Meet 'VC Confidential'

Meet 'VC Confidential'

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Posted by: Anne Kennedy & Gillian Muessig on Tuesday, May 12, 2020 at 8:00:00 pm

“Those who spread ideas, win.”

Seth Godin

We agree! Join us on VC Confidential on WMR.fm as we take a deep dive each week into the opaque world of venture capital and share their learnings and ideas on the inner workings of the shrouded corner of business finance known as Venture Capital. A new episode goes up every Monday night. We're going to rip the opaque lid off:

  • How do Venture Capitalists make investment decisions?
  • Who makes money in Venture Capital investments – and who doesn’t?
  • How do you get their attention for you pitch?
  • What do all those all those letters and names mean anyway? AUM? MRR? IRR?
  • Moreover, how do you get your startup funded by a VC firm?
  • And, most of all, why does all this matter now?

We have taken the time to look under the hood of venture capital, and now we will lift that hood high so that you can find out what you need to know. On ‘VC Confidential’, we will interview many guest experts: fund managers, institutional investors, strategic finance consultants, support platforms, bankers, attorneys and accountants. And we will tell you what we have learned on our way to becoming general partners of our venture capital fund. We are bursting with ideas to share so all can be winners. 

The Backstory 

As business operators, advisors, board directors, and investors, we spent years learning how venture capital works. Today, we serve as the Managing Directors of the Masters Fund named after an inventor, who in 1715, earned the first patent awarded to an American, Sybilla Righton Masters. You can read about her here.

In March, 2009, at the invitation of Brandy Babin of WebmasterRadio.fm, Gillian launched CEO Coach Podcast from a storage closet at the offices of Moz in Seattle. It was the only quiet space in the office where she could broadcast in silence, without an echo in the room.  A post-it note on the door alerted others that she was on the air.

 2009 was an interesting moment in time. The nation was dealing with a financial meltdown. Sound familiar? In 2020, a global health crisis has shut down our economy from supply chain to hospitality and energy. While recovery will come, the emergent global economy will be different. As we write this, the oil industry has cratered into negative prices per barrel because almost no one is driving, flying, or operating a business. Anywhere. No exploration, no R&D, no sales. Frankly, bailing out banks as we did in 2009 looks far easier than restoring an economy that will rebuild the fossil fuel industry. Moreover, based on the fact that the world has now witnessed clear skies of Los Angeles and New Delhi, clear waters of the Venice canals, and chirping birds on Madison Avenue in NYC, we may collectively lose our appetite for the fossil fuel industry and finally find alternatives to what was clearly a suboptimal global life choice.

As early as 2017 many of CEO Coach podcasts were focused on what every entrepreneur was asking us, "How do I get raise money for my startup?" About venture funding, observing how it worked, and -- mostly -- not worked as we discovered how to create a new fund in a more workable model for the 21st century. Sharing what we learned with other emerging fund managers is a no brainer. So was sharing with founders seeking capital to start, build and grow their businesses.  Gillian and Anne started asking questions. A lot of questions. They have answers to share with you so you can get your startup funded or build your own fund. Warning: what you will hear may be different from conventional wisdom.  We are anything but conventional VCs, not least because we are women who fund women-led startups.

Looking Forward

Venture Capital needs to evolve. Women-led startups receive a pathetic amount of funding, while decades of results demonstrate such leadership makes more money for investors. Conventional equity funding serves very few. Less than 4% of VC funding companies have successful exit comma and 80% die completely. That is an unconscionable waste of resources , money , time and talent the world can no longer afford. Clearly, venture funding builds value for investors who benefit from the exit. Where is any focus on building sustainable, profitable companies that add prosperity to cities, states, and countries?

 

 

 

 

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