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upside

Author: Jay Clouse and Eric Hornung

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Named a top 27 business podcast by Fortune, upside examines startup investing outside of Silicon Valley.

Every Wednesday, we speak with an early stage founder. We interview them as if we are angel investors considering the company as an investment opportunity.

Each show has three segments:

1.) Intro: independent research of the company
2.) Interview: interview with the founder
3.) Debrief: breaking down the opportunity

Sometimes, we share Coffee Chats interviewing venture capitalists, community builders, and later-stage founders.

Subscribe and see why Business Insider called our podcast "Almost as Good as Getting an MBA."
142 Episodes
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Interview Begins: 7:11 Debrief Begins: 42:31 In this episode, we'll be talking with Andrew D'Souza, the co-founder and CEO of Clearbanc. Along with his partners, he has raised hundreds of millions of dollars in venture capital. At the same time, they help entrepreneurs to grow their businesses exponentially. He started as a management consultant for a couple of years and then spent the last ten years building a few tech companies leading their sales marketing efforts and leading their fundraising efforts. Clearbanc defines itself as a revenue share agreement, and it’s a company dedicated to providing new businesses the funds they need today in exchange for a portion of future revenue. Today, Andrew is going to address some of the challenges that a large part of startups face today and how companies like his improve their chances to grow reasonably. We discuss: - Ad: Hear about how Integrity Power Search make quality hiring for you. (5:15) - Ad: RIMS sustains your organization and the employees even during this global pandemic (6:35) - D'Souza's framework on venture capital led in founding Clearbanc. (7:26) - Engineering, Sales and Marketing goes well together (9:57) - On validating on which paradigm works on a business (11:50) - Geographical Challenges in handling American investors (16:03) - Clearbanc's revenue share agreement (17:19) - Who's Eligible for Clearbanc? (19:44) - A Venture Capital firm relying on Data and Technology (22:41) - E-commerce emerges during COVID (33:18) - Investors connecting globally through OmniValley (41:03) - Learn more about Clearbanc: https://clearbanc.com/ - Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Learn more about Clearbanc: https://clearbanc.com/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm – This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity – This episode is also sponsored by OmniValley. OmniValley is a platform specifically and exclusively designed for investors. It provides transparency and access into entrepreneurial ecosystems – regardless of geography and market size. OmniValley wants to help you make meaningful connections faster. Today OmniValley's platform connects over 600 investors spanning over 200 global ecosystems. Claim your profile: https://omnivalley.co Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds
Interview begins: 5:50 Debrief begins: 39:35 Nick Cooney is the Founder and Managing Director of Lever VC. Lever VC is a new fund focused in alternative animal products, including alternative proteins, meats, and plant-based dairy products. Their portfolio includes some of the biggest brands in alternative animal products, including Beyond Meat and Impossible Burgers. Nick Cooney has been heavily involved in the alternative animal product industry over the past fifteen years. Today, he teaches us the three common ways alternative proteins are created, his opinions on the ethical questions relevant to this industry, and the future of alternative meat products. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (4:22) - Nick's initial interest in alternative meat products (6:48) - Three methods to creating alternative meats (8:42) - Industry acceptance of animal product alternatives (12:57) - Consumer want (17:58) - How healthy is alternative protein? (20:46) - Ease of making 'novel species' meats (22:46) - Regulation and moral questions (26:03) - Market balance (29:06) - Taste (30:22) - Future of alternative meat (32:42) - Ad: Connecting investors online through the Omni Valley network (38:08) Learn more about Lever VC: https://www.levervc.com/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm – This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity – This episode is also sponsored by OmniValley. OmniValley is a platform specifically and exclusively designed for investors. It provides transparency and access into entrepreneurial ecosystems – regardless of geography and market size. OmniValley wants to help you make meaningful connections faster. Today OmniValley's platform connects over 600 investors spanning over 200 global ecosystems. Claim your profile: https://omnivalley.co Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds
Interview begins: 6:11 Debrief begins: 43:23 Grady Buchanan is the founder and CEO of OmniValley. OmniValley is an exclusive online investor network focused on helping you create connections anywhere in the world. They work to showcase and foster under-ventured and emerging entrepreneurial ecosystems by connecting, matching, and introducing all relevant and participatory investor organizations. That includes institutional investors, venture capital firms, accelerators, and ecosystem supporters. We discuss: Interview begins: 6:16 Debrief begins: 43:27 We discuss: -Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:08) -Grady's background in finance (6:32) -Role of LPs in allocating capital (14:22) -Considerations for allocating capital (17:04) -Jump from finance analytics to investment (19:44) -Why start Omni Valley (24:28) -Grady's other projet, Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained (26:34) -Omni Valley's future (28:54) -Current Omni Valley members (33:34) -Differences from AngelList (35:28) -Free membership (37:03) -Becoming a member (39:01) OmniValley was founded in 2018 and based in Madison, Wisconsin. Learn more and join OmniValley: https://www.omnivalley.co/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm – This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds
Interview begins: 6:29 Debrief begins: 51:16 Jared Steffes is the co-founder and COO of Muxy. Founded in 2014 and based in Austin, Texas, Muxy is an online service that develops interactive features for gaming and streaming platforms. Though optimized for Twitch, Muxy's extensions can be used for multiple streaming and video uses. To date, they have had over 120 million interactions through Twitch and are regularly creating new experiences for streamers. Jared has worked in the game design field for the past decade, having before worked for some prominent companies such as EA Sports, TapMe, and NVidia. We discuss: -Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:20) - Jared's initial start in video games (9:45) - Starting Muxy in tandem with streaming's rise to popularity (15:41) - Missing interactions in gaming (20:10) - Current money-making strategies (24:17) - Adding and developing extensions (28:10) - Interactions beyond video games (30:52) - Helping define the video interactive market (34:10, 38:46) - Changes in Twitch since Amazon's purchase (36:55) - Working towards a SaaS billion dollar company (42:40) - Allowing public use of Muxy's development services (45:24) - What if Muxy fails? (47:14) - Ad: Connecting investors online through the OmniValley network Learn more about Muxy: https://muxy.io/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm – This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity – This episode is also sponsored by OmniValley. OmniValley is a platform specifically and exclusively designed for investors. It provides transparency and access into entrepreneurial ecosystems – regardless of geography and market size. OmniValley wants to help you make meaningful connections faster. Today OmniValley's platform connects over 600 investors spanning over 200 global ecosystems. Claim your profile: https://omnivalley.co Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds
Interview begins: 7:50 Debrief begins: 51:01 Lori Most is the founder and CEO of BackpackEMR. Based in Bloomington, Minnesota, BackpackEMR is a medical EMR software designed for mobile clinics in rural, low-income markets. BackpackEMR is the sustainable, portable, non-internet dependent solution for electronic data recording in internationally underserved areas. Lori Most has been in technology, coding, and design before coding was cool, having worked for prominent companies such as Target and United Health Group. Her pivotal decision to found a startup and create an EMR software came after a volunteering trip to South America. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:27) - Ad: Apply to the Render Capital Competition before May 15 for a chance to earn $100,000 for your startup (6:44) - Lori's coding and tech in and after college (8:01) - Volunteering on medical trips in Peru and decision to make an EMR software (12:11) - Backpack's technical and offline hurdles (20:06) - Current customers, pricing, and hardware (22:29) - Transition from paper/past EMR systems to Backpack (30:00) - Combining forces with Timmy Global Health (33:01) - Balancing public benefit and for-profit motives (34:11) - Sales strategies for different markets: assessing value and price (36:03) - Team and future needs (46:38) - Ad: Connecting investors online through the Omni Valley network (49:36) Learn more about BackpackEMR: https://www.backpackemr.com/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm – This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity – This episode is also sponsored by Render Capital. The Render Competition is investing $100,000 into 8 startups and they want your startup to be one them! Early stage startups with a scalable model are encouraged to apply before May 15th. Startups from any location can apply. Apply for the Render Competition: https://render.capital/competition/ – This episode is also sponsored by OmniValley. OmniValley is a platform specifically and exclusively designed for investors. It provides transparency and access into entrepreneurial ecosystems – regardless of geography and market size. OmniValley wants to help you make meaningful connections faster. Today OmniValley's platform connects over 600 investors spanning over 200 global ecosystems. Claim your profile: https://omnivalley.co Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds
We've been waiting for today for a long, long time. Last summer, we filmed and produced a full-length documentary about the startup ecosystem in Columbus, Ohio. The film is called Test City, USA and is now available for you to watch online. The film premiered at Film Festival of Columbus in September 2019, and was the subject of our third issue of The Update. The film took home "Best Ohio Feature" at that festival, and we began throwing our hat in for other festivals. With festivals going virtual, we are pulling back. We participated in this year's virtual Columbus International Film Festival, but now we're excited to share the film with you. Read all about the film and rent or purchase it here: https://upside.fm/test-city-usa Purchase also comes with a 25-minute bonus commentary with Jay reflecting on the film, now 7 months after its initial release. In an effort to provide relief to the families and small businesses affected by COVID-19, we are committing 50% of all proceeds to WeFeedCbus. With your help, WeFeedCbus aims to provide local restaurants affected by COVID-19 the financial support needed to deliver safely packaged meals to front line workers and community organizations in need. Donations go straight to local restaurant providers partnering with WeFeedCbus to help pay for individually packaged meals that are delivered to communities experiencing food insecurity and our frontline workers in Columbus. It's a great way to spend part of your weekend, and we hope you'll watch the film and let us know what you think. Synopsis: There is undeniable energy and momentum in the growing startup ecosystem of Columbus, Ohio. ‘Test City, USA’ explores this moment in time for the city, how the ecosystem evolved, and the challenges of what comes next. WINNER: "Best Ohio Feature" by the Film Festival of Columbus 2019 OFFICIAL SELECTION: Columbus International Film Festival 2020 Directed by: Kyle Skinner Produced by: Jay Clouse Executive producer: Eric Hornung A film by The Up Company Watch Test City, USA: https://upside.fm/test-city-usa Help us spread the word: https://ctt.ac/aqd4K Read the update issue three: https://upside.fm/update/issue-three/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm
Interview begins: 7:50 Debrief begins: 43:06 Anastasia Kraft is the founder and CEO of Xena Workwear. Xena Workwear is a footwear and soon-to-be apparel company dedicated to designing stylish and safe apparel for women in STEM. Based in Milwuakee, Xena Workwear's first products launched less than a year ago, and since then, they already have impressive supporters and plan to soon expand their apparel to include other items. Originally from Kazhakstan and Germany, Anastasia first realized her business idea while working in project management manufacturing, where she noticed a disconnect between the professionalism of the women in STEM and the safety apparel they had to wear. In today's interview, Anastasia details not only the process of creating a shoe but also her frustration with the inequity between women's and men's safety apparel. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:27) - Ad: Business calling and texting anytime, anywhere with Tresta (6:51) - Growing up abroad and moving to America (8:00) - Experience at Caterpillar and consulting (14:49) - Inspiration for Xena Workwear (17:58) - Designing a shoe (20:49) - Decision to start a company (21:58) - Safety apparel standards and certifications (24:20) - Manufacturing process (27:29) - Xena's team (31:23) - Direct-to-consumer vs. b2b strategies (34:19) - Unequal standards in women's vs. men's safety apparel (39:53) Check out Xena Workwear: https://xenaworkwear.com/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds – This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity – This episode of upside is sponsored by Tresta. Tresta is a mobile app that lets you do business calling and texting from anywhere. With Tresta, you can set up your business phone number, download the app, and start calling and texting UNLIMITED right away. Tresta is the best business phone app on the market, whether you’re a founder or freelancer / just starting your business, or you’re already established. Growing your network and your business is all about communication. You’ve got to be available, no matter where you are. Tresta offers the call management features that empower you to communicate smarter and more efficiently, like auto attendants, call recording, user groups, and more. And you don’t need any special equipment – just the smartphone you’re already using. Tresta is easy to configure, so you can set everything up yourself – all online. It’s just $15 per user per month, with no contract, so start your free 30-day trial today at https://tresta.com/upside
Interview begins: 6:10 Debrief begins: 45:00 Matt Hunckler is the founder and CEO of Powderkeg. Powderkeg is a platform connecting tech talent in the middle of the country to the Midwest companies they're searching for. Founded in 2017 after emerging from Verge, one of Matt's earlier companies, Powderkeg has more than 10,000 active members, all with the goal of staying connected to startup communities outside of Silicon Valley. An Orr Fellow from Indiana University, Matt has had a hand in a number of startups. He's been passionate about Midwestern startup communities for a while, and in today's interview, he shares his ideas on the current trends happening outside the Valley. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (4:53) - History of Matt and Powderkeg (9:37) - Decision to rebrand Verge to Powderkeg (13:30) - Powderkeg membership (14:56) - Fundraising in the middle of the country (16:14) - Powderkeg approach to connecting companies and talent (20:27) - Talent gaps (23:38) - Current Midwest movement (24:45) - Changing ecosystems through Powderkeg (27:30) - Cross-section of different startup cities (30:56) - Novel approaches to growing startup scenes (36:50) - Why not start your own fund? (40:22) - What's missing from the Midwest (41:47) Learn more about Powderkeg: https://powderkeg.com/ Follow Mike on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Hunckler Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview begins: 7:32 Debrief begins: 50:16 Alex Lazarow is the author or "Out-Innovate: How Global Entrepreneurs from Delhi to Detroit Are Rewriting the Rules of Silicon Valley." Alexandre (Alex) Lazarow has spent his career working at the intersection of investing, innovation, and economic development in the private, public, and social sectors. He is a venture capitalist with Cathay Innovation, a global firm that invests across Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America. Alex is an adjunct professor specializing in impact investment and entrepreneurship at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. He is a Kauffman Fellow, CFA Charterholder, and a Stephen M. Kellen Term Member at the Council on Foreign Relations. He earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and a B.Comm from the University of Manitoba. Alex is a regular columnist with Forbes, and his writing has been featured in the Financial Times, Harvard Business Review, McKinsey Quarterly, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, Business Insider, and Insurance CIO Outlook magazine, among others. He speaks regularly on global innovation trends and has presented at Collision, Endeavor, InsureTech Connect, Harvard Business School, the Social Innovation Summit, SOCAP, and the Corporate Venture Capital Summit. In today's episode, Alex shares his research into innovation outside of Silicon Valley, including successful attributes that are often overlooked when working outside the Valley, and the surprises he found in his research. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:08) - Ad: Business calling and texting anytime, anywhere with Tresta (6:32) - Entrepreneurial interest outside the Bay Area (7:35) - Harmful biases from the valley (11:48) - Questioning the necessity of unicorn companies (15:24) - Adapting VC for non-Valley founders (25:37) - Revenue shares with employees (31:57) - Balancing innovation as a startup (36:50) - The "new" trend in remote work (40:22) - Bidirectional innovation from outside Silicon Valley -Ten-year predictions for Valley vs. non-Valley startups Check out Alex's book: https://amzn.to/2JT0MMt Follow Alex on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Alex_Lazarow Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds – This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity – This episode of upside is sponsored by Tresta. Tresta is a mobile app that lets you do business calling and texting from anywhere. With Tresta, you can set up your business phone number, download the app, and start calling and texting UNLIMITED right away. Tresta is the best business phone app on the market, whether you’re a founder or freelancer / just starting your business, or you’re already established. Growing your network and your business is all about communication. You’ve got to be available, no matter where you are. Tresta offers the call management features that empower you to communicate smarter and more efficiently, like auto attendants, call recording, user groups, and more. And you don’t need any special equipment – just the smartphone you’re already using. Tresta is easy to configure, so you can set everything up yourself – all online. It’s just $15 per user per month, with no contract, so start your free 30-day trial today at https://tresta.com/upside
Interview starts: 6:20 Debrief starts: 1:02:12 Mike Duda is a Managing Partner at Bullish. Bullish is a marketing operating partner focused on the growth business and has helped develop companies like Birchbox, Peloton, Casper, and Harry's. Through both investment and creative services, Bullish helps early-stage companies progress in their market. Mike has extensive experience in marketing and advertising, having served in numerous director positions at Deutsch. Our conversation today dives heavily into marketing and advertising strategies as well as some of the methods Bullish uses to currently help their partners. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (4:43) - NYC subway ads (6:26) - Advertising too early in DTC (10:40) - NPS in marketing and staying relevant (15:49) - Identifying new and innovative products (20:49) - When to start marketing and advertising (23:48) - Peloton's recent advertisement (25:36) - Next frontier in advertising (26:41) - Ineffective advertising (28:00) - Creating personas for brands (30:17) - Building and recruiting for consumer brands between the coasts (40:49) - Value vs. utility of a brand (51:42) - Survival of older vs. newer brands (57:07) Learn more about Bullish: http://bullish.co/ Follow Mike on Twitter: https://twitter.com/MikeDuda Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview starts: 6:15 Debrief begins: 49:25 Lesley Eccles is the founder and CEO of Relish, an app developed to help guild couples create healthy relationship skills and conversations. Originally from Scotland, Lesley is also known as a cofounder of the sports fantasy service, FanDuel. Just three months after leaving FanDuel, Lesley founded her own startup, Relish, with the hopes of giving back to others and exploring how technology can improve and preserve relationships. Today, Relish is considered one of the top relationship training apps, using guidance from therapists, counselors, and academics. In our talk with Lesley, she shares how her experience from FanDuel helped her build a second successful startup. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:05) - Beginnings of FanDuel (6:18) - Startup scene in Edinburgh (13:01) - Building and growing FanDuel in NYC (14:51) - Beginning concepts for Relish (21:30) - Finding the perfect people for a new team (25:29) - Goals of Relish and relationship building (28:28, 44:31) - App customers (32:52) - On-boarding and personality assessment (36:51) - Relationship plan specifics (41:20) - Relish vs. traditional couples therapy (43:53) Learn more about Relish: https://hellorelish.com/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview begins: 5:29 Elias Torres is the co-founder and CTO of Drift. Jay recently had the chance to talk to with Elias Torres at Embarc Collective in Tampa Bay. Having worked in software all his life, Elias has been a part of impressive businesses, including IBM and Hubspot, and has founded two software based companies. A Nicaraguan native, Elias discusses his story of immigrating to America and the opportunity he commits to in other LatinX founders and in his home town, Tampa Bay. With his extensive experience, he leaves us with valuable tips in starting effective and strong teams. We discuss: - Ad: Business calling and texting anytime, anywhere with Tresta (4:30) - Immigrating to America (6:05) - Transitioning from corporate to entrepreneur (8:43) - Mentorship (12:00) - Starting companies in Boston (13:34) - Tampa vs. Boston (19:17, 34:37) - Multi-city office organization (23:40) - Bringing opportunity to LatinX founders (24:35)0 - How to bring speed to a startup (29:01) - Hiring at Drift (32:08) - Tips for successful fundraising (32:58) Learn more about Drift: https://www.drift.com/ Learn more about Embarc Collective: https://www.embarccollective.com/ Follow Elias on Twitter: https://twitter.com/eliast Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm -- This episode of Upside is sponsored by Tresta. Tresta is a mobile app that lets you do business calling and texting from anywhere. With Tresta, you can set up your business phone number, download the app, and start calling and texting UNLIMITED right away. Tresta is the best business phone app on the market, whether you’re a founder or freelancer / just starting your business, or you’re already established. Growing your network and your business is all about communication. You’ve got to be available, no matter where you are. Tresta offers the call management features that empower you to communicate smarter and more efficiently, like auto attendants, call recording, user groups, and more. And you don’t need any special equipment – just the smartphone you’re already using. Tresta is easy to configure, so you can set everything up yourself – all online. It’s just $15 per user per month, with no contract, so start your free 30-day trial today at https://tresta.com/upside
Interview begins: 7:02 Debrief begins: 51:37 Amanda DoAmaral is the founder and CEO of Fiveable. Fiveable is an online streaming and content platform helping high school students study and master their AP exams. Started just two years ago, Fiveable offers live and pre-recorded videos, study guides, as well as community building resources. After teaching in Oakland for several years with Teach for America, Amanda DoAmaral began Fiveable as a way to help her old students who needed guidance in studying for their AP exams. In only a couple years, Fiveable has grown to include teachers from various types of backgrounds and boasts a 92% pass rate from their students. We discuss: - Ad: Business calling and texting anytime, anywhere with Tresta (6:02) - TFA training and lack of teaching preparation (9:47) - Teaching in Oakland and decision to leave (12:27) - Start of Fiveable (20:30) - Business growth (23:27) - Live streaming vs. pre-recorded videos (26:00) - Teachers/streamers on Fiveable (27:10, 41:17) - SAT/ACT prep (32:19) - Measuring success (33:13) - Dealing with seasonality of APs (37:10) - Fiveable's tiny team (46:53) Fiveable is based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Learn more about Fiveable: https://fiveable.me/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode of Upside is sponsored by Tresta. Tresta is a mobile app that lets you do business calling and texting from anywhere. With Tresta, you can set up your business phone number, download the app, and start calling and texting UNLIMITED right away. Tresta is the best business phone app on the market, whether you’re a founder or freelancer / just starting your business, or you’re already established. Growing your network and your business is all about communication. You’ve got to be available, no matter where you are. Tresta offers the call management features that empower you to communicate smarter and more efficiently, like auto attendants, call recording, user groups, and more. And you don’t need any special equipment – just the smartphone you’re already using. Tresta is easy to configure, so you can set everything up yourself – all online. It’s just $15 per user per month, with no contract, so start your free 30-day trial today at https://tresta.com/upside
Interview starts: 6:05 Debrief starts:m 33:22 Lakshmi Sarah is the co-founder of Tiny World Productions. An educator and journalist, Lakshmi covers the intersection between VR/AR and storytelling, and she recently co-wrote a book titled 'Crafting Stories for Virtual Reality.' Much of Lakshmi's work includes stories on refugees or immigrants, with the intention of creating empathy and shifting prospective for individuals through this medium. Tiny World Productions create their own 360-view experiences as well as help and workshop others' work in immersive technology. Some of their work includes 'Homelessness in San Francisco' and 'The Wait: Inside the Lives of Asylum-Seekers in Germany.' We discuss: - AD: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (4:43) - Why write a book? (7:14) - When is immersive storytelling useful? (10:01) - Tools and resources for VR/AR storytelling (12:53) - Differences in film vs. immersion experiences (16:36) - The key to storytelling (20:38) - Tiny World Productions (23:36) - The future of immersion (26:16, 30:55) - Current VR/AR experiences (28:19) Learn more about Tiny World Productions: https://tinyworldproductions.com/ Follow Lakshmi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lakitalki Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview starts: 6:10 Debrief starts: 43:34 Elizabeth Galbut is the Founding and Managing Partner of SoGal Ventures. SoGal Ventures is the first female-led millennial venture firm, and they are leading the way in investing in diverse founding teams and products across the USA and Asia. Their focus includes companies working on female sexual health and wellness, aging, and death-related decisions. A Forbes 30 Under 30, Elizabeth is incredibly knowledgeable and experienced in the fields in which she invests. In today's episode, she walks us through some of the issues she and SoGal Ventures are tackling through their diverse outlook. We discuss: • AD: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (4:45) • Sextech and underrepresented groups in venture capital (7:08) • Raising a fund as two millennial women (10:36) • Gaps in venture capital due to bias (12:24) • Finding the underrepresented in VC (17:29) • Death-tech and anti-aging technology (20:40) • Sustainability and healthtech intersections (30:04) • Who is solving and who should solve these problems? (34:31) • Mental health and healthtech (36:36) • Investing in health with potential future health policy changes (39:17) • Optimistic perspective (41:16) Learn more about SoGal Ventures: http://www.sogalventures.com/ Follow Elizabeth on Twitter: https://twitter.com/design4innov8 Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview starts: 6:38 Debrief starts: 32:46 Doug Clinton is the managing partner of Loup Ventures. A Midwest-based venture firm, Loup Ventures was founded in 2017, and to date, they have made exciting investments focusing on frontier tech. Their latest concentrations include neuro-tech and BCI, as well as anti-aging companies. In today's interview, Doug maps out the scene of frontier tech and gives us his thoughts on the consequences such technologies may have in the future. We discuss: - AD: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:27) - About Loup (6:47, 11:00) - "Deciding" the next big technology (7:52) - Technology false starts (10:13) - Least exciting new technologies (11:45) - Most exciting new technologies (14:38) - Neuro-tech and its human implications (15:27) - Past investments (20:53) - Investing in technologies that answer existential problems (23:56) - Researching new technologies (28:57) - Health and anti-aging tech (30:28) Learn more about Loup Ventures: https://loupventures.com/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview starts: 7:22 Debrief starts: 45:18 Matthew Benson is the founder and CEO of eFuse, a new platform used to connect anyone in or interested in the gaming world to other opportunities, talent, and people in the Esports community. Sort of like a LinkedIn for gamers, eFuse allows members to compile their stats into one portfolio and create connections as they search for professional and collegiate gaming possibilities. Prior to founding eFuse, Matthew worked for the Ohio Innovation Fund shortly after college. He had the idea for eFuse while in school and is now celebrating the company's two-month beta launch. We discuss: - AD: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (5:54) - Matt's background (7:22,11:23) - Cluster class at OU and idea for eFuse (9:28, 14:52) - Problems eFuse is solving (18:57) - Talent scouts for eFuse (21:31) - Professional vs. collegiate opportunities (23:13) - Aging gaming demographics (26:20) - Beta launch (27:46) - Building relationships (29:25) - Potential users (31:20) - Measuring the marketplace and game distribution (36:00) - Interactions with Twitch, Mixer, and YouTube (40:47) - Will opportunities in gaming always exist? (42:58) Learn more about eFuse: https://efuse.gg/ Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview starts: 6:09 Debrief starts: 39:07 James O'Connor is the cofounder and president of the Pittsburgh Knights, a global esports team of 30+ players and streamers, headquartered in one of the most well-branded sports cities in the country. With his knowledge of management, program development, economic development, veteran affairs, data-analysis, and strategic planning, his 10+ years of professional gaming experience, and his desire to bolster his hometown, he is driving the Pittsburgh Knights to become one of the most esteemed esports teams in the world. In 2018, the Knights announced their partnership with six-time Super Bowl Champions, the Pittsburgh Steelers. In 2019, the Knights brought on another strategic partner with Pittsburgh roots - multi-platinum recording artist Wiz Khalifa. We discuss: - AD: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (4:32) - History of Pittsburgh Knights (6:12) - Opening Esports events (9:57) - Deciding games for a team (12:08) - How teams make money (15:59) - Building a fan base and media (20:17) - Team structures (24:36) - Esports stadiums (31:37) - Misconceptions about Esports (33:27) - How to build a sustainable gaming company (35:01) - Changes in Esports in next 5 years (36:22) Learn more about the Pittsburgh Knights: https://knights.gg/ Follow James on Twitter: https://twitter.com/jamesoconnor Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview starts: 6:24 Debrief starts: 58:09 Jordan Davis is the Director of Smart Columbus for the Columbus Partnership, leading strategy and public-private partnerships for the Central Ohio region’s $550 million smart cities initiative. She was instrumental in Columbus becoming the sole winner of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart Cities Challenge in 2016 and since has managed the upstart of a new joint venture for the region focused on realizing a connected, autonomous, shared, and electric transportation ecosystem that improves people’s lives. Jordan facilitates collaboration between the public and private sector, secures new private investment in the Acceleration Fund, oversees public affairs, and supports the long-term strategy to sustain the Smart Columbus Initiative. Additionally, she oversees an aggressive electric vehicle adoption program, shared mobility growth plan, autonomous vehicle deployment, and a dynamic corporate engagement portfolio. We discuss: - AD: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (4:58) - "Smart" trends currently happening in cities (7:03) - Initial focus when the grant started (9:16) - Other forward thinking cities at the time of winning the grant (11:06) - Why did Columbus win? (14:57) - Research process (18:50) - Choosing technology vendors (20:13) - Evaluating successful adoption (25:08) - New structural (vs. iterative) changes (27:30) - EVs in Columbus (31:37) - Replicable Columbus (36:31) Learn more about Smart Columbus: https://smart.columbus.gov/ Follow Jordan on Twitter: https://twitter.com/JDLead Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
Interview starts: 7:25 Debrief starts: 38:48 Bryan Darr is the Executive Vice President of Smart Cities at Ookla, the company behind Speedtest.net. Bryan began his career in wireless communication back in 1985 selling car phones. Through his sales, he gathered information and began writing roaming guides. These guides ultimately led him to start his own business, American Roamer, eventually known as Mosaik, and now owned by Ookla. Today, along with providing internet speed tests, Ookla tracks cellular coverage all over the world. We discuss: - Ad: Finding experienced employees for your new business with Integrity Power Search (6:08) - Progression of cellular communication (7:45) - Future of cellular communication (11:26) - Difference between one "G" to the next (14:50) - 5G technology (16:49) - Impediments to 5G usability (21:17) - News for 6G? (21:08) - International implications of 5G (32:15) - Geopolitical implications of 5G (35:39) Learn more about Ookla: https://www.ookla.com/ Ookla 5G Map: https://www.speedtest.net/ookla-5g-map Email Jay: jaywowyourereallygoodwithwords@upside.fm Follow upside on Twitter: https://twitter.com/upsidefm Advertise with an upside classified: https://upside.fm/classifieds -- This episode is sponsored by Integrity Power Search, the #1 full stack high growth startup recruiting firm between the coasts. They partner with venture capitalists, private equity groups and CEOs to build amazing teams for the world’s most disrupting companies. Learn more about or get in touch with Integrity Power Search: https://upside.fm/integrity
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