My New Podcast
“How Hard Can It Be?” will give you an up close and personal look at the people behind Boston’s VC big time
This post originally appeared in BostInno
Does the world need another startup-focused podcast? There are certainly a lot of good ones out there. You can see my faves in the screen shot below, including podcasts from the guys at Drift, Andreessen Horowitz, Greylock Partners, Mark Suster, NextView Ventures and Stanford Business.
In thinking about what I could add to the conversation, I set out to do two things.
Names You Know, People You Don’t
First, I wanted to break out of the “usual suspects” game, and focus on entrepreneurs and investors I knew and respected, but who — however great their achievements — hadn’t been heard from much in the Boston VC community.
Jit Saxena is a great example of this… Founder of multiple $ billion businesses and much sought after board member, but not one to blow his own horn or participate actively in social media. Patrick MeLampy is another, co-founder of both Acme Packet (sold to Oracle for a couple billion,) and the rapidly ascendant 128 Technology, which boldly lays claim to “fixing the Internet.”
Folks like these have been around the block a few times, and their perspective on technology and innovation is seasoned by the survival of more than a few technology cycles. I find that perspective both useful and refreshing, and under-represented in the glitter and glitz of whatever marijuana delivery app is hot for the next 15 minutes.
The Person Under the Persona
I only ask one thing of my guests: Let’s get personal. I’m not interested in small talk, or the usual “killing it” nonsense too common among the Startup Bro set. This is about getting to know the person, about understanding where they grew up, how they were shaped by their families, what led them to achieve their outsized success, and where they’re going next.
We’ll spend about a half hour on that each week, then do a 15-minute second segment on a topic they’re particularly interested in or passionate about. For Jit that was Venture Boards, and for Patrick it was the nature of Innovation. Both conversations were fascinating to me, and I hope they will be to you as well.
My first conversation is with Venture Capitalist Bob Hower, Founding Partner of Boston-based G20 Ventures. Bob is a 13-year VC vet twice named to the Forbes “Midas List,” having led investments in great ideas and great teams including Acme Packet (APKT, acquired by Oracle), AppIQ (acquired by HP), Channel Advisor (ECOM), Actifio, [x+1] (acquired by Rocket Fuel), Evergage and Fuze. Our second segment features Bob’s thoughts on the changing face of venture capital, the innovations driving it and the shifting landscape that led to the creation of G20 ventures.
Check it out. And let me know what you think.