The Twenty Minute VC (20VC) interviews the world's greatest venture capitalists with prior guests including Sequoia's Doug Leone and Benchmark's Bill Gurley. On... More
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20VC: Why Financial Models at Seed, $5M Seed Rounds & The Fear of Signalling Risk is all BS | Why Multi-Stage Firms Have Destroyed Seed & Who Wins and Who Loses in the Next 10 Years of Venture with Adam Besvinick, Founding Partner @ Looking Glass Capital
Adam Besvinick is the Founder of Looking Glass Capital, a pre-seed-focused firm started in 2020. Before starting Looking Glass, Adam spent about 5 years at Deep Fork Capital and Anchorage Capital Group investing in pre-seed through Series C. Adam's portfolio across funds includes the likes of BigID, Transfix, NomNom, and Hone Health, to name a few. In Today's Episode with Adam Besvinick We Discuss: 1. How Twitter Led to Founding a Venture Firm: How did Adam make his way into the world of venture through Twitter? What are 1-2 of his biggest lessons from working with the legend, Chris Sacca? What does Adam know now that he wishes he had known at the beginning of his time in VC? What do most young VCs misunderstand when it comes to reputation? 2. Raising Fund I: The Process: How many LP meetings did Adam have to close Fund I? What docs and materials did he have for the fundraise? How does he advise other managers on doing docs for fundraises? How do different LP profiles want different things in the managers they work with? How did Adam approach first vs final close? How does he advise others managers on closing? How did Adam instil a sense of urgency in LPs to move and commit to the fund? What are 1-2 of Adam's biggest pieces of advice to managers raising a first-time fund? 3. Looking Glass: The Very Disciplined Pre-Seed Strategy: How did Adam decide on the fund size? Why is it the optimal fund size? What is the desired ownership for Adam? What level of dilution does he expect across the lifecycle of the company? What is the average check size? What is the average entry price? How does Adam approach reserves and follow-on checks? How does Adam reflect on his own relationship to price? Why does Adam not like the majority of pre-seed micro-fund strategies? 4. The Market: Multi-Stage Firms Destroying Seed Does Adam agree that "multi-stage firms have destroyed seed rounds"? How does Adam advise founders when they have multi-stage offers and seed firm offers? Who will be the winners and losers in the next 10 years of venture? Why is it harder than ever to advise founders on fundraising rounds today?
20Product: How Linkedin Does Product Reviews, A Post-Mortem on Stories, Linkedin Messenger and Spam & Why the Data Advantage in AI is Diminishing with Tomer Cohen, CPO @ Linkedin
Tomer Cohen is the CPO @ Linkedin. Since joining in 2012, Tomer has served in key leadership roles, helping launch and scale new innovative member and customer experiences. He previously led the growth and development of LinkedIn’s Marketing Solutions portfolio and LinkedIn's consumer and mobile products. Prior to LinkedIn, Tomer worked as an entrepreneur with Greylock Partners and founded a company in the personal CRM space. In Today's Episode with Tomer Cohen We Discuss: 1.) From Israeli Military and Chip Design to CPO @ Linkedin: How did Tomer make his way from the Israeli military to being CPO @ Linkedin? What does Tomer know now that he wishes he had known when he became CPO? What have been some of his biggest lessons from working with Reid Hoffman? 2.) Product: Art or Science: How does Tomer determine whether product is art or science? If he were to put a number on it, what would it be? How does Tomer determine whether to go with his gut vs go with the data on product decisions? How is AI changing the role of product managers and product leaders? What do product leaders and PMs need to do to stay up to date with the latest changes in AI? 3.) Linkedin: Review of Current Products: Feed, Stories, Messenger How does Tomer analyse the success of "the feed" in Linkedin? What worked? What did not work? Why did "Stories" not work in Linkedin? What went wrong? What did they learn? What is Tomer doing to tackle the spam issue in Linkedin? What are the biggest challenges associated? Why does Linkedin still have such poor messaging service? Why is it a difficult problem to solve for? 4.) AI Changes Everything: Why does Tomer believe this wave of AI is the most significant technological shift in our lifetime? Who will win the race in AI; startups or incumbents? Which model will work most efficiently; open or closed? Will we see large enterprises prefer bundled AI options or unbundled with specialised providers?
20VC: Why Being First To Market Does Not Matter, Why You Do Not Have Defensibility on Day 1, How to Analyse Market Size and Present it to Investors, Vitamins vs Painkillers; Do Vitamins Survive Recessions and Good vs Great Messaging with Guy Podjarny @ Sn
Guy Podjarny is the Founder of Snyk, the leading Developer Security platform, helping developers secure as they build. Guy was previously CTO at Akamai, co-founded Blaze.io (acquired by Akamai), and was the product manager of AppScan, the first AppSec scanner, through Sanctum, Watchfire and IBM. Guy is a public speaker, O’Reilly author, and an active early stage angel investor. In Today's Episode with Guy Podjarny We Discuss: 1.) From Israeli Military to Founding a $10BN Company: How Guy made his way into the world of startups from the Israeli military? What is Guy running away from? Why does he hate tribalism so much? Does Guy believe serial entrepreneurship is valuable or naivety of young founders is good? 2.) The Secret to Finding Product Market Fit: Why does Guy believe PMF is a poorly defined term? How does Guy define PMF? What are the single biggest mistakes founders make while searching for PMF? What are the most important elements on messaging when it comes to PMF? If you have a horizontal tool, how do you message and resonate with specific audiences? 3.) Defensibility and Being First to Market: Does Guy believe that being the first to market is really that valuable? Does Guy agree that investors expecting defensibility on day 1 is wrong? Why does Guy think market leadership is way more important than first to market? What are the true defensible moats that can be built early today? 4.) Lessons from 100 Angel Investments: What have been the single biggest lessons for Guy from his 100 angel investments? What are the biggest mistakes angels make when investing today? How should founders present their market size to investors? Where do they go wrong? Does Guy invest in both painkiller and vitamin businesses? How does he compare them? Why is Boldstart Guy's favorite venture capital firm?
20VC: Why Your Fund Model Should Not Rely on $10BN+ Outcomes, Why the Large Funds Got Too Large, The Rise of Solo GP's; The Pros and Cons & Is Consumer Subscription Even a Good Sector to Invest in with Nico Wittenborn @ Adjacent
Nico Wittenborn is the Founder of Adjacent, one of the best early-stage firms created over the last 5 years. Before starting Adjacent, Nico spent over 3 years at Insight Partners in New York and before that learned the craft of venture from some of the best in early-stage, Point Nine, where he spent over 4 years. Nico's portfolio across funds includes the likes of Revolut, Chainalysis, Oura, RevenueCat and PhotoRoom to name a few. In Today's Show with Nico Wittenborn We Discuss: 1.) From Selling Mobile Phones to Leading Early-Stage Investor: How did Nico first make his way into the world of venture with Point Nine? What did Nico learn from his time with Point Nine and Insight? How did his time at each impact how he invests and runs Adjacent today? What does Nico know now that he wishes he had known when he started investing? 2.) Is Consumer Subscription Even a Good Place to Invest? With Calm ($2BN) and Duolingo ($6BN) as the market leaders and there only being two of them, is consumer subscription even a good place to invest? How does Nico pushback that retention for consumer subscription apps is so bad? What do many not see about consumer subscription retention numbers? How does Nico respond to the challenge of high customer acquisition cost and navigating challenging platform shifts in advertising, when investing in consumer subscription? What will the consumer subscription landscape look like in 5 years time? 3.) Adjacent: The Fund, The Strategy: Why does Nico believe if your fund model relies on $10BN outcomes, you are in trouble? How large is the latest Adjacent fund? What does the portfolio construction look like for the fund? How much diversification is the right level of diversification? How many companies per fund? How does Nico think about capital concentration on a per company basis? What are Nico's ownership requirements? How have they changed with funds? What is it about Nico's structure which enables him to be more collaborative than others? 4.) Nico: The Investor: Lessons: How does Nico reflect on his own relationship to price? When does he pay up? When does he not? What has been one of Nico's biggest misses? How has that changed his approach? Why does Nico not really compete with the large multi-stage funds? Why is Nico deliberately trying to reduce the amount of companies that he sees? 5.) The Future of Venture: How does Nico analyze the rise of solo GPs? What are the biggest pros and cons of the model? Why does Nico believe the large generalist funds are in trouble? Who is set to win and who is set to lose in the next 10 years of venture? Which seed firm would Nico invest in? Which Series A firm? Which growth firm?
20Growth: Three Growth Lessons Scaling Whatsapp from 0-100M, Why You Should Hire a Head of Growth Sooner Than You Think & The Biggest Mistakes Founders Make When Hiring for Growth with Ryan Wiggins, Head of Growth @ Mercury
Ryan Wiggins is the VP of Growth and Analytics at Mercury where he oversees a Growth team and founded the Analytics function. Prior to this, Ryan built Growth teams at WhatsApp, where he helped grow WhatsApp Business from 0->100M users, Workplace, and Facebook Ads. If that was not enough, Ryan is also an active angel investor. In Today's Episode with Ryan Wiggins We Discuss: 1.) From US Department of Commerce to Leading Growth Teams: How Ryan made his initial foray into the world of growth with Facebook and Whatsapp? What does Ryan know now that he wishes he had known when he made the entry into growth? What advice does Ryan have for people who want to change their career but are not sure what they want to do? 2. ) Who and When: Building the Team: Should we hire a Head of Growth or a more junior growth hire first? What are the different profiles of growth hires? How do they change with business model? When is the right time to hire your first growth hire? What are the single biggest mistakes founders make on the timing of growth hires? 3.) How to Hire: The Process: Structurally, what is the right way to hire for a growth team? What does the interview process look like? What do you want to get out of each meeting? Should case studies be used, if so, should they be used for the company hiring or of the company where the candidate is from? What does the comp package look like for different growth hires? Who should be brought into the growth hiring process? What stage should they be involved? 4.) Onboarding: Setting Growth Up for Success: What is the ideal first 30,60 and 90 days for new growth hires? What can leaders do to ensure they are set up for the maximum chance of success? What are three of the biggest red flags bad growth hires show in the first 30 days? What are the biggest mistakes founders make in the onboarding process of growth hires?
About The Twenty Minute VC (20VC): Venture Capital | Startup Funding | The Pitch
The Twenty Minute VC (20VC) interviews the world's greatest venture capitalists with prior guests including Sequoia's Doug Leone and Benchmark's Bill Gurley. Once per week, 20VC Host, Harry Stebbings is also joined by one of the great founders of our time with prior founder episodes from Spotify's Daniel Ek, Linkedin's Reid Hoffman, and Snowflake's Frank Slootman.
If you would like to see more of The Twenty Minute VC (20VC), head to www.20vc.com for more information on the podcast, show notes, resources and more.