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#99 Eric Lagier: The Nordic Unicorn Factory

Eric Lagier of ByFounders Discusses the Nordic Startup Ecosystem

Eric Lagier, ByFounders

Eric Lagier co-founded and is a general partner of ByFounders, a 100 million Euro venture firm focused on Nordic and Baltic startups. As you grab your map to find where the Nordics and Baltics actually are, think about this: Since 2013, 41 startups built in Europe are now worth more than a billion dollars. (These are known as “Unicorns”, a term coined by Ailene Lee of Cowboy Ventures). Even more extraordinary is the fact that 10 of those 41 are from the Nordics. So an area comprising of 4% of Europe’s population has generated 25% of Europe’s Unicorns. This includes companies like Unity, Spotify, Just Eat, Sitecore, Zendesk and Tradeshift among others

Yes, a lot of numbers! Join us as Kent and Eric talk about why such huge outcomes occur in Nordic countries, and what cultural differences define the Nordics vs. the U.S.  Learn who is behind ByFounders, how the fund came together and more. 

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ByFounders: https://byfounders.vc/

Something Ventured: https://somethingventured.us

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#98 Jay Adelson: Jay Builds the Internet

We cover Jay’s journey from office temp to founder of the world’s largest data centers to building Digg… and beyond!

Jay Adelson

Jay Adelson is the cofounder or CEO of Equinix, Revision3 and Digg.  From a career that has taken him from building the first data centers to creating a wildly growing news aggregator, Jay has truly unique insight into Silicon Valley.  In this conversation Jay traces his path from working at a temp agency to building the largest data center in the world.

Nerd out with us as we discuss how you obtained a URL before the Internet even had a governing body – and before the web existed; the battle over whether the Internet should ever be commercial; and the kind of technologies you can only invent when you are at the core of the Internet. 

Also discussed – should you be CEO of two companies?  Why didn’t Revision3 become Youtube?  Why was it called Revision3?  Did Reddit replace Digg?  What did Youtube get wrong, and Twitter get right?

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#97 Po Bronson: The Future According to Po

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Po Bronson

Best selling author Po Bronson has written deeply, often hilariously, about Silicon Valley and its effects on the world.  After founding San Francisco’s Writers Grotto, he wrote such books as The Nudist on the Late Shift, Bombardiers, and What Should I Do With My life?.  Today, he’s a venture capitalist at IndieBio – the Life Sciences accelerator. 

In this episode, Po discusses why 2019 feels like 1994, and what happens when daytime and nighttime conversations converge in Silicon Valley.  We also cover income inequality – the idea of ‘Basic Universal Equity”, and the futures of sports, medicine and…libraries.  But that’s just the beginning – stay tuned to hear what happens when climate change, biotech and automation converge.  And the big finish: whether our species will survive.

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96 Monique Woodard, Venture Capitalist

Monique Woodard fell into venture capital.  Or…wait.  Actually, no.  Monique grew up in rural Florida.  Starting with an Atari game system and moving to a Commodore computer, she learned to write computer code This, in a place where coding was far from the norm, and computer class required a drive into town.  She eventually became a venture capitalist, investing in such companies as: Blavity, Court Buddy, Silvernest, and Mented Cosmetics.

In this podcast we discuss Monique’s journey from the farms of rural of Northern Florida to Miami’s music scene, to Silicon Valley.  We discuss how she established herself as an entrepreneur, and founded the organization Black Founders, eventually becoming a venture capitalist.  We cover a wide range of topics, including her demographic investment thesis, and why it should not be conflated with ‘diversity initiatives’.

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95 Alan Eagle on Bill Campbell, the “Trillion Dollar Coach”

Alan Eagle of Google

Alan Eagle is Director of Executive Communications at Google.    He is the coauthor of Trillion Dollar Coach, a book he co-wrote with Google’s former CEO Eric Schmidt and Google’s former SVP Jonathan Rosenberg.  Trillion Dollar Coach tells the story of Bill Campbell – a football coach who became an executive at Apple, and then one of the most beloved coaches to a “who’s who” of Silicon Valley. 

Among those coached by Bill Campbell are Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Eric Schmidt, Sundar Pichai at Google; Steve Jobs at Apple; Brad Smith at Intuit; John Donahoe at eBay; and Marissa Mayer at Yahoo.

In this podcast, Alan discusses what made Bill Campbell so special.  How did a football coach become beloved in Silicon Valley?  Why is Bill Campbell called a ‘trillion dollar coach”? Finally, Alan discusses and what lessons we can take from Bill today:  How to run a meeting, the meaning of leadership…and the power of love.

In this conversation Miyoko and Kent discuss her entrepreneurial journey from delivering bread in a backpack in Tokyo, to founding and building one of the fastest growing venture-backed food production companies in America.

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#94 James Currier — The Soul of Silicon Valley

James Currier of NFX

James Currier is a partner at NFX a venture firm he co-founded with partners Gigi Levy-Weiss and Pete Flint, and advisor Stan Chudnovsky. As an investor, he has funded companies before or alongside firms like Sequoia, Greylock, CRV, A16z, First Round, Mayfield, Shasta, and GGV.  He’s also a four-time serial entrepreneur. He has unique expertise in network effects businesses (his firm has identified 13 different network effects models https://www.nfx.com/post/network-effects-manual

James is also deeply understands the ebbs and flows of Silicon Valley:  Its technology, its trends, its tribes.  In this episode James and Kent cover myriad topics – including James’ perspectives on why Silicon Valley works, who should (and shouldn’t) come to Silicon Valley, and whether or not Silicon Valley has lost its soul.

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#93 Miyoko Schinner’s Entrepreneurial Journey

Miyoko Schinner

Miyoko Schinner is the founder and CEO of Miyoko’s – a vegan creamery that is leading the way to a dairy-free future. She is an award-winning celebrity chef, restauranteur, cookbook author, and TV host.  She brought all these experiences to bear as she founded and built Miyoko’s from a small storefront to over 100 employees distributing vegan cheese around the country.  Miyoko’s has raised venture capital from firms like Obvious (Ev William’s venture firm) and Stray Dog capital.

In this conversation Miyoko and Kent discuss her entrepreneurial journey from delivering bread in a backpack in Tokyo, to founding and building one of the fastest growing venture-backed food production companies in America.

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#92: Carter Cohen – Behind the Scenes with Gen Z

Carter Cohen

Carter is the kind of guy who makes you feel bad about what you were doing in college. He’s a biochemistry major at Georgetown, speaks 3 languages (at least), studies electrochemistry and…well he’s a member of Gen Z, also called “post millennial”.

In this wide-ranging conversation, Kent and Carter discuss the myths and realities about how Gen Z uses technology, what they expect from the future of work and….much more.

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#91 Ryan Bethencourt — Wild Earth Founder and Babel Ventures Partner

Ryan Bethencourt

Ryan is the Founder/CEO of Wild Earth (backed by Felicis Ventures and Peter Thiel).  He is a Partner at Babel ventures and Investor/Advisor to over 80 biotech startups. He aims, through his work, is to positively impact the lives of 7+ billion people and billions of animals through applied biotechnology.

In this wide-ranging conversation, Kent and Ryan discuss the case for Vegan dog food, the emergence of lab-grown foods, the creation of a biotech incubator, the future of psychedelics and more!

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#90 Codepath’s Michael Ellison — Racism, poverty and Silicon Valley

Codepath’s Michael Ellison

Michael is the founder and CEO of Codepath.org a nonprofit increasing the number of high performing,underrepresented software engineers at scale. At over 30 schools, CodePath.org supplements university curriculum with courses co-developed with top technology companies

In this wide-ranging conversation, Kent and Michael discuss racism and poverty on the road to Silicon Valley, Also, discussed are flaws in the Black Panther motion picture.

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