Episode

EP43: The Journey So Far with Patrick Drake Co-Founder and Head Chef of HelloFresh UK

This week we sit down with Patrick, founder/CEO at HelloFresh. An all around foodie, Patrick talks us through his road to success and the difficulties of bringing a new product to market. For those who haven’t tried it yet, HelloFresh is a meal kit service that brings portioned packages of food to your door with easy recipes to follow, and it’s actually the first meal kit service of its kind. Being the first of your kind in any sphere is tough, and Patrick really brings to light the process of educating the public about your product, which can be a real struggle when your product fills a need that people don’t yet realize they have.

Patrick’s origin story is also quite interesting and pretty entertaining, as he started his career as a lawyer in a buttoned-up law firm. He would literally sneak out of his office to cook at various restaurants downtown and he basically kept up a double life until he resigned to be a full-time foodie.

EP42: Self awareness helped us grow – Abhi Lokesh CEO of Fracture

This week in Startup Handmedowns, we chat with Abhi Lokesh, founder CEO of Fracture and down-to-earth world traveler. Fracture is a glass printing company which emerged out of Abhi’s university passion project, an e-commerce art business which donated all of its profits to charity, as well as a trip to Swaziland with his classmate, Alex.

A major lesson in this week’s episode is patience. Abhi talks about refreshing his order intake page and projecting the typical hockey stick growth curve in a naivié way that I’m sure a lot of us can relate too. His dreams for Fracture were pretty idealistic, but the steps to get there actualized in slogging through Facebook marketing campaigns, trying to get on Techcrunch, and really just trying stuff out and seeing what worked.

Additionally, Abhi did not take the traditional fundraising route with venture capitalists, advisors, and a bunch of fundraising rounds. He believed in his product and its ability to grow on its own.

EP41: You Don’t Need More Processes with Ryan Walsh CPO at Splice Formally Partner at Floodgate VC and Beat by Dre

In this week’s episode of Startup Handmedowns, we sit down with Ryan Walsh who is currently a partner at Floodgate. Ryan has had a very rich career history, from starting out as a performing DJ in San Francisco to co-founding his own startup, and working as the VP of product at Beats by Dre. His origin story is wild, as Ryan got his start as a raver in Pittsburg, taking pictures of the polished DJ’s equipment with a disposable camera to figure out how to emulate that sound.

After figuring out that the party life of a DJ was not for him, Ryan went on to found a company called Pulselocker, which was meant as a DJ tool to cooperate with streaming services. If you’ve ever talked to a musician who has been playing pre-Napster, you’ve heard all about how much the music business has changed and how rapidly the way we buy and sell music shifts. Well, the way music was being consumed and DJ’d changed even faster than his company could develop a product, and he eventually left Pulselocker.

EP40: Why You Shouldn’t Raise Too Much Money with Paul Grossinger

In this week’s episode, we interview Paul Grossinger, an angel investor and co-founder of Gaingels Syndicate, Blue Jay Syndicate, A-Level Capital, and Pervasive Group Inc. Gaingels Syndicate is a group offering investment opportunities to LGBT founders and Blue Jay Syndicate offers investment to founders in the Johns Hopkins community, which Paul started partially as a way to give back to his community.

During this interview, Paul challenges the idea that there is a perfect startup formula of funding and encourages founders to think critically about their company’s funding strategy. We are taught to go after big-name venture capitalists, but are founders really going to benefit when they sell their company for a huge chunk of cash and investors take their share first?

EP39: What I’ve learned starting companies with Jack Levine former CEO of Digg and Electric Objects

Jake Levine is the former Founder & CEO of Electric Objects, named one of Time Magazine’s 25 Best Inventions of 2014. He started the company in 2013 to explore ambient computing and the future of art. In 2017 Electric Objects was acquired by GIPHY, which is basically the Google of gifs. Before Electric Objects, Jake was the General Manager of Digg, a Betaworks company which they acquired in 2012. Jake is a part-time VC at Notation Capital and is also a product manager at Square. We cover a lot of ground in this very chilled interview with Jake. we talk about his time at Digg and the painful process of starting a company. This episode was recorded at Betaworks.

EP38: Success takes time – Russ Shaw Founder of Tech London Advocates and Investor

Russ Shaw is the founder of Tech London Advocates and Global Tech Advocates. He originally founded Tech London Advocates in 2013 to establish an independent voice for the technology sector which would focus on the private sector. Since then he has been championing London as a global tech hub and campaigning to address some of the biggest challenges facing tech companies in the UK – diversity, digital skills, immigration, infrastructure and of course access to funding.

Tech London Advocates is a network of more than 6,000 tech leaders, entrepreneurs, and experts in London, across the UK and in over 50 countries worldwide and Philip actually joined Tech London Advocates a few years back.

Before starting TLA Russ was previously the Chairman of The Marketing Group of Great Britain following senior positions at Skype, Telefónica, O2, and CEO of a later stage startup called Mobileway. He’s an angel and venture investor.

EP37: Getting 25,000 downloads a day Patrick Jackson of Disconnect

Patrick Jackson who is the Chief Technology Officer at Disconnect, which allows people to browse the web without being tracked. given the new GDPR regulations you could say these guys launched way before their tme. Disconnect launched in early 2010 and has gone on to have over 50mill users, they’ve raised a millions of dollars and have google chrome and Firefox extensions of the product.

Before joining Disconnect Patrick founded a number of startups through his company imaginary feet which received over 8 million downloads across various apps that they launched. Like one of our previous guests, Mckeever Conwell the 2nd Patrick also worked at the NSA, in fact they worked together and then went on to launch a number of startups together.

In this episode we talk about how to launch an app quickly and also when to kill your project , why press releases don’t matter and why you shouldn’t buy into the hype.

EP36: Success = Reading More with Anthony Frasier from ABF Creative

Anthony Frasier is a digital strategist, tech entrepreneur, author, and public speaker. A Newark, NJ native, Anthony has a long history of mentoring, advising startups & community infrastructures, to solve real problems and build solutions. Before joining Newark Venture Partners as their entrepreneur in residence, Anthony was one of the founders behind The Phat Startup. With well over a decade of experience in tech, media, speaking and coaching aspiring entrepreneurs and students from underserved groups, he has developed a thoroughly different worldview. A published author, Anthony believes that success isn’t something external, it comes from within. You can create your own luck, no matter your background or lack of experience.

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EP35: Why VC’s Aren’t Racist with Mckeever Conwell II of TEDCO

Mckeever Conwell, 2nd, AKA Mac is a Baltimore native serial entrepreneur. He’s currently a Deal Team Coordinator at TEDCO which is an independent organization that strives to be Maryland’s lead source for entrepreneurial business assistance and seed funding. Prior to joining TEDCO Mac worked with the Department of Defense where he achieved Top Secret Security Clearance. He also went on to co-found two startups going through a number of accelerators including NewME. Mac sold of those startups back in 2014.

We talk about life as a programmer to life a CEO and why it’s hard to be a founder of color in tech. This is a huge topic in the industry right now and I’m so glad that we got to dive into with and get Mac’s perspective.

EP34: The Art of Branding with Alain Sylvain CEO of Sylvain Labs

Alain Sylvain is the founder and CEO of Sylvain Labs, an innovation and brand design consultancy. They have offices in New York, Amsterdam and Richmond, VA. The company serves as a strategic planning resource for product developers and marketers. They have some of the biggest names as Clients including: Google, Airbnb, Spotify, AB-InBev, General Motors, Samsung, Facebook, Nike, Uniqlo, PepsiCo, Bloomberg and others.

Alain is co-founder and investor of several ventures including: Master + Dynamic, a design-driven, premium audio brand. Lílo, the first-of-its-kind refrigerator-stable açai bowl, and Waynesaw, a mobile game.

On the show we unpack what it takes to get branding right and he gives us a brief insight into the creative process without giving away too much. Ok, let’s jump into the action.

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