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Fred Wilson

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Friday, March 24, 2017 - 11:30am
I got this tweet today: @fredwilson have you ever told the story of your profile pic? — Jim Christie (@jamechristie) March 24, 2017 The answer is yes I have but it was eight years ago. I thought it would be fun to re-run that post. Here is is:  I saw this tweet when I got […]
Thursday, March 23, 2017 - 11:30am
Our portfolio Casetext was in the news yesterday for raising $12mm, but the more interesting thing about Casetext is their product, called CARA. CARA is a research assistant for lawyers that offers a super simple proposition: Securely upload a brief and discover useful case law CARA uses Casetext’s wikipedia-like database of >10mm court cases and […]
Wednesday, March 22, 2017 - 11:30am
I’ve told bits and pieces of this story here on AVC over the years but I don’t think I’ve ever told the whole story. Y Combinator (YC) Demo Day has been going on over the past few days up in Silicon Valley and it prompted me to remember a demo day in Boston (where YC […]
Tuesday, March 21, 2017 - 5:10pm
My friend Howard Lindzon, who I met on this blog something like twelve years ago, runs an annual conference for fintech entrepreneurs and investors called Stocktoberfest. Yesterday he hit me up on sms and told me they are doing Stocktoberfest East in NYC next week on March 29th and 30th. He asked me if I would […]
Monday, March 20, 2017 - 11:30am
If you are in the venture or startup business and don’t read Dan Primack, consider changing that. He’s great. From his newsletter this morning: Indebted: Last week we noted that Wal-Mart subsidiary Jet.com had acquired ModCloth, an online retailer of vintage women’s apparel. No financial terms were disclosed, but this didn’t feel like a success […]
Sunday, March 19, 2017 - 11:30am
If someone were to ask what the most successful startups of this decade are, the answer would likely be Snap (market cap $22bn). Uber and Airbnb might also be on the list although those companies were launched in the prior decade (2009 and 2008 respectively). But what might be missed is the massive success of the […]
Saturday, March 18, 2017 - 11:30am
My partner Andy and my friend David are doing an “interview cast” which is “a 24 minute conversation about one topic, with one expert.” They call it The Riff and their first episode is about the evolving news media landscape with CNN journalist Laurie Segall. Here it is:
Friday, March 17, 2017 - 11:30am
We are on spring break with our son Josh this week in Utah and we caught most of the games yesterday. I am not a huge college basketball fan, I prefer the pro game, but there is something about march madness that is so great, particularly these first two weekends where the games come fast […]
Thursday, March 16, 2017 - 11:30am
I love it when companies quickly get into a market, start delivering a product or service, and then, over time iterate on their products and services to expand the market and their share of it. Contrast that with a company spending years getting something right before shipping their first product. I much prefer the ship […]
Wednesday, March 15, 2017 - 11:30am
I’ve written a bit here about crypto tokens. How they can be a monetization model for new protocols. How they could be a new monetization model for online media. How they can be a business model for an online “commons.” And why USV invested in a hedge fund that will invest solely in these tokens. […]
Tuesday, March 14, 2017 - 11:30am
There is no doubt that the healthcare system in the US could use some work. We spend way too much and the quality of the healthcare that many receive is not where it could or should be. We allocate too much of our healthcare spending in the last few months of a person’s life and […]
Monday, March 13, 2017 - 5:10pm
I wrote this in July 2011, as a part of an MBA Mondays series on financing structures: ————————————————————- MBA Mondays are back after a one week hiatus. Today we are going to talk about convertible debt. Convertible debt can also be called convertible loans or convertible notes. For the purposes of this post, these three […]
Sunday, March 12, 2017 - 11:30am
Angel/seed rounds used to be done via priced equity securities, either common or preferred. Then, starting about ten years ago, we started to see convertible debt being used in the angel and seed rounds. By 2010 this was the norm and Paul Graham tweeted this in Aug 2010: Convertible notes have won. Every investment so […]
Saturday, March 11, 2017 - 11:30am
The Gotham Gal‘s first angel investment, back in 2007, was Curbed, a network of three lifestyle blogs; Curbed, Eater, and Racked, all of which have become “must reads” in their categories (respectively real estate, food/dining, and shopping/commerce). Of the three, the Gotham Gal has always had a sweet spot for Eater and in this podcast, […]
Friday, March 10, 2017 - 1:00pm
Our portfolio company Quizlet, which is the world’s most popular studying tool, launched learn mode yesterday. Here’s how it works: The team at Quizlet has built a way to go from cramming to studying, delivered via technology that’s in our pockets. Well done. Learn mode is available on Quizlet’s iOS app and it is in closed […]

Tap

Thursday, March 9, 2017 - 11:30am
Our portfolio company Wattpad, which allows people to write and read stories on their phones, recently launched an entirely new mobile reading (and writing) experience called Tap. In Tap, the stories unfold like you are watching someone text with you. It’s an entirely new way of writing and reading stories and I haven’t seen anything […]
Wednesday, March 8, 2017 - 5:10pm

Today is International Women’s Day and I thought I would recognize it by writing about gender diversity, a challenging topic for many in the startup/tech sector. I believe that diversity of all kinds results in better companies, better performance, better culture and better workplaces. It is challenging for many small tech companies to build diverse […]

Tuesday, March 7, 2017 - 11:30am
I have never had anyone edit my blog posts here at AVC. I write the posts, hit publish, and go off on my day and let the conversation follow. Often readers will send to me copy edits; typos, misspellings, grammar errors, etc. I am always very thankful for these reader-generated edits and almost always go make […]
Monday, March 6, 2017 - 11:30am
Five years ago this month, we were recruiting the first class of students to enter The Academy For Software Engineering (AFSE), NYC’s first public high school dedicated to studying software engineering. A lot has happened in those five years; AFSE opened, AFSE attracted a great faculty and student body, AFSE built a modern curriculum to teach […]
Sunday, March 5, 2017 - 11:30am
A friend of mine likes to say that “culture is destiny.”  You can get everything else right but if you get your culture wrong, you are going to have problems. As I look across our portfolio, I see many different cultures, some very strong and obvious even to outsiders. Some cultures are more nuanced and […]
Fred Wilson is a New York City-based venture capitalist and blogger. Wilson is the co-founder of Union Square Ventures, a New York City-based venture capital firm with investments in Web 2.0 companies such as Twitter, Tumblr, Foursquare, Zynga, Kickstarter, and 10gen.