Here's the best of what I read in 2018. I set myself an arbitrary count of ten this year. This really forced me to think about which books had a meaningful impact on me, i.e. not just “great books I can unhesitatingly recommend”.
In May 2016, Amasia led the Series B in Skillshare, an online learning platform with a unique model: it was (and is) a truly open marketplace, allowing anyone to teach and anyone to learn. We doubled down in the Series C earlier in 2018.
The VC business, for a fund manager, is an orgy of rejection. During the course of a year, we will touch 1,000 companies at Amasia; we'll invest in three (maybe four, sometimes two). What this means is that on 997 occasions, we're saying no.
It's spring, which means the thoughts of VCs turn lightly to thoughts of demo days. Many accelerators have their demo days in March. If you haven't been to one, these are celebrations of entrepreneurship; 21st century business theater. Meeting many, many companies and founders in a concentrated period produces the following reflection.
I spoke earlier this week with a young founder, a couple of years out of college, and the conversation has moved me to rant. Not a rant about inexperience, though. Inexperience has its advantages, and experience has its disadvantages. This is a rant about taking on life risk.