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Economic shifts

The last ten years have been an incredibly fascinating time, being 34yrs old I am really excited to have lived during this time and hopefully have been paying enough attention to take better advantage of the next HUGE cycle change. This one isn’t quite over yet though and there are some interesting things that none of the media pundits, fed, or economists really predicted. The corporate shifts that started small in 2010 are getting really big and impactful now in 2014 and I suspect will continue in 2015 even if the fed stops flooding the market with cheap dollars. What am I talking about? Tobacco buyers are going to get their fix from mostly one company going forward The new hot disruption in real estate is ALREADY consolidating – sorry Estately Washington isn’t really … Read entire article »

Filed under: Technology

Interview with Michael Mauboussin

Another great interview with Michael Mauboussin – I don’t really care what you invest in (early stage companies, public companies, real estate, indexes, casino chips…) – you should understand the insight from Mauboussin… Enjoy! … Read entire article »

Filed under: Investing

An economists view on startups

It’s no secret I am a sociologist at heart and love economics or at least parts of economics as a result. I have been listening to Russ Roberts’ EconTalk podcast nearly every week for the last seven years. Not quite from the beginning but pretty close. I have grown as a thinker and ultimately have refined how I approach economic data and quantitative analysis as a result. That said, some of the deeper details about the usefulness of econometrics isn’t for everyone so I won’t be offended if you think worse of me for being such a HUGE Russ Roberts fanboy. What is interesting is his trips out to the bay area that result in a bunch of EconTalk interviews with people from the startup ecosystem. Recently Russ had Sam Altman, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Technology

Investors are better than analysts

We all know that analysts have a lot of alternate interests… company politics and company business models being the two primary alternate interests that analysts must weigh when publicly talking about companies they cover on behalf of their firm. So what would things look like if those same analysts put their skills analyzing companies like true investors? Well the best go become money managers of some kind, that takes time though to build a reputation. What can analysts and investors alike do in the interim to show their prowess and truly practice analyzing company data? Leigh Drogen of Estimize has some clear answers in the interviews below. What is interesting is the anonymous crowd is just as interesting if not more interesting than the non-anonymous crowd. Granted I am an investor in … Read entire article »

Filed under: Technology

Protip – storms are bad

It was a dark and stormy night… that is how every tale starts where there is something bad and ominous in the book right? At least that is what we all write when we are third grade and need to convey a deep emotion with words. The main words connecting that emotion to the reader is ‘dark’ and ‘stormy’. So why the hell are we now writing tweetstorms? Wouldn’t that be a bunch of really BAD tweets? Or maybe that is the joke that tweetstorms are really a swarm of bad tweets with little numbers to mark their increasingly bad tweetscore? At what point did someone roll over and say to themselves, I can’t figure out how to write a blog that people read, so instead I’ll take a communication medium that … Read entire article »

Filed under: Technology

Fantasy Portfolio – Uber

I wrote a couple months ago about my fantasy startup stock portfolio and am finally getting the follow-up posts published. The list in my portfolio include Robinhood – Twilio –Sendgrid – Fitbit – & – Uber I am starting to think Uberconference may be a close second and SendHub is starting to get on my radar as a result of Uberconference. Both are worth more exploration. Let me dig into one in the portfolio though – Uber. If you haven’t used Uber yet it is definitely worth a try. Aswath Damodaran’s valuation in his post Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble: The Costs and Benefits of Market Timing Bill Gurley (Uber investor) attempts to refute Damodaran with an equally long read and important criticism of where models fall apart in his post How to Miss By … Read entire article »

Filed under: Investing

Letters to my kids – Professional opportunities

Eleventh in the series – letters to my kids… Hey guys, Been a while since I sent you a note, but I saw this and immediately thought about sharing with you. I know you have a while to really worry about this one – but you should be saving all of these little notes I send you… you are saving them right? The whole startup vs. corporate life thing is an interesting thing. I too have worked at both startups and corporations and I got into a long conversation about some of that experience last night with your Mom. We were talking about the difference the team makes and it depends a lot on whether or not you’re the smartest person on the team. I guess someone has to be the smartest person … Read entire article »

Filed under: career

The PreMoney Conference

I thought about trying to make it down to the bay area for Dave McClure’s PreMoney conference. I had heard great things about it and the lineup looked rather appealing. I came up with all sorts of excuses and didn’t go – instead I followed the livestream, tweetstream, and of course the slideshare. I made note that I should definitely be there next year as the quality of the presentations was high and the attendance was interesting. I won’t go into depth and pretend I learned a lot because I wasn’t there, I’ll let you grab the slides and dig through the tweets yourself. A few that I pulled out that I thought were particular interesting though included… Don’t quickly dismiss things that look like toys, look for compounding fast growth even … Read entire article »

Filed under: Investing