The Story Behind Our Investment In Humble Dot

About a year ago, a friend told us about this new work app they were using. Didn’t think much about it. Then, the same thing happened a few days later. It’s just the Bay Area echo chamber at work. And then finally, a few weeks... Read More

The Summer Solstice And Seed Stage Squeeze

If you’ve been following my tweets lately, you’ve read some of my quick musings on the state of the seed market this summer. In short, in my 6.5 years of investing in the seed stage, I have never seen activity levels like I’m seeing today.... Read More

Echolocation

I was catching up on MG’s newsletter/blog and came across this opening line, which got me thinking about a concept in investing, specifically in deal sourcing: To me, all information is about triangulation. Any single source, no matter how close to the situation — and often times... Read More

The Truth About Investor Updates

The topic of “investor updates” has been debated frequently. Most folks who are not close to early-stage startups and new company formation would be surprised to discover that a high number of companies, after receiving funding from individuals or institutions, do not send updates to... Read More

VC Firm Creation Versus VC Firm Building

Earlier this year, I reflected on the difference between “fund investing” vs “fund management.” It’s a useful post for emerging managers, I’d recommend reading it. The gist of that post is – making investments is relatively easy, but learning to manage a VC fund is... Read More

Three Great Examples Of Email Newsletters Done Right

Earlier this week, I tweeted a thought about the difference I see between blogging versus publishing: “Publishing is when you draft a bunch of versions, have scores of people look at it, maybe a PR eye on it, etc. (often on Medium). Blogging is when... Read More

Two Simple Questions When Considering A Career In VC

There are countless posts on what one should consider when considering a career in VC. The reality today is that, as technology proliferates into all sectors and geographies, venture itself has grown in lockstep with the size of the opportunity. As the economy is now... Read More

Load Management

I’m not a huge NBA fan, but I certainly appreciate the sport. From a business and growth perspective, there’s so much going on with the NBA that’s fascinating to me. And, this particular offseason with all the amazing free agents on the market makes for... Read More

Quickly Unpacking The Looker And Tableau Acquisitions

Normally, I like to pounce on these big acquisitions quickly with some quick analysis, but big M&A in tech is happening too fast, and it’s graduation season for the toddlers, and family is in town, so for this installment of the blog, we will talk... Read More

Quickly Unpacking The $1.4B Acquisition of Harry’s

Believe it or not, this will now be the second blog post on this site about a billion-dollar exit for a shaving-related startup. It was just about three years ago when the startup world learned that Unilever had decided to plunk down a cool $1B... Read More

Mapping The Haystack Portfolio Across The United States

Hello. It has been a while since I’ve posted here, nearly 3 months. My fingers are well-rested, but my writing prowess is likely rusty, so please forgive any rustiness in this post. I do plan to write a lot more this summer, so stay tuned.... Read More

The Story Behind Our Investment In Second Measure

About 3.5 years ago, we met Michael and Lillian from Second Measure while they were in Y Combinator. We were lucky to invest not only during this time, but also doubled down in an extension. And this week, the company announced it had raised a... Read More

Amazon “Swipes Left” On New York City

Start spreading the news, indeed. Today, Amazon announced it will entirely abandon its plans to build its second headquarters (a/k/a “HQ2”) in Long Island City, a residential neighborhood in the borough of Queens, New York City. There’s no need for me to mince words here:... Read More

The Story Behind Our Investment In Fiddler Labs

This is the story of how we invested in Fiddler Labs. At the beginning of 2018, we almost invested in a startup with two strong founders. To make a long and private story short, on the morning I was about to call the founders to... Read More

Quickly Unpacking Spotify’s Acquisition Of Gimlet Media

I’ve been traveling all week, digging out of email, and closing two deals and — hence — have been pretty quiet online. As I was scrolling through Twitter today and saw the rumors around Gimlet, the podcast media company, being acquired by Spotify for $200M... Read More

Bites At The Apple, Sharpshooting, And Shots On Goal

More often than not, I believe it is largely impossible to predict the shape of an outcome when making an initial venture investment. Investors, of course, will conduct significant due diligence, investigate sources, study trends and the competition — and much more. But, at the... Read More

Fund Investing Versus Fund Management

When I started out investing (via a fund — not my money), I was just investing based on a simple schedule: About once a month, invest $25K into one company I liked. Pretty easy. Over the years, that check size grew slowly to $50K, then... Read More

The Parlay

In gambling, particularly in sports, there’s a concept of “parlay.” The word can be used as a verb (“turn an initial stake or winnings from a previous bet into (a greater amount) by gambling”) or a noun (“a cumulative series of bets in which winnings... Read More

Deal Opacity

When I moved back to the Bay Area in early 2011, the technology and startup sector didn’t feel as big or expansive as it does today. In that time, Twitter was just getting its sea legs, the Quora private beta was one of the hottest... Read More