🧨 a16z's Secret Weapon
Hey Startup Besties,
This is the Kernal newsletter: the startup friend that nods their head and acts interested when you tell us your Spotify personality.
Latest news for Kernalers: you're Spotify Wrapped out, tired from cheering on your World Cup team and debating if you should watch Lindsay Lohan's new Netflix drop. Layoffs are a-plenty, Elon's argument w/ Apple is getting heavy and Chick-fil-A's new e-comm store is gonna be deadly.
Inflation keeps climbing but Amazon broke sales records last weekend. That makes as much sense as my Uncle Carl attempting to hit Mariah Carey's high note in "All I want for Christmas". 🎶
Enough startup chatter, let's get at 'er.
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- 🧨 a16z's Secret Weapon
- 🔔 Startup Ideas to Call Home About
- 🎙 RSVP to Steph Smith's AMA (RSVP here)
- 😎 Klever Kernal Memes
🧨 A16z's Secret Weapon
So our fam at a16z's has done a couple things right in the last couple decades. By couple decades, we mean 13 years. And by a couple of things, we mean hundreds. But let's roll with it & take a walk back in time:
- July 6, 2009: a16z was started by Marc and Ben
- Last 10 years: they invest in some small startups like: Facebook, Airbnb, Slack, Coinbase and 100s more. Lots of them blow up (in good ways), earning them their position as one of the most world-class VCs
- Currently: a16z has $35B in assets under management across multiple funds as a result of the compounding interest of the massive wins they've booked anddd the LPs in their fund that want a slice of their future.
- This summer: they hired startup legend Steph Smith*
*this deep dive's gonna be expanding on who she is, why she's a power player and how you can ask her any question next week.
According to her website, "6 years ago, she left consulting and a 2+ hour commute to redesign [her] life." She claims that day "was the best decision of my life". Since then, she's:
- worked at The Hustle (leading their product Trends to millions in ARR at 15k+ paying subscribers and working with My First Million's Sam Parr)
- Led Hubspot's creator program
- explored 52 different countries
- become one of Kernal's top-followed ideators
- had multiple projects hit #1 on Product Hunt
- wrote a book, Doing Content Right, that's sold over $200k
- And now she hangs her hat at Andreessen Horowitz, as their new podcast host.
Listen here if you want a sample
But Steph's more than a pretty resume. She's got some madddd startup swagger. Twitter threads with over 50,000 likes, side projects that provide data to better understand female representation, open-sourcing her goals of the year and launching first-gen immigrant students scholarship programs are some of the few. If you need some inspo to be a better builder in 2023, her website is THE place to go. 😅
- Want a look at some of the startup ideas Steph shared on Kernal? Be our guest. She's got 3 here that are ripe for building
So why this deep dive on Steph? Well, that's a good question Kernaler:
- We're fans of her work
- She inspires us all to be better builders
- We're hosting a pretty cool AMA with her on Kernal next week*
*AND, we'd love to see you there. Tap the big ol' green button to join us.
🔔 Startup Ideas to Call Home About
Mr. Rainwater is back with another 🔥 idea.
Kuba wants to see reviews for an expensive purchase.
Boyang needs beta testers for launching ecom products faster.
Shmuel sees the 2nd hand market boom, but what about returns?
Trevor is spinning crowdfunding and on to something!
🔊 Startup Zingers:
- Podcast: 8 Productivity Hacks You Can Do in 30 Minutes (Nick Gray)
- Lenny’s Newsletter Holiday Gift Guide 2022 (Lenny)
- 10 warnings your startup is destined for failing (Forbes)
- 999: the # of days Disney CEO Bob Iger retired before rejoining last week after Disney reported a US$1.47 billion quarterly loss" (WealthSimple)
Got a zinger? Tweet @Kernal_Ideas to get it featured.
🤩 Kernal Crew:
Like the 300 other MVPs on Kernal, Zaidi started from Zero. Read how OmaThrive built an insurance company for creators from scratch and takeaway learnings on how you can build your next start-up idea.
More Members to Follow:
🥳 Tania Dsouza just joined from Madrid. Help her find her next project!
️🗂️ Ali Rashidy founded Notion Startup OS to provide easy-to-use templates to grow Plan. Launch. Grow. Join the Group Page.
🗣️ Yun shared 230 channels to promote your startup. Check it out here.
🏆 Tweets of the Week
It's the first weekend of December. Go make it one for the history books. And tweet your fam at @Kernal_Ideas if anything serious goes down.
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🔥 11/10 · 😕 Meh · 😴 Boring Sauce