Building marketplaces, shooting missiles and watching what people do.

Happy Friday.

Hello from 34,000 feet today. I’m somewhere over the Atlantic and heading home after a week of speaking and events in Guadalajara, MX and Madrid. I’d love to come spend a week with you in 2016, scroll to the bottom to learn more.

1. “Whatever I’m doing, I’m fully invested in that thing as I’m doing it.” [Link] [Tweet]

I agree with the author: it’s not about work-life balance, it’s about work-life integration.

2. “anyone building a marketplace company knows that marketplaces face unique challenges” [Link] [Tweet]

If you’re building a marketplace-based company, you should read this.

3. “I understood they wanted us to have a better life than theirs, but there were times I felt suffocated.” [Link] [Tweet]

As a first-generation Indian-American, every word in this piece rings true for me. I imagine other children of immigrants to the US feel the same way.

4. “a Trident D5 ballistic missile launched by the USS Kentucky off the coast of Southern California.” [Link] [Tweet]

Because missiles. Also, here’s a late Veteran’s Day “thank you” to all of the men and women that keep us safe.

5. “you don’t have to suspend reality to imagine that a few portfolio companies might exit at ~$250 million.” [Link] [Tweet]

Two thoughts:

  1. The math around venture funds is relatively straightforward yet very few founders (and perhaps some investors as well) spend any time trying to understand how things work. The goal is to return 3X-5X (or more) to the LPs and that gets trickier as the fund size increases.
  2. Has anyone seen how these single-GP funds are structured? Aside from the management fees and carry, I’d be interested in understanding how the rest of the LPA looks. Hit ‘reply’ and let me know if you’ve got something I can read.

6. “success goes to the fastest, not the first” [Link] [Tweet]

Having sat in countless pitches around the world, this particular idea is the least understood outside of Silicon Valley.

While everyone outside the Valley pitches their app/idea/concept, people inside the Valley are pitching their growth tactics.

How do we share that concept with more founders and investors outside of the major tech hubs?

7. “It is burned in your brain because the world as you knew it is now forever different.” [Link] [Tweet]

I’m late to drones. Really late.

8. “he did what anyone would do and shot a high-budget rap video about it.” [Link] [Tweet]

I had a lemon once but it was pre-social media. I wonder how much faster Land Rover would have reacted if I was able to create something that might bring millions of eyeballs into the issue.

9. “It doesn’t matter what people say. Watch what they do.” [Link] [Tweet]


10. “I’m trying to find these things that aren’t meant to be beautiful but are.” [Link] [Tweet]

Big ships are really big. Also, it’s important to remember that the vast majority of goods available to you daily are taking a ride on one of these things at some point during their creation.

Can I spend a week with you in 2016?

I’ve spent the last few years jetting in/out of places for keynotes and demo days. It’s an effective way for me, as an investor, to meet the maximum amount of companies in the shortest amount of time. I want to give back to local tech communities in 2016.

Here’s the general idea: I’ll come spend a week in your community and we’ll put together a week full of office hours, tech meetups, keynotes and fun. I might even bring some other investors with me to help.

In exchange, you cover my costs and help me figure out how to best help your tech community. Bonus: I might do it all in an Airstream.

I’m only going to do 6 of these week-long trips in 2016, please fill this out ASAP if you think I can help your local tech community. Three of the cities have already been booked, hurry up. 🙂


You can get the full stream of the things I read, it’s all on Twitter — follow me: @paulsingh. Sometimes I write stuff too. You can always find me on Slack, apply to join.

Have a great weekend!


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