This week, we speak with Ben Horowitz, founding partner of famed venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, and author of What You Do Is Who You Are: How to Create Your Business Culture. A16Z (as it known) has $12B in assets under management across multiple funds, and was an early investor in such start ups as Facebook, AirBnB, Lyft, Groupon, Twitter, Pinterest, Box, and many more. The firm formed following Horowitz and Andreessen successful angel investments in LinkedIn, Twitter, Skype, AppNexus, and others.
A16Z is led by its general partners, most of whom came of age in technology as founders, operators, CEOs, or CTOs. Horowitz describes their collective experience building successful companies as “crushingly hard,” and very much impacting their thought process on start ups. The firm has influenced Silicon Valley in numerous ways, perhaps none more influential than turning venture investing into an ensemble practice. We also discuss why cumulative advantage is one of the most important driving factors in venture capital returns.
Horowitz is a thoughtful engineer, founder and VC who has deeply considered the issue of how start ups develop ideas into products and become accepted by the marketplace. Our conversation starts slowly, and builds to a fascinating crescendo about the history of music, from Blues to Hip Hop.
You can stream/download the full conversation, including the podcast extras on Apple iTunes, Overcast, Spotify, Google, Bloomberg, and Stitcher. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.
Next week, we speak with Peter Mallouk, CEO of Creative Planning, a $46 billion RIA, and author of The 5 Mistakes Every Investor Makes and How to Avoid Them.
Ben Horowitz’ authored books
What You Do Is Who You Are: How to Create Your Business Culture by Ben Horowitz
Ben Horowitz’ favorite books
Lenin: The Man, the Dictator, and the Master of Terror by Victor Sebestyen
Books mentioned by Barry
Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership Playbook of Silicon Valley’s Bill Campbell by Eric Schmidt, Jonathan Rosenberg, and Alan Eagle