - Why selflessness is such an important trait he looks for in teams

[00:09:20] - Examples of selflessness in the teams

[00:10:06] - The Winner Within: A Life Plan for Team Players

[00:10:24] - Lessons on gratitude and entitlement

[00:11:34] - Being a meritocracy on the team

[00:12:55] - Rewarding merit as a coach

[00:14:18] - Improving a team today, the power of the basics and fundamentals

[00:15:29] - Defining toughness for players and teams

[00:17:29] - Mark Bingham, the epitome of toughness

[00:18:33] - Why he created and how he uses a glossary

[00:22:09] - Creating a high rate of conversion in recruiting

[00:25:01] - What qualities did the teams that beat him share

[00:27:22] - Take on pride and something he is exceedingly proud of

[00:29:17] - Translating the concepts from the court into the business world

[00:32:20] - Where companies have room to improve

[00:33:16] - Changing a company culture

[00:34:21] - Coaches he has learned from 

[00:36:00] - The power of non-cognitive grit

[00:38:45] - Advice for companies creating a value set

[00:40:40] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him 

Mar 02, 2021
Ryan Petersen - Where There Is Mystery, There Is Margin – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 22]
01:08:51

My guest today is Ryan Petersen, founder and CEO of Flexport. Flexport is a technology platform for global trade. In this conversation, Ryan takes us through the fragmented world of international freight shipping, and we dive deep into the history and inefficiencies of the system. We also cover how shipping containers were standardized, how new protocols get adopted internationally, and the challenges of doing business in the “no man's land” of international waters. Ryan is the type of entrepreneur I enjoy talking to most: he has incredible domain knowledge, high energy and is tackling an enormous global problem. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Ryan Petersen.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

 

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

-----

This episode is brought to you by DigitalOcean. DigitalOcean provides founders and creators with the platform they need to get their website and apps off the ground, all with low-bandwidth pricing to save them money over other cloud providers. 

 

If you are looking for the best place to build web apps or API backends on robust infrastructure, DigitalOcean is the place for you. They provide a fully managed solution that handles your infrastructure, operating systems, databases, and other dependencies, on their new App Platform product. App Platform makes it easy to build, deploy, and scale apps. Get started for free at do.co/founders.

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:24] - [First question] - Overview of what Flexport does

[00:04:49] - His introduction into the world of shipping

[00:06:49] - Difference between parcel and freight

[00:08:53] - Market cap of the overall shipping industry

[00:09:24] - Fragmentation of shipping and what Flexport is solving for

[00:12:52] - Worst parts of the shipping world

[00:15:34] - Improving the tech behind the shipping container

[00:19:06] - Why the shipping container changed the world

[00:19:07] - The Box: How the Shipping Container Made the World Smaller and the World Economy Bigger

[00:21:27] - Teams and outsider perspectives in solving problems

[00:22:34] - How their business could make shipping more efficient and reduce costs

[00:25:24] - Where the margins and profits are made in shipping

[00:25:49] - Poor Charlie's Almanack: The Wit and Wisdom of Charles T. Munger

[00:27:11] - The finance side of shipping

[00:28:56] - Maritime law and the ocean

[00:30:57] - How much is left in the digitization of shipping

[00:32:48] - The perfect state of shipping using Flexport

[00:38:19] - Investing in hard assets to expand the business

[00:41:03] - Lessons about building a business and global coordination

[00:43:15] - Multidisciplinary thinking among their team

[00:44:04] - Global supply chain issues in light of Covid and ocean policing 

[00:44:15] - Peter Zeihan Podcast Episode

[00:47:59] - Testing out demand in the beginning

[00:50:28] - The process of testing out new ideas and killing off losers

[00:52:33] - Important lessons/themes for founders

[00:54:51] - Hardest learned lesson, fundraising

[00:58:06] - Other opportunities in shipping

[00:59:47] - Lessons for creating a new standard

[01:02:22] - Using their standardization to improve global relief work

[01:04:40] - Creating synchronicity in a company

[01:07:09] - What he’s excited about for the future

[01:07:53] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Feb 25, 2021
Jeremy Grantham - A Historic Market Bubble – [Invest Like the Best, EP.214]
01:04:37

My guest today is Jeremy Grantham. Jeremy is the Long-Term Investment Strategist and Co-Founder at GMO. Jeremy has an encyclopedic knowledge of the history of markets, which made it such a pleasure to have him back on the show. In this conversation, we discuss the three key signs of a bubble, why Jeremy believes we are in a bubble right now and how it’s being led by retail rather than institutional investors. We close with the important role that demographics and productivity will play over the next few decades across the world. Please enjoy my conversation with Jeremy Grantham.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest-growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked Twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 


Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at koyfin.com

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company. MITIMCO is the endowment office of MIT. New and small investment funds listen up. MITIMCO is looking to find investors starting funds today.

 

MITIMCO is partnership-driven, long-term focused, and has an extensive history of backing investors early in their careers. These partners are key in delivering the outstanding investment returns required to support MIT's pursuit of world-class education, cutting-edge research, and groundbreaking innovation. MITIMCO is focused on finding and partnering with the best investors across the globe, no matter the market environment. No firm is too small, too young, or too non-institutional.

 

If you or someone you know is currently in the process of starting a fund or recently launched, please email partner@mitimco.org or discover more on their website at mitimco.org/partner.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:03] - [First question] - His view on the markets today 

[00:03:07] - Jeremy Grantham’s Podcast Episode

[00:08:00] - Proliferation of SPAC’s and how he views them as a potential bubble

[00:10:20] - Could SPAC’s help to improve the IPO process

[00:14:30] - How he viewed the Gamestop story through his historical context 

[00:18:24] - Is investor education possible 

[00:19:50] - How the increasing role of retail investors impacts bubbles

[00:24:15] - Attitudes towards market bears in bubbles

[00:28:52] - Long term view on the economy and the forces pushing it higher

[00:41:50] - Returning to a hard money standard for the US economy

[00:49:39] - Would a finite supply of money change market trajectory

[00:51:02] - Best ways to improve the infrastructure of the economy and people’s willingness to work

[00:53:52] - What should one do if they believe we are in a bubble

[00:58:14] - What he is excited about in his green investments

[01:02:28] - Advice to young investors  

Feb 23, 2021
Carlos Brito – Creating an Ownership Culture – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 21]
57:00

My guest today is Carlos Brito, CEO of Anheuser-Busch InBev. AB InBev is the world’s largest brewer of beer and maintains a portfolio of hundreds of beer brands across the globe. Our conversation focuses on AB InBev’s culture of ownership, how Carlos balances organic growth with acquisitions and managing disruption as an industry incumbent. I loved hearing about Carlos’ story from growing up in Brazil to now running one of the largest businesses in the world. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Carlos Brito.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

-----

This episode is brought to you by NetSuite. NetSuite allows founders to centralize their payment systems, ditch old spreadsheets and Quickbook tools, and finally gain visibility and control over their financials, HR, inventory, eCommerce - all in one place, instantly.

Whether you are doing a million in revenue or hundreds of millions in revenue - see why over 22,000 companies are using NetSuite today. Schedule your free product tour at netsuite.com/invest.

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.   

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:12] - [First question] - His career path and how he got to where he is today

[00:11:02] - Culture building lessons throughout his career

[00:14:52] - Maintaining ownership of company culture as businesses grow 

[00:16:47] - How and why they avoid wasted resources

[00:18:49] - Why conserving resources is so beneficial for a company

[00:21:18] - Spreading culture into new members of a team

[00:25:26] - Lessons from managing a large portfolio of different brands

[00:27:58] - Biggest mistakes he has seen within brands

[00:29:38] - Navigating changes/threats in the beer industry, starting with craft beers

[00:32:56] - Lessons from the production and distribution side of the business 

[00:36:02] - How to assess and decide to move into a new market

[00:37:12] - Role of data in deciding how to allocate resources and capital

[00:40:34] - The evolution of marketing over his career

[00:44:32] - Implementing the meritocracy to keep the right people in the company and move them around

[00:47:59] - Feedback he needed to hear

[00:49:16] - How other leaders can decide on whether to focus on inorganic or organic growth

[00:51:41] - What he’s most proud of from his career

[00:53:13] - Passion for the product

[00:54:12] - Most memorable beer in his life

[00:54:56] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Feb 18, 2021
Scott Belsky - Focus on the First Mile – [Invest Like the Best, EP. 213]
53:58

My guest today is Scott Belsky. Scott was the co-founder and CEO of Behance, the world's largest creative network, and a prolific angel investor, having made early-stage investments in Pinterest, Uber, Carta, and Airtable. His company was acquired by Adobe in 2012, where he is currently the chief product officer. In this conversation, we cover the importance of focusing on the first mile of a customer's experience with your product, why every user is (at first) either lazy, vain or selfish, and what the rise of creativity tools means for creators and investors in the future.  We also cover the major trends that Scott thinks will dominate for the next decade. This was one of those conversations where I was left with 10 great lessons that will stick with me for a long time. Please enjoy my conversation with Scott Belsky.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest-growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked Twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 

Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at koyfin.com.

------

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:24] - [First question] - Philosophy for building great products

[00:04:52] - Starting the journey of building a great product 

[00:06:08] - Making the first mile better

[00:08:12] - Understanding user progress in product building 

[00:10:25]  - Getting to awareness and attention and interest in a product 

[00:12:41] - The concept of window dressing

[00:14:24] - Taking an idea and turning it into a high-value product 

[00:14:42] - The Messy Middle: Finding Your Way Through the Hardest and Most Crucial Part of Any Bold Venture and Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality

[00:16:49] - Keeping rewards structure in place for teams to stay engaged

[00:19:56] - Using his knowledge in product building to invest in other companies

[00:24:00] - The concept of object model

[00:25:52] - User psychology concepts they keep in mind when designing a product

[00:27:51] - Implementing all of these strategies into a product

[00:29:25] - The era of eduployment

[00:31:05] - How this will impact colleges

[00:33:27] - The evolution of the talent/audience relationship

[00:35:32] - Decentralization and the companies of 1

[00:37:44] - How that decentralization will impact his investment thesis

[00:39:21] - How increased productivity tools could help with more creativity in the workplace

[00:42:04] - Training people to be more creative in the workplace

[00:44:33] - Future of user interfaces

[00:44:58] - The Interface Layer: Where Design Commoditizes Tech

[00:48:10] - Good design principles

[00:49:51] - The future coming out of Covid

[00:52:09] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Feb 16, 2021
Matt Mullenweg – The Past, Present, and Future of the Internet – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.20]
55:29

My guest today is Matt Mullenweg, co-founder and CEO of Automattic, the company on top of the open-source project WordPress that Matt helped start. Today, WordPress powers 40% of all the websites in the world. Our wide-ranging conversation covers the state of the internet when Matt first started WordPress, the symbiotic relationship between open source and proprietary projects, and how the most successful companies are really master world builders. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Matt Mullenweg.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Vanta. Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founder’s Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:15] – [First question] – What the internet felt like when he first started building Wordpress

[00:05:11] – What was wrong with his impression of the internet then

[00:06:50] – Being a connoisseur of things overlooked 

[00:08:34] – How permission less publishing and open source software shaped the internet

[00:12:30] – Balance between centralization and decentralization and where we are in the cycle

[00:14:08] – The cycle between direct-to-consumer and having intermediary

[00:16:32] – New opportunities and challenges of the internet today

[00:18:49] – Potential of cryptocurrency to enable big changes on the internet

[00:21:22] – The idea of distributed work via the internet and the utopia of it

[00:21:38] - Sam Harris podcast with Matt Mullenweg

[00:24:31] – Advantage of having a team distributed across geographies and timezones

[00:26:46] – What he learned from the Amazon’s API mandate

[00:29:12] – Landmines of distributed work

[00:31:13] – Interesting lessons learned building Wordpress

[00:34:55] – Company building as world building

[00:35:52] – Lessons from Microsoft on platform building

[00:38:53] – Key ingredient to world building within your company

[00:41:09] – Lessons from Wix and Shopify 

[00:42:23] – How to decide what to do next in resource and capital allocation

[00:47:00] – How to engage with other stakeholders in a platform business

[00:50:06] – The continued connectivity created by the internet

[00:53:14] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Feb 11, 2021
Michael Dempsey – Investing in Bleeding Edge Technology – [Invest Like the Best, EP.212]
55:50

My guest today is Michael Dempsey, General Partner at Compound. Michael invests in a broad range of areas but has a unique talent for combining brand building and direct customer relationships with technically demanding sectors. Our conversation covers the rise of virtual influencers, robotics, and how to best identify key inflection points in the evolution of new technologies. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Michael Dempsey. 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest-growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked Twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 

Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at koyfin.com.

------

This episode is brought to you by MIT Investment Management Company. MITIMCO is the endowment office of MIT. New and small investment funds listen up. MITIMCO is looking to find investors starting funds today.

MITIMCO is partnership-driven, long-term focused and has an extensive history of backing investors early in their careers. These partners are key in delivering the outstanding investment returns required to support MIT's pursuit of world-class education, cutting-edge research, and groundbreaking innovation. MITIMCO is focused on finding and partnering with the best investors across the globe no matter the market environment. No firm is too small, too young, or too non-institutional.

If you or someone you know is currently in the process of starting a fund or recently launched, please email partner@mitimco.org or discover more on their website at mitimco.org/partner.

------

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:54] – [First question] – Early stages of his career

[00:05:13] - What are inflection points and how he views them as a source of opportunity 

[00:07:40] - Real vs fake inflection points 

[00:12:19] - Creativity as a key component of inflection points 

[00:12:33] - On Inflection Points

[00:15:01] - Generative Adversarial Networks

[00:18:02] - History of animation and the innovation we are seeing there today 

[00:20:12] - Animation is Eating the World

[00:24:11] - The concept of a digital celebrity and their scale

[00:29:17] - Characteristics of digital celebrity creators

[00:31:12] - Longevity and consistency of these personalities

[00:33:11] - Future of gaming and potential for investments in the space 

[00:37:49] - The landscape for robotics and what has him excited

[00:41:07] - The exploration of space and the opportunities there.

[00:44:35] - Computational biology and the investment potentials.

[00:48:11] - How 2020 has changed the ability to solve scientific problems

[00:51:32] - The idea that Cyberpunk is now

[00:53:32] - Sam Hinkie podcast episode

[00:53:51] - Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Feb 09, 2021
Dustin Moskovitz – Eliminating Work About Work – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 19]
53:04

My guest today is Dustin Moskovitz, co-founder and CEO of Asana, a team-centric product management tool used by over 1.3 million users around the world. Dustin started Asana in 2008, 4 years after co-founding Facebook. In this conversation, we dive into Dustin's belief about the diminishing returns of hard work, the shocking amount of productivity lost in doing "work about work", and Dustin's philanthropic investment strategy around leverage and maximizing ROI. I hope you enjoy my wide-ranging conversation with Dustin Moskovitz. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/88012555/moskovitz-eliminating-work-about-work

-----

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. Visit
https://www.tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

-----

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, go to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up at https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:19] – [First question] – Balancing hard purposeful work and too much work that leads to burn out

[00:05:41] – What led to this way of thinking

[00:06:54] – Regulating hard work through culture

[00:08:25] – False tradeoffs and how Asana represents this

[00:09:43] – Origins of Asana

[00:13:22] – Organizing the chaos of a project

[00:18:09] – Change vs discipline of the mission

[00:19:55] – Transferring good ideas from one company to another

[00:23:19] – Instilling leverage as a concept in an early company

[00:25:21] – New learning curves in building Asana

[00:26:52] – Hardest boss battle during his time at Asana

[00:28:43] – The role of the work graph

[00:31:46] – The proliferation of the work management space and the overall landscape

[00:32:56] – The idea of radical inclusiveness

[00:36:31] – Best reasons to start a new company

[00:37:47] – What will lead to Asana’s continued success

[00:38:59] – Lessons building the product

[00:41:13] – Work with the Open Philanthropy Project

[00:43:44] – Work on pandemics and biosecurity

[00:46:11] – Where he sees the future of artificial intelligence

[00:50:47] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Feb 04, 2021
Chamath Palihapitiya – The Major Problems Facing the World – [Invest Like the Best, EP.211]
01:06:19

My guest today is Chamath Palihapitiya, the founder and CEO of Social Capital, whose mission is to advance humanity by solving the world's hardest problems. I didn't know where this conversation would take us given Chamath's wide-ranging activities and interests but I think it provides an interesting glimpse into some of his core beliefs and the source of his drive. In our wide-ranging discussion we cover potential paths to closing the income inequality gap, how to manage one's personal psychology, his perspective on "value investing", and tackling climate change. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Chamath Palihapitiya. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/33654465/palihapitiya-the-major-problems-facing-the-world.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked Twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 


Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at 
koyfin.com.

-----

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. Visit
https://www.tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

-----

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, go to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up at https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:13] – [First question] – His experience with debt and how he approaches personal finance

[00:09:13] – Attacking the problem of perpetual income inequality

[00:12:06] – Reaching the right people to fix the problem

[00:15:04] – A for profit business to solve the problem of income inequality

[00:19:18] – Traps he has beaten and hasn’t beaten in his finances

[00:22:15] – Chamath’s focus on family, friends, memories, and legacy

[00:25:01] – Big issues of our time; inequality, climate change, improving education

[00:29:28] – Lessons learned from Social Capital 1.0, allocating funds for himself and others

[00:32:33] – The balance between data and the qualitative analysis of companies

[00:35:26] – Insights into businesses beyond the investments he makes

[00:40:29] – Absurdities in the value investing style

[00:43:32] – Benefits of SPAC investing and opportunities for late-stage entrepreneurs

[00:45:06] – Traits in managers that he invests in

[00:47:20] – What he’s learned about combatting climate change

[00:51:40] – Thoughts on the supply chain, specifically as Americans

[00:54:35] – Company life cycles and innovation

[00:57:15] – What is most broken in the capital markets system

[00:58:58] – Fixing healthcare

[01:01:36] – Fixing climate change as President for a day

[01:02:06] – Messaging effectively

[01:03:14] – Is he a “main character” in the investing world

[01:04:06] – Tweeting a picture of himself as a kid

[01:04:42] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Feb 02, 2021
Ali Ghodsi – The Past, Present, and Future of Big Data – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.18]
48:03

My Guest today is Ali Ghodsi, founder and CEO of Databricks, a data analytics platform for data scientists and developers. He's also the founder of Apache Spark, the open-source project that Databricks is built on, and is an accomplished researcher at UC Berkley's computer science department. Our conversation ranges from the origins of distributed computing to modern data infrastructure, how companies can leverage their massive datasets, and the transformation of Databricks through its phases of growth as a business. While technical, it's exactly the kind of conversation I like to have on this show. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Ali Ghodsi. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/4919706/ghodsi-the-past-present-and-future-of-big-data 

 

This episode of Founder's Field Guide is sponsored by Klaviyo.  Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for ecommerce.


With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. See why Klaviyo's trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business.

For a free trial check out https://www.klaviyo.com/founders

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide go
to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes.   

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:48] – [First question] – What is Databricks

[00:03:34] – History of distributed computing

[00:05:35] – Hardware that made this all possible

[00:07:20] – Early challenges in building out these systems

[00:09:43] – What has made networking technology better

[00:10:35] – Doing something in storage vs with memory

[00:11:45] – Origins of Hadoop

[00:12:42] – Use cases of distributed data in 2010 that weren’t possible in 2000

[00:13:35] – Origins of Spark

[00:15:25] – Early Spark and then the transformation into Databricks

[00:16:50] – Early uses cases

[00:17:37] – Their relationship to the open-source project

[00:21:07] – What customers need in order to work with Databricks

[00:23:11] – Their customer interaction

[00:26:27] – How they think about making investments

[00:28:24] – Their competitive advantage

[00:30:13] – Other companies in moving the needle in building distributed computing industry

[00:32:10] – Walls that need to be broken down today

[00:34:02] – Best practices for companies when it comes to their data

            [00:34:13] – Jeff Lawson Podcast Episode

[00:38:47] – Lessons being a CEO

[00:39:53] – Working at the University of Berkeley’s AMPLab

[00:41:56] – What excites him about the future

[00:43:29] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Jan 28, 2021
Joost van Dreunen – Unlocking Value in Gaming – [Invest Like the Best, EP.210]
01:01:36

My guest today is Joost van Dreunen, an investor in the gaming space, professor at NYU's Stern School of Business, and former CEO and co-founder of SuperData Research, a data-driven gaming firm that was acquired by Nielsen. He also recently authored One Up: Creativity, Competition, and the Global Business of Video Games, a great book on the business game industry and why I reached out to speak with him in the first place. Our conversation covers the rise and decline of GameStop, what parts of the value chain actually make money in video games, the evolution of video game business models from Nintendo to Fortnite, and what other industries can learn by studying the video game industry. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Joost van Dreunen. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/14574831/van-unlocking-value-in-gaming

 

This episode of Invest Like the Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis.  If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

Invest like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best go to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:38] – [First question] – First chapter of the modern gaming business

[00:06:28] – The product era of video games

[00:10:11] – The different pieces that take place in creating and selling a game

[00:12:25] – The story of GameStop

[00:18:45] – The transition to digital platform-based gaming

[00:22:55] – How the breakdown of platforms has changed

[00:27:35] – Free-to-play vs free-to-win in digital gaming

[00:31:27] – How the revenue models are changing the type of games that are made

[00:35:07] – Socializing games and the future there

[00:38:14] – Who is making money in the modern gaming world

[00:43:33] – The zones of opportunity to invest in within gaming

[00:47:12] – Why the business models can be more powerful than new tech

[00:53:52] – Strategies from gaming that the non-gaming industries can learn from

[00:57:05] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Jan 26, 2021
Ilkka Paananen – Superpowering Teams – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.17]
45:01

My guest today is Ilkka Paananen, Founder and CEO of Supercell, a mobile game developer based in Finland. Supercell has built hugely successful games like Clash of Clans and Clash Royale that have reached over 100 million daily active users. What interests me most about the company is Supercell's unique culture built on decentralized, autonomous teams with nearly total creative control. Ilkka and I talk about how Supercell hires and designs teams, why they incorporate as little process as possible, and the rise of global, social games. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Ilkka.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/72273479/paananen-superpowering-teams 

 

This episode of Founder's Field Guide is sponsored by Klaviyo.  Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for ecommerce.


With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. See why Klaviyo's trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business.

 

For a free trial check out https://www.klaviyo.com/founders

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide go
to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:51] – [First question] – Why he is the “least powerful CEO in the world.”

[00:04:03] – His career prior to Supercell

[00:07:53] – Lessons from his prior career that he brought to Supercell

[00:11:49] – What he looks for in identifying and recruiting the best people

[00:13:46] – The funnel of getting great people into the business through the rest of the team

[00:15:44] – The Supercell recruitment team

[00:17:33] – Interviewing and screening applicants

[00:18:39] – Building teams and how they are the driving force behind the company

[00:21:29] – The culture of trust throughout the company

[00:24:13] – Ensuring teams know when to kill a project

[00:26:11] – Celebrating after a project gets shutdown

[00:28:15] – Why retention is such an important focus of the company

[00:30:40] – How reach and depth lead to a game’s success

[00:32:21] – The teams outside of development and how they operate

            [00:33:36] - LOST & CROWNED | A Clash Short Film

[00:34:53] – His day-to-day

[00:35:49] – Biggest surprises within Supercell since its founding

[00:36:38] – What makes for a good game

[00:37:59] – The notion of infinite games

[00:39:28] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Jan 21, 2021
Claire Cormier Thielke – The Future of Cities and Real Estate – [Invest Like the Best, EP.209]
01:04:42

My guest today is Claire Cormier Thielke, Managing Director of Asia Pacific for Hines, the largest private real estate investment, development and management firm in the world with over $144 billion in assets under management. Claire responsible for acquisitions, development, and new business generation for Hines APAC and was also recently appointed to the board of Zillow. I was first introduced to Claire two years ago and have wanted to have her on the podcast ever since. 

Her personal story is fascinating - Claire finished Stanford undergrad in 2.5 years and now teaches there - on the intersection of tech and real assets, she was a professional track and field athlete - competing for USA Track and Field, and she's run a marathon on Everest, which we discuss. Aside from her personal story and some of her amazing achievements, in the episode, we dive into the world of real estate investing including how to use pattern recognition to unlock real alpha in real estate, the ingredients that make a city special, and the surprising ROI of public art.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/72331821/cormier-the-future-of-cities-and-real-estate

 

This episode of Invest Like the Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis.  If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

Invest like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best go to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:01] – [First question] – Overview of her career and her passion for real estate

[00:05:32] – The impact of Gerry Hines on her life

[00:07:30] – Her theory of and what she thinks about cities

[00:09:47] – Cities rhyming with each other

[00:12:03] – How the highway act led to growth in cities

[00:13:31] – How cities compare around the world

[00:15:42] – Airplanes as time machines

[00:18:42] – Overview of a building project and how it differs from investing in equities

[00:23:15] – Rebuilding a city from scratch

[00:25:45] – Major real estate changes we’ll be seeing in the US

[00:28:30] – Real estate trends that fascinate her in Asia

[00:30:10] – Real estate plugging into other industries

[00:32:11] – Trends in Asia that could be ported to the US

[00:34:08] – Where to see the best of cities today (post-pandemic)

[00:37:28] – The ROI on public art

[00:38:33] – Her time in track and field

[00:41:59] – The concept of tomorrow time

[00:42:49] – Cultivated other part of her training

[00:45:07] – Her marathon on Mount Everest

[00:46:26] – Replicating the extreme performance piece of herself in a professional setting

[00:48:18] – Lessons from being a professor

[00:49:53] – Joining Zillow’s board, what she wants to bring and get

[00:52:17] – Her childhood and her parents, how that influenced her

[00:56:26] – How one person can be actionable

            [00:58:30] – Brad Gerstner and Rich Barton podcast episode

[01:00:32] – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

Jan 19, 2021
Oliver Hughes – The Secret FinTech Giant – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.16]
57:57

My guest today is Oliver Hughes, the CEO of Tinkoff, the leading online commercial bank based in Russia. I found this conversation fascinating and think it will be essential for anyone who wants to understand online financial services or the next generation of fintech. Our conversation touches on how Tinkoff used direct mail campaigns to become the largest online banking provider in Russia, their last-mile delivery platform that combines couriers with door-to-door salesmen, and how they build profitability into every aspect of the business. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Oliver Hughes.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/72486324/hughes-the-secret-fintech-giant

 

This episode of Founder's Field Guide is sponsored by Klaviyo.  Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for ecommerce.

With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. See why Klaviyo's trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business.

For a free trial check out https://www.klaviyo.com/founders

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide go
to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:44] – [First question] – The origins of Tinkoff

[00:06:18] – How they started and stayed profitable, and lessons learned

[00:08:18] – Bringing Visa to Russia and what he took with him to Tinkoff

[00:10:02] – Overall Credit card and Tinkoff's specifically business model

[00:12:35] – Running an effective direct mail acquisition campaign

[00:15:45] – Branching off from the original core credit card business into other spaces

[00:18:45] – How he thinks about when to make competing investments

[00:21:00] – Embedding into new businesses and how it goes wrong

[00:24:50] – How they became a large door-to-door business in Russia

[00:27:55] – Why that door-to-door business makes it hard to compete with them

[00:29:38] – Challenges in the payments business

[00:32:25] – Using content to help them grow their business

[00:35:29] – Competitive frontiers for Tinkoff and how often they shift

[00:38:45] – What the future of Tinkoff might look like and the Russian business environment

[00:41:55] – State of the market in Russia today

[00:45:27] – Recruiting talent and building culture

[00:47:55] – What he enjoys most about his job

[00:49:14] – Failures and lessons from them

[00:52:00] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

 

Jan 14, 2021
Zack Fuss – Breaking Down the Food Ecosystem – [Invest Like the Best, EP.208]
01:19:29

My guest today is Zach Fuss, an investor at Continental Grain, a 200-year-old family owned business that is focused on investing and operating businesses throughout the food and agriculture ecosystem with assets across the US, Latin America, and Asia. Prior to his work at Continental, Zack was an analyst at Tiger and Citadel. This is a must listen for those interested in any aspect of the food ecosystem but also understanding value chains more generally. In our conversation we cover where profits tend to sit in a specific value chain, how legacy food businesses are creating their 2nd acts as digital businesses and explore what makes Domino's Pizza so interesting and special. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Zach Fuss. 

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/93129089/fuss-breaking-down-the-food-ecosystem

This episode of Invest Like the Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis.  If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

This episode is brought to you by the MIT Investment Management Company (MITIMCO). MITIMCO is always on the looking for promising investment managers with the potential to compound our capital for a decade or more. If you think your firm is too small, too young, or too non-institutional, you might just be exactly what we are looking for. Check us out at https://mitimco.org/partner/ or e-mail us at  partner@mitimco.org. Please also see our new page for emerging managers https://mitimco.org/emerging-managers/.

  

Invest like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best go to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:42] – [First question] – Key components of the food management business

[00:05:12] – The most defensible businesses in the food chain

[00:07:51] – Law of conservation of attractive profits in the food business and food delivery

[00:11:05] – Legacy food businesses and ones that have adapted well to changes today

[00:15:42] – Dark stores and cloud kitchens

[00:17:11] – Breaking down the Domino's Pizza business

[00:19:45] – Being a Domino's Pizza franchise owner

[00:21:03] – Why they offer such high returns to franchise owners

[00:23:22] – The tech company aspect of Domino's Pizza

[00:25:25] – Same store economics for an owner

[00:28:15] – When Domino's Pizza realized their food was not great

[00:29:45] – Why Domino's Pizza owns the delivery and won’t go on other platforms

[00:32:47] – Most portable pieces of Domino's Pizza business

[00:34:03] – Parts of Domino's Pizza history that are intriguing

[00:35:51] – Build once, sell many times

[00:40:09] – Lessons from the best retail businesses

[00:43:26] – Has it become harder for smaller companies to win with larger ones being more nimble

[00:46:39] – Watching the alternative meat companies flourish

[00:49:49] – Interesting trends in the food space

[00:51:22] – Global trends in food that we can learn from

[00:54:04] – Impact of Covid on the food industry

[00:57:44] – Businesses outside of stores that he finds fascinating

[01:00:08] – Why he’s impressed by Chipotle

[01:01:48] – Approaching buying a franchise

[01:05:30] – Creating a new QSR business and differentiating from the pack

[01:07:58] – Frontiers that he’s interested in today

[01:10:17] – What he is saying in the competitiveness in public equities

[01:13:48] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

 

Jan 12, 2021
Carlos Cashman – Lessons from the Amazon Ecosystems – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.15]
01:04:24

My guest today is Carlos Cashman,  co-founder and co-CEO of Thrasio an acquirer of third-party Amazon sellers. In a surprising departure for a high growth company, Thrasio has been profitable since its founding in 2018 and was most recently valued at $1 billion. In our conversation we discuss the full spectrum of the Amazon third party seller ecosystem, the effects of globally commoditized manufacturing, and the terms of Thrasio's acquisitions of Amazon businesses. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Carlos Cashman.  

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/28372673/cashman-lessons-from-the-amazon-ecosystem

 

This episode of Founder's Field Guide is sponsored by Klaviyo.  Klaviyo is the ultimate marketing platform for ecommerce.


With targeted segmentation, email automation, SMS marketing, and more, Klaviyo helps you create your ideal customer experience. See why Klaviyo's trusted by more than 50,000 brands, like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad to help them grow their business.

 

For a free trial check out https://www.klaviyo.com/founders

 

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide go
to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:44] – [First question] – Origin of Thrasio

[00:07:27] – The types of business they work with

[00:11:19] – Challenges for smaller businesses selling on Amazon and when they need a Thrasio

[00:15:31] – How the Amazon ecosystem has changed since they started

[00:18:14] – The capital sourcing side of their business

[00:19:49] – Future of the ecommerce space that has them excited

[00:27:20] – What makes the major online powerful so powerful for DTC companies

[00:32:18] – How edge erodes on spend when people crowd into a platform

[00:34:46] – Building the recognition of the Thrasio brand

[00:44:06] – His history as an entrepreneur and what was the common thread in these businesses

[00:45:47] – Getting customers early on

[00:46:47] – Knowing when something will fail

[00:48:48] – Downside of MBA’s

[00:50:07] – The importance of people in building a company

[00:51:01] – Effectively hiring people

[00:52:37] – What has to remain with the founder

            [00:52:50] – The Outsiders: Eight Unconventional CEOs and Their Radically Rational Blueprint for Success

[00:53:53] – Other places in ecommerce that fascinate him

[00:56:36] – What are the risk factors that he worries about

[00:59:12] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Jan 07, 2021
Ram Parameswaran - Internet Scale Businesses – [Invest Like the Best, EP.207]
01:24:50

My guest today is Ram Parameswaran, founder of Octahedron Capital. Ram started Octahedron this year after more than 5 years as a partner at Altimeter Capital where he made investments in Square, Bytedance, Pinduoduo, and Udaan. In our conversation we cover the potential for internet scale businesses, explore the common characteristics of these businesses, and then go through a rapid-fire round of the most important qualities for 8 business models. This conversation was a blast of energy and could have gone on for 2 more hours. I hope to have Ram on again and can't imagine what his conversations are like at the dinner table with his wife and former podcast guest, Anu Hariharan. Please enjoy this awesome conversation with Ram Parameswaran.  

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/22392883/parameswaran-internet-scale-businesses

 

This episode of Invest Like the Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis.  If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

This episode is brought to you by the MIT Investment Management Company (MITIMCO). MITIMCO is always on the looking for promising investment managers with the potential to compound our capital for a decade or more. If you think your firm is too small, too young, or too non-institutional, you might just be exactly what we are looking for. Check us out at https://mitimco.org/partner/ or e-mail us at  partner@mitimco.org. Please also see our new page for emerging managers https://mitimco.org/emerging-managers/.

  

Invest like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best go to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:45] – [First question] – The opportunity of the commercial internet

[00:11:18] – Identifying the companies that will take advantage of this shift to online commerce

[00:18:30] – How businesses build scale, in particular internet vs non-internet businesses

            [00:23:09] – How Amazon Wins: By Steamrolling Rivals and Partners

[00:24:19] – The Carvana playbook

[00:30:11] – Using frequency of use as a factor in valuing a business

[00:33:55] – Evaluating ByteDance and what can others learn from them

[00:40:52] – Finding success in an experiment

[00:43:32] – How online commerce business will grow globally, with India in focus

[00:55:28] – How they approach and evaluate online advertising businesses

[00:54:50] – Evaluating direct content subscription online businesses

[00:55:42] – Biggest challenges in building ecommerce online businesses

[00:58:31] – The lens to evaluate online marketplace businesses

[00:59:43] – What distinct things matter for on-demand online businesses

[01:01:56] – The competition in the online payment space business

[01:06:35] – Rake/Take rates outside of the US

[01:08:25] – Things that matter for consumer software

[01:10:25] – How that compares to enterprise software

[01:11:44] – Evaluating developer companies

            [01:11:51] – Jeff Lawson Podcast Episode

[01:13:53] – Advice to help people be successful early in their investing career

[01:17:22] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Jan 05, 2021
Dylan Field - The Growing Importance of Design – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.14]
56:14

Dylan Field is the co-founder and CEO of Figma, a collaborative, online design tool which has taken the world by storm. With a most recent valuation of more than $2B and bakers like Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia, Kleiner Perkins, and Greylock, Figma has been one of the most successful companies building tools for creators. In our conversation, we dive into the principles Figma is built on, how they created multi-player for design tools, and the growing importance of design in business. I hope you enjoy this conversation with Dylan Field.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/375923/field-the-growing-importance-of-design

 

DocSend is a document sharing platform that enables companies to share business-critical documents with ease and get real-time actionable analytics. With DocSend’s security and control, startup founders, investors, business development executives, and financial professionals can drive business outcomes that have a lasting impact. Start for free at www.docsend.com.

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide go
to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:2:04] – [First question] – His decision to and application for the Thiel Fellowship

[00:3:23] – What makes his co-founder Evan so good

[00:4:15] – The Thiel Fellowship interview process

[00:5:26] – Creating better opportunities for open ended learning in education

            [00:6:12] – Why Software Is Eating The World

[00:7:48] – Importance and types of independent thought as they built Figma

[00:10:00] – Early stages of forming Figma

[00:12:03] – The market of designers and what Figma does

[00:15:57] – His principles of good design

            [00:17:36] – Bret Victor - Inventing on Principle [Youtube]

            [00:17:49] - Up and Down the Ladder of Abstraction

[00:18:12] – Future of design tools

[00:19:45] – Design as a multiplayer concept and surprises that have come from it

[00:21:40] – Threshold to know when product-market fit occurred

[00:24:11] – Lessons for pricing something effectively

[00:25:48] – Biggest challenge growing the business for him

[00:26:58] – What he’s learned as a manager since starting Figma

[00:28:38] – Lessons in effective recruiting

[00:31:49] – Payoff of hiring the right partner

[00:33:01] – The chapters/stages of Figma

[00:34:38] – What has led to success in terms of the distribution of Figma

[00:35:56] – Hardest thing to copy about Figma

[00:36:47] – Dealing with customer support and unhappy users

[00:38:08] – Their Communities platform and why it’s important for the business

[00:39:02] – Learning about and from their competitors

[00:41:50] – The landscape of software design tools

[00:43:43] – Interesting creator tools

[00:44:31] – What would be the key levers that lead to explosive growth for Figma

[00:45:57] – Global trends he is most curious in

[00:47:21] – Creating a more private digital world

[00:49:33] – Thoughts or advice for people building something new

[00:50:57] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Dec 31, 2020
Tracy Graham - Investing in Overlooked Businesses – [Invest Like the Best, EP.206]
56:35

My guest today is Tracy Graham, founder and managing principal of Graham Allen Partners, a private equity firm that specializes in acquiring and building technology-enabled businesses. In our conversation we discuss how Tracy ended up playing football at Notre Dame, the key lessons he learned from famed coach Lou Holtz, why Graham Allen believes that businesses in secondary or tertiary US markets are undervalued, and why technology represents a great way to improve old businesses. I hope you enjoy my fun conversation with Tracy.

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/86798473/graham-investing-in-overlooked-businesses.

 

This episode of Invest like the Best is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Square, Snowflake, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in.

Visit
https://www.tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

This episode is brought to you by the MIT Investment Management Company (MITIMCO). MITIMCO is always on the looking for promising investment managers with the potential to compound our capital for a decade or more. If you think your firm is too small, too young, or too non-institutional, you might just be exactly what we are looking for. Check us out at https://mitimco.org/partner/ or e-mail us at  partner@mitimco.org. Please also see our new page for emerging managers https://mitimco.org/emerging-managers/.

 

Invest like the Best is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best go to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here at https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[3:35] – [First question] – Tracy’s origin story

[7:17] – Lessons from Lou Holtz

[8:58] – Why Lou was so good as a leader

[10:32] – His early experience as an entrepreneur

[15:45] – Investing principle at Graham Allen and how it was shaped by his experience

[18:41] – Types of companies they target for investment

[23:09] – Defining a unique and interesting data set

[27:14] – Mispricing data sets and the fools gold

[29:19] – Overview of a Midwest manufacturing company

[31:50] – How data is being generated in manufacturing businesses

[36:57] – Data to improve marketing

[41:13] – Using data to dissect distribution

[45:59] – Valuation of the companies in terms of multiples they are looking at

[47:31] – Business values he strongly believes in

[50:54] – Significance of Kenneth Allen in the firm

[52:23] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

 

 

Dec 29, 2020
Zach Perret – The Future of Financial Services – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.13]
58:24

Zach Perret is the founder and CEO of Plaid.  Plaid helps companies build fintech solutions by creating APIs that allow people to connect their financial data to apps and services. In this conversation, we dive into Zach's philosophy on building products, how the financial system works today, how the financial system needs to be updated, and the trends Zach is seeing from the next wave of fintech companies launching on Plaid. I hope you enjoy this conversation with Zach Perret.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content check out https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes/39328476/perret-the-future-of-financial-services

 

DocSend is a document sharing platform that enables companies to share business-critical documents with ease and get real-time actionable analytics. With DocSend’s security and control, startup founders, investors, business development executives, and financial professionals can drive business outcomes that have a lasting impact. Start for free at www.docsend.com.

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus Inc. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide go
to https://www.joincolossus.com/episodes.   


Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week.  Sign up here - https://www.joincolossus.com/newsletter.

 

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Follow Colossus on Twitter at @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[2:00] – [First question] – The notion of Great Challenges he got from his parents

[3:34] – How it was instilled into him

[4:26] – Default Consumptive State and constantly asking questions

[5:33] – Origins of Plaid

[8:57] – An overview of the Plaid product

[11:10] – The early challenges of building Plaid and creating trust with all of the stakeholders

[15:57] – First big break for Plaid

[18:06] – Convincing Venmo to work with them

[20:12] – What helped build relationships with customers

[21:30] – How money is moved and their place in the chain

[24:34] – How convenience helps to create larger markets and opportunities

[26:39] – Usage base vs recurring revenue models

[28:03] – Maintaining their systems as the landscapes and customers shift

[29:56] – What is he seeing on the financial services frontier

[32:34] – Building relationships with developers

[35:07] – Lessons from building a business he’s learned along the way

[37:44] – Successful techniques in recruiting

[39:52] – What’s working well in this current landscape

[41:41] – Business models that interest him

[43:14] – Advice for other startup founders

[44:49] – Things he doesn’t understand today that he wishes he did

[45:46] – What he attributes Plaid’s success too

[47:55] – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

[50:09] – How you know when you’ve found a great challenge

Dec 24, 2020
Mario Cibelli - Cornerstone Investing Insights - [Invest Like the Best, EP.205]
47:18

My guest today is Mario Cibelli. Mario is the managing partner of Marathon Partners Equity Management, a long-biased, concentrated investment firm that he's run for over 20 years. In our conversation, we discuss how his firm figured out Blockbuster's DVD volume and told Reed Hastings and Netflix about their numbers, why visiting a company's distribution center can be an edge for investors, Mario's interesting foray into the world of tequila, and how a few "cornerstone" investing insights have led to many of Marathon's long positions. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Mario.

 

This episode of Invest like the Best is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Square, Snowflake, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in.

Visit
https://www.tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:34) – (First question) – Doing a deep dive into the early days of Netflix

            (2:43) – Netflixed: The Epic Battle for America's Eyeballs

(6:50) – What was impressive about Reed

(7:34) – Visiting Netflix’s distribution centers early on and the lessons of those visits

(10:44) – Lessons learned from other distribution centers

(17:52) – What helps create good luck for a company

(19:17) – Why tequila was fun to investigate

(25:09) – Why tequila is different from other hard liquors

(27:40) – Finding the cornerstone insight in a company

(29:20) – What he’s learned about media-driven personalities and WWE

(34:30) – Lessons in starting a media company and developing IP

(39:00) – Having to battle activist shareholders in business

(42:43) – How the rate of return in deep investigations has changed over his time

(45:08) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Dec 22, 2020
Bob Pittman - Lessons from Building Media Empires – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.12]
01:09:25

My guest today, Bob Pittman, has had one of the most interesting careers I’ve ever come across. Today, he’s the CEO of iHeartMedia, the country’s largest operator of radio stations and podcasts. Bob also created MTV, was the CEO of Six Flags and 21 Century Real Estate, and the COO of AOL and AOL Time Warner. He’s the Dos Equis man of business. In our conversation we discuss why convenience is king for consumers, his lessons from building MTV into one of the most iconic brands and media properties in the world, the rise of user-generated content platforms, and the future of media. We also discuss what qualities make for a great host, a topic that given my current position, is always fascinating. Please enjoy my great conversation with Bob Pittman.

 

DocSend is a document sharing platform that enables companies to share business-critical documents with ease and get real-time actionable analytics. With DocSend’s security and control, startup founders, investors, business development executives, and financial professionals can drive business outcomes that have a lasting impact. Start for free at www.docsend.com.

 

This episode of Founder’s Field Guide is also brought to you by NetSuite.

Netsuite allows founders to centralize their payment systems, ditch old spreadsheets and Quickbook tools, and finally gain visibility and control over their financials, HR, inventory, eCommerce - all in one place, instantly.

Whether you are doing a million in revenue or hundreds of millions in revenue - see why over 22,000 companies are using NetSuite today. Schedule your free product tour at 
https://www.netsuite.com/invest.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:56) – (First question) – His personal interest that unites all of his business ventures

(4:09) – His philosophy on the consumer

(7:43) – Biggest quality mistakes business leaders make

(9:31) – Respecting convenience in consumer preferences

(11:08) – Founding insight to build MTV

            (16:23) – Fred Seibert on Math in Magic Podcast

(17:14) – How the music video concept evolved with MTV

(22:37) – Role of hosts vs guests in the media world

(25:13) – Quality that increases the odds a host works

(30:15) – Why everyone needs to know how to tell a good story

(31:53) – Peak of his time at MTV

(37:51) – Lessons for new media from his experience

(43:46 – The largest uncertainty in the media landscape amid the rise of user generated content platforms

(49:27) – Where he finds inspiration outside of business

            (55:40) – What Other People Say May Change What You See

(56:16) – Different ownership structures and how they changed his behavior

(59:09) – Finding and respecting your audience

(1:02:11) – Lessons from time at Six Flags

(1:02:24) – Most interesting thing about podcasting

(102:52) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Dec 17, 2020
Sam Hinkie – Find Your People - [Invest Like the Best, EP.204]
01:17:31

My guest today is Sam Hinkie. Sam worked for more than a decade in the NBA with the Houston Rockets and then as the President and GM of the Philadelphia 76ers. And now, after years of personal investing, he has launched his own venture capital firm, Eighty-Seven Capital. Every conversation I have with Sam is alive with insight, and this one is no different. We explore the idea of studying the "breadcrumbs" that someone leaves behind as a way to track their progress and trajectory, finding and attracting the right people into one’s orbit, and the lessons from the NBA that most shape his investing career. Sam has taught me the most about the topic of building trust, which we cover here as well. I am excited to share my conversation with Sam with all of you. Please enjoy!

 

This episode of Invest like the Best is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Square, Snowflake, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in.

Visit
https://www.tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

This episode is brought to you by the MIT Investment Management Company (MITIMCO). MITIMCO is always on the looking for promising investment managers with the potential to compound our capital for a decade or more. If you think your firm is too small, too young, or too non-institutional, you might just be exactly what we are looking for. Check us out at https://mitimco.org/partner/ or e-mail us at  partner@mitimco.org. Please also see our new page for emerging managers https://mitimco.org/emerging-managers/.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(3:48) – (First question) – Conducting a good interview

(5:58) – Drilling into topics to learn more about people

(7:49 – What percentage of people are actually worth spending time with for Sam

(9:29) – People who think in a strange way that intrigues him

(10:36) – Interest in digital breadcrumbs and how to follow them

(14:02) – Building context around founders vs analyzing their pitch decks

(17:20) – A real world example of the bread crumb strategy, Houston Rockets GM

(21:25) – How successful people evolve with the erosion of their pre-established edge

(23:07) – Shifting to a people-first focus

(24:50) – Creating an atmosphere that attracts the best talent

(26:50) – Tailoring things to someone else’s incentive structure

(28:24) – Most amazing thing someone did in early days of working with Sam

(30:18) – Lessons from sports that he carries with him

(32:31) – Exceptions to relationships being a key to success

(33:03) – Have people gone soft?

(34:58) – Knowing whether founders are on the right path

(36:07) – Avoiding transactional type people

(37:04) – Most effective lessons he brought to sports from the investing world

(40:01) – Ideas from the sports world he is bringing to the investing world

(44:11) – How the size of the team can impact the success of the team

(45:48) – Designing the game for himself

(50:33) – Lessons learned from watching them build trust

(52:26) – Market areas that have his attention

(54:13) – Fascination into API’s

(58:05) – Keeping your focus on your expertise

(59:45) – Strangest things he’s seen in early stage investing

(1:01:26) – Playing the long game

(1:04:29) – Calling it Eighty-Seven Capital.

            (1:04:42) – Means of Ascent (The Years of Lyndon Johnson)

(1:05:49) – Increasing his chance at a GM job

(1:06:52) – What can Caro teach us about the long game

(1:08:26) – Lessons of power

(1:10:39) – Quality in leaders he respects most

            (1:11:17) – The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson

(1:12:58) – The power of breadcrumbs and how people can start to lay them out

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Dec 15, 2020
Michelle Zatlyn – Protecting the Internet – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.11]
58:10

My guest today is Michelle Zatlyn. Michelle is the co-founder and COO of Cloudflare, a now $25 billion dollar business which she helped take public last year. Cloudflare helps businesses make their websites faster and more secure, and over 25 million websites are running Cloudflare today. In our conversation, we discuss the catalyst for starting CloudFlare, explore the layers of the internet and the future of distributed storage and computing power, and discuss how and why Cloudflare operates its network across 200 cities globally. We close with the importance of finding and working with great co-founders and partners as you build a business. I hope you enjoy our conversation.

 

DocSend is a document sharing platform that enables companies to share business-critical documents with ease and get real-time actionable analytics. With DocSend’s security and control, startup founders, investors, business development executives, and financial professionals can drive business outcomes that have a lasting impact. Start for free at www.docsend.com.

  

This episode of Founder’s Field Guide is also brought to you by NetSuite.

Netsuite allows founders to centralize their payment systems, ditch old spreadsheets and Quickbook tools, and finally gain visibility and control over their financials, HR, inventory, eCommerce - all in one place, instantly.

Whether you are doing a million in revenue or hundreds of millions in revenue - see why over 22,000 companies are using NetSuite today. Schedule your free product tour at 
https://www.netsuite.com/invest.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:52) – (First question) – Project Honeypot and how it started

(3:39) – What question was Honeypot solving

(4:59) – Working through the idea maze of Cloudflare

(7:30) – The first iteration of Cloudflare

(8:15) – An overview of the cybersecurity market and why more leaders need to pay attention

(10:33) – First big break for the company

(12:50) – Risks they help mitigate

(16:42) – Cyber weapons that Cloudflare protects against

(20:14) – Hardest part of the building process

(24:06) – Effective marketing lessons

(25:41) – The sharks vs mosquitoes concept

(27:53) – How do decide where to focus next

(31:34) – The Cloudflare workers program

(36:33) – Their scale vs other cloud providers

(42:21) – The finance side of Cloudflare and their relationship vs Wall Street

            (42:40) – John Collison Podcast Episode

(44:47) – Relationship with their founding partners

(50:46) – What about the future is most excites them

(52:32) – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Dec 10, 2020
Danny Meyer – The Power of Hospitality - [Invest Like the Best, EP.203]
50:33

My guest today is Danny Meyer, the founder and CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group, which compromises some of the most acclaimed restaurants in New York like Gramercy Tavern and Union Square Café. He’s also the founder and chairman of Shake Shack, which began in New York City but is now a publicly traded company with hundreds of locations worldwide. Our conversation focuses on how great hospitality leads to a great business, regardless of what sector its in. We discuss why hospitality is the starting point for Danny’s business philosophy, why first impressions matter, Danny’s concept of ABCD - always be connecting dots, how to scale hospitality, and how to build a business with essentialism and soul. The other day, when my young son went ice skating and fell a lot he said to me “well you learn from your mistake so you try to make as many of them as you can.” You’ll hear Danny say something powerfully similar late in the conversation. It’s a lovely thought, then, that I found out my son, my firstborn, was a boy in one of Danny’s restaurants, in a reveal orchestrated by his incredible team. I really hope you enjoy our conversation.

 

This episode of Invest like the Best is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Square, Snowflake, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in.

Visit
https://www.tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is also sponsored by Assure. Assure is changing the way investors manage private transactions.

 

With Assure, investors can eliminate nearly all the admin cost of private investment. On top of that, they handle all the backend, legal, taxes, accounting, and compliance. All of it, with a straightforward one-time fee. Learn more and try Assure for yourself at https://www.assure.co/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(3:41) – (First question) – His experience as a tour guide in Italy

(8:17) – Why hospitality is the center of business focus

            (8:19) – Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business

(11:50) – Early lessons at creating an environment of hospitality

(15:17) - His strategy ABCD and learning from a trout fisherman relate and relate to hospitality

(20:45) – Scaling hospitality

(24:56) – What kind of people make a hospitality business work

(29:34) – How to be an effective leader

(33:00) – Handling mistakes well in the role of hospitality

(36:28) – Creating the spark in the early part of entrepreneurial ventures

(40:32) – When its time to start something new vs expand something you are already doing

(45:52) – The excellence reflex and an example of this in his career

(50:25) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Dec 08, 2020
Zac Bookman – How Government Works – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.10]
01:15:09

My guest today is Zac Bookman. Zac is the Founder and CEO of OpenGov a budgeting and financial management software for local governments. Before he founded OpenGov Zac was an Advisor to U.S. Army General H.R. McMaster in Afganistan, a law clerk on the Ninth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals, and earned a Fullbright Fellowship studying corruption in the Mexican government. This conversation is one of the most unique and wide-ranging of any I've had on the show. We cover how Zac built a world-class sales organization, the power of selling momentum, and the role capital efficiency still plays in building great companies. We also dive into the details on how local government works from mayors down to school board meetings. Please enjoy my conversation with Zac Bookman. 

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

  

This episode of Founder’s Field Guide is also brought to you by NetSuite.

Netsuite allows founders to centralize their payment systems, ditch old spreadsheets and Quickbook tools, and finally gain visibility and control over their financials, HR, inventory, eCommerce - all in one place, instantly.

Whether you are doing a million in revenue or hundreds of millions in revenue - see why over 22,000 companies are using NetSuite today. Schedule your free product tour at 
https://www.netsuite.com/invest.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:56) – (First question) – His career leading up to OpenGov

(5:45) – Experience in Afghanistan and lessons from his time there

(8:54) – Aligning a large group on a strategy

(9:56) – Aligning the team at OpenGov when getting started

(11:54) – Levels of government that matter and what their systems looked like when he was getting started

(15:24) – Role of budget and how money flows in in government operations

(18:55) – How technology can fix the bureaucracy of government

(21:40) – Can technology help the public’s relationship to government

(24:20) – Defining vertical SaaS products

(27:02) – Picking the right products/customers to build your product well

(28:33) – Their purpose when building their first product

(30:23) – Building a company in a highly regulated space

(32:14) – Selling in this space and lessons learned

(34:04) – Building a machine to distribute enterprise software

(37:03) – Getting the technical, political, and commercial processes aligned

(39:40) – Staying up to date on the market and fending off your competition

(42:18) – Competency within public governments

(44:03) – Metrics that he uses to understand the health of OpenGov

(46:07) – The importance of charging the right price for professional services

(48:36) – Hardest episode in developing OpenGov

(50:17) – Valid early criticisms of the company

(52:34) – Advice to new entrepreneurs entering the vertical SaaS space

            (54:06) – The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers

(57:04) – Engineering momentum among teams

(59:00) – Personal improvement as a leader

(1:01:55) – The study of death and why it’s important for him

(1:04:19) – What people can get spending time in the mountains

(1:06:53) – Role of capital efficiency in his work

(1:09:11) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Dec 03, 2020
Daniel Gross – Finding Undiscovered Talent - [Invest Like the Best, EP.202]
59:20

My guest today is Daniel Gross. Daniel is the founder of Pioneer, an extremely unique company which he describes as a “fully remote startup generator” that helps talented people around the world figure out if their idea has legs. You can learn more about it at pioneer.app. Our wide-ranging conversation covers the art of asking great questions, the use of predictive modeling and psychometrics to identify talent, and why psychometrics are probably overrated and not that scientific. We then dive into exciting new frontiers for tech investing ranging from GPT-3 to satellites. I really enjoyed this conversation and I hope you will too.

 

This episode of Invest like the Best is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors.

With Tegus, you can learn everything you'd want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 10,000 calls on Square, Snowflake, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in.

Visit https://www.tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is also sponsored by Assure. Assure is changing the way investors manage private transactions.

With Assure, investors can eliminate nearly all the admin cost of private investment. On top of that, they handle all the backend, legal, taxes, accounting, and compliance. All of it, with a straightforward one-time fee. Learn more and try Assure for yourself at https://www.assure.co/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(3:15) – (First question) – His passion for Crank and Whiplash and why movies are great screeners for interviews

(6:15) – Overview of Pioneer

(7:56) – Defining talent

(10:02) – The equivalent page rank when it comes to people

(14:10) – Psychometrics and matter to him

(18:13) – The importance of persistence

(20:23) – The concept of insecure overachievers

(22:48) – Fast twitch vs slow twitch capitalism

(24:31) – Importance of memes as it relates to human behavior today

(26:14) – The landscape of the type of businesses being formed

(29:25) – Overview of GPT3

(33:33) - The Power of Ten Playbook

(38:08) – Technologies going from a frontier to a utility

(42:45) – Why something like a Starlink can’t be regulated

(44:58) – Seed vs leech ratio in capital funding

            (49:10) – Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success

(49:15) – Dissecting Patrick’s usual closing question and good questions for screening people

(52:56) – What questions help him get to the bottom of

(55:58) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Dec 01, 2020
Emmett Shear - The New Language of the Internet – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.9]
51:24

My guest today is Emmett Shear, founder and CEO of Twitch. Twitch is the world's leading live streaming platform for gamers, which was acquired by Amazon in 2014. We talk about how Twitch empowers streamers to monetize their audience, the necessity of picking a customer early in a business, and the lessons Emmett learned scaling Twitch from an online reality TV show to a global brand inside Amazon. We also discuss how Twitch has helped create a new language in the internet age with emotes, a topic I am fascinated by. I hope you enjoy this conversation with Emmett Shear.

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 

This episode is also brought to you by Solo Stove. There's simply no better way to create good moments this holiday season than around a fire with a Solo Stove Bonfire.  Complete with 30-day return policy and a lifetime warranty, the unit is made entirely of stainless steel, and at just 20 pounds, the Solo Stove Bonfire is easy to transport for a perfect evening in the backyard, at the campground, or on the beach. Get $5 off with code Patrick5 before December 31st 2020.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:52) – (First question) – History of interactive entertainment

(4:10) – Interactivity from the clubs in Vienna and what he learned from that

(5:16) – Origins of Justin.TV and when gaming became the focus for Twitch

(8:59) – What he enjoyed about video streaming games early on

(10:21) – Interactive experience between creators and community

(12:28) – Emotes on twitch and how they came to be

(14:45) – Business of emotes and the affiliates

(16:27) – How these features are proliferating out on the internet and changing it

(17:21) – How far we are in the streamer-influencer phenomenon

(20:00) – Building an effective platform for fans

(23:07) – Evolution of the just chatting piece of Twitch

(24:58) – Favorite parts of Twitch from followers: Chess

(26:45) – Running a business within a larger business

(28:09) – Most interesting trend in the market today

(30:40) – Effective ways for recruiting the team

(31:35) – Most curious about what is happening on the internet today

(33:06) – Advice from the early days of Twitch

            (35:55) – Ira Glass video taste and making things

(36:34) – Focus on strategic mission

(38:06) – Identifying the customer

(40:40) – Starting small

(41:45) – Investors focus on potential market size

(43:00) – Most common reasons talented people fail

(43:47) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 26, 2020
RRE Ventures - RRE Ventures - Raju Rishi, Nikita Singareddy, Jason Black - [Invest Like the Best, EP.201]
01:00:13

My guests today are Raju Rishi, Nikita Singareddy, and Jason Black of RRE Ventures. RRE is a New York-based VC firm investing in early-stage start-ups with more than 400 investments over its 25 year history. Raju, Nikita, and Jason focus their time in the world of healthcare investing, a topic I haven't explored much personally or on this show. We discuss the current landscape for healthcare investing, the variety of stakeholders in the healthcare value chain, the opportunities for founders and investors in the space, what excites them most about the future of the space, and the impact COVID has had in shaking up the industry. I hope you enjoy my conversation with the RRE team. 

 

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 

Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at koyfin.com

                                                  

Ladder Teams is a modern personal training experience with expertly designed workout plans, 1x1 access to some of the best coaches in the world, and the power of community, all delivered to your phone. 

If you’re looking to switch up your fitness routine at home or if you are back at the gym and looking to refresh your training plan Ladder Teams has a program for you. Check out https://ladder.fit/Patrick to download the app and get started.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:34) – (First question) – How the team think about attractive investment concepts

(7:13) – The current landscape for healthcare investments

(8:53) – Complications in pricing healthcare and where it needs to change

            (17:45) – Catastrophic Care: Why Everything We Think We Know about Health Care Is Wrong

(17:55) – The major stakeholders and where the innovation is coming from

            (18:22) – The Patient Will See You Now: The Future of Medicine Is in Your Hands

(24:43) – How Covid is changing the healthcare sector

(28:43) – Cutting edge of remote patient monitoring

(37:03) – Passive monitoring and future tech of healthcare

(39:38) – Improving the clinical trial process

(44:54) – Doctors being lost in the shuffle and improving the experience for them

(50:20) – Excites them most about the future of the space

(56:17) – Kindest thing anyone has done for them

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 24, 2020
Nick Kokonas - Know What You Are Selling – [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.8]
01:22:09

My guest today is Nick Kokonas, the co-founder of the 3 of the best restaurants and bars in America - Alinea, Next, and The Aviary as well as the co-founder and CEO of Tock, a comprehensive booking system for restaurants. This was one of my favorite conversations in the history of the show. Nick is a philosophy major turned derivatives trader that is now one of the most well-known names in the restaurant and hospitality industry. We cover so many topics I can’t list them here, but I’ll remember it for why it's so important for a business to really know what it's selling and then actually sell it. Nick also pulls back the curtain on why restaurants and even book publishers can be great businesses if you do them in the right way. I felt like this conversation could have gone on for hours and I hope you enjoy it.

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 

This episode is also brought to you by Solo Stove. There's simply no better way to create good moments this holiday season than around a fire with a Solo Stove Bonfire.  Complete with 30-day return policy and a lifetime warranty, the unit is made entirely of stainless steel, and at just 20 pounds, the Solo Stove Bonfire is easy to transport for a perfect evening in the backyard, at the campground, or on the beach. Get $5 off with code Patrick5 before December 31st 2020.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(3:02) – (First question) – Why he thinks it’s so important to own something

(4:35) – Make decisions that have outcomes

(7:00) – His interest in the restaurant business

(8:54) – Why restaurants are so tough

(12:05) – How their business mindset changed their running of the restaurant

(14:35) – Words they would avoid in the restaurant

(16:19) – Asking the right questions in the restaurant business

(20:40) – Importance in taking the right risks

(22:02) – Coming up with innovative strategies for ticketing, selling meals ahead of time, and dynamic pricing

(30:08) – Can dynamic pricing be extended to other businesses

(31:20) – Origin of Tock

(36:17) – Early days of Tock and identifying the right customers/challenges

(41:33) – Importance of the first customer

(44:22) – The typical restaurant business model

(49:23) – Lessons from Tock and the importance of knowing what your selling

(53:47) – Lessons from publishing

(55:44) – Other aspects of business that people know but do nothing about

(1:00:19) – Their response to Covid and lessons learned

(1:07:43) – The real impact to the food delivery companies

(1:09:24) – How businesses communicate their end processes to their customers

(1:14:07) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 19, 2020
Niki Scevak - Wild Hearts and Wild Ideas - [Invest Like the Best, EP.200]
51:15

My guest today is Niki Scevak, co-founder and partner at Blackbird Ventures. Blackbird is a leading VC firm in Australia and New Zealand and has invested in companies like graphic design platform Canva and autonomous vehicle company Zoox. Our conversation covers the types of wild ideas Blackbird invests in, the landscape of venture and start-ups in Australia and New Zealand, and everything Niki knows about gross margins and customer acquisition. We also introduce a new concept on the show I'm calling Breakdowns, where we dive into a single business, what it does, how it operates, and what makes it tick. I hope you enjoy the conversation.

 

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 


Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at 
koyfin.com

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is also sponsored by Assure. Assure is changing the way investors manage private transactions. 

With Assure, investors can eliminate nearly all the admin cost of private investment. On top of that, they handle all the backend, legal, taxes, accounting, and compliance. All of it, with a straightforward one-time fee. Learn more and try Assure for yourself at https://www.assure.co/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:39) – (First question) – Defining a wild heart

(3:38 – How you identify someone doing their life’s work

(4:30) – Defining a wild idea

(6:13) – Origin of Blackbird and importance of small teams

(7:05) – Investing in companies and not rounds

(09:57) – Signs of a good story and storyteller

(11:37) – Any places he disagrees with the majority of thinkers in the tech investing space

(13:11) – The sleepy firms backing high growth companies

(16:02) – The products of an investment firm

(18:17) – What he likes to see in a startup after their initial investment and gets him worried

(20:21) – Unique characteristics of the New Zealand and Australian markets

(23:36) – Trends he’s seeing in companies he’s backed recently

(24:46) – Everything he knows about gross margins

(25:36) – Range of gross margins in software companies and the quality of the business

(27:00) – Lessons on customer acquisition

(28:23) – Unique way a company acquired customers early on

(29:23) – Customer retention

(31:12) – Finding the best product thinkers

(32:30) – Question he is trying to answer

(34:01) – Lessons from his investing career

(35:40) – Business breakdown of Canva

(38:36) – How Canva gets to its customers

(41:25) – Figuring out the monetization model

(44:42) – Canva’s moat

(46:08) – Most delightful feature

(46:41) – Positive portable lesson from Canva

(49:13) – Best way to learn more about the company

            (49:24) – How I Built This with Melanie Perkins

            (49:27) – This Week in Startups with Melanie Perkins

(49:41) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 17, 2020
Todd McKinnon - Creating and Defining a New Market Category - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.7]
01:01:22

My guest today is Todd McKinnon, co-founder and CEO of Okta, the leading provider of identity management for enterprises. Todd started Okta in 2009 after realizing that enterprises would need a robust solution for identity management in a world where everything was quickly moving to the cloud and today counts over 7,000 enterprises as customers. Our conversation focuses on how Todd decided to leave Salesforce to start Okta, the painful early years of growing the business, how companies can create and define a new market, the different roles he's had to play as the company grew and went public, and the frameworks he's put in place to continue to innovate and test new things as public business. I hope you enjoy our conversation.

 This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:19) – (First question) – Best slide in his presentation for starting Okta

(5:21) – The early days of Okta and what they were trying to do

(8:36) – Challenge of building the company from an engineering perspective

(10:32) – First version of the Okta product

(11:03) – An overview on identify management

(13:55) – The major innovation in the early days of the product

(16:11) – The early struggles of starting a company

(18:49) – Becoming a default mode solution

(20:39) – Most interesting ways the company has grown its services

(22:10) – Future of platform businesses

(24:24) – Expanding into an infrastructure business

(25:59) – Important shifts that they are paying attention

(28:21) – Future of our digital identity and Okta’s potential role

(32:20) – The chapters of Okta’s story so far

(35:03) – Challenges they had to overcome in growing the company

(37:31) – Recruiting the right talent and fostering it early on

(39:12) – Biggest mistakes he’s made with the business

(41:06) – Benefits of extreme focus vs having a broader view of the problems

(43:35) – Innovating within Okta

(46:02) – How software businesses define cost of revenue and cost of goods

(48:23) – Lessons they’ve learned about selling the services of a small company into the largest company

(49:54) – Lessons from working with bad clients/customers

(51:06) – Their inside view into the future of business today

            (51:10) – Jeff Lawson podcast Episode

(52:36) – Best way to maintain the growth of Okta over the long term

(53:30) – Lessons he would give to business students today

(54:51) – Being scared as a founder

(55:27) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 12, 2020
Jason Karp and Rohan Oza – The Power of Brand - [Invest Like the Best, EP.199]
58:46

My guests today are Jason Karp and Rohan Oza. Jason is the founder and CEO of HumanCo, a holding company focused on building businesses that help people live healthier lives. Jason formerly ran the hedge fund Tourbillon Capital and was an audience favorite when he was on the podcast several years ago. Rohan is the co-founder of CAVU Venture Partners, one of the fastest-growing venture funds in the CPG space. Before Cavu, Rohan focused on supercharging brands like Vitaminwater and Smartwater at Glaceau which was acquired by Coca Cola for over $4b dollars. You may also recognize his name as a recurring Shark on ABC's Shark Tank. Our conversation covers how to think about investing in brands, what makes for a great brand, how partnerships with influencers and celebrities can turbocharger a brand,  how brand ultimately gives you pricing power, and how Rohan and Jason try to add, in their words, sizzle, to the brands they work with. I really enjoyed this conversation with two of the smartest people I know on brands and brand strategy and hope you will too. 

 

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 

Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at koyfin.com

 

Ladder Teams is a modern personal training experience with expertly designed workout plans, 1x1 access to some of the best coaches in the world, and the power of community, all delivered to your phone. 

If you’re looking to switch up your fitness routine at home or if you are back at the gym and looking to refresh your training plan Ladder Teams has a program for you. Check out https://ladder.fit/Patrick to download the app and get started.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:58) – (First question) – Exploring the early part of Rohan’s career with Mars

(4:53) – First time changing a brand’s image

(6:40) – Jason’s transition since his last appearance on the podcast

(9:47) – What parts of a brand excite Rohan as an investor

(11:33) – The marketing machine once you find a brand

(13:13) – Options in the retail strategy

(19:07) – Biggest errors early in a brands lifecycle

(21:04) – The shift where consumers care more about the makeup of a product than just the brand

(26:20) – Finding the fanatical few in the early part of a brands lifecycle

(31:03) – How the role of celebrity has changed in shaping brands

(33:01) – The importance of how a brand makes consumers feel

(36:15) – Will distribution drive market changes in the future

(38:17) – Driving revenue multiples for products

(48:33) – Categories in health and wellness ripe for disruption

(52:20) – How scalable health and wellness brands are as public companies

(55:00) – Challenges that older brands have in today’s environment

(56:46) – Kindest thing anyone has done for Rohan

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 10, 2020
John Chambers - Pattern Matching, Playbooks, and Winning Product Categories - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.6]
59:58

My guest this week is John Chambers. John was the CEO of Cisco from 1995 to 2015 where he helped grow Cisco from $70 million to $40 billion in annual revenue. In this conversation we discuss the best business lesson he learned from long time GE CEO Jack Welch, his key lessons from acquiring over 180 companies with Cisco, pattern recognition and playbooks, capitalizing on market transitions enabled by new technologies, the value of team offsites, and a lot more. I was immediately drawn into John's magnetic personality and it's easy to see how he was so adept at running a 40,000 person company for 2 decades. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with John Chambers.

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:04) – (First question) – Why companies need a near death experience

(6:37) – The way his leadership changed between 1999 and 2003

(11:34) – His career before and leading to his time joining Cisco

(17:51) – What Cisco was like when he joined

(21:02) – Role that pattern recognition plays in his management

(24:16) – Lessons learned from the spate of acquisitions they took on under his tenure

(30:46) – Pricing deals and using Cisco’s scale to be successful

(33:09) – Lessons he learned in terms of distribution

(35:10) – What he learned from his relationship with Shimon Peres

(42:08) – His role in helping young entrepreneurs

(46:00) – Transformation on his team building trips to Alaska

(50:42) – Transitions in the world he is focused on right now

(52:542) – Kindest thing anyone has done for John

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 05, 2020
Anu Hariharan – Lessons in Growth Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.198]
01:00:21

My guest this week is Anu Hariharan. Anu is a partner at Y-Combinator's Continuity Fund where she focuses on growth investing. Before YC, Anu was an Investment Partner at Andreesen Horowitz where she worked with portfolio companies Airbnb, Instacart, Medium and Udacity. In this conversation, we discuss growth stage businesses and their business models, how her background as an engineer impacts her investing style, the most interesting international markets for tech start-ups, and how much opportunity there still is for investing in tech and e-commerce startups. This conversation left me thinking about how much digital transformation there still is in front us and the exciting opportunities ahead. Enjoy this great conversation with Anu Hariharan. 

 

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 


Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at 
koyfin.com

 

 This episode of Invest Like The Best is also sponsored by Assure. Assure is changing the way investors manage private transactions. 

With Assure, investors can eliminate nearly all the admin cost of private investment. On top of that, they handle all the backend, legal, taxes, accounting, and compliance. All of it, with a straightforward one-time fee. Learn more and try Assure for yourself at https://www.assure.co/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:45) – (First question) – How she thinks about growth stage businesses through their business models

(5:00) – Her views on the winner-take-all business goal

(9:53) – How to prioritize the stakeholders when building a network business

(12:19) – Priorities in growth stage businesses vs those seeking Series A funding

(18:25) – Most interesting international markets

(21:44) – Risks in investing in international tech startups

(24:54) – Assessing a hardware-based tech company vs software business

(30:22) – How her background as an engineer impacts her investing style

(36:11) – Lessons from the various growth strategies she’s observed

(40:05) – How valuation impacts the company and her decision to invest

(45:45) – How far along are we into the global digital transformation and what opportunity is left

(48:15) – Sectors that are still primed for more digital transformation

(52:50) – How the tech investing landscape has changed during her career

(57:45) – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Nov 03, 2020
Laura Behrens Wu - When Digital and Physical Worlds Converge - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.5]
49:09

My guest today is Laura Behrens Wu, co-founder and CEO of Shippo. Shippo started in 2014 after Laura realized with her own e-commerce start-up that shipping was an incredibly difficult task for most merchants, so she set out to fix the problem for everyone. Shippo let's merchants small and large use its dashboard or APIs to simplify the shipping and tracking process. Our conversation focuses on Laura's background prior to Shippo, how Shippo's business and business strategy have evolved, the inherent challenges of building a shipping platform, and the intersection of the physical and digital worlds. I hope you enjoy our wide-ranging conversation.

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:57) – (First question) – The story of Popout and how it led to Shippo

(7:40) – Challenge of working in a huge and crowded market

(10:36) – How Shippo changed shipping for small businesses

(12:30) – First big break in their favor

(13:39) – Their master account with the major shipping companies

(14:39) – Why is the shipping industry so complex

(16:25) – Most painful part of building Shippo

(18:20) – Advice for people in early company building

(19:26) – Pricing software in early days

(20:32) – The early days of Shippo and getting it to where it is today

(23:17) – Going to market and targeting new customers when they’re mostly small businesses

(25:48) – Partnering with a larger company, in their case Shopify

(27:52) – How they think about their long-term planning

(30:48) – Competing in a world where companies can own their own infrastructure

(32:39) – How often they think about other competitive advantages

(34:20) – Worst question an investor asked her: what if Amazon tries to copy them

(35:17) – Her superpowers as a founder

(36:41) – API vs dashboard and the difference in their customer bases

(38:52) – What businesses that need shipping today need to know

(40:14) – Changes in how businesses are being built today

(41:28) – What excites her most about the future of this business

(43:28) – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 29, 2020
Brad Gerstner and Rich Barton – Thriving in Changing Markets - [Invest Like the Best, EP.197]
01:17:59

My guests today are Rich Barton and Brad Gerstner. Brad is the founder of Altimeter Capital and is one of my favorite active investors. Brad and Altimeter were one of the largest investors in Snowflake in its earlier days and continue to invest in iconic modern businesses with an extreme focus. Rich has one of the most impressive resumes in the business world. He founded Expedia, Glassdoor, and Zillow; He’s a longtime Netflix board member, since before they went public; he’s a venture partner at Benchmark Capital; and he give back through the Barton family foundation. Our conversation covers Rich’s “power to the people,” strategy, Brad and Rich’s perspectives on taking companies public through SPACs vs. IPOs, and their perspectives on how to build a great company. This one is so fun, we even discuss how to come up with company names, talk about the importance Wizard of Oz, and explore the importance of big hairy audacious goals. I really enjoyed this conversation with two of the smartest people I know, and I hope you will too.

 

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 

Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at koyfin.com

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is also sponsored by Assure. Assure is changing the way investors manage private transactions.

With Assure, investors can eliminate nearly all the admin cost of private investment. On top of that, they handle all the backend, legal, taxes, accounting, and compliance. All of it, with a straightforward one-time fee. Learn more and try Assure for yourself at https://www.assure.co/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:59) – (First question) – How Brad and Rich met

(5:57) – The instant click between them

(7:21) – The power to the people perspective

            (7:29) – Brad Gerstner Podcast Episode

(10:21) – Delivering information to consumers

(11:31) – The investing perception of data-delivery businesses

(13:54) – How they use SPACs

(17:38) – How entrepreneurs view SPACs

(20:17) – Lessons from their involvement in Altimeter Growth Corp

(23:57) – Defining value add investor in the public and private markets

(26:36) – The Wizard of OZ and Pygmalions

(30:41) – Leadership mold at businesses and big audacious goals

            (30:44) – No Rules Rules: Netflix and the Culture of Reinvention

(36:05) – Frank Slootman’s leadership style

            (36:12) – Amp It Up

            (46:13) – TAPE SUCKS: Inside Data Domain, A Silicon Valley Growth Story

(38:11) – Courage in leadership

(41:33) – Physical businesses vs digital only businesses

(43:34) – Getting companies fit

(45:39) – Lessons around talent density

(48:28) – State of the world and markets today since the inception of the pandemic

(53:46) – Making up words for companies and fertile ground

(56:45) – Go to market model vs business model

(58:50) – Early days of product market sales

(1:03:03) – Advice to early investors and entrepreneurs for the future of their careers

(1:08:10) – The board challenge

(1:12:06) – What question are they working hard to answer right now

(1:16:09) – Kindest thing anyone has done for Rich

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 27, 2020
Jason Citron - Building the Third Place - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.4]
01:02:20

My guest today is Jason Citron, founder and CEO of Discord. Discord is one of the largest and fastest growing social networks in the world. It started as a place for gamers to congregate online, but thanks to how easy it makes it to create a community of any type and its offering of text, audio, and video as means of communication, it has expanded far beyond gaming. It has the potential to become the default digital “third place” that we go to find belonging in a variety of online communities. With over 100 million users, it’s also one of the most interesting communications service businesses since the original social networks rose to power.

Our conversation focuses on his background prior to Discord, Discord’s founding and growth, its business model and how it has evolved over the past 8 years, and what the future holds for Discord. As we talked, I had this sense that I’d be willing to go work for Jason, and I think you’ll see why. I hope you enjoy our wide ranging conversation.

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(3:17) – (First question) – Lessons from his time as a video game developer

(7:58) – Going from game developer to game development platform

(12:23) – From his first startup to Discord

(16:33) – Expressing the hypothesis of discord

(20:10) – How to know what signal to build upon

(22:11) – Early adoption of Discord

(26:17) – Getting the word out about Discord in the early days

(30:43) – Creating more than just a platform, but creating a third place for people to congregate

            (32:38) – The Great Good Place: Cafes, Coffee Shops, Bookstores, Bars, Hair Salons, and Other Hangouts at the Heart of a Community

(32:55) – The evolution and expansion of the types of community using their platform

(37:27) – Discord’s business model and how it’s evolved

(41:32) – Enhancing communication through Nitro

(45:05) – Big principles for company building at Discord

(51:22) – His thoughts around competitive advantage for the platform

(52:55) – Creating a holistic experience for the users

(55:45) – What bothers him the most when hiring

(57:47) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 22, 2020
Ben Gilbert and David Rosenthal of Acquired - Lessons on Early Stage Investing and Getting Acquired - [Invest Like the Best, EP.196]
51:38

My guests today are Ben Gilbert and David Rosenthal. Ben and David are investors but also the duo behind the Acquired podcast, which is one of my favorite podcasts that dives deep into business history and famous acquisitions. I recommend you check it out.

In this conversation, we review of some of the greatest corporate acquisitions of all time and also discuss investing lessons Ben and David have learned across their careers. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Ben and David.

 

This episode is brought to you by Koyfin, one of the fastest growing fintech startups. I discovered Koyfin earlier this year when I asked twitter for the best Bloomberg alternative, and the overwhelming winner was an intriguing new product called Koyfin. 

Koyfin has tons of high-quality data, powerful functionality, and a nice clean interface. If you’re an individual investor, research analyst, portfolio manager, or financial advisor, you should definitely check them out. Sign up for free at koyfin.com

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is also sponsored by Assure. Assure is changing the way investors manage private transactions.

 With Assure, investors can eliminate nearly all the admin cost of private investment. On top of that, they handle all the backend, legal, taxes, accounting, and compliance. All of it, with a straightforward one-time fee.

Learn more and try Assure for yourself at https://www.assure.co/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:29) – (First question) – What they look for in new founders based on more experienced managers they’ve worked with

(5:07) – Difference between emerging vs legacy market

(9:17) – Research steps to determine if a market can get big enough to invest in

(12:08) – Working with other firms for doing an initial investment round

(15:42) – Recent trends in the supply of capital and number of founders in the VC space

(18:56) – Lessons they have learned studying corporate transactions

(24:13) – How do startups transform once they are acquired to increase their multiples so much

(28:10) – What they learned from deliberations that take place within the acquiring company

(30:39) – Most interesting deal for them to unpack

(32:44) – What are features of a business that is difficult for others to replicate

(35:52) – Any company that are intimidated to go up against

(37:37) – Who would they follow

            (38:52) – Blake Robbins Podcast Episode

(39:09) – Missing pieces in their skill set

(41:43) – Early green shoots

(44:40) – Lessons from Alaska Airlines acquisition and the value of scarcity

(47:07) – Kindest thing anyone has done for them

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 20, 2020
Leore Avidar - Creating and Selling Superpowers - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.3]
58:45

My guest today is Leore Avidar. Leore is the co-founder and CEO of Lob, a company which makes it easy to send direct mail programmatically. He’s also the founder of a new company focusing on sports card collectibles, Alt, which is how we originally connected. Our conversation ranges from building Lob, buying a Lebron James rookie card, starting a 2nd business while operating his first and how Leore tries to create and sell superpowers. Like my conversation with Rahul Vohra from Superhuman, I think this conversation will inspire entrepreneurs out there to start building aggressively. Please enjoy.

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:55) – (First question) – Origin of Lob

(6:14) – Creating and selling superpowers to other people and its value proposition

(7:23) – Defining an API in his words

(8:44) – Early breaks for Lob

(10:45) – Early lessons in responsible growth

(12:19) – Physical infrastructure behind Lob

(14:14) – Surprises in mail delivery

(15:00) – Progression through their pricing models

(18:10) – Leaders in the world of making the world programmable

(19:07) – Their interest in the physical world

(19:45) – Hardest part of scaling a physical business

(21:09) – Building a culture that keeps people around

(23:13) – Why he is fascinated by negotiations and what he’s learned from it

(25:20) – Scarcity, time, and leverage impact’s on negotiations

(26:35) – His interest in collectibles and the formation of Alt

(30:18) – Size of the alternative market he focuses on

(30:54) – The focus on cards

(32:18) – An overview of collectible cards industry

(33:19) – What is the API of card collection and trading

(35:51) – Competitors in the space

(37:19) – Buying a Lebron James card

(38:21) – Building a fund around the collectibles and the strategy

(39:45) – What it means to be a technology company

(40:23) – Collectibles beyond sports

(41:30) – Defining a good investor

            (43:32) – Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don't Have All the Facts

(43:43) – Qualities he looks for in investors

(45:03) – What does the collectible universe look like over the next 5-7 years

(45:43) – Cultural value of assets

(48:50) – Managing his time while launching two businesses

(49:51) – What he’s most excited about over the next 6 months

(51:45) – Consolidation of API businesses

(52:19) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 15, 2020
Jacqueline Novogratz – Investing in Dignity and Character  - [Invest Like the Best, EP.195]
53:51

My guest today is Jacqueline Novogratz. Jacqueline is the founder and CEO of Acumen, a non-profit global venture fund that uses entrepreneurial approaches to solve the problems of poverty.  Our conversation touches on how Jacqueline left Wall Street and ended up starting a micro finance bank in Rwanda, how she thinks about investing in character, how creating dignity plays such a major role in her investments, and how governments and businesses can work together to solve the world's toughest problems. It is a bit of a departure from my normal investing conversations but contains powerful lessons for many investors and builders. I really enjoyed our conversation and hope you will to. 

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:29) – (First question) – Where the concept of the blue sweater came from for her book.

            (2:44) - The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World

(4:29) – Every child has a humiliated experience and the impact on their life

(6:55) – The origin of Acumen

(10:42) – Why character is such an important investing filter for her

(11:59) – How the markets have changed through the lens of Acumen

(16:59) – The challenges of getting started

            (17:04) – Manifesto for a Moral Revolution: Practices to Build a Better World

(19:46) – Embracing the idea of being uncomfortable and an example for her

(21:50) – The space between government action and market action

(26:11) – The concept of conformity traps

(29:29) – The lens of moral imagination

(30:32) – The importance of brining dignity to others

(35:09) – Entrepreneurial skills she sees outside of the US that we lack here

(39:38) – Biggest problems across the globe she is interested in tackling

(42:48) – Impediments to investing in global problems

(49:11) – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 13, 2020
Justin Singer - How Regulation Unlocks Opportunity - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.2]
01:02:33

My guest today is Justin Singer, the founder and CEO of Caliper Foods and Stillwater Brands, two leading companies in the cannabis industry. We start our conversation with a fascinating discussion on how regulation creates or destroys business and investing opportunities, and then go on to discuss the ins and outs of the cannabis industry in detail. You’ll be able to tell quickly how high-quality Justin is as a thinker and operator, and you’ll learn a ton about this nascent business. Please enjoy our conversation.

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag 

Show Notes

(2:51) – (First question) – How changes in regulation create market opportunities

(5:38) – Why VC’s need to pay attention to regulatory changes

(6:50) – Story of Section 230 of the communication decency act

(8:54) – Relationships between rules, laws, and free markets

(11:56) – How regulatory changes impacted recent business ventures

(13:30) – His initial interest in the cannabis space

(17:28) – How the industry participants have changed over time

(21:04) – An overview of the cannabis industry and different pieces of the chain

(25:51) – What has led to delays in the legalization of the marijuana industry

(28:52) – How the dosage of the product impacts the business

(31:34) – CBD vs THC industry differences

(32:53) – How much of this industry is left to be unlocked and potential timing

(35:55) – Business and investing opportunities in the space

(38:16) – Competitive frontier in cannabis

(40:37) – The timeline and pending changes coming

(43:03) – Margins and business factors of his business

(45:51) – First big break for the business

(49:47) – What he learned working under Tim Wu

(50:34) – Why we are in the golden error for fraud

(52:11) – Avoiding fraud

(55:12) – What he wants to learn more about in the cannabis space

(56:50) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 08, 2020
Jesse Livermore - Upside Down Markets - Understanding Fiscal and Monetary Policy - [Invest Like the Best, EP.194]
54:11

My guest today is Jesse Livermore. I’ve worked with Jesse as part of our research partners program at O’Shaughnessy Asset Management for years now. Whenever there is a huge, important, and complex issue to be studied, I believe he’s among the best minds in the world to tackle it. He did that recently on the topic of what he calls “upside down markets,” which is the topic of this conversation. We seek to answer the simple question: against a horrible economic backdrop, how can the stock market be near all-time highs? Jesse explains in detail the impact that fiscal policy has had on the market and may have in the future. Please enjoy this master class in upside down markets.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:29) – (First question) – What is Upside Down Markets

(5:44) – Overview on monetary easing and the fed’s role in the markets

(9:42) – Why fiscal policy is such an important lever and the impact it has on the economy

(15:07) – The impact of stimulus on public companies’ fundamentals

(19:25) – The mix of assets in the market due to stimulus

(22:13) – What made 1929 so different to how we are reacting today

(26:14) – Negative concerns: too much money in the system and the risk of inflation

(32:43) – Will the pendulum swing back to labor and higher wages

(37:23) – How these changes could impact specific companies or sectors differently

(41:34) – How he is applying all of this to his personal investment philosophy

(44:25) – Biggest risks still out there

(49:51) – Most interesting gap in his knowledge putting together this piece

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 06, 2020
Rahul Vohra - Using Emotion to Design Great Products - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP.1]
01:19:51

Today’s episode represents a new chapter for Invest Like the Best, so requires a longer introduction than normal. Starting today, I’ll be bringing you two episodes per week on the same feed. On Tuesday’s, I’ll focus on investors, and on Thursday’s, I’ll host builders—founders, CEOs, and operators from all different fields. We call this new Thursday series Founder’s Field Guide. There’s nothing more interesting to me than how great businesses get build, and how investors can identify those businesses at the right time. We’ve already recorded with founders build companies in food, technology, infrastructure, shipping, collectibles, and many more categories. The goal each weak will be to have a builder share what they’ve done, how they’ve done it, and what they’ve learned along the way. We view this as a critical next step in furthering our mission: to capture and openly share the world’s best knowledge on business and investing.

Onto the kickoff episode with Rahul Vohra. Rahul is the Founder & CEO of Superhuman, an extremely popular product for managing email. Rahul describes himself as a Computer Scientist, Gamer, Entrepreneur, and Designer. You’ll see quickly why it’s the intersection of these areas that sets Superhuman apart. We discuss why emotion matters when building products, and how other entrepreneurs can learn from his experience. Please enjoy the very first episode of Founder’s Field Guide, and stay tuned in future weeks as we host leaders from Nike, Cisco, Twitch, and so many more…listen in as we explore the world of cannabis, baking (not that kind), manufacturing, hardware, software, and more. Let’s dive in.

 

This episode is brought to you by Microsoft for Startups. Microsoft for Startups is a global program dedicated to helping “enterprise-ready” B2B startups successfully scale their companies. If you’re a founder running a B2B company targeting the enterprise, you should definitely check them out. 

 

This episode is also sponsored by Vanta.  Vanta has built software that makes it easier to both get and maintain your SOC 2 report, at a fraction of the normal cost. Founders Field Guide listeners can redeem a $1k off coupon at vanta.com/patrick

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(3:56) – (First question) – His interest in game design and emotion in software creation

(5:15) – Key elements of game design

(6:23) – Toys in digital software creation

(8:48) – Finding success in boring software solutions

(11:19) – Getting confidence while building when there are no real customers

(14:08) – How they landed on their final product

            (15:40) – The Superhuman Product/Market Fit Engine

(20:46) – Determining software price

            (21:55) – Positioning Your Startup is Vital — Here’s How to Nail It

            (23:09) – Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind

            (24:13) – Monetizing Innovation: How Smart Companies Design the Product Around the Price

(26:36) – First big break for the business

(29:04) – How technology companies actually grow

(32:15) – Branding a software

(33:57) – How he evaluates a company brand as an investor

(36:07) – Questions to ask founders when considering an investment

(37:35) – How the distribution of Superhuman worked so well

(41:25) – Most common question asked by VC’s about Superhuman

(43:00) – Why they do manual onboarding of customers

            (43:05) – Daniel Ek Podcast Episode

(45:10) – Cost structure of a busines looking to reach the billion-dollar valuation

(47:18) – Designing for flow in software business

(51:21) – His design philosophy and their joy formula  

(58:03) – His superpower

(1:00:46) – The power of therapy

(1:02:50) – Why he invests in other companies

(1:05:05) – Trends in the technology space that have him excited

(1:07:28) – The future for Superhuman

(1:10:26) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him  

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Oct 01, 2020
Modest Proposal – Better, Cheaper, Faster: Why Companies that Reduce Friction Win - [Invest Like the Best, EP.193]
01:05:22

Before getting to this week’s guest, an announcement: starting Thursday we will be introducing a new series of interviews. Be sure to check this same podcast feed in two days to learn more.

My guest this week goes by the pseudonym Modest Proposal. He’s both a close friend, and one of the most respected thinkers on financial twitter. I field more inbound questions about him than just about anyone, and you’ll see why in this episode. We discuss many of the biggest themes in today’s stock market, from consumer to technology to marketplace and local home services. As always, Modest brings specific insight and general frameworks to the discussion. I talk to him as often as I can because I learn something new every time, and this discussion was no exception. Please enjoy my conversation with Modest Proposal.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:37) – (First question) – How investing is about underwriting the future

(5:42) – Essential tools to underwrite the future

            (7:59) – Michael Mauboussin base rate book

(9:02) – Increasing returns to scale as the most important tool

(11:36) – Example of silly investments

(14:00) – Ideas of consumer signal and non-linear beahvior

(16:30) – Why he was blown away by ibuyer.com

(19:08) – How businesses are targeting facilitating transactions

(23:11) – Ecommerce and digital penetration in business

            (25:42) – Gavin Baker podcast episode

            (26:00) – Modest proposal last podcast appearance

(27:56) – His thoughts on the extinction of so many businesses as a result of the pandemic

(32:26) – Chart tracking Product to service against homogeneous to heterogenous

            (33:41) – The Perfect Store

            (33:49) – eBoys

(43:51) – Other features of business that fascinate him

(46:29) – Ideas that pique his interest right now

(51:20) – Case study: IAC/InterActiveCorp

(59:36) – Barry Diller’s superpowers

(1:01:17) – Why he’s spent so much time exploring IAC/InterActiveCorp

(1:02:56) – Related companies to explore

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Sep 29, 2020
Lauren Taylor Wolfe – The Modern Activist Toolkit - [Invest Like the Best, EP.192]
01:00:39

My guest this week is Lauren Taylor Wolfe. Lauren is the co-founder and Managing Partner of Impactive Capital. Prior to founding Impactive she spent 10 years at Blue Harbour Group, a $3 billion activist investment firm. Our conversation is on the modernization of the activist investor playbook—how investors engage with companies to make them better and improve long term outcomes. We discuss the entire activist toolkit, focuses on what has changed the most in recent years.

I’m also very excited to announce a new initiative. After years of building, operating, and investing in software, we are launching Positive Sum, a new early stage equity investing firm. You can read a bit more at positivesumadvisors.com. Now, please enjoy my conversation with Lauren Taylor Wolfe.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:31) – (First question) – Her background and how she landed at Impactive Capital

(6:25) – Impactive’s strategy vs the stereotype of the activist investor

(10:55) – Potential candidates for what they do

(13:26) – How they view the small cap tech world as the space is dominated by huge companies

(15:24)  - How capital allocation has evolved over her career

            (15:30) - The Outsiders: Eight Unconventional CEOs and Their Radically Rational Blueprint for Success

(17:38) – Best capital allocation strategies and mistakes that most companies make

(18:48) – The levers activists pull: cap structure; capital allocation and operating structure

(22:00) – Major lessons from earlier in her career

(23:25) – Major changes in Governance as part of the ESG strategy

(26:13) – The issue of dual-class in the space

(27:35) – Features of a pristine healthy board

(28:40) – Board’s role setting incentives and objectives for management

(29:55) – How she thinks about the E&S in ESG and how it helps shareholders

(32:56) – Applying her strategy in a real-world example

(37:40) – What they look for in a business when it comes to sum of the parts

(40:29) – Businesses that are misunderstood and what she looks for in that category

(41:39) – How she manages relationships with the boards

(45:11) – What she has learned transitioning business models

(47:08) – The rise of employee activism

(50:02) – What she’s seeing in terms of diversity and inclusion in board rooms and C-Suites

(53:32) – Best practices and ways to disrupt hiring

(57:48) – Something she doesn’t understand well today that she wishes she did

(58:59) – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Sep 22, 2020
Rory Sutherland – Moonshots and Marketing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.191]
49:21

My guest today is Rory Sutherland. Rory is the Vice Chairman of Ogilvy & Mather Group, which is one of the largest and most renowned advertising agencies in the world. He’s also the author of one of my favorite recent books called Alchemy: The surprising power of ideas that don’t make sense. In this conversation, we explore many of his counterintuitive ideas about business. Rory makes you think as much as anyone, so I hope you enjoy this conversation.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:12) – (First question) – Why spreadsheets and logic kill magic

(5:42) – What a product/service is vs how it’s delivered and makes people feel (regular moonshot vs psychological moonshot)

(13:22) – Psychological anomalies - doing things faster, better, cheaper (Red Bull vs Coke)

(19:54) – Swiss army knife that companies should avoid

(22:50) – Don’t design for average

(24:39) – How do people approach improving their business through marketing

(27:30) – Case for direct mail

(29:22) – Turning your weaknesses into a strength

(34:29) – The seven deadly sins and how useful they are as guideposts

(37:38) – Most powerful sin for marketing

(39:14) – Reaching intelligent answers from dumb questions

(43:25) – Why the opposite of a good idea can sometimes be a good idea

(47:30) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Sep 15, 2020
Michael Seibel – Lessons from Thousands of Startups - [Invest Like the Best, EP.190]
55:56

My guest this week is Michael Seibel. Michael is a Partner at Y Combinator, and the CEO of YC's startup accelerator. He was the cofounder and CEO Justin.tv, which eventually became Twitch, and Socialcam. In this conversation, we discuss all Michael has learned reviewing thousands of applications to YC, interviewing countless new entrepreneurs, and watch young companies begin to grow and, occasionally, find product market fit. Listeners will also enjoy when Michael traps me big time in my thinking about AirBnb and his framework for great problems to solve. Enjoy this great conversation with Michael Seibel

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:22) – (First question) – Emerging trends among founders

(6:00) – The long-term impact of Covid on business

(7:16) – What an application to YC looks like and what stands out for him

(11:46) – What he wants to learn in the interviews

(13:54) – Poise in the interviews

(15:40) – How the YC experience has evolved and improvements they’ve made

(18:38) – How he defines technology

            (18:50) – Every Company is Becoming a Software Company

(21:12) – His thoughts on non-software companies and how they play into what YC does

(23:48) – Why frequency and intensity of the problem matter to him

(28:32) – Serving the supplier and building the demand

(30:38) – Bravery in founders

(36:07) – Partnerships and collaboration in venture capital investing

(37:58) – Second time founders focus on distribution

(39:23) – Coaching the psychological component of being a founder

(44:16) – Learning as a founder vs the education system

(46:08) – Customer vs investor focus of founders’ mindset

(48:16) – How teams know they are really onto something

(52:38) – His being a founder trainable or innate

(54:08) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Sep 08, 2020
Michael Mauboussin – Great Migration Public to Private Equity - [Invest Like the Best, EP.189]
59:19

My guest this week is Michael Mauboussin, the head of consilient research at Counterpoint Global. Michael is an all-time favorite guest here on the show, and this is his fourth appearance. We discuss one of the biggest topics in the world of investing: the shift from public to private markets that has taken place over the last several decades. We explore the reasons for this shift, the biggest overall changes in capital markets, and what the future may hold. Along the way we explore other fascinating topics like the rise of intangible asset investments, employee-based compensation as a form of financing, and more. If you enjoy this conversation I urge you to read Michael’s paper on the topic which will be linked in the shownotes. Please enjoy this conversation with Michael Mauboussin.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:27) – (First question) – Motivation for writing the book from public to private equity

            (2:28) – Public to Private Equity in the US: A Long-Term Look

            (3:02) – The Incredible Shrinking Universe of Stocks

(4:48) – Size of the public vs private markets

(7:20) – History and changes in the public to private markets

(12:00) – Public market vs venture capital returns

(16:48) – Persistence of returns

(20:01) – Role of price and EBIDTA on the returns of a buyout

(23:31) – How buyout forms are sourcing the debt

(29:31) – Transition to businesses relying on intangibles

            (29:42) – Capitalism without Capital: The Rise of the Intangible Economy

            (30:13) – Endogenous Technological Change

            (30:36) – Should Intangible Investments Be Reported Separately or Commingled with Operating Expenses? New Evidence

            (34:18) – Explaining the Recent Failure of Value Investing

(36:21) – Superstar firms and increasing returns

(42:38) – Role on monopolies in creating network effects

(4:52) – The allocators perspective in these investments

(49:16) – How does this all impact public market active management

(51:54) – Advice to young people getting into the investment industry

            (52:30) – Jeremy Grantham Podcast Episode

(53:30) – Other areas he is researching/looking into

(55:44) – How investment work and Santa Fe research influence eachother

(56:54) – Investors to learn from

            (57:15) – John Collison Podcast Episode

 Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Sep 01, 2020
Chetan Puttagunta and Jeremiah Lowin – Open Source Crash Course - [Invest Like the Best, EP.188]
01:00:33

My guests this week are Jeremiah Lowin and Chetan Puttagunta. Jeremiah is the founder of Prefect.io, an open-source software company where my family and I are investors, and Chetan is a partner at Benchmark Capital. Both are past guests and good friends. I asked them on to help the audience understand the open source software business model. I’ve been fascinated with this model in which companies give a huge chunk of their work and value away for free to a community of developers, and then make money by building additional tools, functionality, and services on top of their free and open platform. While this may strike you as a wonky discussion on a niche software topic, I think it is valuable for everyone because the ideas can be applied to more than just code. I view much of my own activity as open-sourcing investment research and knowledge. It is also important because much of the world’s technology is built on top of open source projects. I hope you learn something new about this emerging category. Please enjoy.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:40) – (First question) – Originator business in open source software; Redhat

(5:51) – Why open source is valuable in building a business

(7:40) – Examples of the benefits of open source projects

(10:27) – Open source business models that produce the best results

(17:04) – Defensibility of open source companies

(25:02) – Mentoring younger founders on using open-source

(30:54) – The benefits of launching open-source

(36:41) – Building a digital community

(41:31) – Lessons from Open Source that can be applied to other businesses

(50:04) – The opportunity sets available in the open source space

(53:33) – Future of open source

            (56:31) – Tobi Lutke Podcast Episode

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Aug 25, 2020
Katrina Lake – The Next Wave of E-Commerce - [Invest Like the Best, EP.187]
58:42

My guest today is Katrina Lake, the co-founder and CEO of Stitch Fix. Stitch Fix is a multi-billion-dollar public company which has brought an entirely new model to retail apparel by combining data science, technology, and personal stylists to create a unique shopping experience tailored to the individual consumer. I first met Katrina through past guest Bill Gurley and have been excited to host her since that first meeting. In our conversation, Katrina and I discuss all aspects of Stich Fix—its history, business model, innovations, and its future. Please enjoy this great and thought-provoking conversation with Katrina Lake.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:19) – (First question) – Where E-Commerce stands and what the future might hold

(4:37) – Why personalization makes Stitch Fix stand out from the others

(9:34) – Why data science is foundational to their business

(12:15) – What makes for a good augmented human and hiring stylists

(14:34) – Stakeholder value and creating a great partnership with suppliers

(18:10) – Their emphasis on stakeholder focus and social justice

(19:28) – The capital efficiency of their business in the early days

(24:46) – Her superpower of recruiting

(29:46) – Her strengths in building Stitch Fix

(31:56) – Transparency vs authenticity

(32:59) – Big break for the business

(37:15) – Exclusive brands to Stitch Fix

(39:01) – The next act for Stitch Fix

(41:43) – Lessons learned in pricing services

(44:24) – Future trends in retail apparel

(48:02) – Hardest thing to copy about Stitch Fix

(49:59) – Lessons for putting data science at the center of your business

(53:37) – Moments during her journey she’s felt most alive

(55:23) – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Aug 18, 2020
Brian Armstrong – The Future of Crypto - [Invest Like the Best, EP.186]
01:04:33

My guest this week is Brian Armstrong, the co-founder and CEO of Coinbase. The topic of our conversation is the future of cryptocurrency and decentralized finance. Its been a while since I checked in on the world of crypto and while prices are still below the 2017 highs, there’s been a ton of additional work and infrastructure laid. We discuss the major events of the past decade and what might happen in the 2020s. Perhaps most interesting, we cover the potential benefits of a modernized financial system, which Coinbase hopes to help usher in. As I’m trying to do more in conversation with CEOs, we also discuss the lessons he’s learned building a business. Please enjoy my conversation with Brian Armstrong.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:23) – (First question) – Most important developments in cryptocurrencies

            (3:00) - What happened in crypto over the last decade

(3:01) – What will happen to cryptocurrency in the 2020s

(4:01) – Long term vision for Coinbase

(6:57) – Why should we be aiming towards an open financial system

(11:41) – How crypto improves the movement of money

(14:22) – Creating sound money and currencies

(16:21) – Why economic freedom is an important variable in what he’s trying to do

(19:44)  - How economic freedom can happen with various regulators around the world and in different countries

(22:49) – How Coinbase attracted its first users

(26:33) – The December 2017 madness of cryptocurrencies

(29:50) – How he thinks about recruiting teams and motivating them to be productive

(33:40) – Mistakes with people he’s learned from

(34:56) – Steering a product roadmap and creating a successful business

(37:17) – What do the non-Bitcoin currencies offer that Bitcoin doesn’t

(41:19) – Innovation in cryptocurrency that excites him: DeFi

(43:40) – Interesting geographic locations and their impact on crypto

(45:29) – How his thoughts on company building has changed over the years

(46:47) – Battling any loss of confidence as a founder

(51:01) – Improving decision making as a leader

(53:54) – Aspects of the job that he loves the most today

(56:25) – Largest impediments to mass adoption of crypto

(58:25) – His curiosity for scientific research and bioengineering

(59:19) – Advice that helped him that he would offer others

(1:01:38) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Aug 11, 2020
Matt Ball - The Future of Media: Movies, the Metaverse, and More - [Invest Like the Best, EP.185]
01:46:35

My guest today, Matthew Ball, is a long time coming. He’s the former head of strategy at Amazon Studios, an investor, and probably my favorite business essayist writing today. In fact, I can’t think of another author whose work I read as quickly once a new essay drops. Read his latest on the past and future of Nintendo and you’ll see why. Our conversation is all about the past and future of media. We discuss movies, music, television, video games, and the metaverse. When I re-listened to this episode I couldn’t believe how much information was in Matthew's head and how easily he covered so many topics in depth. Please enjoy this great conversation.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:20) – (First question) – Compulsive interest of how people entertain themselves

(4:19) – Changes of intellectual property and trademark in media

(9:12) – Cross media world building and Netflix’s strategy

(11:47) – Competing with the major power players at the top

(16:54) – Fate of movies in the new media landscape

(20:38) – Fate of music in the new media landscape

(25:40) – Age and gaming in this media transition

            (26:20) – Gavin Baker Podcast Episode

(29:50) – Legacy of the Marvel Cinematic Universe

(34:48) – How he defines the notion of a metaverse

(39:53) – Creating a more interoperable version of our digital world

(47:37) – What is not included in the metaverse and investing in one

(52:14) – Tim Sweeney’s role in Epic Gaming

(58:12) – The unreal engine

(1:07:46) – What should investors be thinking about when it comes to gaming worlds

(1:12:43) – Opportunities in the gaming space for investors

(1:19:59) – Cloud gaming’s impact on the space

(1:26:54) – Will other media platforms have to copy the gaming industry

(1:30:51) – How interactivity and feedback loops plays into his investment decisions

(1:33:07) – Ease of creating a new media business today

(1:35:20) – Trends media storytelling

(1:38:50) – What makes for good IP in media content

(1:42;14) – Why he wants to explore payment platforms and block chain

(1:44:56) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Aug 04, 2020
Kat Cole – How to Operate: Lessons in Brand, Distribution, and Leadership - [Invest Like the Best, EP.184]
01:17:34

My guest today is Kat Cole, the COO and president of North America for Focus Brands, which owns famous companies like Cinnabon, Carvel, Jamba, and more. Kat’s story and career trajectory are remarkable, as are the lessons she’s picked up along the way which she shares with us all in this conversation. We discuss negotiation, distribution, brand building, brand extension strategies, and leadership. I always enjoy having a true operator on the show, so I was very excited to discover Kat and her thinking. Please enjoy this great conversation.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:13) – (First question) – Her call to prayer

            (2:16) – Kat Cole on Pomp’s podcast

(5:20) – Her positivity lens

(7:59) – Applying that positivity lens in business

(13:34) – How to show positivity in early interactions with someone

(17:37) – Overview of Kat’s career

(21:03) – Lessons learned building brands

(27:11) – Changing relevance or differentiation within a brand

(32:34) – Keeping a brands dominant position in people’s minds

(36:00) – The power of franchising and shared commitment

(40:50) – How her experience makes her a better investor

(42:55) – Lessons around distribution

(46:24) – Effectively negotiating and getting your fair share in a partnership

(52:49) – Attributes of a brand that get Kat most excited

(56:34) – Transferring her brand lessons to software and tech companies

(59:09) – Biggest lessons in leadership she’s learned

            (1:04:13) – Checking In: the power of intention, reflection, and action to be your best and help others do the same

(1:05:18) – Most effective questions in her check-ins

(1:06:29) – Personal check-ins vs professional check-ins

(1:10:44) – Balancing gratitude and ambition

(1:14:37) – The kindest thing anyone has done for Kat

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jul 28, 2020
Eric Vishria – The Past, Present, and Future of SaaS and Software - [Invest Like the Best, EP.183]
01:05:44

My guest this week is Eric Vishria, a general partner at Benchmark Capital. Eric joined Benchmark after spending the first part of his career as an operator and CEO. The topic of our conversation is the past, present, and future of software businesses. We begin by explaining why public software companies trade at such incredibly high multiples today. We then explore the several different generations of these businesses and why the future remains so bright for companies building software as their primary product. I’d go one step further and suggest that the information in this episode is even more valuable for non-software businesses and investors, because its crucial to understand the impact that these products will have on the overall business landscape. COVID has accelerated the long-running transition to digital across the corporate world, and Eric serves as the perfect guide. Let’s dive in. 

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:29) – (First question) – His take on public markets, and specifically as it relates to SaaS businesses

(4:04) – Why these companies trade so high

            (7:53) – Peter Zeihan Podcast Episode

(11:19) – The competitive frontier in the digital markets

(14:02) – The API competitive frontier

            (14:22) – Chetan Puttagunta Podcast Episode

            (18:36) – Every Company is Becoming a Software Company

            (20:10) – John Collison Podcast Episode

(22:54) – Charging in an API business model

(24:09) – Describing the different generations of SaaS, starting with Gen 1

(28:15) – Gen 2 SaaS businesses

(31:52) – Being an investor in SaaS

(36:55) – Gen 3 and importance of traditional SaaS companies to get into API

(38:06) – Other problems software can solve

(44:19) – Why more money isn’t going into SaaS

(46:48) – Lessons from the investment universe and how it could apply to SaaS

            (47:26) – The Hierarchy of Marketplaces — Introduction and Level 1 - Sarah Taval

(51:49) – Lessons about scaling

(57:51) – Cross customer strategy

            (1:00:01) – Energy and Civilization: A History

(1:01:28) – Qualities of an interesting investor

(1:03:52) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Jul 21, 2020
Turner Novak – The Past, Present, and Future of Consumer Social Companies - [Invest Like the Best, EP.182]
01:00:42

My guest this week is Turner Novak, a partner at Gelt VC. Many of the largest companies in the world today are consumer social companies, so Turner and I discuss the past, present, and future of those businesses. When executed right, they are often the fastest-growing companies in history, and the rise of TikTok and some other companies we discuss makes it clear that there may always be more room at the top. The network effects that support these companies make them unique beasts to analyze, and Turner’s writing has been among my favorite content on the topic. Please enjoy our detailed conversation on this important are of public and private markets.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:18) – (First question) – History of consumer social companies

(3:28 – The importance of quality growth over rate of growth

(4:43) – Importance of friends and identity in a social network

(6:21) – Major markers he analyzes in new social networks

(7:59) – The meteoric rise of TikTok and how it compares to other social networks

            (8:08) – The Rise of TikTok and Understanding Its Parent Company, ByteDance

(13:38) – How TikTok deals with user friction

(17:28) – Why TikTok copies is a waste

(21:08) – Advising companies to build a media arm in this environment

(24:18) – Business models beyond advertising for social networks

(30:44) – His thoughts on Pinduoduo and the opportunity for a similar company in the US

(37:36) – What Snapchat is doing

(43:51) – How social eCommerce could be a competitor to an Amazon

(46:31) – His review of Zynn

            (46:36) - Attack of the Clones: TikTok’s Rival Kuaishou Lands in the US

(52:22) – The geopolitical battle of social networks

(53:36) – Creating social commerce companies

(54:27) – Fantasy draft portfolio

(59:18) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

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Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jul 14, 2020
Charlie Songhurst – Lessons from Investing in 483 Companies - [Invest Like the Best, EP.181]
01:07:34

My guest this week is Charlie Songhurst, the former head of strategy at Microsoft and a prolific investor, having personally invested in nearly 500 companies throughout his career. I met Charlie at an event hosted in New York and you can tell within one minute of meeting him that his mind is sparkling with ideas and curiosity. Its no wonder he’s been among the most commonly requested guests when I asked several top investors and CEOs who I should have on the show. We discuss the lessons he’s learned about business, investing, and people from such a large sample size of companies. I won’t reveal any more here, I highly recommend you just listen to Charlie and learn. Let’s dive in.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:25) – (First question) –  Stack ranking the vices of power, money and fame

(2:41) – Memorable response to the stack ranking question

(3:13) – Best scenario to explore this stack ranking concept

(3:55) – Other ways to rank founders

(4:44) – Quick look at this career

(5:16) – Time at Microsoft

(6:03) – Features he looks for in startups

(10:55) – Managing the declining curve of productivity

(14:55) – Why founders are often unique people

            (14:57) – Jeff Gramm Podcast Episode

            (15:04) – Aliens, Jedi & Cults

(19;43) – How early entrepreneurs need to make recruitment a serious part of their work

(23:06) – How successful founders win the best candidates

(25:27) – The East Coast vs. West Coast investment strategies

(30:40) – When it’s time to bring in quantitative factors into early stage investing

(34:36) – The markers that pop up in companies that hit

(37:22) – Boring but successful investments

(39:28) – Investor aesthetics

(41:29) – Characteristics of investors that he believes are important to success

(42:57) – Impacts of Covid and some of the permanent changes that have happened as a result

(47:49) – Investing opportunities in the local community

(49:13) – His take on cryptocurrencies

(53:47) – Most mis valued asset in the world

(55:16) – Investing opportunities in Europe

(57:34) – Make up of his 483 investments

            (57:58) – Matt Clifford Podcast Episode

(59:17) – Curation as a skill

(1:01:54) – Timing and startup success

(1:05:11) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jul 07, 2020
Blake Robbins – Investing in Gaming - [Invest Like the Best, EP.180]
56:19

My guest today is Blake Robbins, a partner at Ludlow Ventures. We talk about all things video games, including the major companies in the industry, how games monetize, how in-game economies work, how e-sports has evolved, and much more. This is a fast-growing segment of consumer attention and interest, I believe we are in the very early days of gaming going mainstream.

I also have a favor to ask. My team and I have built a small survey for Invest Like the Best listeners and if you’ve enjoyed the podcast, I’d deeply appreciate it if you took 5 minutes to fill it out at investorfieldguide.com/survey. It will help shape the future direction of the show, which I intend to keep improving in the years to come. Thank you, and now please enjoy my conversation with Blake Robbins.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:35) – (First question) –  Overview of the gaming industry and how folks may get involved as an investor

(3:46) – Some of the biggest players in the space

(5:30) – The monetization methods of these gams

(9:22) – How do these games respond to real currencies

(14:49) – The landscape of e-sports/e-gaming as a whole

(19:57) – His involvement with 100 Thieves

(25:52) – The media landscape and the role of influencers

(29:05) – When he invests and what the opportunities are out there

(33:07) – The engines behind a lot of this; Unity and Unreal

(34:58) – Other investors that get this trend

(37:43) – Other interesting areas of investment for him, including the creator economy

(41:25) – Opportunities to build out and invest in the infrastructure of the creator economy

(45:37) – Infrastructure opportunities that need to be built

(48:08) – Advice for younger professionals

(49:04) – Investment allocation he is most proud of

(50:08) – A unique skill he couldn’t teach or train in others

(52:27) – Something in gaming he doesn’t understand or wants to learn more about

(54:08) – The kindest thing anyone has done for Blake

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Jun 30, 2020
Brad Gerstner – Public and Private Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.179]
01:09:06

My guest today is Brad Gerstner, the founder and CIO of Altimeter Capital, a multi-billion dollar technology-focused investment firm. Brad and his team are known for a deep expertise in internet-enabled businesses, including Expedia, Facebook, Uber, and many more. We discuss the evolution of opportunity in this style of investing, including the important shift to private investing, where so much of the value creation now happens. I won’t soon forget our discussion of consumer intent on the internet and how it has shifted, the role that essentialism plays in Brad’s business and life, and the rise of the Chinese internet giants like Bytedance. Please enjoy this great conversation with Brad Gerstner.

 

This episode is brought to you by the MIT investment management company (MITIMCO)

Reach out or learn more: 

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:32) – (First question) – Overall investment philosophy at Altimeter

(5:12) – Most interesting thing in the landscape today

(11:16) – Disrupting the tech giants moving forward

(13:56) – The investing opportunity in the backend of the internet

(16:42) – His take on old line businesses and how technology could shift his view on them

(18:56) – Lessons from company founders whose platforms rely on consumer discovery

(21:32) – Running his business on essentialism

            (21:40) – Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

(26:11) – Tactical applications of essentialism

(29:46) – Applying essentialism outside of business

(31:16) – What travel has taught him about business

(33:43) – What we should know about the Chinese internet market

(37:11) – The emergence of bite sized transactions across the web

(39:22) – Bite sized work

(42:43) – How early on can you figure out what company would win a vertical

(45:36) – What problem space would he tackle today

(48:49) – Collaborating in the private markets

(57:27) – Pricing businesses as a key component of his investment choices

(1:02:47) – Fascination with life sciences and software

(1:04:12) – What about the future excites him

(1:06:48) – Kindest thing anyone has done for Brad

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jun 23, 2020
John Collison – Growing the Internet Economy - [Invest Like the Best, EP.178]
01:21:25

My guest today is John Collison, the Co-Founder of the digital payments company Stripe. Stripe’s mission is to increase the GDP of the internet, a lofty and deeply interesting pursuit. John is clearly a voracious learner across business and investing, which you’ll hear instantly. He started Stripe with his brother Patrick when he was just 19 years old, and has grown it to, at last valuation, a $36B business. In our conversation, we discuss conglomerates, the internet economy, the power of writing, and why board members are like Pokémon characters, each with different powers. It’s a lively and wide-ranging conversation with one of the entrepreneurs I’ve most enjoyed speaking with. Please enjoy.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:30) – (First question) – Interest in industrial conglomerates

(9:10) – Their thinking on acquisitions vs starting new companies

(11:42) – How the payment landscape looked when Stripe was started

(15:55) – View on the internet economy

(20:09) – Exciting possibilities for the future of the internet economy

(22:11) – The forces of size vs speed among startups

(26:53) – Driving reasons why employees choose Stripe starting with clear communication

(28:55) – Tips for better internal communications

(30:09) – The importance of rigor in Stripe’s corporate culture

(32:15) – Investors and investing styles that are most intriguing to him

(36:02) – Teaching vs experiencing business lessons

(37:56) – Lessons from going to market with new ideas

(50:58) – Allowing teams to explore new ideas at Stripe

(44:11) – Best startup companies to study to understand the history of this space

            (44:52) – Softwar: An Intimate Portrait of Larry Ellison and Oracle

            (48:18) – Cable Cowboy: John Malone and the Rise of the Modern Cable Business

(48:43) – Infrastructures of internet businesses that are missing

(52:03) – Does general accounting practices need to change to capture the true value of a company like Stripe

(1:01:53) – Shared playbooks in Silicon Valley

(1:02:02) – The transition to the no code movement

(1:08:22) – Other businesses that pique his interest outside of software

(1:10:21) – Future trends that excite him

(1:11:10) – First memory when he felt like he was participating in the tech economy

(1:12:46 – The role of board members

(1:15:48) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

(1:18:49) – Advice for young people

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jun 16, 2020
Jeremy Grantham – An Uncertain Crisis - [Invest Like the Best, EP.177]
01:07:59

My guest today is Jeremy Grantham. Jeremy is the co-founder and chief investment strategist of Grantham, Mayo, & van Otterloo (aka GMO). GMO, which manages more than $60B for clients, was a firm that helped educate me early in my investing career. They’ve long published thought-provoking research, most of which came from Grantham himself. He is regarded as a highly knowledgeable investor in various stock, bond, and commodity markets, but is particularly noted for his prediction of various bubbles. In this conversation we discuss the current crisis, which he calls the fourth major event of his long and storied career as an investor. As he says, this one is the most uncertain. We also discuss unique topics like commodity-based companies, and how opportunity often lies between fields of expertise. Please enjoy our conversation.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:37) – (First question) – What keeps him going in investing

(2:54) – Changing approaches to managing money over the decades

(7:27) – Their investment forecast for major allocations and how that has evolved

(10:06) – How to markets compete with FAANG stocks

(16:06) – More opportunity for active investors and where

(30:55) – How he talks to clients about major stock market events

(34:09) – His interest in natural resources/commodities

(47:07) – Long term argument for the three natural resources: oil, metals, and food

            (47:10) – An Investment Only A Mother Could Love: The Tactical Case

(52:01) – Specific case for particular metals

(56:46) – Areas in the future that excite him or that he wants to learn more about

(1:03:42) – Advice for people interested in investing

(1:05:15) – Kindest thing anyone has done for Jeremy

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jun 09, 2020
Ben Thompson – Platforms, Ecosystems, and Aggregators - [Invest Like the Best, EP.176]
01:17:47

My guest today is Ben Thompson. Ben is the author of my favorite business strategy newsletter called Stratechery. He’s also the host of the exponent podcast, and now the Dithering, a podcast he recently launched with John Gruber. I think Ben is among the most interesting business analysts in the world, and I’ve learned from and directly applied many of his ideas. We cover many of the major concepts he’s introduced over the years, including his well know aggregation theory. I think that to understand how the internet has changed the business world for good, you must read Ben and follow his thinking. I’m excited to finally have him as a guest on the show. Please enjoy our conversation.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(01:26) – (First question) – Companies that are built for the next disruption

            (1:32) – The End of the Beginning

(9:58) – Aggregation Theory and the Smiling Curve

(13:18) – Steps to creating an aggregator

(19:46) – Pattern of successful aggregators or luck?

(24:34) – How aggregators interact with suppliers and consumers

(30:49) – Taking on other aggregators

(34:09) – Platform vs aggregator in the scope of Shopify vs Amazon/Walmart

(40:55) – The Moat Map

(46:16) – Value chain thinking and profitable business models

(51:58) – Future of media and independent content creator’s vs bundles

(56:07) – Bundling independent creators

(1:00:37) – The infrastructure layer of technology and software companies

(1:02:35) – His thoughts on gaming platforms

(1:06:13) – The atoms vs the bits in the tech world

(1:12:18) – What he’s learned from covering Netflix

(1:13:46) – Kindest thing anyone has done for Ben

            (1:15:56) – Stratechery Podcast

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jun 02, 2020
Shishir Mehrotra – The Art and Science of the Bundle - [Invest Like the Best, EP.175]
01:11:23

My guest today is Shishir Mehrotra and the topic of our conversation is the bundle: offering access to multiple products, services, or providers for a single bundled price. This topic is full of incorrect pre-conceived notions, and as it turns out, the bundle is one of the most powerful ideas in business. Properly harnessed it is good for everyone involved. Shishir explains the ins and outs of bundles in this conversation.

Shishir ran product at YouTube for years and sits on the Spotify board of directors. He founded and now leads Coda (which is “A Doc” spelled backwards) in 2014, to bundle together productivity apps like docs, spreadsheets, databases, and applications. I love this wonky, detailed conversation which has me thinking differently about many businesses and business strategy. Please enjoy.

 

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:08) – (First question) – The arc of his career

(3:32) – Why he has an interest in bundling

(7:45) – The concepts of superfan, casualfan, and nonfan businesses

(11:05) – Using Spotify as an example of bundles

(13:24) – The first myth of bundling: Bundling is bad for consumers

(17:53) – The second myth of bundling: 1st vs 3rd party providers and the bundlers

(23:03) – Low usage but high Marginal Churn Contribution (MCC) business

(24:26) – How insurance fits into these models  

(26:37) – Myth 3 of bundling: How this impacts consumers

(32:12) – How marginal costs play into the thinking of bundling

(34:54) – Myth 4: Bundling things that have nothing to do with each other

(39:51) – How bundling companies can apply this into their product development

(43:21) – Strategic advice to companies building bundles

(49:01) – How price and pricing power play into advantages for certain bundlers

(54:16) – How does bundling play into his investing thesis

(56:47) – Most interesting bundles he’s observed

            (58:44) – Eigenquestions: The Art of Framing Problems

(59:14) – What the future of this trend is

(1:02:24) – What is an eigenquestion

(1:06:29) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

May 26, 2020
Hamilton Helmer – Power + Business - [Invest Like the Best, EP.174]
58:45

My guest today is Hamilton Helmer, the Co-Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Strategy Capital and the author of one of the best business books in history called 7 Powers, which is the topic of much of our conversation. He has spent his career as a practicing business strategist: advising companies, investing based on strategic insights and teaching strategy.  In the last three decades, he has also utilized his strategy concepts as a public equity investor. In this conversation we cover all seven business powers, from counter-positioning to scale economies, and how companies earn and keep those powers. Any investor or businessperson should understand these concepts, and 7 Powers is the best work I’ve seen that explains them in depth. Please enjoy our conversation.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:31) – (First question)  - What power means to him

(5:05) – Benefits being more common than barriers in the power equation

(6:28) – How early-stage companies develop their barriers

(11:23) – The power of counter positioning and how he’s seen it applied

(14:47) – The product side of counter positioning

            (16:39) – Daniel Ek Podcast episode

(17:27) – Applying the idea of counter positioning to yourself

(20:40) – A cornered resource

(23:49) – A look at google as a cornered resource

(27:12) – Unique power of network economies

(31:18) – What subtleties disqualify network effects

(32:54) – Nuances of scale economies

(35:56) – Learning economies and who can scale it better

(37:07) – Building a switching cost and barrier into your business

(40:10) – Branding as power

(44:27) – Defining process power and how it differs from scale economies

(46:40) – The notion of the time lag and cash flow

(50:42) – Why is so much power concentrated in technology businesses

(52:07) – What does power mean for customers

(53:43) – Developing power as an art vs science, and the best power artists

(55:08) – The kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

May 19, 2020
Tobi Lutke – Building a Modern Business - [Invest Like the Best, EP.173]
01:05:26

My guest today is Tobi Lutke, the co-founder, and CEO of Shopify.  This is both a timely and evergreen conversation.  Timely, as the world as moved aggressively digital in the past two months, and Shopify powers so much of digital commerce.  Evergreen, because while we touch on Covid and the Shopify business, this is much more a conversation on business and personal principles, learning, design, and growth. Tobi is one of the CEO’s I look up to most for the type of company he is building and for the way he conducts himself.  We discuss business focus, why video games help you learn the power of attention, what design means for products and organizations, and much more. Please enjoy my conversation with Tobi Lutke.

 

This episode is brought to you by the MIT investment management company (MITIMCO)

Reach out or learn more: 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:35) – (First question) – The launch of the new Shopify shop app

            (2:44) – Daniel Ek Podcast Episode

            (2:45) – Jeff Lawson Podcast Episode

(4:56) – Having the right focus and growing a good business

(9:06) – Marketplace business model vs the merchant driven business model

            9:16 – Bill Gurley Podcast Appearances - 162 | 144 | 137

(11:47) – His role as a decisionmaker as CEO of the company

(14:07) – What does he mean when he talks about quality

(18:28) – His thinking on design and quality

            (18:32) – Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance

            (19:59) – The Design of Everyday Things

(21:06) – Friction as a force in business and manufacturing

(26:04) – His thoughts on systems and being free of process           

(26:08) – The Systems Bible

 (30:01) – The game of Factoria and how it relates to systems

            (32:16) – Transfer Learning

(34:33) – What Real-Time Strategy games have taught Tobi

(38:30) – Building context inside of a company and making it scale

(41:17) – Personality typing

(46:22) – The Tobi Blueprint

(46:04) – Why he likes The Guide to the Good Life and stoicism

(55:38) – Raising kids and the impact of Covid

(1:03:16) – The kindest thing anyone has done for Tobi

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

May 12, 2020
Ali Hamed – An Update on Private Credit - [Invest Like the Best, EP.172]
44:47

My guest today is popular past guest Ali Hamed, who joins us for an update on private credit. We discuss what has happened so far, what parts of the market are frozen, and where opportunities may lie. We also talk about how the world has shifted digitally since the beginning of the COVID pandemic. Please enjoy my conversation with my friend Ali Hamed.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:41) – (First question) – World of private credit in the pandemic age

(4:50) – Bag of uncertainty

(6:27) – Important levers in private credit

(9:15) – Scary scenarios and systemic risks in this world

(13:21) – General trends in the credit data

(15:30) – Are investors factoring government response properly

(17:02) – Defining advanced rates

(20:18) – Focus on quality vs rate of return now

(22:26) – Pockets of opportunity as uncertainty declines

(26:06) – Online ecommerce platforms, like the YouTube economy

(29:40) – Non advertising driven ecommerce platforms

(31:54) – How venture capital is responding

(38:19) – How junior debt could be am opportunity

(40:17) – Trends he’s thinking about; redefining small businesses

(43:07) – Ali Hamed Podcast Episode

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

May 05, 2020
Chris Bloomstran - An Update on Public Markets - [Invest Like the Best, EP.171]
57:59

My guest today for a flash update is Chris Bloomstran, the founder and CIO of Semper Augustus and a popular past guest on the show. We talk about his view on the state of the public equity market, why it will be hard for the market to deliver great returns for the next decade relative to the last, and where opportunities may lie. Please enjoy.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:42) – (First question) – Adjustments to his portfolio in the age of a pandemic

            (6:41) – Chris Bloomstran Podcast Episode

            (9:36) – The Federal Reserve Act

(12:32) – Surprising action in the markets during the crisis

            (13:08) – 2020 Investment Letter

(15:02) – Why we won’t see the same performance in tech over the future as we’ve seen the last decade

(21:00) – The carnage in energy sector and return potential

(30:06) – Berkshires activity since the crisis started

(35:48) – Where sectors are valued in the current market

(41:12) – Expectation for deflation over inflation 

(48:54) – Characteristics to look for in businesses to own over the next 10 years

(52:05) – Economic factors they are focusing on

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Apr 30, 2020
Josh Kopelman - The Past, Present, And Future Of Seed Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.170]
55:54

My guest today is Josh Kopelman, the founder of famed venture capital firm First Round Capital. Prior to starting First Round, which has invested at the earliest stages in companies like Square, Uber, and Roblox, Josh was a three-time entrepreneur, so our conversation spans early-stage investing, business building, and entrepreneurship. I’ll not sure forget his analogy distinguishing between navigators and cartographers, nor the rest of the interesting ideas he shared after seeing and investing in so many great businesses. We also discuss how First Round has bucked the trend to build what I’d call a platform adjacent to the core investing business which does a lot for their entrepreneurs and is a model for other professional investing firms, both in venture and elsewhere. Please enjoy my conversation with Josh Kopelman. 

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:05) – (First question) – How pandemic has impacted their investing strategies

(3:54) – How this stressful environment impacts founders

(6:23) – His early career as a founder and how startup culture has changed

(10:15) – Most important lessons from his entrepreneurial career and building from just an idea

(11:50) – How to analyze a founder

(14:05) – Common disagreements when it comes to deciding on an investment

(15:33) – How many opportunities they evaluate in a meeting

(16:16) – The curvy road to their investment in Roadblox

(17:52) – Whether the concept for a platform is overused

(19:36) – Founders asking what google search they should build on

(20:46) – Solving existing or forecasted problems

(25:39) – How the startup scene is impacted by the huge legacy tech companies

(30:28) – What makes a great early stage investor

(32:19) – Do they focus on founders or themes

(33:19) – Where will valuations and returns come back to after the pandemic

(36:30) – How are business models evolving in technology entrepreneurship

            (36:31) – Matt Clifford Podcast Episode

(39:40) – The Dorm Room Fund

(43:02) – Whether investment funds should have their own platform

(47:31) – Product mistakes in software building

(51:52) – What he’s most excited about for the future

(54:05) – The kindest thing anyone has done for him 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Apr 28, 2020
Manny Stotz - Frontier Markets Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.169]
01:00:34

My guest today is Manny Stotz, the founder of Kingsway Capital. Manny is one of the leading investors in Frontier Markets, investing in equities in countries like Egypt, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. We discuss the opportunity in these markets from all angles: demographics, valuations, sectors and beyond. It is important to note that we recorded this conversation before COVID, and these markets have fallen 30% without a similar rebound in prices that we’ve seen in the U.S. As you listen you’ll hear why this may be relevant for the companies Manny focuses on and may accentuate the opportunity in Frontier Markets even relative to the numbers quoted in this conversation. Listeners will know my interest in Frontier Markets runs deep, so I was excited to have one of the categories leading investors join me.

Please enjoy my conversation with Manny Stotz.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

2:07 – (First question) – How Kingsway was conceived, their focus on frontier emerging markets, and his career path

11:57 – What are the best company builders good at when it comes to fostering a brand

18:30 – How country-specific factors impact the tailwind

25:43 – How markets are faring in these special circumstances

32:09 – Building a book in many of the markets they trade-in

37:10 – Understanding your edge in frontier markets, showing up

39:59 – Importance of solid distribution for the companies he invests in

42:12 – Concentration in various markets

44:10 – Moving beyond consumer brands in these markets

47:14 – Some of the most interesting countries they are looking into and the country business model

            47:42 – Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies

            47:44 – Civilization: The West and the Rest

            47:46 – Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty

53:21 – New topics he’s excited to learn about that will impact his business over the next 10-20 years

55:37 – Best way for people to get involved and invest in these markets

58:17 – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Apr 21, 2020
Sarah Tavel - Consumer & Marketplace Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.168]
01:00:51

My guest this week is Sarah Tavel, a general partner at Benchmark, working alongside past guests Bill Gurley and Chetan Puttagunta. Sarah has a long history as both an investor and as an operator.  She was an early product leader at Pinterest before joining Benchmark. Sarah has become one of my go-to resources for topics like networks, consumer technology, and marketplaces among many other topics. I’ve used her framework for how to think about client engagement, company data, and marketplace liquidity and quality over and over again in my business life. I’m so excited to finally have her on the show.  Please enjoy our conversation.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:24 – (First question) - Lessons learned from watching the food delivery space

5:44 – Hip camp and how they are thinking about the space rental sector

            5:45 - The a16z Marketplace 100

7:47 – Valuing private companies vs public companies

9:37 – Building marketplaces

14:24 – Tipping a market

            14:30 – Bill Gurley Podcast Episode

18:09 – How to incorporate reputation scores into a network

19:55 – Search ranking as a tool for marketplaces

21:00 – Size of marketplaces vs their competitors

22:15 – Niching of marketplaces

            22:21 - Chetan Puttagunta Podcast Episode

23:26 – State of the consumer social sector

27:50 – The LinkedIn problem and how she would build a social platform

30:42 – Things that are piquing her interest in the consumer space

32:20 – Lessons learned about scaling while working at Pinterest

38:42 – Pricing and the marketplace

41:25 – Identifying and optimizing a Core Action in a digital business

44:18 – Accruing benefits and mounting losses as part of the product design

47:48 – Her investment in Reci

52:18 – How should companies gather the best data from their business

56:03 – Lessons to SaaS investing

56:29 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Sarah

57:45 – Most interesting philosophy lesson

            58:09 – Creating a Kingdom of Ends

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Apr 07, 2020
[BONUS] Boyd Varty - 40 Days and 40 Nights
24:52

In the midst of the worldwide quarantine, my friend Boyd Varty decided to begin an adventure he has been considering for a long time: a 40 day and 40 night stay in the African wilderness. I’m releasing this short conversation with Boyd to pique your interest in his daily dispatches. He will be taking short audio journal-like recordings and sharing them with the world as he goes. As of today they are several that you can listen to by subscribing to the Track Your Life podcast on Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. Please enjoy this short chat with my good friend Boyd Varty.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(0:31) – The start of his 40-day trip

(1:42) – Origin of the word quarantine and how it led to this journey

(3:07) – History of this idea

(6:14) – The logistics of this 40-day venture

(9:59) – His experience doing this before and how it changed his psyche

(12:07) – What is he most fearful of

(13:22) – How he feels about sharing this experience when he returns

(15:47) – The mental preparation to this journey

            (15:48) – Priya Parker Podcast Episode

            (15:49) – The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters

(17:33) – How can outsiders make a connection to Boyd while he’s in this isolation

(19:55) – How can people actually follow him on this journey

            (20:23) – Track Your Life with Boyd Varty Podcast Apple Podcasts | Spotify

            (20:33) – Instagram - @boyd_varty

            (20:36) – boydvarty.com

            (20:43) – 40daysand40nights.com

(21:05) – The story of the 17 lions

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Apr 05, 2020
Gavin Baker – Investing Through a Bear Market - [Invest Like the Best, EP.167]
53:01

My guest today is with past guest Gavin Baker, the founder and CIO of Atreides Management, LP. We discuss investing during a bear market and the major ways in which the COVID19 outbreak has dramatically altered the investment landscape. Please enjoy my second conversation with Gavin Baker.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(1:40) – How he sees the markets right now

(3:06) – How he handles information uncertainty and the value spreads

(5:53) – Trading in today’s market and the volatility

(9:45) – How the economic activity squares with the amount of stimulus being pumped into the market

            (13:11) – Market Wizards: Interviews with Top Traders

(13:56) – Asset tests for individual companies in this environment

            (19:09) – This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly

(20:45) – His take on software companies during the crisis

(28:57) – Fast pace of change during extreme times of duress

(35:14) – Space as a service

(39:52) – Attention and time inside digital universes and how investors can take advantage

(46:17) – Why chaos is a ladder

            (50:42) – It Was a Very Good Year: Extraordinary Moments in Stock Market History

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Apr 02, 2020
D.A. Wallach – Investing in Healthcare - [Invest Like the Best, EP.166]
01:15:11

My guest today is D.A. Wallach, one of the more interesting investors I’ve come across. He is the former lead singer of the group Chester French and the former artist-in-residence at Spotify, where he was also an early investor. While he’s also an early investor in companies like SpaceX, his focus the last 5 years has been on early stage health care investing, which is the topic of this conversation. We discuss the entire life sciences and heath care investing ecosystem. This was recorded in the very early days of the Coronavirus outbreak so while we touch on it briefly it isn’t the primary focus, and I intend on returning to more traditional episodes like this one in the coming weeks, meant to be evergreen conversations. Please enjoy my conversation with D.A. Wallach.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:31 – (First question) – Where is interest in healthcare started

4:04 – How to categorize health services

5:13 – The product of medicine

6:56 – How medicine is changing in 2020

10:17 – What is enabling innovation in medicine

12:41 – Manufacturing of solutions, gene therapy example

17:16 – Using CRISPR

19:47 – Pros and cons, and the morality of gene intervention

23:44 – How progress is being made in medical breakthroughs

26:51 – What is the business and investment world seeing on the longevity side

30:15 – What is next in the wearable medical tracking trend

33:04 – The personalization of medical treatments

34:31 – How he thinks about all of this from an investing standpoint

36:37 – Exiting these companies

39:41 – How he thinks about founders in this space

42:35 – Drug prices

            42:46 – The Paradox of Pricing

46:45 – What will lead to a change in the pricing of drugs

49:05 – The delivery side of healthcare

51:09 – Investments that could improve the delivery side of healthcare

53:33 – Thoughts on the anti-interventionist line of thinking in the medical world

57:50 – Lessons from his health portfolio

1:02:33 – Other frontiers that pique his interest, including gut biome

1:06:46 – His career in music

1:08:20 – Lessons he learned during his time in the music industry

1:10:19 – Opportunities in the music industry as an investor

1:12:29 – Kindest thing anyone has done for DA

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 31, 2020
Chad Cascarilla – Update on Tail Risk - [Invest Like the Best, EP.165]
44:21

My guest today is Chad Cascarilla, here to discuss some of the tail risks in the economy and markets as of March 24th in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic. Chad was one of the most successful investors during the global financial crisis with a specialty in the banking and finance systems. He now runs Paxos, a trust company which trades and custodies unique products like pax gold, bitcoin, and other tokenized assets including simple pax dollars. I feel it is important to avoid confirmation bias in times like this and not just talk to people are optimistic or long, and while I still believe this is ultimately a positive and optimistic conversation, Chad acknowledges and outlines scenarios that few are talking about yet in the markets.

 

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:04) – (First question) – Today’s market and the porridge scenario

(7:38) – Risks to the market that people aren’t focused on

(10:54) – What lessons from 2008 do we need to heed this time

(13:07) – How does he think about inflation on the other side of this crisis

(16:02) – What does a too cold recovery look like

(20:35) – Benefits of nationalizing the banks vs pumping liquidity

(24:13) – What does the just right recovery look like

(25:24) – Assets that might be ideal to hold in a too hot or too cold scenario

(29:00) – His take on how Bitcoin has performed during this crisis

(31:53) – The US’s inherent strengths compared to the rest of the global economy

(34:50) – Advice for people

            (38:59) – Paxos.com

(39:48) – What is he monitoring to see which way things shake out

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 25, 2020
Brent Beshore – Update on Small Business and Private Equity - [Invest Like the Best, EP.164]
38:21

My conversation today is with my close friend Brent Beshore. Brent is a private equity investor who owns and interacts with many small businesses, which have been hit especially hard by COVID. We discuss the various impacts that COVID has had and may have on both small business and the private equity investing community. Brent also proposes some policy actions which he thinks may help those most in need. Please enjoy.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:13 – (First question) – What Brent sees as the current landscape for small businesses

3:25 – The real problem for small businesses right now

6:02 – How long can small businesses survive these freezes

9:14 – Ideas to help businesses stay afloat during a global shutdown

11:01 – The cost of restarting businesses on the other side of this  

13:41 – Policies that could help

            14:30 – government co-paying some business expenses

            16:05 – Suspending payroll taxes

            16:17 – The small business bond

            18:00 – Wider latitude for banks

20:03 – How effective would Brent’s ideas actually be at lessening the pain

22:41 – A look at how things look in the private equity complex

25:39 – What are the potential opportunities out there

29:24 – What is a balance sheet product

32:00 – How this is personally impacting Brent

34:20 – How this is personally impacting Patrick

35:45 – Importance of relationships for personal health

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 20, 2020
Dan Rasmussen – Investing Through a Crisis - [Invest Like the Best, EP.163]
42:57

My guest this morning is Dan Rasmussen of Verdad Capital. Like me, Dan and his firm focus on quantitative research. Just a month before the COVID crisis hit markets, they completely and published a study on investing during periods of market crisis, which is the topic of this conversation. We discuss what works and what doesn’t during and after acute periods of panic in markets. I think you’ll find it extremely informative. Because Dan’s firm and my own share many beliefs about investing and conduct similar flavors of research, I try to offer devil’s advocate questions throughout. Please enjoy.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag 

Show Notes

1:54 – (First question) – What he sees in the markets today given the atmosphere right now

4:26 – An overview of their study: Crisis Investing: How to Maximize Return During Market Panics

8:38 – How things get more predictable during crisis

11:15 – The length of these crises and assets they focused on

12:40 – What happens to bonds and credit during these times

15:50 – Geography of crises

18:14 – How does this impact the philosophy of just index investing

20:40 – Positioning of value in this market

27:50 – Lessons from other crises

32:21 – Importance of a blended factor approach

35:44 – Role of momentum

38:10 – What else he is paying attention to during this crisis

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 16, 2020
Bill Gurley and Chetan Puttagunta – An Update on Consumer & Enterprise Venture Capital - [Invest Like the Best, EP.162]
38:44

My guests today are Bill Gurley and Chetan Puttagunta, both partners at benchmark capital. We review the early stage investing world in the face of coronavirus in a very timely conversation, which is one that will remain valuable once this crisis is done. We discuss enterprise and consumer, funding and growth, and the entrepreneurial spirit in the face of a crisis. Please enjoy.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:44 – (First question) – Landscape for venture capital ecosystem

6:47 – The experience in 2009 and the entrepreneurs that tend to rise to the top

8:24 – The relationship between early stage companies and public investors

10:45 – How this crisis impacts enterprise businesses vs the broader corporate sector

14:46 – Advice for early stage companies in a period like this

18:23 – What Chetan was doing during the last downturn and what he learned during it

20:27 – Early stage vs late stage companies in this environment

            22:57 – On the Road to Recap

23:00 – Benefits of being small in a period like this

25:22 – How portfolio companies are responding and pivoting during this period

29:33 – Best practices for remote companies

31:39 – Themes that stand out during this period

34:51 – Closing thoughts 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 13, 2020
Bryan Krug – An Update on Corporate Credit - [Invest Like the Best, EP.161]
27:30

My guest in this flash podcast is Bryan Krug of Artisan partners. We discuss what has happened so far in the corporate high yield and investment-grade credit markets, and the loan market. We compare today’s environment to the financial crisis and other past crises with lots of nuances that I hope will be helpful to bond and equity investors. Please enjoy.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

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Show Notes

1:08 – (First question) – An overview of what he covers in the corporate credit markets

1:52 – How things have changed in the last couple of weeks

3:56 – Composition of the high yield market

7:07 – Major sectors of the high yield market outside of energy

8:39 – How do they price the risk in securities right now

11:21 – How do they handicap a great unknown

13:00 – Risk for broader contagion in the overall credit markets

14:49 – What’s the downside potential here

16:31 – Potential for upside

18:33 – How does he view companies that are drawing down on their entire line of credit

19:44 – An overview of the loan market

20:42 – What warning signs equity investors should be watching for in the bond markets

21:57 – What do credit spreads look like today compared to before this crisis

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 13, 2020
Deep Basin – Oil Price War and Its Implications - [Invest Like the Best, EP.160]
50:19

This week, I’ll be recording and immediately releasing a series of conversations on business and market reactions to the spread of coronavirus. The conversations will be on oil and gas, corporate credit, and the reaction within the venture capital community. Today’s conversation is with Matt Smith, Ian Singer, and Kobi Platt of Deep Basin Capital. We are investors in Deep Basin, and they were past guests on the podcast. We discuss the new price war in the oil markets and the impact it might have on equities and especially on U.S. oil producers. Please enjoy.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Show Notes

1:59 – (First question) – An overview of the global oil market and demand

3:37 – Supply and demand shocks we’ve seen lately

6:22 – What happened this weekend with Russia and Saudi Arabia and why the outcome was so shocking

9:45 – The knock-on effects of this activity on equities

14:24 – Impact on US energy production

18:29 – What other industries will feel the effect of reduced production in the US

20:35 – Defining a price war and how victory is defined

27:53 – Saudi Arabia’s calculus in this energy fight.

31:11 – How does all of this change what factors they use to analyze companies

35:43 – What it actually looks like within the commodities markets to trade energy

40:01 – What uncertainty is most intriguing to each of them

43:00 – The long-term interest in investing in the energy sector

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 11, 2020
Peter Zeihan - Dis-United Nations - [Invest Like the Best, EP.159]
01:03:31

My guest this week is Peter Zeihan, the author of a new book, the Disunited Nations.  Peter was an extremely popular guest on the show last year and after reading his new book, I knew we had a lot to discuss in round 2.  In this conversation, we discuss two ways of ruling the world, the coming American disinterest in global affairs, and which country are poised to do well int eh future.  We explore military and non-military technologies, political changes, and up and coming alliances like that between the United States and Mexico.  As with last time, peter packs more information into an hour than just about anybody.  Please enjoy our conversation.

This episode is brought to by Koyfin.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Show Notes

1:57 – (First question) – What makes for a successful country

6:02 – Five first-tier countries that are well positioned

7:14 – Ruling the world, US carrot model vs British stick model

9:39 – How other countries will use these models in the future

12:59 – The surprising reliance of Iran and Russia on the US

15:24– Key points of his research on the Middle East

18:36 – Advice for how those operating in the US should think about future business investments

23:05 – The future of manufacturing partnerships with the US and the focus on Mexico

27:30 – What Coronavirus has taught us about the world economy

30:01 – What the primaries and election are teaching us

35:09 – What role does Africa play in the future

38:36 – Strong and weak players in Europe and how Brexit has impacted things

44:41 – The future for nuclear power

46:27 – The outlook for South America

50:42 – The trends and future in military technology

55:03 – Non-military technology that will have a major impact

58:26 – Skills young people should focus on for the future

1:00:07 – Coronavirus as a dress rehearsal for large scale disruptions to the world

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 10, 2020
Jeff Lawson – How to Build a Platform - [Invest Like the Best, EP.158]
52:12

My guest this week is Jeff Lawson, the Founder, and CEO of Twilio. Twilio is a 15-billion-dollar company offering a cloud communications platform to its customers.  Twilio is used by customers like Lyft, Twitch, and Yelp to make communications in their products easy.  Jeff and I talk about why it pays to be a platform, how to be a platform, and how to sculpt a company culture. This is a must-listen for anyone building a business whether it’s a tech business or not.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:18 – (First Question) –  Company vowels and draw the owl

5:26 – Significance of API’s

12:14 – How non-software businesses can transition into the space

         17:50 - Agile way of working at ING Belgium (video)

18:38 – How they strategize their product build

23:27 – The idea of asking your developer and why it’s so important to them

33:02 – How they codified their business culture

45:12 – Parting advice for people building platforms

48:13 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Jeff 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Mar 03, 2020
Niko Canner – Become a Perfect Instrument - [Invest Like the Best, EP.157]
52:14

Niko Canner is the founder of Incandescent where he and his team help the leaders of large companies in the areas of strategy and innovation. He was also the founder of Katzenbach Partners and a member of Bridgewater’s management committee. Niko is a fantastic writer, and I highly recommend you check out his blog “On Human Enterprise,” which has posts on many of the most interesting aspects of business and personal purpose. This conversation was inspired by many of those posts. Please enjoy.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:17 – (First Question) – The story of Doctor V

            3:24 – Aravind and the Choice of Great Achievement

4:00 – Becoming the perfect instrument

6:05 – What is Niko planning to be the perfect instrument of

8:18 – How should individuals think about finding what they can be the perfect instrument of

            8:59 – Brett Victor – Inventing on Principle

10:59 – How do businesses apply this principle

13:20 – Making choices easier

16:43 – Era’s to a company and when it’s time to start a new one

19:52 – How can business culture be cultivated and useful

22:53 – Cultures at the tail end of a distribution

24:33 – Can hierarchy be fluid, or does it need to be a dedicated corporate structure

27:47 – My Unlikeliest Favorite Business Book

            28:03 – The Millionaire Real Estate Agent: It's Not About the Money...It's About Being the Best You Can Be!

30:46 – The Red Test and how it can be used by businesses

36:54 - Ten Principles for How to Run a Company

42:25 – Dealing with the sponsor owner brief in the software world

45:24 – How does one choose customers

46:32 – Bill Hubbard passage – A Theory for Practice: Architecture in Three Discourses

49:09 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Niko

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Feb 25, 2020
[REPLAY] What You Learn About Business Deals After: 12,000 Deals Reviewed, 1,500 Deep Dives, 125 Site Visits, and 7 Portfolio Companies with Brent Beshore - [Invest Like the Best, EP.100]
51:12

For the 100th episode, I’ve brought back my good friend Brent Beshore. Brent was the 10th guest on the podcast, after we met because of a mutual interest in capital allocation. I quickly learned that Brent was one of the most unique and thoughtful investors around. He was an entrepreneur from the moment he left school, trying many different things before finding a fit buying smaller business with the intention of owning them forever.

What amazes me about Brent is his encyclopedic understanding of business and the nuances of different business models and deal structures. This comes from reps. He and his team have looked at about 12,000 deals over the years, at every kind of business that you could imagine. I’ve been with him when he goes through this process and it’s fun to hear what makes certain businesses stand out from others, which is largely the topic of this conversation.

You all know transparency is key for me, so it’s important to know that my family and I are investors in a fund called permanent equity, run by Brent and his firm Adventure.es.

To commemorate this milestone episode, I can think of no one better than Brent, because he exemplifies what has made this podcast so fun for me: learning from other people who are willing to share what they themselves have learned through fun, blood, sweat, and tears. Please enjoy our conversation, and thank you so much for coming along on this journey. I can’t tell you how much it means to me.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Show Notes

2:02 - (First Question) – How does he think about optimizing risk in terms of the capital stack when looking at deals

5:27 – What conditions would they add debt down the road after investing in a company

6:52 – What business sectors are most intriguing for Morgan to invest in right now

            6:57 – Trent Griffin Podcast

9:34 – Why no HVAC businesses if it’s such an attractive sector

13:56 – thoughts on rolling up similar businesses and horizontal scale

16:04 – Another industry Brent would focus on

18:02 – Difference between property management in larger cities vs smaller metro areas

18:51 – What role does profit margin play when Brent is evaluating a business

22:46 – The appeal of a hyper cyclical business

            22:52 – Brent Beshore Podcast Episode

27:27 – Favorite counter cyclical business

28:14 – How they judge assets, tangible vs intangible assets

33:58 – How does he think about wage inflation when considering the cost of a business

37:21 – His fascination with pet crematoriums

38:57 – History of the permanent equity fund and the changes by having a larger pool of capital

43:48 – Pitching investors on a new structure for the business

46:14 – How will this business model scale

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Feb 04, 2020
Chetan Puttagunta – Go Slow to Go Fast: Software Building and Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.156]
01:20:25

My guest this week is a good friend and a business mentor of mine. Chetan Puttagunta is a general partner at Benchmark Capital and has a remarkable track record of investing in early-stage software businesses, including several like Mulesoft, MongoDB, and Elastic that went on to be public companies.

Chetan has been my key guide for understanding the world of enterprise software as we at O’Shaughnessy Asset Management have built an investing platform called Canvas. His advice has been critical to our early success. In this episode, we explore the history of software and software investing, and go into the details on how to build and grow new software businesses. We discuss product, sales and marketing, recruiting, scaling, and everything in between.

Please enjoy this great conversation with one of my favorite business and investing thinkers.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:34 – (First Question) – How Chetan found MongoDB and decided to invest in it

8:01 – The evolution of databases in the growth of technology

16:19 – Market penetration of this space and what investors should be thinking about

21:46 – Advice how companies can build software effectively

25:12 – Tactics to effectively implement empathy led product building

30:33 – Companies asking users what to build vs telling users what they want

34:26 – The need for the right capital, and patient capital in particular

37:55 – Creating the perfect customer experience

44:37 – Common reasons they don’t invest in a company

48:48 – Lessons on scaling, especially in sales and marketing

52:47 – Best recruiting pipeline strategies

59:56 – Pitfalls of unit economic traps

            1:00:23 – The Dangerous Seduction of the Lifetime Value (LTV) Formula

            1:01:34– The Hierarchy of Engagement

1:02:18 – What has changed for Chetan in his time working with the team at Benchmark

1:06:009 – Later stage life cycle business considerations and Amazon’s AWS

1:13:29 – The business model of open-source software

1:15:54 – Being default open

1:17:53 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Chetan

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jan 28, 2020
Rebecca Kaden – Thesis Driven Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.155]
54:39

My guest today is Rebecca Kaden, a partner at famed venture firm union square ventures. USV is known for thesis-driven investing, which is the topic of our conversation. Rebecca walks us through the evolution of USV’s thesis into its third generation, and from there we explore many of the most interesting and exciting areas of business, technology, and learning. Please enjoy our conversation

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Show Notes

1:11 – (First Question) – An overview of Union Square Ventures Thesis 3.0

7:49 – Core changes that can help any community

9:59 – Ways to fix the broken education system

13:41 – Gap between job preparedness and the education system

14:44 – Companies creating education systems to prepare people for careers in their field

18:49 – Most unique technological solution for people to educate themselves

22:00 – Ways to improve access to capital

26:49 – The distribution problem in capital markets

28:19 – How does she assess an early-stage company and its team’s ability to assess their ability to maximize distribution

30:56 – Digital marketing and why it could be broken

34:22 – Examples of masterful marketing

36:07 – How they are focused on improving wellbeing, their first focus on healthcare

39:35 – Wellbeing on their focus on community

            41:29– The Art of Community: Seven Principles for Belonging

45:30 – Her thoughts on mentorship

48:23 – What she has learned in her time at USV

51:50 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Rebecca

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jan 21, 2020
Matt Clifford – Investing Pre-Company - [Invest Like the Best, EP.154]
01:14:44

My guest today is Matt Clifford. He’s the co-founder of Entrepreneur First, the world’s leading talent investor. They invest “pre-company” by helping the best people in cities around the world find a co-founder, develop an idea, and start a company. So far, they’ve helped 1000 people start 200 companies worth a combined $1.5B. This conversation covers their entire ecosystem and holds lessons for anyone building a business. I especially loved Matt’s ideas on the history of ambition.

 

Please enjoy our conversation.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:20 – (First Question) – An overview on talent investing

4:37 – The history of ambition

10:08 – How do they search for ambitious people

12:21 – What happens early on for these formed teams

17:43 – Assigning an idea to a talented team

20:52 – Opportunities in deep technology

27:16 – A closer look at the hardware and machinery of the deep technology changes

30:54 – The geographical focus of venture capital investments

37:16 – Problems with the way early-stage investment world works

41:22 – People who are creating value in a management company and how they manage their investments

55:12 – Advice to people creating investment companies and pricing power

1:00:31 – The power of cities

1:02:46 – Topics they cover in their newsletter; technological sovereignty as one example

1:04:11 – Experience and thoughts on China

            1:06:51 – A.I. Nationalism

1:12:03 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Matt

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jan 14, 2020
Peter Buffett – Finding Your Note - [Invest Like the Best, EP.153]
01:09:37

My guest today is Peter Buffett. Peter is a musician, composer, author, and philanthropist. Peter is an Emmy Award winner, New York Times best-selling author and co-chair of the NoVo Foundation. We discuss music, community, philanthropy, and finding one's note in life. This is a very different episode much more about life in general, with no business or investing discussed. Like his father Warren, Peter has the gene for phrasing ideas in memorable ways, and I think you’ll find many great phrases in this chat that will stick with you. I’ve been thinking about Peter's idea making sure those in your life are safe, seen, and celebrated ever since our chat.

Please enjoy.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag 

Show Notes

1:27 - (First Question) – Welcome and small talk

1:35 – Why Peter is in Kingston and how it plays into his foundation work

4:01 – How moving from the city to the country changed Peter

6:27 – Seeing connections vs living abstractions

7:30 – What is the Nova Foundation

11:03 – Historical points that inform his views

13:51 – Identifying qualitative negative side effects and which ones they are attacking

17:51 – What makes for effective community 

20:22 – Linkage between consumption and individualism

23:55 – The cultivation of work ethic, curiosity, and education

            23:57 – Life Is What You Make It: Find Your Own Path to Fulfillment

27:22 – Early exploration of his curiosity

32:26 – What has music taught Peter about music that is unique to that experience

34:26 – Most memorable question a person has asked Peter at his concert and conversation series

36:46 – What makes for good relationships, in particular marriage

42:03 – What keeps people from putting in the work into a relationship

45:11 – What he has learned about being a good friend

46:29 – How does one person have a relationship with a large community

49:21 – Dark sides of the philanthropic world

            49:54 – The Charitable-Industrial Complex

53:21 – Dignity: Seeking Respect in Back Row America

55:55 – What one spot would he send everyone to learn

57:48 – Traumas and helping people find their note

            57:49 – The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma

            1:00:38 – How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence

1:02:24 – What is he most interested in right now: how to best use Nova’s funds

1:04:45 – Lessons from family

1:07:22 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Peter

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Jan 07, 2020
Ben Savage – All Things Fintech Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.152]
01:05:21

My guest today is Ben Savage, a partner at Clocktower ventures. Ben is focused on financial technology, fintech, investing which is the topic of our conversation.

I’ve been making the fintech is rounds of late, and plan on making a few of these conversations public. Ben is the first in what may be a mini-series because of the sheer amount I learned in our discussion.

We cover all aspects of the fintech ecosystem. I hope you enjoy.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 Show Notes

1:15 (First Question) – The market portfolio and how technology will move us away from liquid markets

7:24 – Businesses that are making assets that weren’t investable, investable

            9:11 – Ryan Caldbeck Podcast Episode

12:03 – Most interesting places where technology is creating investment opportunities

18:33 – Assets that are likely to tap into new sources of beta

23:46 – How well are investors prepared for the changes that are coming

28:35 – Trends in asset management with technology

33:05 – View on cryptocurrency and blockchain

36:45 – Places where startups can reduce costs/fees and create efficiencies

40:17 – Views on private equity markets and their future

45:40 – Privilege of access problem

48:50 – Verticals in fintech that are interesting to him

59:53 – The importance of focus and niche

1:02:26 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Ben

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Dec 17, 2019
Jeff Ma – Making Decisions with Data - [Invest Like the Best, EP.151]
53:34

My guest this week is Jeff Ma. Jeff was on the famous MIT Blackjack team from the book Bringing Down the House but has spent his career in an around fields of analytics and data science. He’s studied sports betting and analytics, built companies for analyzing human capital, and ran the data science and analytics group at Twitter. Here are links to his book, blog, and podcast.

Our discussion is about a number of fascinating ways data is being used to make decisions in the worlds of sports and business. Please enjoy!

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:20 - (First Question) – How quantitative analytics have evolved in sports and how they’re being used

4:26 – Best role of humans in the analysis process

8:38 – Sports that are most interesting to observe through analytics

10:26 – How does luck play into sports analysis

11:54 – Team analytics vs better analytics

12:38 – Concentration of success among sports betters and their moats

14:58 – Favorite lessons learned from professional gamblers

16:45 – How analytics got introduced into gambling

19:21 – Understanding one’s own biases

24:04 – How he became VP of analytics at Twitter

28:37 – Primary lessons from the work evaluating human capital and talent with analytics

            28:59 – Niel Roberson Podcast Episode

31:40 – How to model people for success when hiring

33:29 – How to hire the right data scientists’ team

37:54 – Most interesting problems they tackled at twitter

42:31 – Responsibility of social platforms to police itself

45:34 – Areas that would interest him in the future as an investor

49:24 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Jeff

51:50 – Values instilled in him by his parents.

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Dec 10, 2019
Vaughn Tan – Quality and Innovation - [Invest Like the Best, EP.150]
01:21:53

My guest today is Vaughn Tan, who studies quality, innovation, and organizational behavior. His resume is bonkers. He’s a PhD from Harvard, Was an infantry signals logistician in the Republic of Singapore Army, then worked at Google on advertising, EarthMapsspaceflight, and Fusion Tables. He’s also been a wood sculptor.

But the topic of our conversation is how to foster quality and innovation in ourselves and inside of companies—lessons he learned in part by studying inside some of the world’s best restaurants.

If you enjoy this conversation, I recommend you also check out his new book, The Uncertainty Mindset Innovation Insights from the Frontiers of Food. Please enjoy my conversation with Vaughn Tan.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:33 - (First Question) – Interesting ways to identify high quality

5:06 – The current problem with the way we think about the world

8:56 – How people think about their careers and college

11:21 – Uncertainty vs risk, and productive discomfort

19:08 – Cultivation of discomfort for an individual

24:05 – Successful innovation cultures

32:25 – Analyzing quality and restaurant bread

37:43 – The Slug idea

40:43 – His research project where he observed restaurants

45:44 – How do people mandate their own structure in the face of uncertainty

53:46 – How employees should approach this rent-to-buy hiring structure

57:17 – Example of someone who took advantage of uncertainty time

1:00:05 – Playful adults

            1:00:07 – Jerry Neumann Podcast Episode

1:03:10 – Other changes companies can make to their culture to be more innovative

1:08:19 – The difference between simplicity and complexity

1:11:12 – How he applies his thinking into several different ideas, like Cannabis

1:16:17 – Asking the right question

            1:19:05 – Andy Rachleff Podcast Episode

1:20:19 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Vaughn

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Dec 03, 2019
Gavin Baker – Tech and Consumer Growth Investing - [Invest Like the Best, EP.149]
01:04:02

My guest this week is Gavin Baker, the founder, and manager of Atreides Management. I met Gavin in the same way I meet many of the most interesting people, on twitter. His focus is on consumer and technology growth investing, which is the topic of our conversation. We discuss many of the largest trends in these sectors, several fascinating investment cases, and also explore the videogame industry in detail—which I found especially interesting. Please enjoy my conversation with Gavin Baker.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:16 – (first question) – His unique view on the markets

4:00 – Distilling Apple as a growth investment

6:44 – What is the most important lever for Apple looking forward

9:01 – His view on Intel

11:03 – Most important technological changes that may dictate his investing strategy

16:20 – How do you look at a big idea, like AR, and then apply to an individual business

            18:21 – Fortnite isn't a game, it's a place

            18:26– Fortnite Is the Future, but Probably Not for the Reasons You Think

18:56 – His insight into video games and their ability to control attention

28:36 – How do you invest in the gaming sector

40:06 – Favorite video games

32:07 – Why gaming and customer sector allows him to find Alpha richness

34:17 – Being in the top 1% of knowledge before investing in a company

36:24 – His view on value investing today and, in the future,

41:15 – Increase of regulatory capture 

42:01 – Headwinds to the tech companies today

43:50 – Thoughts on the Chinese internet market and how it impacts US markets

45:36 – How often companies look at China for ideas

46:21 – Role of alternative data in his process

49:36 – Big trends today we should be paying attention to

54:20 – the most interesting company he does not own

58:48 – Advice for new investors

1:00:17 – Non-obvious tech resources - TechMeme

1:00:50 – Favorite sci-fi character

1:01:19 – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

All opinions expressed by Patrick and podcast guests are solely their own opinions and do not reflect the opinion of O'shaughnessy asset management. This podcast is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as a basis for investment decisions. Clients of O'shaughnessy asset management may maintain positions in the securities discussed in this podcast. Clients of the podcast guest’s firm may also maintain positions in the securities discussed in this podcast.

Nov 26, 2019
Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger – How to Build a Great Product
01:33:44

My guests this week are Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, the co-founders of Instagram.

I met Kevin and Mike a few months ago over a shared interest in business and investing. I have found them both to be extremely good people who have a rare talent for finding and solving interesting problems. Indeed, problem-solving and jobs-to-be-done is a big part of our conversation.

I realized walking into the podcast that Kevin and Mike have a rare set of experiences: having both built and sold an extremely successful product from scratch, but then also operated and scaled inside one of the largest businesses in the world. This means they have unique knowledge to offer just about anyone interested in business and products. We dig into all those lessons here.

I am working on hosting more founders and CEOs on the podcast, and can’t think of a better pair to show you why I want to do so. Please enjoy my conversation with Kevin and Mike. 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:38 – (first question) – Projects they’ve been working on since leaving Instagram

5:22 – How they can apply what they are learning in machine learning

7:18 – Most interesting experience diving back into data and machine learning

8:42 – How startups compare today to when they founded Instagram

13:23 – Judging founders and whether they know how to use their data effectively

14:26 – The jobs-to-be-done framework

19:14 – Laying out a vision vs solving problems that pop up

25:20 – Developing and sharing the principles of the company with the team

30:48 – Creating a community when it includes almost the entire world

39:03 – The most popular ways people used the platform

41:24 – What was the jobs-to-be-done rational behind the stories feature

44:15 – Interesting things that they saw as Instagram entered the developing world

46:40 – Their thoughts on how Instagram shaped culture and if they focused on those

52:58 – The new waves that they are observing right now

55:11 – How their thinking on leadership and teams changed during their time at Instagram and Facebook

1:03:23 – The pillars of a good business, including humility and confidence

1:06:06 – Focus on growth and distribution in a startup

1:10:01 – How early were they thinking about monetization on this free platform

1:13:43 – How do they think about how they invest their money and allocate resources

1:17:36 – Mentors for Kevin and Mike

1:20:30 – Their passion for learning to fly and the someday/maybe list

1:23:01 – Their interest in coffee

1:26:24 – Advice for everyone else

1:30:00 – Kindest thing anyone has done for them

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Nov 19, 2019
Daniel Ek – The Future of Audio - [Invest Like the Best, EP.147]
56:18

My guest this week is Daniel Ek, the founder and CEO of Spotify.

In my conversations with Daniel, I’ve found him to be one of the most interesting and thoughtful business leaders in the world. You’ll see what I mean as you listen to our conversation.

We talk about Spotify plenty, but what I so enjoy about Daniel is his way of thinking in systems and frameworks. He is committed to evolution, innovation, and growth for both himself and for Spotify and is on my shortlist of CEOs to emulate.

This was one of my favorite conversations on the podcast, I hope you enjoy it.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:21 – (first question) – Management lessons from a Dubai chocolate maker

4:54 – Trends shaping the business landscape today: globalization, automation, and digitation

7:51 – How he thinks about the vertical integration of his business and scale

10:37 – Are companies doing a good job adjusting to the changes in the global business landscape

14:44 – How does Spotify view scale moving forward

17:59 – What trends has he seen among creators as a result of the Spotify platform

20:32 – The community benefit that has been created by the platform

23:47 – Intimacy of audio

25:31 – Creating an environment that continues to spur innovation

29:12 – Star vs constellation business strategy

32:21 – Measuring network health

35:12 – Spotify Originals and what his competition in the video market is doing

39:36 – How podcasts play into the growth strategy

43:04 – How did he solve the problem of competing with free

47:21 – Is their strategy repeatable, going after fractured suppliers

49:02 – Role of the CEO in a startup

51:22 – Others who have taught him great business lessons

53:18 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Daniel

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Nov 12, 2019
George Rzepecki – Investing in Africa - [Invest Like the Best, EP.146
46:32

My guest this week is George Rzepecki, the found and managing partner Raba, an Africa focused investment firm. George is making investments across Africa in early-stage companies. Africa represents a fascinating opportunity: a huge and diverse population and enormous room for per capita GDP growth. We cover all aspects of investing in the continent, including unique potential rewards and risks.

Please enjoy our conversation.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:18 – (first question) – Interest in emerging markets and the tech landscape in Africa

4:57 – Similarities across all of the different metro markets across Africa

8:05 – Why has the continent lagged behind the rest of the world

10:49 – What is the history and landscape of capital in the African continent

13:32 – The market opportunity given the demographics

15:44 – US investment/involvement in Africa

18:06 – Kinds of companies that he likes to invest in

23:26 – Initiatives and investments that could help lift the population out of poverty: finance

29:33 – The public marketplace landscape in Africa

31:49 – Capacity on the private side

34:24 – How the valuation of deals compares to other markets

36:13 – Unique risks in the investments they are making

38:28 – Most exciting trends or changes he is seeing

40:22 – The professional investor environment

43:25 – How to learn more and get involved

            43:49 – China Africa Research Initiative

            44:17 – China Africa Project

            44:38 – Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World--and Why Things Are Better Than You Think

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub

Follow Patrick on twitter at @patrick_oshag

Nov 05, 2019
Chad Cascarilla – The Future of Blockchain and Financial Services - [Invest Like the Best, EP.145]
01:07:06

My guest today is Chad Cascarilla, the CEO and co-founder of Paxos, which describes itself as a financial technology company “mobilizing assets at the speed of the internet.“ Thanks to more than 20 years of investing and financial services experience, Chad has a unique perspective on integrating blockchain technology with traditional systems. He also has one of my favorite bitcoin origin stories, which we explore.

Before Paxos, Charles co-founded institutional asset management complex Cedar Hill Capital Partners in 2005 and its blockchain-focused venture capital subsidiary, Liberty City Ventures (LCV).

Our conversation is less about cryptocurrencies and more about the history, current state, and potential future states of our financial system. Please enjoy.

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

1:32 - (First Question) – His work in the finance world before crypto’s

5:12 – Experience navigating the subprime mortgage trend and what it taught him about blockchain

9:59 – The levers that matter in the financial services industry today vs when he first started

14:07 – Open vs closed money in financial services

19:16 – How slowdowns are different in the modern era

23:06 – What would lead to a major winding down of global debt

27:09 – What would be his focus as a traditional investor

29:21 – How he first got involved with bitcoin

            29:47 – Elliott Wave Newsletter

31:53 – His measured view of Bitcoin and living through the volatility of it

            32:03 – Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System

35:57 – Allocation of a portfolio which includes crypto

36:54 – His involvement and feelings on gold

37:56 – The formation of Paxos and the problem it exists to solve

41:34 – How Paxos is impacting the space

44:12 – Advantages of a private blockchain

43:59 – What is Pax Gold and how does it work

48:53 – Bad ways and situations to own gold

52:12 – Using a stable coin

56:00 – Biggest problem they are working on now

57:23 – What should people be paying attention to in the crypto currency space

            59:23 – Coindesk Research Archive

59:39 – Has the influx of interest in crypto helped in other spaces

1:02:11 – Other lessons people should learn from his career

1:04:53 – Kindest thing anyone has done for Chad

 

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