Social Capital teardown. Smart home bets. LA tech. Top construction deals.
Genteel VC standards
Various interesting articles today (all linked in The Blurb) and of course data.
First, a behind-the-scenes look at the fundraising discussions between Autodesk and VCs. The $500k investment that the VCs did not make would have been worth $37 million after the IPO stock peak in 1987.
It’s worth reading, as it’s written from the founder’s perspective and they are very honest about their impressions of the offers on the table and the VC dynamics at play.
And now some data.
Social Capital teardown
Using CB Insights data, we took a deep dive into VC fund Social Capital to highlight the fund’s strategy, financing activity, deal trends, and more. The report features annotations and commentary by Social Capital partners.
Scale challenge #1 – A culture of helpful
As we’ve grown to 130 folks on the team, there are a few things that have become increasingly important and that we’ve been thinking of a lot.
A common question we now get from the team is what is our biggest risk. We covered it at our recent offsite (slides here) but the big thing boils down to having people who are 4s and 5s on the helpfulness hierarchy.
I learned about this framework in a great essay by Daniel Debow which is linked below.
The other thing we’re really focused on is speed. As an insurgent company, speed is a killer weapon. A great essay on this topic comes from The First Round Review by Dave Girouard, founder and CEO of Upstart and former President of Google Apps Enterprise.
Scale challenge #3 – A culture of intellect & critical thinking
While there is a lot of talk about hiring people with high EQ (definitely important), we also increasingly hire for smarts.
Isht as we scale remains uncertain and smart folks with high intellectual capacity can think critically of how to solve these challenges and know where to focus.
An oldie but goodie from HBR is linked below on this topic.
Construction tech is a nascent industry that has seen some notably large deals in the past few years. Construction management unicorn Katerra takes the largest deal to date, with a $130M Series C mega-round.