Evaluating Fit Between Entrepreneur and Investor: a Conversation with Jeff Burkland and Sid Trivedi

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

The investment environment is tilted in favor of startups right now. And that means there’s a high likelihood you’ll be able to raise capital — in fact, it’s as high as it’s ever been before.

In this episode, special guest host Jeff Burkland, Founder & CEO of Burkland, talks with his friend, Sid Trivedi, Partner at Foundation Capital, about the partnership between entrepreneurs and investors.

Topics covered:

  • How investors evaluate startups
  • Building culture in a remote environment
  • What sets apart the Bay area ecosystem
  • Advice for evaluating investor fit

This discussion with Sid Trivedi was taken from our show Startup Success. If you want to hear more episodes like this one, check us out on Apple Podcasts.

If you don’t use Apple Podcasts, you can find every episode here.

Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Startup Success in your favorite podcast player.

Welcome to start up success, thepodcast for startup founders and investors here you'll find stories ofsuccess from others in the trenches as they work to scale some of the fastestgrowing startups in the world stories that will help you in your own journeystart up. Success starts now welcome to start up success. Today wehave a very exciting guest host Jeff Brooklyn, who is the CEO and founder ofBrooklyn, so I am going to turn it over to Jeff, who has a special guest fromthe venture capital community with him to day. Thank you, Kate. All right, we havewith US my friend sit tervey since a partner at foundation capital. I can'twait to hear what we have to talk about Said said. If we could I'd love to hearfirst from you about how you became involved in an dusting and foundationcapital, absolutely and Jeff, I should say I heard from Cape that this is yourfirst time hosting and podcast, and I am so excited in honor that you'redoing it with me. I'm eternally grateful I'LL TRY TO BE IM too much on that part, though Jeff. Just youknow quick overview on my background. I was born in India. I grew up in a bunchof different countries: Singapore, India, Indonesia. We moved a lot andthe main reason for that was my dad was very early at Noko, which most peopledon't know to day, but was a very famous mobile phone company and when mydad joined Noki in the s, the concept of a mobile phone didn't exist. So as akid, I got to see this platform shift from desk top to mobile, and thathappened all in my home like it didn't it wasn't on the news or on TV orsomething it was happening. In my home I mean we had every single model ofevery single mobile phone and that no KIA launch, for you know from the ninefrom the late all the way into the two thousands. Then you know my dad wascertainly the the it person at every party, but it was. It was very, veryexciting to kind of see that shift and that got me very excited abouttechnology, and you know my mom was was an investment banker, so she had thisfinance background and it was interesting and through it all, Ithought. Well, you know this tech field seems really interesting and financealso seems very, very intriguing, and I wonder if there's an opportunity tocombine the two, so I moved to the US first to study at cornel and whilethere I you know, started to hear a little bit about venture and I neverthought that I would join the industry, but I thought maybe you know when I'msuccessful and I'm a very successful found or something like this willhappen. I got to join it, though, through a pretty unique path. At firstworked in investment banking, and I worked at Barclays which just goingthrough a transition from Leman brothers to Bartres as a result of theOA crisis and then subsequently moved it to private equity and then movedinto early stage venture capital, but through it all I focused veryspecifically on it and cyber security and- and that obviously has been acategory over the past decade, which has really grown. So it's been a lot ofFinton out of cover ous sector that has gone from its infancy to being one ofthe most defining categories with an enterprise software. Today, that's awesome Itte a comment on one ofthe things you said. I didn't realize how old I was until you told me thatsome people don't know no to you any more wait. What do you mean? Would I tell people, but most peoplehave no idea boyet's, like the many times like Yon, explain to them, andthen I think the most the other interesting thing and given we'retalking about startups ist most people don't realize how innovative noke was.I mean it was Oh yeah, Steel Company, a rubber company. It did lobel phones.Today, that's telecom, I mean a company...

...is consistently innovated over ahundred years. I been very interesting to see. T'same was speaking of innovation, soyou see a bunch of it. You've got to have a lot of great stories about someinnovation. You've seen, perhaps a investing story that you've seen andrelates to some fantastic innovation. Anything you can share with US yeah Imean there's so many interesting stories. Maybe I'll do some funnystories. I think the funniest story for me in this business is just howcompetitive this business is. There are so many smart people in venture and,however good you might be an understanding, a category orunderstanding why it investment opportunity is unique. There willlikely be other people who have that save affinity, and I remember one ofthe early investments I've made. What six or seven years ago now in a Tibonetworks, remember try to convince to Shakur the CEO to take our capital andto share was trying to decide between, and this was at my prior firm cow,which was small even an and foundation, but you know he was deciding between avery large multi billion dollar venture for my prior firm and, like I remember,having a conversation with to share, so we gave him a term sheet middle ofDecember and right, he said Hey. I need some time to think about it. I saidOkay and my assumption was I'll take about a week. I ve done this processbefore, but to share is a a very, very successful operator. I was early atCisco, very, very early at Cisco and one of the earliest executives, and hetook about twenty five days to sit a term sheep, and I remember talking tohim every single day in December into the first week of January, and I wastraveling in Asia, you were sweating out, I was it was every day it wasevery day. Jeff it was Christmas. Is Christmas. Eve is New Year's and NewsDay and the only reason I know this was, I remember, seeing the phone bill whichobviously the first was paying her ome. Seeing this point and looking at allthe calls, I'm thinking- Oh, my goodness, this is a hiss- is better byOsageville, but it's it's amazing. Just howcompetitive this business is and the most successful founders a spending alot of time trying to make a decision on who is the best investor and you acredited car for making that decision. Yeah, I have to admit when I came outof business school, I thought DC sounded like a fun thing to do, and youknow you romanticize it and you see all these great successful. He sees and youthink it's pretty easy. You know I feelembarrassed to say that and now being around a lot of CS in the world and therole that I have. I realize it's not for me and I have alot of respect for what you do. It is a hard job. It's got to be right fit, but that's cool good story. He said you had a few. I want to hearanother yeah, you know the other one that I was going to mention, and wecould talk more about this, because I know that that Berkely is a a CFpartner with this company. Its Stackley is, you know one of my more recentinvestments I was made in summer of last year and it was the firstinvestment that we has a firm her a foundation capital did without evermeeting the founders. Nobody on our team had met a single member. So backthen, when I say a single member was just two founders, a pitch deck noproduct at Stackin, so it was very very early. There was no website, there wasnothing, but we had. We had made investments before where we'd met afounder. One of US had made a founder, but not the full partnership. We madeinvestments where another person who wasn't the investor in need had met thefounder, but we never actually made an investment where no one had met thefounders, and this was in the height of the pandemic. It was in May of lastyear I two thousand and twenty,...

...and I think the toughest part for us asa firm was trying to figure out. You know. Can we do these types of thingsand we has a firm getting involved very very early in the venture business, sowere typically there as you're at your first or second round of funding, and Idefine that for founders. As the week end. Gold would be somewhere betweenone to thirty people on the tea. At our point of you know, initial investment,and we typically lead the round and we typically join the board. So once wewrite an investment, we are all in and we're in for the long term, and in thiscase it was complex to kind of be all in, because you're making a decision ona market which I understood very well, which is in proud security. But thesecond thing you're making a decision is on two foundred and without beingable to meet them. How do you make that decision? The way that I did it fromthe time that I met the founders to the time that I gave them a terp sheet,which was roughly three weeks, I spoke to them every single day. You know onthe weekends as well, and that was more than I would normally you know we weremeeting them in personal would be a different experience, but I got toreally know them through each of those days. You know we did more formaldiscussions, we did more informal discussions and then, on top of that,I've always done founder references before making an investment. But inthis case I spoke to every single person that Travis and Capel the two cofounders had worked for in their prior rolls wow. I went back to like that.First Trap. You know: Travis is first job out of out of college icus a whileago and just hearing what people said about these two individuals and itreally helped in I'd, say if I look at it today fast forward today and we'realmost exactly on one year in to that experience of investing most of thethings I got right. There were some things which I didn't expect, I'm I'moverwhelmingly positive. I had questions about the two founders, butoverwhelmingly. It has been a positive perspective. I was more worried, but itended up being less of a worrying than anything. You know this. There are acouple things in what he's talked about the I'm curious about when you did thisa deep reference checking. So did you scare up some Ole stuff like? Could youscare up some? Some things were like this. Is these are a few things theyneed to work on about? My feeling is: There's always something people need towork on a right, and if I don't hear that a offense check, I actually getconcerned, but I'm curious there sort of how you live with. You know try to scare out weaknessesand how you evaluate with misses when you're doing that, I think you hit thenail in the head, I would have answered it the same way, which is that if therearen't areas for improvement or weaknesses that are highlighted, that Iam not doing my job in terms of getting the right references, if I'm moremetering, overwhelmingly positive information, that's an issue, and I amdigging to try to figure out where the weaknesses are not because you know I'mtrying to find flaws and every person, but it's important to understand andhave an eye, wide open approach to thinking about where the issues mightlie. And you know if I look at companies where things have not gonewell for us, both me personally, as well as the firm it's been, because wedidn't identify an area, improvement or weakness and didn't factor that it tothe company building process. The be why you do with those weaknesses likewhen you learn about a you know. I see a specter one. Is You know, there's acategory like that's fine, I can live with that weakness. You know that'sversus others that maybe you can't live with and then another potential is wellthat's a weakness now that I know about it can work on all right and we, Ithink, surrounding in most situations, you're trying tofigure out well. How do I solve for that weakness and that weakness can beas simple as person founder x is fantastic at sales,but doesn't have technical product knowledge he or she may not be able tofigure out how to build product and...

...because they're so overly promotional.Sometimes they will be selling You a vision without thinking about whetherthat vision can actually be applied. That's obviously a major issue. Nowthat could be solved if you have a CO founder person. Why? Who is moretechnical and is thinking about how to build product consistently? That's agood example, and if the, if there isn't a person, Why van you know westart to think about well, who should be uncertain as a person lie, and notonly can that person? Why be should that person? Why be technical and aable to build products, but they should be able to speak up to person x, fersin extra respect, know his are her decisions and thoughts. Otherwise youwill be selling an overly promotional vision well in advance of any realproduct. That's a great example of a situation. There are very few instanceswhere founders are not strongly opinionated, so you know hearing thatfeedback. I mean. I hear it all the time. It's almost one that if you don't hearyou like exactly exactly like, we want foundersto be opinion an if they're, not opinionated, then that's a major issue,because most of the time they're trying something that's completely differentto what the industry thinks is noble or what customers think is normal or whatthe cart market thinks is normal or what other investors think is normal.So we want. We want founders to be opinionated and have a vision and andcontinue to push on that vision that we want them to also consider otherperspectives. We want somebody who is able to look it and evaluate whetherthat vision is working and how they may need to bend or change that vision, butof ultimately we don't want them to kind of bend at the first kind of negative comment. We want them to havea point of view. Yeah that makes sense. Other thing you said in your story, wasyou never met them in person right yeah? You have you're talking o them everyday and some of its formal, some of its informal. I can get a pretty goodpicture on the formal I'm curious about the informal like. How did you go aboutthinking about that? A replicating that online is kind of hard right. You might,for example, if if it's in person you might meet up for drinks or a ball game,or something like that, that's a tough one is yet it is really really hard, and Iwish I had a good answer. I don't think we do, and this is why I believe thatat least our industry and venture capital will be one of the firstindustries to go back to work in a physical office. I mean this is anearly stage venture capital. This experience is really important, but butthe way that I did it was trying to understand their both the founders,travers and Capel's backgrounds. W T what have they done in fire? I lives.What were their families like? What were they interested and outside ofcloud security with E, with the little time that they had where willy spendingtime and there were? They were very interestingthings like Travis, the CO founded Co had worked with Capel at Capitaine inthe D C region, but travis had always kind of lived outside of the physicaloffices that he worked in, so the region where the physical offices areand Travis had been in Kentucky. You know for most of his life, and the mainreason for that is his wife is a competitive, dressage athlete and theylive in a horse. Farm was just pretty amazing to kind of you, but it was justunderstanding those types of stories you had this founder, who was buildingthis innovative cloud security company and had worked in a bunch of differenttechnology companies and startups before that, but lived in Kentucky andhad a wife who was a competitive...

...athlete focused on forces. I it's notsomething you would expect, and I will tell you the awesome thing about. Iknow I'm going on a little bit of a tangent, but just the awesome thingabout virtual meetings and making these decisions virtually is, as you get tofind founders like that, you know who are not your typical, be area founder,worked in a fantastic technology company here in the region and is nowstarting there. Four fifth sixth start, but it was really understanding, Javisand Capel's stories. What got them excited outside of just work, and Ithink a lot of that is just time. I wish that there was an answer in termof like a cool game that we played, or we tried to do a virtual dinner or I'veheard other investors doing that. I don't think those work as well to behonest, at least for me. They haven't, but understanding people's backgrounddoes really beanie you get to understand what motivates them yeah I mean that's, there's, probablyif you weren't already doing it, my guess is: Maybe you were, but there'sperhaps something to bring back to the physical world, getting the depth ofunderstanding of the person, but absolutely- and I should mention so Idid finally get to meet both founders. Last year I made a trip to Washington DC in September of last year. Right when that the you know, coved cases out herein the the area region will low, as well as the covet cases in the DCregion will dow it was also the first and only trip that the firm madeformerly, I was the only person from the firm who flew on an airplane for awork related meeting during a global tindee without vaccines at the time,but it was awesome to meet the two founders and I think that the mostsurprising thing, but by then we have been you know we didn't been investorsfor a couple of months, but the most surprising thing was realizing thatTravis was taller than I expected. The pill was was shorter than I expected,like it's very hard to make to make. That is up to the you know. You can'treally ask people what their height is. So it's not. It's not good conversationstarter. Yes, I hear that a lot and it's a really fun one with your kid. Somy ten year old, you know, I didn't feel, like my teacher was so tall. We, yes, you were saying you think youknow better call. Be One of the first ones to come back in person and youknow that can lead us down a really interesting path. You know one briefaside: I was talking with another venture, capitalist and, and he said hewant a deal at some point in the past. I don't knowif it was a couple months back or many months back, but during the pandemicbecause he visited the entrepreneur and nobody else did and that made thedifference, and so I think I think you know there's definitelysomething to in person. You know a lot of people are saying that on the flipside, you hear a lot of talk about all remote companies. You know the nextlargest start up. Ecosystem out of the outside of the bay area is going to beremote. That's well! That's something I read recently and I'd love to hear yourperspective on that. It's interesting that you mentionedthat other venture capoles. The funny thing is: I've made two investmentsthis year in two thousand and twenty one, the first one I made earlier thisyear in February. I believe we won it also because we met the founders inperson, so the advantage here was the founders were based on the B area. Theywere not on the east coast, so it's easier to meet them, but there were twobig things that made that a huge advantage. You know I'd done. A Bunchof reference calls very similar to Stakee the earlier company I mentionedon both the founders. Again, it was very similar story. Two founders pitchdeck, no product no website so very early days, and I was doing founderreference calls talking to the founders every single day for the first ten daysbut meeting both of them. Horation putrein person had a dramatic impact inhelping me to figure out a what made...

...the two of them tick, and I hadquestions with both of them around what their place in the company was. Why hadone kick? Why have they picked one to be? The CO versus the other, forexample, was one question and I became very obvious when you met the person I talked to them after we, we gave themthe term sheet and convinced them to sign it, but we would be. We are thefirst firm to meet them in person. There were two other firms that did doit, but they got to see the the experience that we had. You knowall of us connecting and that had a pretty big impact on their decision tochoose us to those foundation. So I think the in person factor isdefinitely there, particularly if the companies are based during the B area,where increasingly the sees are more open to meeting founders before theymake the decision. But at the same time I see the the benefits of having thisremote perspective. We as a firm pre covet about sixty per cent of ourportfolio, was based here in the Barea, and you know we haven't yet run the thenumbers, but I'm pretty sure that I could tell you just by the number ofinvestments we did over the past twelve months. We have started to dosignificantly more investments outside of the barrier. Then then, prior years-and I think part of that is their remote perspective. That's interesting!How does that pensate in your opinion, into companies themselves? Do you havea perspective on the approach? Companies and you'll probably bethinking of some pretty early companies, given one you invest, but where were you fall in that? What'syour thought, yeah, you know, I think I think companies are all trying to makedecisions and I have companies that are as small as the the most recent one Imentioned Levo, which is just six people right now too, when I investedall the way up to a couple hundred people and that's you know, these aredirect companies that I manage and then as a firm. We have companies that arein the early thousand. A number of people and that are still in our footfolio and I think every CEO is trying to make a decision and and the fewthings that they are trying to consider that I've heard as consideredconsiderations one. There is this question around: How do you buildculture and remote environment and that's really around? Well you? How doyou build loyalty? How do you build a sense of community to retain talent ina increasingly competitive technology market where that talent can go andwork at a different company? So when things are going well, it's easy toretain talent, but when things are going badly and almost always, theywill go badly in a start up, they're going to be bad days. How do we keepthe employees motivated in staying at that company and believing in thatcompany and there's an inherent value in coming into a physical office andseeing your colleagues versus being on you know Zoe or some other platform and,being you know, one box out of many in terms of creating the culture in thatbrand and that sense of belonging? So how do you kind of do that and my hopeis and what I've seen the successful pre the pandemic has been havingmonthly or quarterly in person gatherings for the entire team, and Ihope that for the companies that do decide to to say fully distribute it,they will do those events in person and use budget that would have beenallocated for office spent to actually hold in person events, some exoticlocation may be, or some place, that's exciting and bring the company together.The second thing is just the processes are very different: their things aroundtask management, obviously having video on during calls slack email. How do youhost happy ours a equivalent of a water...

...colar chat during the day that arenecessary and I think tools and processes are really important in aremote first work environment, and on that topic I would say the third thingis: How do you figure out sinking between tea members? So usually youneed more six when your virtue, primarily because the walking up to anindividual is very tough to do. I missed a little bit, so you know I didhear something about a water cooler replicating some of the water coolerschat, and I'm curious about that. What what are you seeing like? How? How doyou hap you do that it's hard? I think you do it to me today. The water coolat the virtual watercolor chats seem more like band ates, rather than a longterm fix, but the way that it's being done right now is through having a set.So there's a few things, one, a certain set of companies will host a smallertown halls, whether that's on a daily or a weekly basis. I've had some of mycompanies hosted on a daily basis, so every time every day at lunch timewhich is hard to do in a distributed environment, because your equivalent oflunch time might be different and depending on where you are, but everyday at lunch time, they will have a one armed block. That is a if the wholeteam comes together on to a soon call or on to whatever platform they'reusing to just chat about. What's going on things that that might be important,the second thing is holding more stings like formal. I migt take that into mybusiness, holding more formal sinks, one on ones, a smaller team group on aweekly by weekly, sometimes daily, depending on the situation, but atminimum monthly basis that you have a good sense from every single person atthe company, and you know what the issues are and what they're excitedabout, and then I think the third is. There are new new virtual platformsthat are coming out their platforms, I gather, and so far and the best way todescribe them. Jeffs, it's almost like sims. It's like the old sims. You knowvideo game, but so you have these virtual avatars that walk around. Butthen, when you get close to somebody, you get on video and you're able tokind of have conversations on video. There are certainly products like thatthat are e, that met at existed, that are trying to kind of emulate theoffice and with these platforms with gather and Sophia, the companies thathave been testing them have actually asked those vendors to go and createthe physical office in the virtual world. So you now have a physical watercooler that you could go to the the kitchen just the way that it looks likein the office all the floors. The way they look like to make it feel likeyou're in the office like you can almost imagine as if you were doingsomething that you were doing in two thousand and nineteen. What I'd love todo maybe now is kind of turn to the EGO system and what I have in mind is you knowwhat do you think has historically made the bay area ecosystem so strong forstartups? And then what do you see for post pandemic, whether that's a bayarea- that's interesting, but also outside the bay area, whether that'sher mode or what you know how those ecosystem are going to evolve or or anything like that thatyou may be seen yeah, I think, what's made the Barea. Sosuccessful is the concept that failing feeling in your job or feeling feeling in your job and that you join astart up and it feels feeling in your start up as in you start a company andfields is very acceptable. It is not considered odd or abnormal to see this failure and have that failurehappen again and again and because...

...people are not afraid to fail, they endup coming up with crazy ideas that usually are very different to thenorm, which end up a subset of them end up being very, very successful, and Ithink every other community has been trying to replicate a concept of car ofbeing okay with the Social Foto. Failing and the second thing I think so. In myopinion, that is the most important part that is allowed the Baria to be soso successful. The second part, I think that has allowed it to be successful,is because it's okay to fail. The cause more and more founders have beencreated. Who've created those successful companies by failingmultiple times. There are a lot of very creative people who live here and whenyou have so many creative minds are so close together in a region. You end uphaving the the multiplying effect of those creative minds coming together totry even more interesting ideas and obviously we as as venturecapitalists and broadly service providers to the to the community andJeff. You are very much in that bucket of providing financial services C FOservices. We obviously helped to tend of foster that ecosystem, but we are inI'm very certain that we are only beneficiaries of it. Our level of helpis is limited, aversed, the founders. I think that the question now is: Doesthe Baria continue to keep its competitive advantage post a pandemic,because what the pandemic as show is that you can access the Barias talentvirtually and if you can access it virtually and you don't have to pay thethe high real estate prices of the high taxes, then why not be somewhere else y?And so we are? You know. I think we had this critical juncture where founderswill need to decide. Is it really reliant essential to be and the area oris it more important to to be in a community or a part of the country or a part of theworld where the cost of living is more normal for all of the employees? Andthat, I think, is a big question. That's fascinating, you're, a smartcookie said. I have to think about this, one thatlike what what would in important, if I were in that dilemma right now, I meanI feel like I don't know. If you can replicate, there's this taste of takingness remotely and elsewhere. You know you. Ialmost think you have to be around that group. However, like you said you know we, where do youwant your employees to be what, if it's so expensive here? Do you have to keep that you know? Is there a happy memetal? That's a fascinating perspective. I can try to answer it and my hunch.This is just my opinion. I think different people have differentopinions here, my hunches that the bar will continue to be the Mecca for startups and for creationof new companies, and I believe that, because if you are an early stagefounder, there is a distinct value of being here and that value is becausemost of the capital today is still based out here, and that's some of thatcapital is moving. Are some well known, firm that have moved to other parts ofthe country, but predominantly that capital is staying here? So there'sthis value for me here again, the same applies for most of the largetechnology companies. There are some that have decided to move in to the sstayed off out here, so there's value of having talent, that's based here andthen the last one, I would say, is the founders who have been successful inpast. You know years and decades are so...

...base to, and when I talk to founders,who have had overwhelming success, and I've spoken to a number of them overthe past year, whether that company has gone public as it's had a Su very, verysuccessful acquisition. Most of them are still planing to stay here in theBAREA. Very few of them tell me, you know what said taxes are very high orthe cost of living has gone up, and I made a decision to move to anotherregion. I think they they are in this fortunate position in life, wherethey've they've got enough. Personal money and they've made the decisionthat they want to be here in the Baria. So if you want to access those people,they're, obviously predominantly going to be based too cool, I appreciatesharing that that resonate. So as we start to wrap up here, let's see acouple of couple areas. Just any advice: You have her founders. Today we talkedabout a lot now right, but any any sort of party shots for founders to day. Ithink the biggest. The biggest thing I would tell founders right now iscapital is very, very inexpensive, we're all seeing that this year andit's you now we can talk about why it's inexpensive, but it high high levelinterest rates. A low global governments are continuing to pourmoney into the economies to pump up the economy and, as a result of thatconsume me, demand is high, consume a demand impacts enterprise to mat, so it's a capitalist chief people aretrying to find investors are trying to find ways to generate alpha, generatereturns, and venture couple is a very interesting acid class to try to dothat in and so most of us in the venture business have a lot of capitalto deploy and then their new entrance who are coming in all the time. Thenyou, hedge fans, there new corporate venture arms an then you venture fundsbeing created. The capital is cheap and if you are a founder who has come upwith a decent idea with an interesting background, the likelihood that youwill be able to raise capital is quite high right now and it's as high as itcan ever be. And so the big question that you have to try to determine as afounder is the what additional value does that investor bring outside of thecapital and out they the best investor, basedon the weaknesses and issues that I have as a founder to bring on board Ito the tea. I tell founders all the time to think of your investors,particularly your early stage in Vestra, your first or your second investor aseffectively a CO founder, and you know for better parts. We are one when weintrest foundation were taking between twenty to twenty five per centownership for investment. So you many times we think of ourselves as a secondor third of Worth Co. Founder E- and it is very, very important for us that ourfounders feel that we are bringing something else to the table outside ofthe capital that we bring in and whether that is access to customers andthe early days, helping you think to who your first ten customers will behiring key executives. A key executives could be a sedia manager, but it couldalso be you know, a very, very unique engineer that you're looking to hirethinking about strategy and thinking about what makes your companysuccessful versus the market and how you may need to navigate the marketwith new entrance, as well as incumbents, trying out new things andthen, lastly, thinking about multiple rounds of fund raising that you willhave to usually you will have to raise over many many years. All those fourfacets are things we think about, and each of us have certain skills in oneof those areas, but but I always tell founders to peerly billy consider wellwhat else is the investor bringing...

...outside of the money that they'reproviding for what it's worth? That's something we see as well. In the starts,we we help the value of a R, a good investor fit and a good investor ishuge siren. I doubled down on what you said said. Absolutely, let's see wetalk about how we met each other, but before I do that anything anything youwant to point out about yourself foundation,capital, something you want to you know, leave in our listeners, minds yeah. Youknow, I think, if I could be selfish and provided a quick promotion for usthat we do just early stage venture investing. We are typically your firstor your second investor in Tor Company, and we have consciously made thedecision to focus. Just on that. You know, there's an opportunity to do lotsof different things in venture even do late stage. You could invested founderequity, you could get. You know we have venture firms or now creating packs. Wedon't do any of those things we just to early stage and we make that consciousdecision, because we think it's really important that if you want to be goodat something- and you focus very very specifically on that- and not only dowe focus on that early stage, but we are also very sector focused, so thatten of us here at the firm and we focus on four big sectors: enterprise,software, consumer fin tech and what we call frontier tech and on theenterprise side. Even further on that we are each of us who focus on theenterprise. Software Investments Front also focus on sub categories, and Imentioned that I focused on it and cyber security investing and that's anarea of now focused on for the last decade. But the advantage that thatgives me is a network that can help founders from have a deffrence andunfair advantage in gaining access to their first few customers in particular,and that in cyber an it, I believe, is a differentiating factor in thatnetwork of customers that I know now as well. Overa hundred and eighty cio C, SOS and C tos of principally global two thousandcompanies- and these are companies like paypal and Equitas and fight going intoit, and I use those executives to help me help my founders going to find theirfirst few customers and also, of course, help me. The diligence, companies ethink about new opportunities breakfasting, but, more importantly,I'm raise or focus on helping. My founders find their first two customersin an area, cyber security in it where there are a lot of new startups beingcreated and there's a ton of incumbents, and I think it's that razor focus,early stage, sector focus and even with insect or subset or focus. That givesus a unique viewpoint in how we think about investing inventor. Yes, at youand you foundation on top notch, for this early companies, so hopefully,hopefully keep keep finding good ones, and they keep coming to you, becauseit's great for them thank or only Sam, because I mean this it I forget how long ago it wasn'twe met when we met, we were were introduced. We we got. We were meetingon the street somewhere. I forget outside of some. My memory is some coffee shop that wemet A, and I remember that you suggested that we walk over to thisbubble. Tea Play spilit and I'm familiar with that. It's it's a popular thing in in Toronto.When I go visit, so we grab some and then we stepped outside and walkedalongo the embarcadero. I was ready to...

...sit down. You know typical, as you sitdown at the coffee shop and I have a top conversation, but instead we let atleast an hour. I think right walking a lot of the parkertown back. It was refreshing, I have to say, asopposed to sitting down so number one. I look forward to doing that again withyou. You know when we start getting back and number two. I hope these sortof walk and talks. I think more and more people do them. I sought, I hopethey continue. I couldn't agree more and it's funny Jeff. I actually becauseyou sent me the questions and an advance. I took a look at this questionand I was trying to remember late last night, very late last night. You knowwhen exactly did we meet and I poured through my email got the full details.So I can, I will add more to your story. You're, absolutely right. We met atsteep creamery right inside plunk headquarters in San Francisco. That wasour first kind of walk and top meeting, but funnily enough we met a little bitbefore that. If you, if you'll remember this, the two of us were at a giantsgame. We had both been invited by a another bank and you kind of came up to me halfwaythrough it and you said: Hey No. I work on helping start ups manage thatfinancial services meets that C. FL needs and I'd love to find some time tocatch up, and I said absolutely, we should definitely do it. We have lotsof start up and we should have a conversation, and I also did checkefter was about five years ago now. So it took me some time to remember thiswhole story, but I do remember the long walk we took, and I remember you sayhey. This is refreshing. This is different to what we normally dositting in a conference room, and I think you know it's been. It'sbeen a fantastic journey. You've been a fantastic partner over the years.You've worked with a number of my startups stacklike, just the mostrecent one, but there's so many, and I also distinctly remember when you putyour hand up and agree to join me as a CO host and speak in front of all ofour enterprise c fos and CEOS at an event that I done to help them to thinkabout financial metrics back in two thousand and nineteen, and it was just,I remember, getting feedback from a number of different founders. Afterthat event say, I would like to work with berkly associates because of Jeffbrery points that he just made a either things that I care about like for thefirst time I had somebody who could explain to me financial concepts in asimple manner. Help me to think about things like make. Take very close. Lookat how much your catch a lotment is, and you know how much you are burningon a monthly basis. That's awesome to thank you. Yes, it's been to it's beena great journey these past five years. As you said, that's wonderful, crazy. Thanks for joining this podcast, Sad,absolutely a for having me Kate, anything you want to know. Thankyou both. What a fascinating conversation it was, a real treat tolisten to you've been listening to start upsuccess. To make sure you don't miss out on future episodes subscribe to theshow in your favorite podcast player. Like would you hear Hap the number ofstars? You think the show deserves an apple podcast for more tools andresources for your own start up. SUCCESS CHECK OUT BERGLAND ASSOCIATESCOM. Thank you. So much for listening till next time I.

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