Wed, 27 August 2014
Hunter Walk: VC Investing, YouTube and The Bottom Up Economy (Partner @ Homebrew VC)
Ryan chatted with Hunter Walk, Partner at Homebrew Venture Capital, during Ryans’ recent trip to San Francisco. Homebrew is a seed stage investment firm, that focuses on the “Bottom-Up Economy.” Hunter calls his company a start-up, and instead of "writing code," he is "writing checks" to help founders build companies.
Hunter previously lead consumer product management at YouTube (Google). Hunter and Ryan discussed what it was like working at YouTube very early on in the company's history. They each talk about their love for platforms “that bet on people. And that give people the tools to create where their efforts can turn into dollars.”
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When reflecting on his time at YouTube, Hunter said with YouTube: “You can build a TV-sized audience without having to ask for approval from anybody wearing a suit. There are no gatekeepers. It doesn’t mean that everyone succeeds to the same success, for there’s near equal access for everybody.”
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Ryan also asked Hunter about his blog, and how that effects deal flow (Thanks for the listener Edward for that question). Hunter says blogging does help his investment business, although he doesn't know to what extent. He also believes in paying it forward and that it's important to be accessible to entrepreneurs via the blog/Twitter.
Finally Hunter talked specifically what types of investments he likes to make. Hunter details how his investment philosophy was shaped by working on Google Adsense and while at YouTube. Getting down into a few of his investments, Hunter dives into his portfolio companies: Shyp and TheSkimm. He discusses why he bet on them and what types of companies he is looking for.
Hunter and Homebrew's info:
Homebrew’s website: www.homebrew.com
Hunter’s blog: www.hunterwalk.com
Hunter on Twitter: www.twitter.com/hunterwalk
Hombrew on Twitter: https://twitter.com/homebrew
Homebrew’s investments discussed:
The Skimm: Daily email newsletter that gives you what you need to know to start your day: http://www.theskimm.com
Shyp: Enabling users to simplify the process of shipping items basically anywhere in the world. http://www.shyp.com