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Invest Like the Best with Patrick O'Shaughnessy

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 https://joincolossus.com/
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Invest Like the Best with Patrick O'Shaughnessy
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Now displaying: February, 2022
Feb 24, 2022

My guest today is Sebastian Kanovich, CEO of payments company dLocal. Sebastian founded dLocal in 2016 to bridge the infrastructure gap between payments in developed and emerging markets. Since then, the initially bootstrapped start-up has enabled global merchants like Uber, Spotify, and Google to service billions of emerging market users. And in doing so, dLocal has created $10bn of equity market value, having IPOd last year. Our discussion covers dLocal’s playbook for facilitating payments in emerging countries, what Sebastian has learned about great API building, and how he challenges himself to improve personally. Please enjoy my conversation with Sebastian Kanovich.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

 

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This episode is brought to you by Pilot. Pilot handles your startup’s finance, accounting, and tax prep needs, so you can focus on what matters most—building your business. Join over 1,000 startups that rely on Pilot to help them scale. Founder’s Field Guide listeners get 20% off their first six months. Get in touch with Pilot at https://pilot.com/founders

 

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:13] - [First question] - His take on global payments, what is interesting about this system today, and dLocal’s role within it

[00:04:06] - Approaching a country that could benefit from low-friction payments and the playbook for helping them improve their system

[00:06:10] - Differences between being an API business versus a protocol one

[00:07:13] - What companies handle these systems outside of emerging markets and why they haven’t entered the emerging market space

[00:08:59] - A specific example of the steps involved in getting a country integrated into global payments for an app or service provider

[00:11:22] - Whether or not they interact with consumers

[00:12:09] - The trading and foreign exchange component of global transactions

[00:13:16] - Country specific product teams and consolidating their process

[00:14:52] - What he would look for in early-stage payment companies to invest in

[00:16:23] - Defining excellent when it comes to working with regulators and regulatory environments

[00:17:53] - Their role in digital globalization and trends that might arise in the future

[00:19:52] - Ways that low-friction payments have helped accelerate regional innovation

[00:21:31] - The unit economics and costs of a single payment 

[00:24:05] - What the source of cost is to process a payment or transaction

[00:25:10] - Variables in currencies that make them desirable to work with

[00:26:38] - Lessons learned from distribution and customer acquisition of their service

[00:29:23] - Advice he would give to developers building API products

[00:31:16] - An example of wanting to build a function into an API that was never built

[00:32:40] - How they’ve been able to move and scale so fast

[00:34:23] - Ways their business could most improve

[00:35:14] - The operating system he uses to run the company

[00:36:38] - Ways he’s most improved or gotten better as a CEO over the years

[00:37:58] - Why deep humility is such an integral part of his character 

[00:38:30] - The biggest mistake they’ve ever made as a business and what they learned 

[00:39:20] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Feb 22, 2022

My guest today is Frank Slootman, Chairman and CEO of cloud platform Snowflake. Frank has become one of the most revered CEOs in business. Over the past twenty years, he has three times taken over emerging enterprise software businesses – first Data Domain, then ServiceNow, and most recently Snowflake - and led them across the chasm into large, billion-dollar businesses. Please enjoy this great discussion with Frank Slootman.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus is the new digital hub for market intelligence. The Tegus platform empowers Investors and Corporate Development teams to invest smarter by pairing best in class technology with the highest quality user-generated content and data. Find out why a majority of the top firms are using Tegus on a daily basis. Head to tegus.co/patrick for your free trial.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Lemon.io. The team at Lemon.io has built a network of Eastern European developers ready to pair with fast-growing startups. We have faced challenges hiring engineering talent for various projects - and Lemon.io offered developers for one-off projects, developers for full start to finish product development, or developers that could be add-ons to the existing team. Check out lemon.io/patrick to learn more.



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Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:33] - [First question] - How he evaluates the team of a company he’s working with

[00:04:48] - The pace of decisions made around changing team members 

[00:06:10] - Understanding the potential quality of outside leaders being brought into the company

[00:08:13] - How he characterizes great and constructive confrontation

[00:09:53] - What he’s found to be most effective in convincing senior talent to join a team

[00:11:36] - Ways he personally generates energy to sustain himself in this pace of business

[00:14:17] - How he fosters and nurtures healthy communication pathways

[00:15:36] - Narrowing the focus when evaluating a new product

[00:17:58] - Is it possible for a focus to be too narrow?

[00:19:31] - An example of a dazzling customer that he’s worked with 

[00:21:04] - Working backwards from a problem and building something that solves it

[00:23:03] - Building trust between a company and its customers over time

[00:25:37] - Overview of the base layer ingredients of trust

[00:28:12] - Sequential versus parallel processing and how they affect building trust

[00:30:22] - Lessons in successfully translating between engineers and business people

[00:32:58] - Crossing the chasm and effective sales organizations

[00:35:17] - Working compensation into getting more out of an organization

[00:38:45] - How much a sales organization needs to work backwards to serve their product

[00:41:40] - Great questions for board members to ask their executive team

[00:46:07] - Where the analogy of ‘business as war’ falls down and defining the highlander concept 

[00:48:01] - What he feels he could still hone in his skillset 

[00:49:16] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him 

Feb 17, 2022

My guest today is Tim Flannery, co-founder of venture fund administrator Passthrough. Passthrough is removing friction from the manual, time-consuming fundraising process by making investor onboarding as simple and automatic as possible. Their software helps investors fill out subscription documents in minutes rather than hours and allows GPs to easily track LP subscriptions during a fundraise.

 

In our conversation, we discuss the power of identity as a feature to build products around, the double-edged sword of solving an unsexy problem, and how Passthrough has thought about pricing their software. Please enjoy my conversation with Tim Flannery.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Pilot. Pilot handles your startup’s finance, accounting, and tax prep needs so you can focus on what matters most — building your business. Join over 1,000 startups that rely on Pilot to help them scale. Founder’s Field Guide listeners get 20% off their first six months. Get in touch with Pilot at https://pilot.com/founders

 

-----

 

Founder's Field Guide is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Founder's Field Guide, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:02:08] - [First question] - The push and pull nature of what Passthrough is trying to solve

[00:04:17] - What the idealized end state 10 years from now looks like

[00:07:33] - A history of friction in investing and what barriers still remain today

[00:12:35] - The spark of insight that led to starting this new venture

[00:17:45] - Lessons learned from Okta and why identity is so powerful

[00:19:39] - Plans to expand this concept deeper into the tech stack

[00:22:24] - Adjacent problems that they plan to tackle as they continue to scale

[00:24:30] - What it feels like to use their product as an LP today

[00:26:10] - Working with service providers without becoming one

[00:28:06] - What great sales and distribution looks like to him at the infrastructure level 

[00:31:50] - Defining what “bring your collaborators” means 

[00:33:19] - His secret to recruiting talent to help solve an unsexy problem

[00:37:46] - His love for the intersection between process, pipelines, and efficiency 

[00:40:12] - Having a process for designing processes

[00:42:11] - How they arrived at their pricing and thoughtful pricing in software

[00:45:08] - Lessons from building Passthrough that other builders could benefit from 

[00:47:16] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Feb 15, 2022

My guest today is IAC’s CEO, Joey Levin. IAC is a unique business in that it’s a holding company which builds world-class digital businesses. Since Barry Diller created IAC over two decades ago, it has produced 11 public companies, including Match Group, Expedia, and Live Nation. Today, the business is comprised of category-leaders like Angi, Dotdash Meredith, and Care.com.

 

Joey joined IAC in 2003 and became CEO in 2015. We talk about why he tries to avoid centralization between businesses, what he's learned from Barry Diller, how he approaches capital allocation, and so much more. This conversation serves as an excellent reminder that there’s no formula to company building. Everything is idiosyncratic and requires its own best decisions. Please enjoy this great discussion with Joey Levin.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus is the new digital hub for market intelligence. The Tegus platform empowers Investors and Corporate Development teams to invest smarter by pairing best in class technology with the highest quality user-generated content and data. Find out why a majority of the top firms are using Tegus on a daily basis. Head to tegus.co/patrick for your free trial.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Levels. As one of their early access members, Levels was one of the most interesting products I've used. Levels is attempting to make continuous glucose monitoring mainstream by using real-time biosensors to see how food affects your health. Using Levels made me realize how little we understand about what's happening inside our bodies. And it was the only product that has ever made me willing to log food. If you want early access to become a Member of their private Beta, (the waitlist is currently 150K+ people), use this link – levels.link/PATRICK

 

-----

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:05] - [First question] - The unique nature of IAC; the business of building businesses

[00:05:27] - The first business spun out of IAC and its bottom-up philosophy

[00:06:41] - The differences of IAC and how they manifest 

[00:09:39] - Agility and history of respecting the core functions of the internet

[00:12:36] - Simplified, faster, and larger choice digital experiences

[00:15:57] - His thoughts on the shared characteristics amongst their winners 

[00:18:26] - Lessons from building competitive products in online dating simultaneously

[00:21:37] - Navigating customer acquisition cost and embracing change

[00:24:04] - What makes someone great at customer acquisition 

[00:26:26] - Fostering a unique approach compared to typical customer funnels

[00:27:48] - What most explains his move from a pip-squeak to CEO

[00:29:44] - The process he uses to get to know the critical aspects of a new business

[00:31:59] - Indications that a leader may no longer be suited to run a business

[00:33:13] - Characteristics of vertical markets that he finds attractive to get involved in

[00:34:08] - The early stages of incubating a new business and an overview of their process

[00:38:10] - Enabling new consumer experiences and infrastructure fading away

[00:40:17] - Distilling big ideas down to streamlined approachable consumer products 

[00:42:22] - High-level internal conversations around capital allocation

[00:45:06] - Quantitative versus qualitative analysis in their decision-making process

[00:46:50] - What idea felt the most right but turned out to be a disaster

[00:51:26] - Brand rollup versus brand consolidation and when either strategy is appropriate

[00:54:03] - Having a good sense of identifying, defining, and positioning categories

[00:56:23] - Which aspects of his perspectives have shifted since becoming CEO

[00:57:59] - Thoughts on the toolkit available for sourcing and the cost of capital

[01:01:08] - What personally brings him the most joy in what he does

[01:02:37] - Working with Barry Diller and what it taught him

[01:06:39] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Feb 8, 2022

My guest today is Peter Chernin, who’s had a Hall of Fame career in the entertainment business. Peter ran News Corp and Fox for fifteen years between 1996 and 2009 before co-founding The Chernin Group, which has become one of the leading investment firms in the consumer space. Along the way, he has also produced a number of blockbuster films, including Titanic, Avatar, The Greatest Showman, and The Planet of the Apes Trilogy. Please enjoy this wonderful discussion with Peter Chernin.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors. With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 20,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Levels. As one of their early access members, Levels was one of the most interesting products I've ever used. Levels is attempting to make continuous glucose monitoring mainstream by using real-time biosensors to see how food affects your health. Using Levels made me realize how little we understand about what's happening in our bodies. And it was the only product that ever made me willing to log food. If you want early access to become a Member of their private Beta, (the waitlist is currently at 150K+ people), use this link – levels.link/PATRICK

 

-----

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:06] - [First question] - Business and investing lessons from producing Titanic and Avatar

[00:06:44] - Defining great content and why James Cameron’s franchises have done so well

[00:10:26] - Contributing factors to box-office domination of pre-existing franchises

[00:12:56] - Tailwinds in his earlier career and identifying them in time to get behind change

[00:16:07] - Identifying Showcase was a subscription business early on, unlike broadcast businesses

[00:19:40] - Signals of passion and how powerful niche audiences can be 

[00:23:24] - What a phony aggregator is and the slow dissolution of the middle market

[00:27:01] - The era of unbundling and direct relationships with superfans

[00:30:27] - Lessons learned from building Hulu

[00:34:29] - Working with Rupert Murdoch and qualities that separate him from the crowd

[00:37:07] - Defining what bravery means in a businesses sense

[00:39:22] - A movie he’s made in the past decade that he’s most proud of

[00:43:27] - The keys to being an effective partner to creative individuals

[00:49:53] - What exists today that may change the future landscape of media writ large

[00:52:19] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him

Feb 1, 2022

My guest today is entrepreneur and investor, John Pfeffer. John was a partner at private equity firm KKR in the 2000s, Chairman of leading French IT company Groupe Allium in the 90s, and now invests his own money through his private family office, Pfeffer Capital.

John is one of the smartest investors I know, and our conversation spans all of John’s experience and investment ideas. We discuss the difference between value creation and wealth creation, why John has made such a big bet on one asset, and why adaptation is more important than ever. I hope you enjoy this conversation as much as I did.

 

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Tegus. Tegus has built the most extensive primary information platform available for investors. With Tegus, you can learn everything you’d want to know about a company in an on-demand digital platform. Investors share their expert calls, allowing others to instantly access more than 20,000 calls on Affirm, Teladoc, Roblox, or almost any company of interest. All you have to do is log in. Visit tegus.co/patrick to learn more.

 

-----

 

This episode is brought to you by Lemon.io. The team at Lemon.io has built a network of Eastern European developers ready to pair with fast-growing startups. We have faced challenges hiring engineering talent for various projects and Lemon.io offered developers for one-off projects, developers for full start to finish product development, or developers that could be add-ons to the existing team. Check out lemon.io/patrick to learn more.

 

-----

 

Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit joincolossus.com/episodes

 

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

 

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

 

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

 

Show Notes

[00:03:08] - [First question] - John’s background and the experiences that shaped his worldview and sparked his curiosity

[00:07:34] - Aspiring to grow with a lack of inertia 

[00:10:31] - Why he invests primarily in technology and technology dependant businesses [00:15:22] - What it’s felt like being a tech investor from 2011 leading up to today

[00:19:26] - How he defines good and bad business

[00:21:24] - Why good businesses don’t often have technology disruption risks

[00:22:26] - An (Institutional) Investor’s Take on Cryptoassets; key points from his paper

[00:35:28] - What else is interesting in the crypto space and potentially strong business models that exist outside of Bitcoin 

[00:48:46] - How capital has changed over time and what makes capital efficiency or formation superior

[00:51:51] - Value creation and why a shift in value can affect your returns

[01:01:12] - Whether or not crypto and the founding protocols will fade out of the public eye

[01:11:52] - A consensus on store of value in crypto and how it could change

[01:18:03] - Why he is so heavily allocated to Bitcoin compared to other tokens

[01:25:19] - General take on the nature of buying and selling capital and European markets

[01:35:28] - The interconnectedness of the globe and the future of globalism

[01:39:46] - Why he doesn’t ask people where they’re from and how he prefers to get to know people that can sometimes be unorthodox

[01:41:59] - Market index investing and why it may not be the best strategy going forward

[01:47:36] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him



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