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Invest Like the Best

Exploring the ideas, methods, and stories of people that will help you better invest your time and money. Learn more and stay-up-to-date at InvestorFieldGuide.com
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Now displaying: August, 2020
Aug 25, 2020

My guests this week are Jeremiah Lowin and Chetan Puttagunta. Jeremiah is the founder of Prefect.io, an open-source software company where my family and I are investors, and Chetan is a partner at Benchmark Capital. Both are past guests and good friends. I asked them on to help the audience understand the open source software business model. I’ve been fascinated with this model in which companies give a huge chunk of their work and value away for free to a community of developers, and then make money by building additional tools, functionality, and services on top of their free and open platform. While this may strike you as a wonky discussion on a niche software topic, I think it is valuable for everyone because the ideas can be applied to more than just code. I view much of my own activity as open-sourcing investment research and knowledge. It is also important because much of the world’s technology is built on top of open source projects. I hope you learn something new about this emerging category. Please enjoy.

 

This episode of Invest Like The Best is sponsored by Canalyst. Canalyst is the leading destination for public company data and analysis. 

If you’re a professional equity investor and haven’t talked to Canalyst recently, you should give them a shout. Learn more and try Canalyst for yourself at canalyst.com/Patrick.  

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:40) – (First question) – Originator business in open source software; Redhat

(5:51) – Why open source is valuable in building a business

(7:40) – Examples of the benefits of open source projects

(10:27) – Open source business models that produce the best results

(17:04) – Defensibility of open source companies

(25:02) – Mentoring younger founders on using open-source

(30:54) – The benefits of launching open-source

(36:41) – Building a digital community

(41:31) – Lessons from Open Source that can be applied to other businesses

(50:04) – The opportunity sets available in the open source space

(53:33) – Future of open source

            (56:31) – Tobi Lutke Podcast Episode

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Aug 18, 2020

My guest today is Katrina Lake, the co-founder and CEO of Stitch Fix. Stitch Fix is a multi-billion-dollar public company which has brought an entirely new model to retail apparel by combining data science, technology, and personal stylists to create a unique shopping experience tailored to the individual consumer. I first met Katrina through past guest Bill Gurley and have been excited to host her since that first meeting. In our conversation, Katrina and I discuss all aspects of Stich Fix—its history, business model, innovations, and its future. Please enjoy this great and thought-provoking conversation with Katrina Lake.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:19) – (First question) – Where E-Commerce stands and what the future might hold

(4:37) – Why personalization makes Stitch Fix stand out from the others

(9:34) – Why data science is foundational to their business

(12:15) – What makes for a good augmented human and hiring stylists

(14:34) – Stakeholder value and creating a great partnership with suppliers

(18:10) – Their emphasis on stakeholder focus and social justice

(19:28) – The capital efficiency of their business in the early days

(24:46) – Her superpower of recruiting

(29:46) – Her strengths in building Stitch Fix

(31:56) – Transparency vs authenticity

(32:59) – Big break for the business

(37:15) – Exclusive brands to Stitch Fix

(39:01) – The next act for Stitch Fix

(41:43) – Lessons learned in pricing services

(44:24) – Future trends in retail apparel

(48:02) – Hardest thing to copy about Stitch Fix

(49:59) – Lessons for putting data science at the center of your business

(53:37) – Moments during her journey she’s felt most alive

(55:23) – Kindest thing anyone has done for her

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Aug 11, 2020

My guest this week is Brian Armstrong, the co-founder and CEO of Coinbase. The topic of our conversation is the future of cryptocurrency and decentralized finance. Its been a while since I checked in on the world of crypto and while prices are still below the 2017 highs, there’s been a ton of additional work and infrastructure laid. We discuss the major events of the past decade and what might happen in the 2020s. Perhaps most interesting, we cover the potential benefits of a modernized financial system, which Coinbase hopes to help usher in. As I’m trying to do more in conversation with CEOs, we also discuss the lessons he’s learned building a business. Please enjoy my conversation with Brian Armstrong.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:23) – (First question) – Most important developments in cryptocurrencies

            (3:00) - What happened in crypto over the last decade

(3:01) – What will happen to cryptocurrency in the 2020s

(4:01) – Long term vision for Coinbase

(6:57) – Why should we be aiming towards an open financial system

(11:41) – How crypto improves the movement of money

(14:22) – Creating sound money and currencies

(16:21) – Why economic freedom is an important variable in what he’s trying to do

(19:44)  - How economic freedom can happen with various regulators around the world and in different countries

(22:49) – How Coinbase attracted its first users

(26:33) – The December 2017 madness of cryptocurrencies

(29:50) – How he thinks about recruiting teams and motivating them to be productive

(33:40) – Mistakes with people he’s learned from

(34:56) – Steering a product roadmap and creating a successful business

(37:17) – What do the non-Bitcoin currencies offer that Bitcoin doesn’t

(41:19) – Innovation in cryptocurrency that excites him: DeFi

(43:40) – Interesting geographic locations and their impact on crypto

(45:29) – How his thoughts on company building has changed over the years

(46:47) – Battling any loss of confidence as a founder

(51:01) – Improving decision making as a leader

(53:54) – Aspects of the job that he loves the most today

(56:25) – Largest impediments to mass adoption of crypto

(58:25) – His curiosity for scientific research and bioengineering

(59:19) – Advice that helped him that he would offer others

(1:01:38) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

Aug 4, 2020

My guest today, Matthew Ball, is a long time coming. He’s the former head of strategy at Amazon Studios, an investor, and probably my favorite business essayist writing today. In fact, I can’t think of another author whose work I read as quickly once a new essay drops. Read his latest on the past and future of Nintendo and you’ll see why. Our conversation is all about the past and future of media. We discuss movies, music, television, video games, and the metaverse. When I re-listened to this episode I couldn’t believe how much information was in Matthew's head and how easily he covered so many topics in depth. Please enjoy this great conversation.

 

This week’s episode is sponsored by Bottomless. Bottomless is a smart coffee subscription which automatically re-orders coffee for you based on your consumption habits. 

 

Bottomless is offering one month and your second bag of coffee for free at bottomless.com/patrick.

 

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

Show Notes

(2:20) – (First question) – Compulsive interest of how people entertain themselves

(4:19) – Changes of intellectual property and trademark in media

(9:12) – Cross media world building and Netflix’s strategy

(11:47) – Competing with the major power players at the top

(16:54) – Fate of movies in the new media landscape

(20:38) – Fate of music in the new media landscape

(25:40) – Age and gaming in this media transition

            (26:20) – Gavin Baker Podcast Episode

(29:50) – Legacy of the Marvel Cinematic Universe

(34:48) – How he defines the notion of a metaverse

(39:53) – Creating a more interoperable version of our digital world

(47:37) – What is not included in the metaverse and investing in one

(52:14) – Tim Sweeney’s role in Epic Gaming

(58:12) – The unreal engine

(1:07:46) – What should investors be thinking about when it comes to gaming worlds

(1:12:43) – Opportunities in the gaming space for investors

(1:19:59) – Cloud gaming’s impact on the space

(1:26:54) – Will other media platforms have to copy the gaming industry

(1:30:51) – How interactivity and feedback loops plays into his investment decisions

(1:33:07) – Ease of creating a new media business today

(1:35:20) – Trends media storytelling

(1:38:50) – What makes for good IP in media content

(1:42;14) – Why he wants to explore payment platforms and block chain

(1:44:56) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him

 

Learn More

For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.

Sign up for the book club and new email newsletter called “Inside the Episode” at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub.

Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag

 

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