Friday, November 13, 2015

Monday, October 19, 2015

Quick Link: All About Acquisitions

Jeff Seibert, a techie who founded one company while still a student at Stanford and sold it to Box and then founded and sold another company to Twitter (where he still works), describes - in this returning to campus talk (at Stanford eCorner)  - "what went well and what didn't during the acquisition of his earlier startups by big-name technology companies, stressing the importance of culture fit, maintaining your team's trust throughout, and continued investment in growth after being acquired. Seibert also explains how an acquisition isn't always the best exit strategy for a promising startup.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Quick Link: Rami Essaid of Distil Networks on Startup Grind

The downloadable and streaming audio is here, the video is here.


  • Worrying about Competition Copying Ideas: The Unique Way in which you Execute Is Everything.
  • Equity split among founders who are full time and moonlighters who will join only post funding. He was the only one doing it full time, so he had a majority stake while the moonlighting co-founders split the  rest.
  • Starting without tech co-founders is an up hill battle. If you can't sell your vision for the product  to a techie, it would be difficult to sell it to investors.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Quick Link: John McAfee with James Altucher

The interview is titled "John Mcafee: The Most Interesting Man In The Universe. And, given the sheer colorfulness of his life - from selling his anti-virus company for Billions (to Intel), to becoming a fugitive in Belize, to his views on cyber threats and  now running for President - he almost lives up to the hyperbolic claim.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Quick Link: BREATHE and all the rest will follow

In this fun interview with Tim Ferris, endurance athlete and trainer extradionaire Wim Hof emphasises the importance of deep breathing, why he eats only one meal-a-day and other techniques.

Monday, May 4, 2015

More Tim Ferriss-isms

Tim Ferriss - of Four Hour Work Week fame- has a new TV Show out titled "the Tim Ferriss experiment". To promote the show, Tim appeared on two recent podcasts - Mixergy and Product Hunt - Maker Stories - both of which are well worth a listen.

Friday, April 24, 2015

How to start an E-Commerce company and get acquired by for half-a-billion-dollars

Unfortunately, in this fun From Scratch interview, Vinnie Bharara and Marc Lore, Co-Founders of refuse to reveal exactly how the deal with Amazon - which acquired's parent company, Quidsi, for $540 Million in 2010 - came about. But they still share in detail how they went about thinking through and building out the business - something that Indian E-Commerce entrepreneurs, who are treading down the "build scale, the profits will follow" path, will appreciate.

The funny parts include Vinnie's imitation of his dad's reaction - when he saw the $80,000 charge for bulk purchase of diapers from a wholesaler - in his (Dad's) Indian accent;'s tagline "We deliver everything but the baby" & a T-Shirt they made with "We're both No. 1 and No. 2" (Don't Ask).

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Quick Links: How SolarCity is delivering cheaper power (than grid power) to consumers

Engaging "From Scratch" interview with Lyndon Rive, CEO of US-based, publicly listed SolarCity, in which he comes across as as a very passionate advocate of solar energy. (The positive way in which he's handled his Dyslexia is inspiring.) His claim that SolarCity is already delivering power to consumers at rates cheaper than that from grid is validated in this NPR Planet Money episode titled "How Solar Got Cheaper".
For a long time, solar power has seemed like a thing of the future. A few environmentalists with a lot of money could afford it, but it wasn't really available for everyone.

That's changed. Suddenly, solar power isn't this weird fringe technology anymore. People get it not to save the planet, but because it's a good deal.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

The Vital Importance of Playing!

NPR has aggregated some great TED Talks on the Importance of Playing!
Does something serious happen when we play? In this episode, TED speakers describe how all forms of amusement — from tossing a ball to video games — can make us smarter, saner and more collaborative.

Seth Godin's Startup School Series

This Series (a recoridng of a talk by Seth to a group of entrepreneurs about to embark on their startup journeys)  is a great listen with a lot of takeaways for both newbie and established entrepreneurs.

How Freshdesk's is Aceing PR, Funding, HR

Chennai, India-based SaaS CRM firm Freshdesk's Founder & CEO Girish Mathrubootham has an engaging interview on Mixergy.

I especially liked the aspects relating to how the company leveraged the HackerNews community to attract and get early customer traction; how it attracted the attention of its first VC investor, Accel Partners (Girish got Angellist founder Naval Ravikant's attention - by saying soemthing nice about him on a HackerNews article, which got them on to AngelList, where Accel noticed them and reached out) and how Freshdesk practices "strengths finder" principles to fit its employees to the right roles.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Making Babus Walk the Talk on Ease of Doing Business. Via Reality TV!

NPR's Planet Money has a great episode based on the findings of Peruvian economist Hernando de Soto whose work led to the World Bank's annual Ease of Doing Business Ranking  of countries.

Samples of de Soto's practical approach:

- he actually set up a company to find out how long it takes and costs to get various approvals; and

- he got the President of Peru to listen to complaints from business folk on live TV. Who (On Air!) issues diktats to the concerned departments to resolve the matter within a stipulated time. And, best of all, a reporter visits the department by deadline day to follow up - again, with camera in tow!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Quick Links: Matt Mullenweg (Founder of Word Press) with Tim Ferris

A 2-hour conversation that is so easy to consume!

I especially liked Matt's description of

1) How the process of learning music at a young age helped in his programming career that came much later.

He talks about how the person who is practicing new notes which sound awful to someone who might be listening casual  is pushing himself/herself more than someone who sings/plays what might sound good to them (and hence limit expanding their horizons)

2) Hiring based on actual assignments - rather than based on interviews. He in fact insists on text chatting with the interviewee - which is how most work related communications happen (at least in the tech world) -  so as to not let the person's in person / video interviewing "skills" do not prejudice him.

Related link: Matt's HBR article