Today, we announced to our team that Brian Harwitt is being made a partner at CoVenture. Honestly, it’s been a long time coming. Brian joined CoVenture in September of 2016 (3 months after closing our first credit deal, and back when we had less than $10M of total AUM). It’s crazy to think about how small we were back then. And it’s a testatement to how much Brian has helped grow our firm to what it is today.
Since he started, Brian has led, sourced, co-lead, and/or been instrumental in helping us make over a dozen investments totaling hundreds of…
TikTok’s $200M fund that finances new content creators is such a big deal, for a few reasons:
(1) User-Generated-Content sucks (we all proved it to ourselves by posting about politics all the time). It turns out most people really shouldn’t be content creators, and instead just readers.
(2) So the social platforms will try to equip the best posters with financing and resources to post more, and professionalize
(3) They will also want to entice these users with money in exchange for them being exclusive to their platform: “hey, I’ll give you $100k in exchange for you being exclusive to…
The world feels split into three buckets:
· Stuff that’s definitely in trouble: like movie theaters and live events
· The majority of the world that’s a total black box, still: BDCs, Real Estate, etc.
· The few corners of the world where real conviction can be built: tech stocks, E-Commerce, new media
The problem is that since the pockets where conviction can be built are so limited, they’re crowded. It’s obvious to express conviction in tech by purchasing Zoom, AMZN, FB and NFLX. And so they’ve become expensive to own.
But while the list of names capturing value through…
Walmart should buy TikTok — it’s obvious.
Amazon uses its content as a lead generation tool for Amazon Prime. What’s amazing for Amazon is that the company doesn’t need to make a profit on its content — but rather it just needs to use the content to drive shoppers to a prime subscription.
Walmart will be able to use TikTok to do the same. …
I’ve found that a lot of smart people are bad decision-makers. And primarily, when they make bad decisions it’s on “what to pay attention to.”
Knowing what to care about, and what to not care about are often how I identify experienced/high-quality board members. New board members either care about everything, or not enough stuff. Experiences board members are really good at knowing which issues to dig into, and which ones should be left up to management.
But it’s also how I’ve started to identify good CEOs, and even people I’d like to work with in the future.
I’ve heard of a handful of angel investors raising Rolling Funds as an alternative to a “micro fund.”
I wanted to lay out a handful of incomplete gut reactions on the concept:
(1) What is a Rolling Fund?
My understanding is that a Rolling Fund is actually a series of funds that get set up once per time period (example: once per quarter). Investors can choose to invest a set amount per time period, and essentially that just means they contribute a pre-set amount to each of these time-stamped funds.
Example: “I’d like to invest $25k/quarter ($100k per year) into…
Through 2014–2019, growth was the top priority of startups. Through those years, a priority put on growth accelerated.
As I’ve written prior, in 2019, if you were growing 100% YoY with “positive unit economics” you could seemingly raise any amount of money at any valuation.
Firms were becoming so focused on backing future unicorns, that they were putting bets on less companies, making those bets bigger, and really prioritizing this growth premium.
When investment managers raise funds, they usually do so with a thesis. Very few investors can raise capital because LPs just “trust them to do what is best.”
But what happens when a thesis needs to change mid-investment period? There aren’t a lot of good options. An investor can either:
Everyone I speak with wants to talk about the stock market. Why won’t it go down? Why doesn’t it reflect the economy? What’s happening?
My response back is… I don’t really know.
Maybe the stock market only captures large companies less impacted by the economy. Or maybe allocators need to fill their equity bucket, and prices are being driven by equity re-balancing rather than speculation. Or maybe it’s bullish investors predicting an early recovery. Or maybe equity markets are so weighted towards tech stocks, it’s not reflective of the plight of traditional industry.
But high yield doesn’t make much…