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We talk to Southern California VCs to get to know them, their funds, and their advice for entrepreneurs

LA Series A Investors

Jeffrey Evans — Mantis VC

Jeffrey Evans — Mantis VC

Talking with Jeffrey made me wonder if I need to get a celebrity for our venture fund.  Jeffrey had the opportunity to work with Alex and Drew of the Chainsmokers to set up Mantis VC and it sounds like an amazing team.

Jeffrey explains the value that the Chainsmokers are able to bring and how entrepreneurs and funds can best work with celebrity.

Blake Bartlett — OpenView

Blake Bartlett — OpenView

Blake Bartlett explains how to get started with PLG, how the funnel changes going from a sales-led motion to a product-led motion, how to think about PLG metrics, and much more.

Jackie Fast — Sandbox Studios

Jackie Fast — Sandbox Studios

I learned so much about working with celebrities from Jackie Fast at Sandbox Studios :

* Celebrities are not doing this for impact.  It is for the money
* George Cloney’s $1B payday from Casamigoes caught everyone’s attention
* It’s not only about choosing the right celebrity, it’s also about having the right team around them
* Celebrities are so eager to work with startups, they are resorting to DMs
* Celebrities and startup collaboration is going to explode

Charlie Hanna — Marcy Venture Partners

Charlie Hanna — Marcy Venture Partners

Marcy Venture Partners has grown from $30M to $900M AUM, now leading Series A and Series B rounds.  

Charlie Hanna tells us how he, Jay-Z, Jay Brown and Larry Marcus work together at Marcy to evaluate and champion the brands of the future.  He points out that celebrities like Jay-Z and Rihanna didn’t make their billions from their music, but from their ability to build brands.

Megan Holston-Alexander — A16Z

Megan Holston-Alexander — A16Z

Megan Holston-Alexander leads A16Z’s Cultural Leadership Fund (CLF).  CLF connects the world’s greatest cultural leaders with the best new technology companies.

Megan tells us about getting black people onto cap tables, into tech and building generational wealth.

She tells us how A16Z has grown this network and her own journey into this role.

Raj Ganguly — B Capital

Raj Ganguly — B Capital

B Capital has rapidly grown to over $6B AUM and has just announced its first early-stage fund, the $250M Ascent Fund run by a superstar team that includes Eduardo Saverin, Gabe Greenbaum, Karen Page, Karan Mohla, and Howard Morgan.

Raj says B Capital was not an overnight success but was built steadily on the conviction that there needed to be a firm that could be best in class on value-add and also global from the outset.

Faraz Fatemi — Lightspeed

Faraz Fatemi — Lightspeed

What does it mean to be more authentic online and will it lead to a nicer Internet? 

How will future social networks make it easier to establish an online identity, find community and enable community ownership?

Faraz Fatemi, partner at Lightspeed, brings his perspective on consumer psychology to today’s episode of LA Venture. 

Shomik Dutta — Overture VC

Shomik Dutta — Overture VC

Shomik Dutta says that climate, and specifically the need to decarbonize every major industry will “eat the world” in the same way that Marc Andreesen famously said that software would eat the world in 2011.

Shomik argues that the TAM in climate is multiples of the TAM in software today.  The immensity of the need is one of the motivations of the work that he is doing now at Overture.

Laurent Grill — JLL Spark

Laurent Grill — JLL Spark

Corporate venture capital is becoming a first choice option for founders seeking the value-add that corporates can bring in an industry.

This is the thesis of Laurent Grill as he seeks to build the #1 choice PropTech fund at JLL Spark.

Dan Fishman — Regeneration VC

Dan Fishman — Regeneration VC

Do you feel good about your purchases and the trash you generate?  

Dan Fishman believes we can get there and he shares perspective for startups and brands that are being built to serve our new regenerative future.

Maureen Klewicki — Cedars Sinai Health Ventures

Maureen Klewicki — Cedars Sinai Health Ventures

Maureen Klewicki leads venture investing for Cedars Sinai, a $4B/year LA-based hospital with 14,000 employees.

Maureen discusses opportunities she sees for startups to be created to address issues like price transparency in healthcare, the labor shortage crisis, and the move to value-based care.  She shares go to market strategies in healthcare and much more.