722 episodes

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

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

    • Investing

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

    20VC: Stitch Fix Founder Katrina Lake on Growth vs Profitability, Her Biggest Lessons From Working with Bill Gurley at Benchmark and The Importance of Mental Flexibility as a Leader

    20VC: Stitch Fix Founder Katrina Lake on Growth vs Profitability, Her Biggest Lessons From Working with Bill Gurley at Benchmark and The Importance of Mental Flexibility as a Leader

    Katrina Lake is the Founder & CEO @ Stitch Fix, 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. Prior to their IPO in 2017, Katrina raised just $42M in venture funding from some of the best in venture including Bill Gurley @ Benchmark and Steve Anderson @ Baseline. In just 6 years Katrina took the company from founding moment to $2BN IPO and was even cash flow positive after just 3 years. If that was not enough, Katrina is also on the board of both Grubhub and Glossier.

    In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

    1.) How Katrina made her way from being an associate at a venture firm to reshaping the world of fashion with Stitch Fix?

    2.) On reflection, is Katrina happy that the business was forced to be so capital efficient so early? What did Katrina do to structure the business and its inventory management to preserve cash? How does Katrina think about the balance between growth vs profitability?

    3.) What have been some of Katrina's biggest lessons from working with Bill Gurley? How does Katrina ensure not to overweight his opinion on the board? What have been Katrina's biggest lessons on effective board management? How has being on the Grubhub and Glossier board changed the way she operates the Stitch Fix board?

    4.) How does Katrina think about imposter syndrome and self-doubt today? How does she remedy it? How does Katrina ensure she remains on the front lines with customers despite being a public company CEO? What benefits are there for founders to stay in the trenches even when a large company?

    5.) How does Katrina think on the importance for founders to have a vision today? Where do they need to be flexible? What are some dangers or pitfalls associated with "the vision"? How far are Stitch Fix along in cementing their vision?

    Item’s Mentioned In Today’s Episode

    Katrina’s Favourite Book: Between The World And Me

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

    Likewise, you can follow Harry on Instagram here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

    • 36 min
    20VC: Robinhood Founder Vlad Tenev on The Single Most Important Thing Leadership is Responsible For, How To Manage Fear and Self-Doubt as a Leader & The Future of Fintech; Bundled or Unbundled

    20VC: Robinhood Founder Vlad Tenev on The Single Most Important Thing Leadership is Responsible For, How To Manage Fear and Self-Doubt as a Leader & The Future of Fintech; Bundled or Unbundled

    Vlad Tenev is the Co-Founder & CEO @ Robinhood, the company that provides commission-free investing, plus the tools you need to put your money in motion. To date, Vlad has raised over $2.2BN with Robinhood from some of the very best in the business including Sequoia, Greenoaks, Index, DST, Ribbit, IVP, Thrive, NEA, GV and more incredible names. Before Robinhood, Vlad started two finance companies in New York City.

    In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

    1.) How Vlad made his way from Bulgaria to studying Math at Stanford to founding one of the fastest-growing companies of the decade in Robinhood?

    2.) How does Vlad describe his own style of leadership today? How has this changed with the scaling of the business? What phase has been the most challenging? Why does Vlad think so much about "the tempo" of the company? What can you do to ensure the highest tempo?

    3.) How does Vlad think about self-doubt as a leader when recognising the sheer size of the Robinhood team today being over 1,000? How does Vlad analyse the role that fear has to play in leadership? How does Vlad manage the weight of expectation? What works? What does not?

    4.) What have been Vlad's lessons in what it takes to acquire the very best talent? Where do many founders make mistakes here? How does Vlad think about the role of mentorship with young team members? Why and how does Vlad bet so big on giving young team members responsibility?

    5.) How does Vlad assess the current state of the fintech landscape today? Does Vlad believe we are entering a period of bundling or unbundling? Will we see the continued rise in the M&A activity we saw earlier this year? Why? What is likely to change in 2021?

    Item’s Mentioned In Today’s Episode

    Vlad’s Favourite Book: The Mars Project

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

    Likewise, you can follow Harry on Instagram here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

    • 36 min
    20VC: Benchmark's Sarah Tavel on Why Chasing GMV Will Lead To The Wrong Direction, The 2 Crucial Tipping Points For Marketplace Adoption, Why UGC Plays Are Like Marketplaces & How To Determine Between Existential and Non-Existential Risk

    20VC: Benchmark's Sarah Tavel on Why Chasing GMV Will Lead To The Wrong Direction, The 2 Crucial Tipping Points For Marketplace Adoption, Why UGC Plays Are Like Marketplaces & How To Determine Between Existential and Non-Existential Risk

    Sarah Tavel is a General Partner @ Benchmark, one of the most successful funds of the last decade with a portfolio including the likes of Uber, Twitter, Dropbox, WeWork, Snapchat, StitchFix, eBay and many more. As for Sarah, prior to joining Benchmark, she was a General Partner at another globally renowned firm, Greylock, where she led deals in Sonder and Gixo. Pre-Greylock, Sarah was the first PM @ Pinterest where she led three acquisitions, launched Pinterest internationally, and was responsible for closing their $100m Series C financing.

    20VC: Benchmark's Sarah Tavel on Why Chasing GMV Will Lead To The Wrong Direction, The 2 Crucial Tipping Points For Marketplace Adoption, Why UGC Plays Are Like Marketplaces & How To Determine Between Existential and Non-Existential Risk

    In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

    1.) How Sarah made her way from being the first PM at Pinterest to being a General Partner at one of the world's leading venture firms, Benchmark?

    2.) What does Sarah mean when she says, "the small things are not the big things"? How does Sarah determine between existential vs non-existential risk? How does this impact the type of board member Sarah is? How has Sarah seen the best board members engage? Who are they?

    3.) Why does Sarah believe that in marketplaces, chasing GMV will lead you in the wrong direction? How does Sarah think about good vs great when it comes to 1.) Average order values? 2.) Repeat purchase rates. 3.) NPS? 4.) Net revenue retention? How should they change with time?

    4.) In marketplaces, what is a tipping point? What are the 2 crucial tipping points to be aware of? How can marketplaces ensure demand brings further demand? What can they determine from how demand engages with different suppliers? How does Sarah feel about feedback systems?

    5.) Why does Sarah believe that UGC plays are like marketplaces? What lessons can be drawn from TikTok to suggest this? How does Sarah think about her biggest lessons when analysing the growth of DoorDash? What do many not see that is important to recognise?

    Item’s Mentioned In Today’s Episode

    Sarah’s Favourite Book: Pachinko: The New York Times Bestseller

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

    Likewise, you can follow Harry on Instagram here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

    • 36 min
    20VC: Alexis Ohanian on Why Now Was The Right Time To Start Seven Seven Six, The 2 Very Distinct Types of Deals In Venture & The Unbundling of Social in 2021

    20VC: Alexis Ohanian on Why Now Was The Right Time To Start Seven Seven Six, The 2 Very Distinct Types of Deals In Venture & The Unbundling of Social in 2021

    Alexis Ohanian is the Founder @ Seven Seven Six, his new fund which just recently announced their first investment leading the $4M seed round for Dispo. Prior to founding Seven Seven Six, Alexis was the Co-Founder & Managing Partner @ Initialized Capital, where he backed many a unicorn including Ro, Flexport, Patreon, GOAT just to name a few. Alexis is also the co-founder @ Reddit, commonly referred to as the front page of the internet, their latest valuation priced the company at $3Bn.
    In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

    1.) When Alexis left his L Sats to go get waffles, what did he learn about himself? How did that lead to founding Reddit? How did Reddit lead to angel investing? How did that lead to Initialized?

    2.) Why did Alexis leave Initialized? Why was now the right time? What worked with Initialized that he has taken with him to Seven Seven Six? What did not work with Initialized that he has learned from? How does he view VC NPS as a result of this and the learnings?

    3.) How does Alexis analyse his own relationship to money today? How did his relationship with his mother and her illness impact how he thinks about wealth and happiness? How did he feel when at 22 he sold Reddit? How does he feel about the "keeping up with the Jones'" mentality?

    4.) How did having Olympia change how Alexis operates and invests today? How does Alexis define backing projects he would be proud to talk to Olympia about? How does he feel about the type of deals many investors make today?

    5.) How did Alexis first meet PG from YC? How did he feel when he heard he believed in him and Steve with Reddit? How did that change how Alexis feels about being the first person to really back someone?

    Item’s Mentioned In Today’s Episode

    Alexis’ Favourite Book: Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction

    Alexis’ Most Recent Investment: Dispo

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

    Likewise, you can follow Harry on Instagram here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

    • 33 min
    20VC: Slack Founder Stewart Butterfield on Leadership Styles, Decision-Making, The 3 Levels of Wealth, IPOs vs Direct Listings & Why Effective Entrepreneurship is Like Parkour

    20VC: Slack Founder Stewart Butterfield on Leadership Styles, Decision-Making, The 3 Levels of Wealth, IPOs vs Direct Listings & Why Effective Entrepreneurship is Like Parkour

    Stewart Butterfield is the Founder & CEO @ Slack, the leading channel-based messaging platform, used by millions to align their teams, unify their systems and drive their businesses forward. Prior to their direct listing in June 2019, Stewart raised over $1.3Bn from the likes of Accel, Thrive, Softbank, Kleiner, IVP, T Rowe, GV and a16z to name a few. Prior to founding Slack, Stewart co-founded Flickr, a company he built into one of the largest web services in the world. Due to his many incredible successes, Stewart has been named to the 100 Most Influential People in the World by Time Magazine, and one of the Top 50 Leaders by BusinessWeek.

    In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

    1.) How Stewart made his way into the world of startups and came to found Flickr? What was his founding moment for the Slack journey?

    2.) How does Stewart think about and assess his relationship to money? How has it changed over time? What does Stewart believe are the 3 levels of wealth? How does Stewart think about his identity being tied to the company? Is that a challenge? How does he mitigate it?

    3.) How does Stewart describe his management style and philosophy today? How has it changed over time? How does Stewart approach reversible vs irreversible decisions? How does Stewart structure post-mortems? Why does Stewart believe effective entrepreneurship is like parkour?

    4.) How does Stewart think about and advise on the debate between direct listing, IPO and SPAC? What has been better/worse and different since making the transition to being a public company? What have been some of the biggest surprises?

    5.) Why does Stewart believe that for most companies, comprehension is the reason for the lack of adoption and customer acquisition? How does he look to solve that with Slack? What have been their biggest mistakes on messaging and branding?

    Item’s Mentioned In Today’s Episode

    Stewart’s Favourite Book: Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting Out of the Box, Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, The Courage To Be Disliked

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

    Likewise, you can follow Harry on Instagram here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

    • 43 min
    20VC: Accel's Dan Levine on The Current State of Seed & Series A, The Rise of Pre-Emptive Rounds, Solo Capitalists and Multi-Stage Funds Entering Seed & Market, People and Product; What To Prioritise?

    20VC: Accel's Dan Levine on The Current State of Seed & Series A, The Rise of Pre-Emptive Rounds, Solo Capitalists and Multi-Stage Funds Entering Seed & Market, People and Product; What To Prioritise?

    Dan Levine is a Partner @ Accel, one of the world's leading venture firms with a portfolio including the likes of Facebook, Slack, Qualtrics, UiPath and Deliveroo. As for Daniel, he actually joined Accel in 2010 before leaving to join Dropbox. At Dropbox, he worked on the platform team helping open the platform to third-party developers and launched and managed many of the company’s developer-facing initiatives. Following Dropbox, he rejoined Accel and has led investments in Scale.ai, Mux, Vercel and Sentry to name a few.

    In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

    1.) How Dan made his way into the world of venture with Accel? How that led to his joining Dropbox? What led to his re-joining Accel 3 years later?

    2.) How does Dan assess the current state of the seed and Series A landscape? How does Dan analyse the rise of pre-emptive rounds? How does Dan determine when to lean in and pre-empt vs when not to? What does Dan think is the biggest myth about raising a Series A?

    3.) How does Dan analyse multi-stage funds so actively entering seed? What has Accel's seed portfolio data shown? How many went on to raise a Series A? How many did Accel lead? How many companies died? What is the biggest problem this portfolio presents?

    4.) How does Dan analyse the trio of people, product and market? How does Dan approach market sizing? How does Dan approach the risk associated with market timing? What risk is he willing to take? What is he not? When can one stretch on market? When is it a stretch too far?

    5.) How does Dan evaluate the rise of solo capitalists? What does he see as the core pros and cons of the model? What are the pros and cons of the partnership model like Accel has? How does Dan evaluate the rise of investor personal brands today? What worries him?

    Item’s Mentioned In Today’s Episode

    Dan’s Favourite Book: Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. (Vintage)

    Dan’s Most Recent Investment: Altinity

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

    Likewise, you can follow Harry on Instagram here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.

    • 44 min

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