45 episodes

John Espey, a serial entrepreneur, MBA, and early stage investor interviews founders and investors at innovative companies. Defiance_ invests in, consults, and starts companies that defy conventional wisdom, and this podcast explores that world.

The Defiance_ Ventures Podcast John Espey

    • Investing
    • 5.0, 4 Ratings

John Espey, a serial entrepreneur, MBA, and early stage investor interviews founders and investors at innovative companies. Defiance_ invests in, consults, and starts companies that defy conventional wisdom, and this podcast explores that world.

    #41 - Derek Holt, K4Connect

    #41 - Derek Holt, K4Connect

    In this episode John interviews Derek Holt, president of K4Connect, a tech company that is transforming the way nursing homes and assisted living communities serve their customers.  Derek covers a lot of ground ranging from transitioning from IBM to a startup community to actual startups.  He also talks about scaling a business during the COVID pandemic.  



    Books that Derek likes:

    Challenger Sales Model

    Measure What Matters 

    • 2 hr 4 min
    #38, Chris Elmore, Avidxchange

    #38, Chris Elmore, Avidxchange

    Avidxchange is one of the most well known startups in Charlotte.  It has been recognized for many awards and has raised over $1 billion of capital.  In this episode John interviews Chris Elmore, one of Avid's first employees.  Chris talks about the early days at Avid, scaling it, raising multiple rounds of capital from big name investors across the US, keys to sales success, and also talks about the classes he teaches in NC.  



    John talked about Jeff Bezos's day one letter

    Chris likes the How I Built This podcast

    Chris also likes The Pitch podcast

    • 2 hr 4 min
    #40 - Nina Barnett, Grooop

    #40 - Nina Barnett, Grooop

    Nina is an impressive young entrepreneur who created a safety app while in under grad to address a problem that she and her friends could not find a good solution for.  She talks about building an app without a technical background through a partnership and what she had to do to figure out how to build a company around it.  Her company Grooop is an app that makes it easy to let friends and family know when a person is safe versus in transit and to discretely notify others when one might be in danger.  It strikes a delicate balance between privacy and security, which is a topic that has taken on increasing significance as society grapples with topics such as contact tracing.



    Here are many of the resources that John and Nina discussed throughout the interview:

    Nina's development partner out of Durham - Smashing Boxes

    UNC's Adam's Apprenticeship Program

    Vital Voices Non Profit

    Girlboss

    Female Founder Collective 

    Project Scientist

    Hooked - how to build habit forming apps

    Founders Live

    Carolina Challenge

    Launch Chapel Hill

    Greensleeve



    Check out the video on the Defiance_ YouTube Channel

    • 1 hr 22 min
    #39 - Neeta Kirpalani, Consultant, Healthtech Women

    #39 - Neeta Kirpalani, Consultant, Healthtech Women

    John interviews Neeta Kirpalani.  Neeta left a successful career in healthcare to become an independent consultant and her practice has thrived.  She also invests her time in Healthtech Women and Springboard Enterprise's Women's Health Tech Hub.  Neeta talks about building a branding strategy, building a team to support her efforts and scale, and moving from a career in non profits to healthcare.  She also talks about the value of an MBA to an entrepreneur.



    Resources that Neeta likes:

    Carolina Health Innovators

    Society of Physician Entrepreneurs

    HIMSS

    Bootcamps at UNCC

    Tech Talent South

    IASA

    • 58 min
    #37, Lauren McAbee, Chakti Yoga, Essential Thrive

    #37, Lauren McAbee, Chakti Yoga, Essential Thrive

    In this episode John interviews Lauren McAbee, founder of Essential Thrive, a holistic health company focusing on essential oils and Chakti Yoga, a yoga form she created that combines dancing moves with Yoga.  Lauren talks about the health benefits of Yoga, why she created her own form, and also about going virtual and actually increasing revenue.  She discusses thinking about going virtual and COVID-19 forcing her hand and she also talks about how much more scalable the business model is.  Lauren also talked about her personal regimen including sauna, drinking mineral water from springs, and also talks about being a vegan.





    Essential Thrive on Instagram

    Lauren shares her playlists on Spotify.  They are awesome!

    • 1 hr 27 min
    #36-Jordan Schindler, nufabrx

    #36-Jordan Schindler, nufabrx

    Jordan started and runs a company that infuses vitamins and other transdermal products into fabrics.  His business recently was featured on Fox News resulting in a massive increase in sales of anti-microbial copper infused surgical masks.  In this episode he talks about starting the business while at the University of Washington, moving the business to North Carolina, and the massive scaling required when the business took off because of the COVID crisis.



    Jordan came to North Carolina for the Manufacturing Solutions Center in Conover, NC 

    John mentioned the recent Andreesen article on building.

    Bezos's article on being a day 1 company

    Jordan recommends Emotional Intelligence 2.0 

    Jordan recommends Crossing the Chasm 

    Jordan recommends Play Bigger 

    John's reading list post 

    Jordan recommends 10% happier 

    • 1 hr 4 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
4 Ratings

4 Ratings

Tin_Man41 ,

Espey = Jack of All Traits

Espey will crush you in the workplace, gym, and now podcasts. Great info here for all types of people. Well done, Espey!

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