Invest Like the Best with Patrick O'Shaughnessy

By Colossus

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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
Francis Davidson - Design-led Hospitality - [Invest Like the Best, EP.253]
53:22

My guest today is Francis Davidson, founder and CEO of the hospitality brand Sonder. Francis launched Sonder in 2013 as an alternative to traditional hotels and rentals with a specific focus on technology and design. During our conversation, we discuss where Sonder fits into the hospitality ecosystem and why design is so key to their offering. We also touch on Francis’s unique views around customer-centric focus, the nuances of hiring a team, and how they approach decision-making. Please enjoy my conversation with Francis Davidson.

 

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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At WatchBox, the world’s finest watches are at your fingertips with an ever-expanding collection of luxury timepieces, all certified authentic and collector quality. WatchBox’s global team of expert client advisors is ready to help you find the watch you’ve always wanted. Step into the collector’s circle at thewatchbox.com/patrick

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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

[00:02:38] - [First question] - Thoughts on the obligation of a business to deliver the best possible customer experience

[00:03:43] - Making a decision that actively went against improving the customer experience

[00:06:00] - What Sonder is and the key insight that led to building the business

[00:08:43] - Ways they cut down costs by leveraging technology available today

[00:10:44] - The economic model of the business and where it differs most from other hotels

[00:12:15] - The journey of $100 coming in to Sonder and working through the company

[00:13:20] - How the building or asset owner is integrated into the business model

[00:14:18] - Network density and how he thinks about it when it comes to scaling Sonder

[00:16:18] - His philosophy on design and why he thinks it matters in hospitality

[00:18:05] - What you can overspend on and underspend on to keep a guest happy

[00:21:05] - Making decisions on building in house or partnering to provide a new solution

[00:22:29] - Do property owners dress up their own hotels or are there guidelines and retailers

[00:23:51] - Lessons learned from working with overseas manufacturers

[00:24:44] - The key levers that will drive the growth of Sonder

[00:26:59] - What a typical occupancy rate is for them versus other hospitality options

[00:28:23] - Category creation and design that influence and change how people behave

[00:29:45] - Qualities of a new market and what drives success in attacking it

[00:31:15] - His contrarian viewpoint on building a business and talent density

[00:33:40] - The features of his job’s product and the interview process

[00:36:21] - Does everyone at a company need to be an A player?

[00:38:00] - His philosophy on team culture and developing synchronicity

[00:41:01] - Ways to build strategic competitive advantage inside of Sonder

[00:43:22] - What the most successful version of Sonder will look like ten years from now

[00:45:16] - New features and tech improvements that are coming soon he’s excited about

[00:46:48] - Trends in hospitality that have been accelerated and changed by COVID

[00:48:36] - Growing changes in the glamping and nature-forward guest experiences

[00:51:04] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him 

Nov 30, 2021
Niraj Shah - Developing Every Skill - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 252]
01:04:09

My guest today is Niraj Shah, the CEO and co-founder of Wayfair. Wayfair started life in 2002 as a collection of independent websites selling category-specific home furniture but became a one-stop-shop for the home category in 2011 when, at $500 million in sales, the team consolidated their 240 websites into Wayfair.com. Today, the business offers 22 million products from 16 thousand suppliers to more than 30 million customers.

 

During our conversation, we discuss how the competitive frontiers in e-commerce have changed, what it was like to build out a proprietary logistics operation, and what makes the home goods market more attractive than other physical goods markets. Please enjoy this great conversation with Niraj Shah.

 

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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At WatchBox, the world’s finest watches are at your fingertips with an ever-expanding collection of luxury timepieces, all certified authentic and collector quality. WatchBox’s global team of expert client advisors is ready to help you find the watch you’ve always wanted. Step into the collector’s circle at thewatchbox.com/patrick

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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

[00:02:50] - [First question] - The global supply chain and its issues today in 2021

[00:05:13] - Why he finds the ocean leg such a problematic area and how to resolve it

[00:07:04] - Overview of the physical goods market around the world

[00:10:50] - The role of magazines and devout subscribers in certain sectors 

[00:11:50] - Are physical goods trends in flux or fairly steady and less geared to change

[00:13:06] - From 240 separate websites into what became Wayfair as we know it today

[00:16:36] - The competitive frontier of eCommerce in its early days and why they won 

[00:18:29] - Expanded logistics control, developing their brand, and becoming Wayfair

[00:21:40] - Aggressively building for the future as a public company with investors involved

[00:27:23] - Key differences between Wayfair, IKEA, Restoration Hardware and others

[00:34:22] - Other areas of interest and drivers of future investment opportunities for Wayfair

[00:38:39] - What excellent marketing means to him and why Netflix does it so well

[00:42:02] - The margin profile of Wayfair and all of its major components 

[00:47:13] - Lessons learned from major mistakes while building the business

[00:49:54] - Company culture and deliberately investing time and money into it

[00:51:50] - Evaluating the importance and success of their adapt and grow philosophy

[00:53:18] - How he would measure his own improvement as a CEO over time

[00:55:17] - Thoughts on the dimension of competition as they scaled

[00:56:57] - The most stressful episode of growing the business and what he learned 

[01:00:16] - What the best outcome for Wayfair would look like in the future

[01:01:38] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Nov 23, 2021
Bored Ape Yacht Club -  [Web3 Breakdowns, EP. 1]
51:56

Today, I am excited to share our newest show, Web3 Breakdowns. Similar to our Business Breakdowns series, Web3 will have it's own dedicated feed so make sure to hit this subscribe link or find it on your preferred podcast player. The first episode of Web3 Breakdowns covers Bored Ape Yacht Club. You will hear from guest, Eric Golden, who will also be coming back to host his own Web3 Breakdowns moving forward. We are sharing this first episode to make sure no one misses this launch. 

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Welcome to our new show, Web3 Breakdowns. We want to be your on ramp into this new decentralized world, and through conversations with builders, creators, and investors, we will do our best to help you understand and navigate this emerging ecosystem.

First up, we are breaking down the NFT project and cultural phenomenon, Bored Ape Yacht Club. To help break down Bored Apes, I am joined by Eric Golden, former Portfolio Manager at Fidelity and current Bored Ape owner. Eric and I start with an overview of the Bored Ape Yacht Club and his path to owning an NFT in the collection. We then use Bored Apes as a lens to understand how NFT projects are not just creating rare art but strong membership communities too. Beyond the cultural differences between NFT communities, it was fascinating to hear how projects are differentiating themselves with IP ownership, roadmaps, and DAOs. Please enjoy this breakdown of the Bored Ape Yacht Club.

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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Web3 Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Web3 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: @Web3Breakdowns | @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

 

[00:02:30] - [First question] - What the Bored Ape Yacht Club is

[00:03:39] - Motivations for owning a Bored Ape compared to traditional art 

[00:07:46] - The scope of prices, hierarchy, turnover, and trading overview of these NFTs

[00:09:51] - Distribution of rarity and why it matters 

[00:11:29] - How the project roadmap is managed by the member community

[00:16:23] - Who are the members and the key stewards of steering the ship

[00:18:08] - An example of a project where the owners don’t own the IP of their NFT

[00:20:56] - Underlying fundamentals and utility behind owning a Bored Ape 

[00:26:36] - Thoughts on fungible tokens inside of non-fungible projects

[00:29:06] - Ways to think about the value proposition of owning an Ape and an Ape token 

[00:30:36] - Different options for minting NFTs and their pros and cons

[00:34:36] - Literal mechanics of the minting process

[00:36:59] - Smart contract mediating of combining NFTs to generate rare ones

[00:39:20] - Building a bottom up brand and other examples of this trend

[00:41:50] - Are NFTs just gambling, or will they become investable assets like physical art

[00:46:09] - Blockchain infrastructure of the NFT space and whether it’ll stay on Ethereum

[00:48:48] - What makes the Bored Ape Yacht Club so innovative compared to other projects

Nov 18, 2021
Will Marshall - Indexing the Earth - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 251]
49:52

My guest today is Will Marshall, the co-founder and CEO of Planet. Will founded Planet in 2010 with a small team of NASA scientists to build a constellation of satellites that would image the entire Earth every day. Since then, Planet has successfully built and deployed 450 satellites into space, which the company is using to create a time series of images for every place on Earth.

 

Our conversation covers the untold space story. How space is going through an internet moment where cost reductions and performance enhancements have led to a seismic shift in what’s possible above our atmosphere, and how that can drastically improve life on Earth through unique datasets like the one Planet is piecing together.

 

Once you listen to Will speak about Planet’s progress and mission, it’s hard to think of a more underappreciated company in business today.

 

Please enjoy this great conversation with Will Marshall.

 

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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At WatchBox, the world’s finest watches are at your fingertips with an ever-expanding collection of luxury timepieces, all certified authentic and collector quality. WatchBox’s global team of expert client advisors is ready to help you find the watch you’ve always wanted. Step into the collector’s circle at thewatchbox.com/patrick

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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] - His thoughts on the renaissance of the space industry

[00:05:09] - The earliest days of Planet and why he started the business

[00:09:22] - Unique data units captured by their satellites

[00:11:21] - What might we know in fifteen years using satellite data that we don’t today

[00:13:35] - The real estate of space and interesting angles to consider 

[00:15:59] - How customers interface with Planet and their early use cases

[00:20:57] - Thoughts on the sovereignty of space and the laws that exist currently  

[00:23:43] - Figuring out the dynamics and pricing of Planet’s business model

[00:27:34] - Examples of stress and tensions when working in space

[00:29:08] - The future of privacy and concerns we should have there collectively

[00:30:29] - Five different types of satellites and their functions

[00:31:39] - The most sci-fi potential futures that Planet may unlock someday

[00:32:54] - Indexing the Earth and using data to train machine learning algorithms

[00:34:02] - What he’s learned about Earth that is most surprising

[00:37:12] - Contributing factors to a 70% decline in life on the planet in 40 years

[00:38:35] - Ways that going public might impact Planet’s long term goals

[00:40:23] - The hardware story of building various prototypes of satellites

[00:42:18] - How much is built in house versus outsourced to fabricate their satellites

[00:43:48] - Complimentary space trends that are compounding beyond imagery

[00:45:32] - Whether or not they plan on making their data open-source

[00:47:15] - Democratizing their data and allowing other companies to build on top of it

[00:48:30] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Nov 16, 2021
Roelof Botha - Sequoia’s Crucible Moment - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 250]
01:07:32

My guest today is Roelof Botha, a partner at one of the world’s oldest and most successful venture firms, Sequoia Capital. A few days ago before I sat down with Roelof, he announced Sequoia’s boldest innovation since the firm was founded by Don Valentine in the early 1970s. Going forward, the firm will break from the traditional VC mould of fund cycles and instead restructure around a single, open-ended, permanent structure named The Sequoia Fund.

 

In our conversation, we first discuss the details of this change from all different angles and then dive into Roelof’s career. We talk about what’s changed over the past twenty years, his days at PayPal, what legendary investors he’s worked with have had in common, and what he’s learned from being involved in businesses like Square, YouTube, and Unity.

 

Please enjoy this great conversation with Roelof Botha.

 

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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At WatchBox, the world’s finest watches are at your fingertips with an ever-expanding collection of luxury timepieces, all certified authentic and collector quality. WatchBox’s global team of expert client advisors is ready to help you find the watch you’ve always wanted. Step into the collector’s circle at thewatchbox.com/patrick

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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] - What led Sequoia to change their structure

[00:05:53] - Parallels between their approach and the problem Square set out to solve

[00:07:36] - The mechanics of the new fund and how it’ll affect their clients

[00:10:42] - How much discretion LPs will have when choosing to participate in sub-funds

[00:13:11] - What the future looks like and how public securities could be a dominant force

[00:15:02] - Benefits and value-unlocks that the new fund offers that weren’t available before

[00:16:55] - Comparing their structure to the current crossover funds we see emerging

[00:18:21] - What alignment looks like in this new structure for LPs

[00:22:02] - Cost of capital, interest rates, and their impacts on rates of return

[00:25:39] - Changes in the industry and founders that he’s noticed

[00:28:56] - What matters to him when meeting with young companies for the first time

[00:31:47] - The importance placed on value creation over value capture in the early days

[00:33:09] - Things that would dissuade him from partnering with a company

[00:34:18] - What the growth and leadership at Square has taught him over the years

[00:35:44] - Things he’s most excited about for payments looking forward

[00:37:34] - How often a company lowering friction with technology appeals to him 

[00:38:38] - Thoughts on Unity and its role in the growing trend of the metaverse

[00:40:28] - Why the open and decentralized nature of the future is so beneficial

[00:42:05] - Lessons learned about content and internet from working with YouTube

[00:44:08] - The landscape of developers today and MongoDB's role in it 

[00:45:24] - Commonalities between companies who have a successful second act

[00:48:16] - Good board members support founders during their pivotal moments

[00:49:26] - Learning to identify and hunt for crucible moments

[00:50:50] - Curiosity is the key ingredient of a great investor

[00:52:05] - What makes for a fantastic investment memo

[00:53:20] - The most memorable investment memo he’s ever read

[00:54:07] - Honing his leadership as his role has changed at Sequoia these past years

[00:55:51] - Thoughts on Sequoia’s brand and the scope of his ambition

[00:58:05] - What he’s most curious about in the world today

[00:58:46] - What technology wants most from people today

[01:01:13] - The difference between an accountant and an actuary's mindset and when each one is appropriate to inhabit

[01:02:38] - Differences between talent and genius 

[01:04:12] - Closing principals about business building he finds important to consider

[01:06:17] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Nov 05, 2021
Sarah Friar - Building the Local Graph - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 249]
01:13:26

My guest today is Sarah Friar, the CEO of Nextdoor, which connects people in local neighborhoods together. Sarah’s CV sparkles with impressive achievements at interesting businesses, and we spend a lot of time in this conversation thinking through what excellence looks like as a CEO, CFO, equity analyst, and board member. The rest of our discussion is focused on Nextdoor and how the soon-to-be public business is fostering connections between people and businesses in their local areas.

 

I do this podcast so I get to meet and learn from people like Sarah. I could have talked to her for hours. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Sarah Friar as much as I did.

 

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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At WatchBox, the world’s finest watches are at your fingertips with an ever-expanding collection of luxury timepieces, all certified authentic and collector quality. WatchBox’s global team of expert client advisors is ready to help you find the watch you’ve always wanted. Step into the collector’s circle at thewatchbox.com/patrick

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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] - What makes an excellent equity analyst

[00:05:51] - Things Sarah does differently as an operator because she was an investor

[00:08:29] - Key factors that make a great CFO

[00:09:31] - The role of the CFO in regards to capital allocation as a company grows

[00:11:50] - What convinced her to join Salesforce and Square

[00:14:45] - The initial spark and appeal that led her to join Nextdoor

[00:17:35] - Existing problems with ‘community’ and how they approach fixing them

[00:21:36] - Interesting and compelling data points about in-person interactions

[00:23:54] - Network density as a driving factor of product quality

[00:26:43] - What gives Nextdoor a unique angle against some of its existing competitors 

[00:28:51] - Thoughts on platform leakage and user retention

[00:30:57] - Successful strategies for deploying Nextdoor in a new country

[00:35:32] - Having a feed and trying to avoid creating echo chambers

[00:37:04] - Some of the biggest mistakes they’ve made while trying to grow

[00:38:49] - Options for a business model and thoughts on advertising 

[00:43:25] - The importance of scale, advertising, and their relationship dynamic

[00:45:55] - Ways she’s learned to effectively steer the businesses strategy

[00:49:48] - Why she doesn’t like titles 

[00:51:07] - Key levers that will allow Nextdoor to succeed in the future

[00:53:35] - How advertisers evaluate platforms like Nextdoor compared to Google or Facebook

[00:57:19] - What a successful board member looks like and how she’s learned to be one

[00:59:34] - Leading with transparency and empathy

[01:02:00] - An overview of what Ladies Who Launch is and what they do

[01:03:57] - Way to educate our children about finance and encourage financial literacy

[01:07:51] - Making your platforms welcoming and guiding users away from conflict

[01:10:30] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for her 

Nov 02, 2021
Universal Music Group: The Gatekeepers of Music - [Business Breakdowns, EP. 32]
01:16:19

Today, we are running a special episode of Business Breakdowns on our Invest Like the Best feed. When we launched Breakdowns, we hoped to cover industries and businesses that we were “well known but poorly understood.” This deep-dive on UMG and the music industry is just that - you will walk away with a whole new appreciation for artists, labels, and what streaming technology has done for a historic industry. If you enjoy this episode, please be sure to subscribe on your preferred podcast player and check out our growing catalog of episodes.

 

Today we’re breaking down Universal Music Group. As one of the largest music businesses in the world, UMG is home to many of the world’s greatest artists, including Taylor Swift, U2, and The Beatles catalog. A discussion on UMG requires a deep dive into the history of music itself, how it was historically monetized, the shift from physical to digital, and what streaming has meant for the various pieces of the ecosystem. Our guest, Arman Gokgol-Kline, a partner and investor at Ruane, Cunniff & Goldfarb, walks us through that evolution of the music industry before we dive in on UMG.

 

In our discussion, we first break down the industry pre and post Napster, looking at the ways music was sold historically, and how that led to both record profits and a consumer revolution. We then assess streaming’s impact on the industry and how, contrary to what you might think, labels may be more important in a marketplace where it’s easier than ever for creators to record and release music. Finally, we finish with UMG’s place in the ecosystem. The primary drivers of the business, how they’re able to attract the world’s superstars, and how they think about deploying dollars to acquire new artists and timeless catalogs.

 

Please enjoy this fantastic breakdown of Universal Music Group.

 

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 Quartr. With Quartr, you can access conference calls, investor presentations, transcripts, and earnings reports – straight from your pocket. Quartr is 100% free and includes companies from 12 markets including the US, the UK, Canada, India, and all the Scandinavian countries. Quartr is available for both iOS and Android, so check out the app today.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Brex. Brex began as the first corporate card for startups and now offers a full financial stack built for scale. Get 10-20x higher credit limits, uncapped rewards, easy deposits and payments, and expense management all in one. Grow your business faster with Brex.

 

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Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. 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

[00:04:01] - [First question] - How technology disrupted the music business and it’s evolving history

[00:12:44] - What the industry of music labels looks like from the 90s to today

[00:21:19] - How it feels as a high-tier artist to engage with a label directly today

[00:28:20] - The revenue and business model of an artist akin to Taylor Swift

[00:30:44] - The differences between UMG's main sources of revenue; music publishing and recording

[00:35:08] - General margins and trends for music publishing

[00:36:22] - Ownership and mechanics of monetizing an artist’s Intellectual Property 

[00:40:57] - How streaming revenues are divided among stakeholders

[00:46:23] - History of the bargaining power of labels and streaming platforms

[00:51:25] - Capital allocation, ROI, and acquiring IP and catalogs

[00:57:39] - Thoughts on the growth profile of the industry as an investor

[01:02:23] - Potential risks to UMG in emerging technology and new creator trends 

[01:08:50] - Reasons why an artist would pick UMG over other major labels

[01:12:42] - Diversity and how artists are sometimes treated by labels

[01:14:02] - A growing increase in music consumption across the world

Oct 28, 2021
Alex Rampell - Investing in Operating Systems - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 248]
01:17:31

My guest today is Alex Rampell, General Partner at Andreessen Horowitz. Alex has a long history in fintech, having co-founded six companies in his career, including Affirm and TrialPay. During our conversation, we cover Alex’s framework for positive selection in investing, why the best investments are often operating systems or systems of record, and Alex’s views on the future of fintech. For those that have listened to our Business Breakdown on Visa with Alex - you know the intellectual horsepower he brings to every discussion. This conversation is no exception. 

 

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 20,000 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 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, LLC. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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] - Lean into positive selection and avoid adverse selection

[00:07:48] - Thoughts on growing capital formation in private markets

[00:14:01] - Why it’s useful for investors to think in terms of bonds and call options instead of equity

[00:18:39] - Doing more with less and hunting for operating systems to invest in

[00:28:08] - His views on infrastructure and the presentation layer conundrum

[00:33:32] - The sequencing involved in building an operating system over time

[00:40:11] - Rise of the creator class and the coming tailwind post-cloud technology; the rise of the solopreneur 

[00:43:32] - The pig joke and his thoughts on the FinTech space

[00:47:47] - Big financial services functions that will be embedded in non-financial businesses

[00:51:07] - Deciding which functions and financial services models are most attractive

[00:57:01] - What a shift towards data and FinTech might unlock for the world writ large

[01:02:40] - How to improve payment profits by reducing credit rates

[01:04:12] - The threat that Buy-Now-Pay-Later companies pose to Visa and Mastercard

[01:12:17] - How the struggle between distribution and innovation continues to change

[01:15:04] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him 

Oct 26, 2021
Sam Bankman-Fried - Creating a Perfect Market - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 247]
01:14:56

My guest today is Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and CEO of leading cryptocurrency exchange, FTX. In a little over two years, FTX has registered 1.2 million users, grown to facilitate $10.9 billion of daily trading volume, and reached an $18 billion valuation. Prior to FTX, Sam worked at Jane Street Capital before founding a quant trading firm of his own, Alameda Research. At just 29, Sam has packed a lot into a short period of time, and as I’m sure you’ll hear, he has a special ability to harness uncertainty and think deeply across a range of topics.

 

In our discussion, we cover the building blocks of a perfect market, the key areas of inefficiency in today’s exchanges, and Sam’s north stars of product design and effective altruism. We also talk about fairness in crypto markets, how FTX thinks about user acquisition, and derivatives as key enablers of properly functioning markets.

 

Please enjoy my great conversation with Sam Bankman-Fried.

 

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 20,000 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 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. 



------

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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

[00:03:57] - [First question] - What motivates him and what the true north of his vision is

[00:07:12] - Evaluating the impact of well-functioning markets and philanthropic spending

[00:11:55] - The key functions and building blocks of a perfect market

[00:14:59] - Who pays $50 million to access fiat market order books

[00:21:49] - What is valuable about having access to order book data

[00:25:41] - Assessing and understanding the state of fairness in crypto markets today

[00:31:51] - Can crypto only move as fast as the fiat system keeps up

[00:32:43] - The advantages and disadvantages of stablecoins and USDT

[00:34:46] - How much fiat inflow there is into crypto markets and exchanges today 

[00:37:36] - What it is about cryptocurrency exchanges that are so appealing to him 

[00:42:21] - Building in a dynamic world and deciding the sequence of problems to solve

[00:45:12] - Whether or not the US is on the wrong side of crypto and countries competing for healthy regulatory environments in this emerging asset class

[00:47:25] - Thoughts on centralization and what being decentralized unlocks

[00:50:22] - Why derivatives are such a key function of properly functioning markets

[00:52:38] - The competitive landscape between derivatives and exchanges

[00:54:35] - Spending marketing dollars and paid acquisitions for FTX

[00:57:30] - The growing trend of user-generated content becoming user-generated assets 

[01:02:24] - How many layer one blockchains we’ll need and the competition for dominance

[01:05:18] - Thoughts on Bitcoin as the pioneer of the space and how relevant it still is

[01:06:26] - Possibly reaching a state where everything happens on-chain

[01:08:23] - What he means when he says he has more RAM than hard drive space

[01:09:39] - Amassing wealth insanely fast and whether or not it affects him

[01:10:26] - Important things to consider in this rapidly growing space

[01:12:02] - A decision he made while respecting the power laws that govern us

[01:13:10] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Oct 19, 2021
Nick Neuman - Becoming Your Own Bank - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 246]
01:03:57

My guest today is Nick Neuman, CEO and co-founder of Casa. Casa helps bitcoin investors and owners keep their digital assets safe from loss or theft by providing managed self-custody services. In our discussion, we cover the history of asset custody from ancient temples to decentralized ledgers, look at the mechanics of how private keys work, and explore why people are better off holding the keys themselves. We then dive into the future of digital wallets as gateways into our virtual lives, what’s interesting about identity authentication more broadly, and whether these innovations may lead to unintended consequences. Please enjoy this great conversation with Nick Neuman.

 

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 20,000 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".

 

------

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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

[00:03:23] - [First question] - The history of asset custody

[00:07:56] - What private keys are and their role in financial security 

[00:12:21] - Overview of storing a token in a wallet and accessing with a private key 

[00:15:28] - Thoughts on private keys through the lenses of convenience and safety

[00:18:49] - Solving both self-custody of assets and peace of mind

[00:21:39] - How the user experience will feel once self-custody is properly developed

[00:24:11] - Why asset custody is so interesting and what a perfect scenario unlocks

[00:27:05] - Is the DeFi ecosystem an early manifestation of a self-custody financial system 

[00:28:57] - Ways Casa is planning to become a convenient and diverse platform for users

[00:32:16] - The role wallets will play in the future of a digital world

[00:34:56] - Forms of authentication that are most appealing in creating a seamless user experience

[00:37:39] - Overview of what hardware wallets are and how they work

[00:40:17] - Different security options that Casa offers from the simplest to the most secure

[00:44:51] - How many crypto holders there are and how many use self-custody

[00:47:31] - The craziest security set up around Bitcoin he’s ever heard of 

[00:48:49] - What the most ideal outcome for Casa looks like in the coming decade 

[00:51:26] - Thoughts on the competitive landscape and potential growth challenges 

[00:53:07] - Important aspects of the crypto ecosystem other than security  

[00:55:49] - How empowered people feel when they successfully adopt self-custody

[00:57:13] - Whether or not there are ways that the current centralized system is more secure

[00:59:58] - Thoughts on offering a way for users to display they are protected by Casa 

[01:01:31] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

 

Oct 12, 2021
Devin Finzer - An Everything Store for Digital Assets - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 53]
50:58

My guest today is Devin Finzer, co-founder and CEO of OpenSea, the world’s largest NFT marketplace. In a journey that started like many other founders in the space, Devin went deep down the crypto rabbit hole in 2017 and became particularly fascinated with the potential behind digital assets.

During our conversation, we touch on the origin story of OpenSea, how Devin differentiates between the spectrum of NFTs in the market, and what he sees as the opportunity in the future for the industry. We also talk about the various risks within a blockchain, from security dynamics to market speculation. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Devin Finzer.

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 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".

 

-----

 

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

[00:02:56] - [First question] - When he first thought up the genesis of OpenSea

[00:06:00] - What is listed on OpenSea, assets and volume, and the scope of the platform

[00:07:26] - Thoughts on potentially becoming the current era “everything store”

[00:09:22] - How they managed to become the main NFT trading platform

[00:12:28] - What NFTs are, their various classes, and ways they’re stored on the blockchain

[00:15:25] - How much transaction and auction volume happens on-chain

[00:17:07] - Profile picture style NFTs and what’s exciting about them

[00:19:24] - ArtBlocks and the mass interest in AI-generated art

[00:21:22] - What he’s learned and seen about the emerging crypto gaming space

[00:24:38] - The user experience of buying an NFT on OpenSea

[00:26:45] - How the ownership transfer works between wallets

[00:28:04] - Whether or not they have plans to partner with other companies

[00:30:32] - How they think about what gets placed on OpenSea and why

[00:32:09] - Thoughts on take rate and their 2.5% take rate of transactions

[00:33:22] - Why their take rate is so low compared to other sale platforms online

[00:34:47] - OpenSea’s relationship with the Ethereum blockchain and other integrations

[00:36:50] - Perspective on wallets both as businesses and products

[00:39:16] - Potential risks and the dark side of the unregulated NFT space

[00:40:48] - The massive boom and bust cycles of crypto and the high prices of NFTs

[00:41:59] - Interesting areas of Web3 that are in development today

[00:44:19] - The project he’s enjoyed watching grow the most in the crypto world

[00:46:42] - What OpenSea might look like in the future if the best-case proves true

[00:48:59] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him

Oct 07, 2021
Jenny Lefcourt - The Go-to-Market Motion - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 245]
01:01:32

My guest today is Jenny Lefcourt, an equal General Partner at seed-stage venture firm Freestyle Capital, where she manages $450 million in seed investments. Jenny has been engrained in the tech world since the early days of the internet. She dropped out of her Stanford MBA program to co-found online wedding registry startup WeddingChannel.com with classmate, Jessica Herrin, which was subsequently acquired by The Knot. During our conversation, we cover Jenny's investment frameworks, why she believes a deep understanding of the customer is key for founder success, and what makes great go-to-market strategies. We also touch on some of Jenny's favorite market themes around technology for the aging population, the future of work, and the growing low-code/no-code market. Please enjoy my conversation with Jenny Lefcourt.

 

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 20,000 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 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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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] - Her background and some formative experiences that lead her to where she is today

[00:08:38] - Common patterns of desirable founders when it comes to customer focus

[00:09:50] - Her investing framework for evaluating and deciding which companies to invest in

[00:12:32] - Innovation and adoption in the technology sector for the older generation

[00:15:11] - The biggest jobs to be done in this space currently today

[00:17:33] - Cultural differences in how the West views and treats their elderly

[00:21:02] - Business model options for turn-key apartments offered by UpsideHoM

[00:22:48] - Other categories and potential opportunities in tech geared towards the elderly

[00:24:59] - What you need to do differently when building products for the elderly

[00:27:32] - How she learns about a new prospect’s go-to-market approach and reverse engineering an action plan to execute it

[00:32:03] - Founders, You Want to Sell Viagra

[00:33:33] - Selling transformation and an overview of this idea with BetterUp

[00:36:30] - Her thoughts on how the world and the future of work might change 

[00:41:14] - Interesting approaches to improving the onboarding and recruiting process

[00:43:24] - The emerging movement of low code/no code tools

[00:46:58] - How she as an investor adjusts as the world becomes more digitally connected

[00:49:02] - Ways her life has most dramatically changed over the past few years

[00:51:33] - Lessons learned from her time at All Raise

[00:53:40] - Outstanding and remaining barriers to inclusive and diverse teams

[00:58:47] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for her

Oct 05, 2021
Dave Girouard - Making Better Loans - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 52]
01:07:05

My guest today is Dave Girouard, co-founder and CEO of Upstart, a lending platform that leverages AI to make loans more accessible and affordable. Dave started in Silicon Valley as a Product Manager at Apple and later spent eight years at Google, where he built their suite of cloud apps. In our discussion, we cover the lessons Dave has learned about building speed into a habit, the intricacies of training an AI model to predict the future, and what it was like to start a fintech business as an outsider. We also discuss the past, present, and future of lending, why Dave and his team have no plans to build a super app and the differences between public and private market investors from a founder’s perspective. One of the tropes you hear these days is that lending has become a customer acquisition tool for FinTechs, but as Dave explains, the market and opportunity set in lending itself should not be underestimated. Please enjoy this great conversation with Dave Girouard.

 

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 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 brands like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad trust Klaviyo to grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.

 

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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 ambitious 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] - Lessons learned about adopting speed as a habit

[00:05:39] - Knowing which decisions require your attention and are worth it as a CEO

[00:07:00] - What slows down decision-making execution and overcoming it

[00:09:34] - Ways to persuade partners to move as fast as you do

[00:10:44] - One of his most valuable lessons learned from his time at Google

[00:12:20] - The key insight that first lead him to the idea of creating Upstart

[00:15:10] - The early days of learning about the financial lending space

[00:16:49] - Figuring out how to improve on an age-old rigid and regulated system 

[00:18:42] - Credits scores, what drives them, and why they’re suboptimal

[00:20:57] - Overview of building an AI learning model and applying it to loans

[00:23:24] - Surprising findings on predictions and evaluating loan applicants

[00:25:16] - Machine learning algorithms and interwoven programmer bias

[00:26:49] - The role interest rates play in their business model

[00:28:34] - Revenue model and transactions that fund Upstart 

[00:31:43] - Who the typical customer is and their user experience

[00:33:09] - Ways in which they can compound their AI models for other services

[00:35:10] - The biggest hurdle encountered when building Upstart

[00:36:55] - How he’s seen the FinTech space in his area change over time

[00:38:39] - A pie chart on revenue for financial services today

[00:40:24] - Why there are more profits in lending than payments 

[00:41:25] - Major loans types and how they might change in the future

[00:44:12] - Disruptive aspects of the buy now pay later consumer movement

[00:46:09] - How much Upstart could change the future of lending over a decade

[00:48:17] - Inefficiencies of the lending space that still exist today

[00:49:43] - The most important decisions he’s made while building Upstart

[00:51:59] - Things to know when building a business that sells to banks

[00:52:49] - How it feels to interact with hired CEOs versus founder CEOs

[00:55:05] - Thoughts on cryptocurrency and AI writ large

[00:57:00] - Areas that have his attention and get him excited lately in FinTech

[00:58:58] - State of the art AI growth and what lingers over the horizon

[01:00:36] - What he’s learned about being a public market CEO versus a private one

[01:02:38] - Differences between public market and private market investor philosophies

[01:03:53] - Major battle scars from raising capital for Upstart

[01:05:12] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Sep 30, 2021
Jay Hoag - Calibrating Market Adoption - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 244]
01:15:50
My guest today is Jay Hoag, co-founder of TCV. If you look at Jay’s investment track record, it’s a “who’s who” of tech giants with Airbnb, Netflix, Peloton, Zillow, and a list that does not stop there. Needless to say, Jay has a Hall of Fame career. During our conversation, we talk about his own journey founding TCV, what advice he has for visionaries, and why he sees advantages for private to public crossover investors. Jay has such a wealth of experience that is on display throughout this episode. Please enjoy my conversation with Jay Hoag.

 

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.

 

------

 

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

 

------

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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

[00:03:13] - [First question] - Some of his early key formative experiences that shaped his worldview as an investor

[00:06:29] - How much software businesses have changed since he started investing in them

[00:08:28] - The key insight that led him to create TCV

[00:11:36] - Generating returns by swinging less and raising your average

[00:15:06] - Understanding and evaluating a value proposition in its early stages

[00:22:08] - What slightly crazy founders look like and why it’s important for a company

[00:25:47] - Whether or not we’re in the golden age of content already 

[00:28:27] - Why Peloton was rejected so many times before TCV invested in them

[00:32:32] - Things founders often need from him and how he helps them succeed

[00:36:15] - Lessons learned from investing in public markets versus private ones

[00:41:35] - Advice for founders when it comes to conveying their ideas to investors

[00:44:55] - The social dimension of interactive and network building content

[00:46:18] - How important maintaining a focus in the early days is for a new company

[00:48:07] - The most challenging aspect of executing his strategy today

[00:50:48] - One of the most emotionally stressful episodes while launching TCV

[00:53:44] - Supporting your founders during the good and tough times

[00:55:16] - New potential headwinds and tailwinds in the tech space writ large

[00:59:14] - Things people might be overlooking today that could be great opportunities later

[01:02:58] - Whether or not internet companies are threatened by the crypto boom

[01:04:32] - What most has him most excited about the world today

[01:06:20] - Advice for company building in the investing world in general 

[01:09:48] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him



Sep 28, 2021
Gina Bianchini - Helping Creators Build Communities - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 51]
55:35

My guest today is Gina Bianchini, founder and CEO of Mighty Networks, which gives creators a platform to start, grow and own their social communities.

 

In our conversation, we cover the differences between leadership and management, the lessons Gina learned building a similar business in the 2000s with Marc Andreessen, and the elements that make up a thriving community. We talk about community design, finding ways to connect like-minded people, why it’s so important to create movement, and what the future may hold for creators.

 

Please enjoy this great conversation with Gina Bianchini.

 

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 brands like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad trust Klaviyo to grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.

 

-----

 

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 ambitious problem, then Versett is the firm to call. To check them out, visit versett.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

[00:02:35] - [First question] - A period in Gina’s career of deep intensity that she learned from

[00:04:28] - Solving ways to preserve her energy as a high performing entrepreneur

[00:08:19] - How much of her day is spent doing things she wants to do 

[00:11:24] - What is unique to leadership that differs from management

[00:14:49] - The insight that led to what eventually became Mighty Networks

[00:27:19] - Enabling features of a community that Mighty Networks offers creators 

[00:31:51] - Key symptoms of a healthy online community

[00:37:35] - Differences between their emerging communities and the power of belonging

[00:41:38] - Turning movement and accomplishment into a software platform

[00:47:32] - Tying passion into purpose and the structure of a movement

[00:50:20] - The biggest potential risks and challenges that Mighty Networks faces

[00:52:56] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for Gina 

Sep 23, 2021
David Fialkow - Paint Outside the Lines - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 243]
01:03:35

My guest today is David Fialkow, co-founder of General Catalyst. If you are looking for a dose of fun, charismatic energy from a very unique investor then this is the conversation for you. David has a diverse background not only as an investor but also as a philanthropist and filmmaker. He won an Academy Award for his role as the producer of the 2018 documentary Icarus. During our conversation, David and I dive into what makes a great founder, the importance of storytelling, and the value of effectively convening people within your network. After listening to all of his great stories, I think you’ll see why David has so much fun and success helping founders. Please enjoy my great conversation with David Fialkow.

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

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] - How the process started that led to filming Icarus and becoming a VC 

[00:16:01] - Lessons learned about identifying creativity in potential founders

[00:19:26] - What it looks like when a founder doesn’t clearly love their product 

[00:24:35] - Different aspects of building a successful investment firm

[00:28:22] - Features of Ken Chenault that differentiates him from other CEOs

[00:30:12] - Applicable lessons for the effective convening of people

[00:35:20] - Whether or not he cares about the business model of new companies they back 

[00:40:57] - The story of Icarus

[00:47:24] - What is David drawn to at the moment

[00:51:13] - Key ingredients required to tell a powerful and convincing story

[00:53:16] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Sep 21, 2021
Justin Waldron - The Future of Social Gaming - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 50]
01:03:05

My guest today is Justin Waldron, co-founder and President of Playco. Justin is a pioneer of the social gaming industry after he co-founded Zynga at age 19, and he has continued to build games ever since. In our conversation, we cover how Justin sees the future of gaming as social platforms evolve, how gaming may be the next tool for content creation, and how Playco has approached aligning incentives for game creators and players. As talk of the metaverse becomes more mainstream, it’s fascinating to hear directly from those around it. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Justin Waldron.

 

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 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 brands like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad trust Klaviyo to grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.



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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

[00:02:47] - [First question] - His thoughts on the metaverse and why it’s so interesting

[00:06:07] - The ways hardware and software will shape the future of digital worlds

[00:08:23] - Examples of how these digital experiences might look in the years to come

[00:10:45] - His background, history, and his life before founding Playco

[00:16:31] - Ways content creates human interactions and its role in user retention

[00:18:43] - How successful social media platforms encourage user interaction 

[00:20:51] - Games becoming a way to create content and being a creation tool

[00:23:06] - This history of user-generated content for pre-existing games

[00:27:32] - Defining what instant gaming is and how it’s different from traditional gaming

[00:30:24] - The technological problems and hurdles in creating games that load instantly

[00:34:00] - Parallels between instant gaming and cloud-powered processing

[00:36:43] - What types of games are most desirable for games shared via links

[00:38:58] - The feel of this model working in real-time and the project that’s furthest along

[00:41:37] - Lessons learned about working with and structuring partnerships with social media and content creation giants

[00:45:06] - Ways in which social network platforms are evolving

[00:48:04] - Playco’s business model and smart approaches to generating revenue

[00:50:28] - The role NFTs might play in instant gaming and making crypto mainstream

[00:53:03] - Crypto wallets and building one in house versus using a 3rd party wallet

[00:54:17] - What the best case scenario will look like for Playco in a decade from now

[01:00:44] - Other companies to go check out that leverage and empower individuals 

Sep 16, 2021
Daniel Ek - Enabling Creators Everywhere - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 242]
01:26:26

Today is a special episode because it marks five years since I released the first episode of Invest Like the Best. Over those years, I’ve learned so much from so many investors and builders, but today’s guest may have taught me the most.

 

Daniel Ek is the CEO and founder of Spotify, and I find him to be one of the most thoughtful business leaders in the world. Daniel is the perfect guest for this special occasion because he exemplifies the curiosity, humility, leadership, and dogged determination that I think characterizes the best investors and operators.

 

In our conversation, we discuss the differences between the world of bits and atoms, how Daniel gets up to speed in challenging new fields, and why Europe might be a sleeping giant about to wake. We then bring the discussion back to Spotify, the evolving creator ecosystem, and Daniel’s frameworks for leading the business into its next chapter of growth.

 

Over the past 5 years, we’ve produced more than 300 of these shows and reached nearly 30 million people. I am deeply thankful to the guests who’ve been willing to share their knowledge with us all and even more thankful to everyone who has taken the time to listen and learn alongside me. This has truly been the greatest pleasure of my career, and I don’t plan on ever stopping this journey.

 

Now, Please enjoy my conversation with a great friend, Daniel Ek.

 

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.

 

------

 

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

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, and Ben Thompson.

 

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

[00:03:37] - [First question] - Building atoms versus bits and if we’re destined to return to atoms

[00:08:04] - What makes early-stage atoms companies more challenging to build

[00:10:20] - Whether or not we’re starting to see cross-pollinating of infrastructure companies into other sectors

[00:13:00] - His process for learning about new fields when he knows nothing

[00:16:12] - Big and interesting problems that we will need to solve 

[00:19:35] - The nature of healthcare’s technological adoption compared to other sectors

[00:24:13] - Downstream unlocks of collecting and observing big pools of data

[00:30:00] - What he has found effective about taking an idea from 0 to 1 

[00:33:40] - Lessons learned about compounding change and staying patient

[00:37:17] - History of European technology and its unique regional characteristics

[00:42:40] - Cultural and continental traits that may make Europe a technological leader 

[00:45:42] - Characterizing the major lessons learned from his time at Spotify 

[00:50:31] - How artists are changing the ways they connect with their fans via Spotify

[00:55:44] - What he would change about the legacy music industry given today’s tools

[01:00:15] - The influence global exposure has on internet companies and creatives 

[01:03:02] - Interesting observations about the recent explosion of podcast popularity

[01:07:36] - Working with, carrying, spreading, and maintaining Spotify’s sacred source

[01:12:37] - Ways we can improve and sharpen our decision-making skills

Sep 14, 2021
Gabby Dizon - Mapping the Metaverse Economy - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 49]
56:46

My guest today is Gabby Dizon, co-founder of Yield Guild Games or YGG. In 2020, Gabby and his co-founders built YGG around the growing “play-to-earn” economy within blockchain-based games. Based in the Philippines, YGG effectively backs players - who might not otherwise be able to afford to play - in exchange for a share of their profits. Today, YGG is paying out over a $1mn US dollars a week to players within its community - largely concentrated in their home country of the Philippines.

 

The play-to-earn model has seen its most rapid growth in the popular NFT-based game “Axie Infinity”. Players earn tokens within the game which can be exchanged into local currencies or be used to purchase more digital assets. For a sense of how this market has expanded, Axie Infinity has already reported over $1.5bn in sales over its history- and nearly $900mn over the last 30 days.

 

The speed at which these games and the ecosystems around them are growing is remarkable. In our conversation, Gabby explains YGG’s decentralized structure, the unit economics of their business model, and how he deals with the volatility of crypto assets when trying to build a durable, long-term business. We also discuss the broader metaverse landscape, how it might evolve, what might derail it, and the technicalities of building a token-based, as opposed to equity-based, business.

 

I hope you enjoy this wild conversation with Gabby Dizon.

 

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 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 brands like Living Proof, Solo Stove, and Nomad trust Klaviyo to grow their business. For a free trial, check out klaviyo.com/founders.

 

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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

[00:03:34] - [First question] - What Yield Guild Games is and what they do

[00:04:30] - The growing popularity of play-to-earn games in the metaverse 

[00:06:07] - Major categories of digital assets that exist today 

[00:08:11] - How players can earn money playing Axie Infinity

[00:10:47] - The business model of YGG and what they offer to players

[00:12:42] - Potential earnings of playing Axie Infinity

[00:15:03] - Possible risks to demand and what the Axie economy could be in a few years

[00:17:54] - Evaluating games that are worth investing in

[00:19:55] - The kinds of things that will be most valuable across games in the future

[00:21:37] - Differences in value between cosmetic and utilitarian in-game purchases

[00:23:04] - Key focuses of YGG over the near future

[00:24:47] - What’s different about labor and capital in the metaverse

[00:27:11] - How tokenomics works and value grows for a DAO

[00:29:02] - Ways DAOs are better or worse than traditional equity tables

[00:30:11] - The state of YGGs economics today

[00:31:16] - The Guild’s player retention and growing their scholars

[00:32:54] - Barriers to entry for building a competitive DAO like YGG

[00:34:14] - What made Gabby so interested in crypto originally

[00:36:38] - His personal journey to crypto games

[00:37:53] - Jobs that may carry over from the real world into the metaverse

[00:39:36] - Companies that will arise focusing solely on in-game item creation

[00:41:18] - Base layers of infrastructure needed to create the best future for crypto gaming

[00:44:32] - Shared qualities between games that have a high replayability rate

[00:46:40] - Good and bad tokenomic ecosystem designs

[00:48:17] - What the biggest risks are for the future success of crypto gaming  

[00:49:26] - What factors will ensure the future growth and adoption of crypto gaming  

[00:50:25] - How much fiat flows through Axie and the growing value of in-game assets

[00:52:05] - Whether or not we’ll see purchasable utility items in the future

[00:53:21] - What he’s most excited about for the future of the metaverse

[00:54:52] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him

Sep 02, 2021
Scott Malpass - Building a Great Endowment - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 241]
01:02:05

My guest today is Scott Malpass. Scott was the CIO of Notre Dame's endowment for 32 years and has always been a pioneer at the forefront of the endowment investing world - leading Notre Dame's early investments into Sequoia as well as some of the premier fund managers in China decades ago. Scott built the endowment into a powerhouse, scaling it from $400 million to over $12 billion of assets under management across 175 managers. In our conversation, we talk about the qualities he looks for in great investors, how asset classes have evolved over his 30 years of investing, and how Scott recruited top talent to work at Notre Dame’s endowment. Scott is clearly on the Mt. Rushmore of institutional investors, and I’m lucky to consider him a mentor and a friend. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Scott Malpass.



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 20,000 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 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. 

 

------

 

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

[00:03:54] - [First question] - Finding his way to investing and Notre Dame

[00:06:11] - Key milestones of running their endowment for so long

[00:07:58] - What an endowment model is and how it’s evolved

[00:10:30] - The ingredients that unite their shared successes

[00:11:46] - His philosophy on building a differentiated investing team

[00:13:11] - How he approached talent identification when hiring new managers

[00:15:39] - The importance of understanding who someone was before they became an investor

[00:17:12] - Episode: Steve Mandel, Investing Behind Change

[00:17:28] - Whether or not someone has a reliable and solid core

[00:19:03] - Differentiating between self-confidence and an over-inflated ego

[00:20:27] - Evaluating real investing skills in an individual

[00:21:44] - The most memorable major early partner he brought on to the endowment

[00:23:14] - What made Don Valentine and Sequoia so special

[00:24:21] - Forcing good long-term incentive alignment with a firm

[00:26:35] - What makes a GP exceptional in how they treat LPs

[00:28:01] - How many managers actually have the ability to create alpha

[00:29:24] - His thoughts on venture capital and how he’s seen it evolve

[00:32:40] - The role private equity played in his success and how it’s changed over the years

[00:34:36] - Why diversify when managing such a large pool of capital

[00:35:58] - Public equity as an area of opportunity relative to private and venture capital

[00:38:08] - Bonds in an endowment and high net worth family offices

[00:39:32] - Whether or not equities are still appealing

[00:40:20] - Lessons from investing in China so early in his career 

[00:42:59] - What he’s learned about effective leadership from leading the team at Notre Dame

[00:44:54] - Advice on building your own basic portfolio

[00:47:03] - Portable classroom lessons that lend themselves to effective teaching

[00:48:28] - Why it’s important to do team-building exercises and off-sites

[00:50:07] - His thoughts on cryptocurrency and how others should think about it

[00:51:52] - Students that he’s most proud of across his career

[00:54:56] - Ways you should spend your 20s if you want to become a great investor

[00:55:49] - What’s on the horizon for him over the coming years

[00:57:55] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

 

Aug 31, 2021
Mike Maples, Jr. - A Playbook for Startups - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 48]
01:05:26

My guest today is Mike Maples, co-founder and partner of Floodgate. As a child of the computer revolution, Mike was deconstructing calculators in grade school, writing video games in high school, and inevitably found himself building businesses in Silicon Valley after college. After his success as an operator, Mike eventually transitioned to become a full-time venture investor in the 2000s, and has since built a track record that includes Twitter, Twitch, Lyft, Octa, and a long list of successful tech businesses.

 

I'm not sure I've recorded a conversation with more applicable ideas and advice for company builders. We discussed early insights and secrets, value hypothesis testing, customer development, growth, team orchestration, and a lot more.

 

This is a masterclass from somebody who has seen it all. Also, do not miss his answer to the kindest thing question at the end of the conversation. I hope you enjoy this great talk with Mike Maples.

 

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. 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 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

[00:03:08] - [First question] - His philosophy on the power of forcing a choice

[00:04:43] - How he knows when he comes across a team that has an apple quality

[00:07:39] - Exploring and hunting new inflections in ever-changing systems

[00:10:37] - Why recognizing winning insights allows you to not have to predict the future

[00:12:23] - Whether or not the evolving nature of the funding landscape changes his thinking

[00:14:18] - An example of his insight framework and stress testing a team’s potential

[00:17:21] - Practice reckless optimism

[00:18:54] - Commonalities between teams and their ideas when they get inflections wrong 

[00:20:12] - What the value hypothesis is and how to test it

[00:22:15] - Ways that effective startup teams operate compared to big corporations 

[00:25:36] - His involvement post-investment and where outsiders can be most helpful in a companies’ early days

[00:28:34] - Lessons learned about finding, convincing, and marketing to their first customers 

[00:32:13] - An example of early customer selection done phenomenally well

[00:34:09] - Why it was possible for companies like Justin.TV and Lift to pivot so dramatically from their original ideas 

[00:38:49] - Customer development and using good customers to your advantage

[00:42:31] - Who went from founder to the best growth executive 

[00:43:05] - What he thinks his firm will need to do to continue offering an apple to founders

[00:46:08] - The most useful stress tests his firm can offer founders

[00:46:52] - Defining category design and what the process of category design looks like

[00:50:33] - Inflections he’s currently paying the most attention to

[00:52:07] - His experience with an HP35 calculator and how it shaped his life 

[00:54:41] - What venture capital may look like in the future

[00:56:30] - The most difficult things he faces in his career

[00:57:52] - Ways he’s learned to manage failure more effectively

[00:59:06] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him

 

Aug 26, 2021
Renata Quintini and Roseanne Wincek - Investing at the Supercritical Stage - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 240]
01:01:47

My guests today are Renata Quintini and Roseanne Wincek, co-founders and managing directors of Renegade Partners. Before launching Renegade, Renata and Roseanne were partners at high-profile VC firms, Lux Capital and IVP. 

 

During our conversation, we explore their careers and what led them to launch Renegade. We cover what it means to invest at the “Supercritical Stage” in venture and dive into a variety of topics around this theme. We then discuss their investing philosophies more broadly, covering what best-in-class talent pipelines look like, what quality revenue means to them, and what worries them most in search of businesses with outsized potential returns. I think this episode highlights that even as competition in venture has intensified - the best VC partners can offer more than just capital.  I hope you enjoy my conversation with Renata and Roseanne.

 

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 20,000 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 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. 

 

------

 

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

[00:03:57] - [First question] - What the process of starting a new investment firm was like

[00:05:22] - Why the world needs another venture firm

[00:06:48] - The biggest takeaway from Renata's experience at a start-up Venture firm

[00:07:51] - The inspiration for Renegade

[00:11:48] - The most common mistakes made in the early stages of a company

[00:15:14] - Key items to look into first when evaluating companies 

[00:18:04] - Internal superpowers: helping a founder use their strengths

[00:23:46] - Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction

[00:24:04] - What makes a good customer call

[00:25:44] - How more than one Operating Partner changes the conversation and reveals more

[00:27:59] - How businesses have changed in the past few years

[00:30:31] - What companies that have good talent pipelines do to set themselves apart

[00:35:36] - Lessons learned from working with Coda and its CEO, Shishir Mehrotra 

[00:38:12] - Lessons learned from working with MasterClass

[00:41:21] - Differentiating between high and low-quality revenue when evaluating a company

[00:47:39] - What scares them about investing in outliers

[00:51:07] - Improvements made as investors and catalysts for those changes

[00:53:48] - Building an organization that will disrupt itself

[00:56:43] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for them

 

Aug 24, 2021
Max Simkoff - Redesigning the Home Buying Experience - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 47]
01:09:25

My guest today is Max Simkoff, Founder and CEO of Doma. Max founded Doma in 2016 after experiencing the pain and manual process associated with title insurance and real estate transactions. With a background in predictive analytics, Max built Doma to bring a digital-first approach to a historically manual and labor-intensive process. 

 

In our conversation, we cover the history behind mortgage closings, where title companies fall into that process, and how Doma is using technology to improve the client experience. We also discuss Max’s formative experiences at his previous venture, Evolv, and the lessons he’s learned from taking Doma from an idea to a public company. There are many great lessons in this episode, and Max’s entrepreneurial energy shines throughout. Please enjoy this great conversation with Max Simkoff.



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.

 

-----

 

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

[00:03:17] - [First question] - What Doma does and what they do for customers

[00:04:38] - What Title is and why it sits at the center of such a large transaction

[00:08:41] - Overview of the business economics of this space 

[00:13:55] - How the ecosystem works writ large

[00:18:05] - The formative business experiences he had that led him to today

[00:23:03] - What it means to be great at this whole process

[00:26:53] - The thing Doma tries to predict and the inputs that allow them to do so

[00:32:50] - Defining his biggest roadblocks and how they’ve changed over time

[00:36:02] - Managing stakeholder expectations and perception

[00:40:22] - Learning to walk to the line of having a large vision and communicating it

[00:42:51] - What his loose screw is as a founder

[00:45:06] - The square-peg-round-hole they encountered during the pandemic

[00:51:20] - What the counterproductive byproduct of his genius is

[00:53:35] - Figuring out where to take the company next 

[00:56:52] - The big lessons learned from interacting with capital markets

[00:59:30] - Other entrepreneurs he feels are maniacs that he respects

[01:00:55] - What will be the biggest contributing factors to their success over the next decade

[01:02:44] - The key ingredients for building a winning team

[01:04:34] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him




Aug 19, 2021
Suzanne Ciani - Exploring the Creative Process - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 239]
56:34

The intro music you just heard is from my guest today, Suzanne Ciani, an early pioneer of electronic music dating back to the 1970s. As a 5-time Grammy-nominated composer, Suzanne’s music can be heard on her solo albums as well as films, games, and countless commercials. Many have argued her Coca-Cola “pop and pour” changed the sound of advertising forever. 

 

During our conversation, we discuss what it means to be an artist, how to evolve away from the need for approval and validation, and the importance of mentors during the creative process. While many of our guests strive to be lifelong learners - Suzanne seems to take this a step further as a lifelong learner and a lifelong creator. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Suzanne Ciani.

 

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 20,000 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 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

[00:03:53] - [First question] - One of her proudest moments early in her life

[00:05:18] - What she’s learned about originality and its role in the creative process

[00:07:24] - Advice for breaking out of a derivative impulse and finding your character

[00:09:27] - Going from a classically trained pianist to exploring modular synthesis

[00:13:47] - Performing on David Letterman

[00:17:55] - What the Buchla is and the sounds it can make

[00:23:03] - How much of playing a modular synth is improvisational versus pre-made

[00:24:36] - Ways she would design a creative system for other creatives

[00:27:38] - What her interface allows her to do and the mechanics of it

[00:29:07] - Describing what the core sound elements are that she manipulates

[00:32:30] - The role of women in music and how it’s evolved over time

[00:35:06] - What stands out from her mentorship with Ilse Bing

[00:38:16] - Later career creative freedom and what it unlocks for artists

[00:39:25] - Her thoughts on the creative process writ large and its components

[00:42:10] - Commercial sound design and working with Coca-Cola and Atari

[00:44:46] - Observations from a creative life that other artists could benefit from

[00:46:11] - Unifying factors across her best performances

[00:47:53] - What the future might hold for technology and music

[00:50:18] - Where to start when exploring her discography

[00:51:17] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for her

Aug 17, 2021
Sameer Shariff - Breaking Language Barriers - [Founder’s Field Guide, EP. 46 ]
54:17

My guest today is Sameer Shariff, co-founder and CEO of Cambly. After starting his career at Google, Sameer founded Cambly in 2013 as an on-demand service to learn English. At the touch of a button, Cambly connects its global user base into a 1-on-1 conversation with an English speaker.

 

During our conversation, we cover the origin story of the business, what Sameer views as the core functions of the two-sided marketplace, and how the team approached scaling a product that was international from day one. Once you hear Sameer talk, you quickly realize the size of Cambly’s market opportunity and why it may have been easy to overlook this problem. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Sameer Shariff.

 

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

 

-----

 

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.

 

-----

 

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

[00:03:05] - [First question] - What led him to the original concept of Cambly

[00:05:21] - Beginning to learn the scope of the problem and what solving it unlocked 

[00:07:58] - What Cambly is and how they started tackling the problem 

[00:09:15] - Lessons learned about the challenges of building an alive marketplace 

[00:11:41] - Technical challenges and the enabling technologies that allowed it to happen 

[00:12:59] - Deciding on what to focus on first when it comes to students 

[00:15:24] - Figuring out the formula for unit economics and the pricing structure

[00:17:02] - Learning what doesn’t work in their business model

[00:18:07] - Setting up quality control measures and moderation

[00:21:01] - Tools and services that will improve their experience in the future

[00:23:18] - What the 11-star version of Cambly would look like in a decade

[00:26:56] - Ways in which their software and concept could be applied elsewhere

[00:28:30] - Setting themselves up for success and fine-tuning the matchmaking component

[00:30:37] - Driving users to the platform and audience building strategies

[00:33:46] - Making the platform feel native to each country it serves

[00:35:59] - Surprising lessons learned around distribution and market penetration

[00:37:13] - The biggest boss battles faced as a business

[00:40:17] - Advice he would give to founders in a similar situation 

[00:41:32] - How he’s personally changed the most across this journey

[00:43:32] - Ways he’s shifted to a state of letting go and trusting his team more

[00:45:14] - Lessons learned from studying Airbnb

[00:47:22] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him 



Aug 12, 2021
Sridhar Ramaswamy - The Past, Present, and Future of Search - [Invest Like the Best, EP. 238]
01:17:00

My guest today is Sridhar Ramaswamy, co-founder and CEO of Neeva and Venture Partner at Greylock. After a 15-year career building Google’s ad business, Sridhar launched Neeva as an ad-free search engine with a focus on personalization and privacy. During our conversation, we dive into the early days of search and what led to Google’s dominance. Sridhar shares his view on the potential end state for ad-based search engines, and how all of his experiences led him to found Neeva. Beyond a great deep dive into the origins of search, this discussion is filled with great lessons about data-driven decisions, the value of partnerships, and balancing revenue opportunities against user experience. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Sridhar Ramaswamy.

 

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 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

[00:03:39] - [First question] - Major chapters of the history of search engine technology 

[00:09:21] - The early days of the page rank revenue model prior to ads 

[00:16:27] - Reputation and quality and how they were applied in Google’s early days

[00:21:10] - Driving variables of Google’s ad model that will drive their business going forward

[00:26:48] - Lessons learned about the importance of partnerships while at Google

[00:33:26] - What is Neeva and what motivated him to start it in the first place

[00:39:11] - Variables in building an ad-free search engine that can compete with Google

[00:44:57] - Thoughts on tracking and privacy in the tech world today writ large

[00:50:09] - Lessons he’s learned about pricing when it comes to software

[00:52:58] - Figuring out finding customers when your addressable market is everyone 

[00:56:20] - What he’s learned about leadership over the course of his career writ large

[00:58:05] - What he’s learned about identifying candidates and winning them over when it comes to recruiting new talent

[01:00:27] - His philosophy on product development in general

[01:02:19] - Framing problems in a way that allows you to reach milestones as you build 

[01:04:43] - His biggest professional mistake and what he learned from it

[01:06:08] - The kindest thing that anyone has ever done for him

[01:07:49] - What Bill Campbell brings to mind when he thinks about him

Aug 10, 2021
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.

-----

 

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.

 

-----

 

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

[00:03:10] - [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.

------

 

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 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

[00:03:39] - [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.

-----

 

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

 

-----

 

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.

 

------

 

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

[00:03:38] - [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.

-----

 

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.

 

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.

 

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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.

------

 

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.

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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 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.

 

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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

[00:04:10] - [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.

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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.

 

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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."

 

-----

 

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.

------

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.

 

------

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.

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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 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.

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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.

-----

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