The Entrepreneur Podcast
The Entrepreneur Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

1. De-Risking the Decision to Leave the Corporate World as an Entrepreneur w/ Craig Follett

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

You’ve got this idea.

Every day you show up to your job, do your work, and do it well.

But in the back of your mind, you can’t stop thinking about that thing that you want to do.

That thing that you know will change the world.

But in today’s world, up and quitting a job is scary. You’ve got responsibilities. You’ve got bills.

How do you de-risk the decision when it comes to setting out on your own as an entrepreneur?

You're listening to the IVIONTRERNORpodcast from the Pierre L, Morriset Institute, forent Prenership at the IvyBusiness School. In this series I beentrepreneur an IV faculty memberEric Janson will anchor the session. CRAG FULLETT is one of the most genuinepeople that I know he went on to start universe before the company wasultimately acquired by ticket master in thwent a fifteen in this wide rangingconversation Craig shares with us, his calculated founding story of universe,how he derisked the decision and ultimately left his prestigious job atBCG to start the company, since the acquisition Craig is reemaide at thehelm as universe as CEO and despite the fact that he's achieved financialfreedom, he very much remains the same person today as he was when he foundedthe company almost a decade to go. I hope you enjoy listening to thisepisode as much as I enjoyed having this very candid conversation with theuniverse founder in CEO, Greg Fullett. Today I wanted to get into your storyyour enchrepreneureal journey, but I'd like to rewind back. If you can tell me,maybe you and ninety seconds a little bit of you could summarize your own biosure. So I I grew up in Ontario. I studied engineering in business atWestern and Ivy always knew. I wanted to start a company. My my onegrandfather was an enchpreneur and my other grandfather was an engineer, andso maybe I'm a little bit of a blend of both of them and H. Yeah, so studiedengineering went to ivy loved it and then thought that I wanted to become aninvestment banker. So I did an internship at credit. Suise, you knowdid well learnt a bit, but I always knew I wanted to start a company, so Ifelt that what I was learning was not necessarily entirely applicable, so Iwanted to change gears. A bit switched over, worked for BCG for three yearsdoing strategy consulting and then from there left BCG to launch universe,which we started as a sharing economy. Business grew anpivoted into in eventsand ticketing business and then sold to live nation tickemaster, and that wasyou sold in twenty Thwsen and fifteen thosan and fifteen. So rewind a littlebit entrepreneurial inklings then came from your probably grandparents, yourparents at all, raise you enrpreneuriale. I don't know how doesan entreprenr raised right, like my so my dad's, a lawyer and my mom is a is agrade school teacher and they always raised me to be very wellarounded, so I did like a million extracurriculars like played violinplayed hockey just like, but like across a wide spectrum of things, sothey kept me very, very busy, and maybe that well roundedness was somethingthat's related to angprenership in a way and definitely keeping busy iskeeping busy juggling multiple priorities. commetitive sports is onethat seems to be coming up a lot of people that pay competitive sports.What did you play grown up played hockey, skiing, dilda soccer, but kindof gravidated more towards hockey okayyeah summer jobs? Were youdelivering sear scatalogues or you starting your long care, F business?What woere you do! I was a lifeguard yeah, great gig yeah as a young, greatgate, the young Adot to be outside and so lifegarden swimming instructor. Sodid a bit of that Nice. Okay! So your path out of school was not to start thecompany right away, but you knew that you wanted to. Why didn't you start itright away? I think that I knew that I wanted tobuild experience, build connections and save a bit of money. You know I I don'tcome from a lot of family money or anything so built a little bit of anest, Eggor o safety net and then from there was a little launch and kind of aa more formidable way. Just like wholeheartedly a for you would you do it differently, or thatwas the right path for you. I think it was right path for me, it's probablydifferent for each person and for me and this one of my mentors describedbcg this way BCG for me was like an extension of school in a way, so I kindof didn't: Do it right out of school,...

...but it out of the school of consulting.So what did you learn in consulting that, you think or or d? Do you think,consulting directly or indirectly attributed Thi the success that you'vehad with universe? I think that it definitely helped. I don't think it'sthe only thing. 'CAUSE, I think consulting is obviously very differentfrom enchprenership, but Um, I think consulting is a great learningEnvironment Wrightes, you rotate through a variety of different cases ina rapid pace, and what I personally would do is at the end of each case. Iwould reflect like okay, based on this experience with a client. Is there abusiness? I would start you know, I know something new about an industry oran inefficiency in a business. What are some tmrerial solutions that wouldresolve thosh, so I kind of tried to keep that hat on and then, as Iprogressed through BCG and was able to prove myself as a strong performer, Iwas able to choose a little bit more closely the projects I wanted to be on,and so I got to choose projects that were more in the Tex ector doing likedodilingences and Emina of taxt start ups for other companies, and then I wasmore directally looking at start ups and kind of interviewing t eentrepreneurs to create strategies based on startep landscapes. Soeventually it did directly kind of help and then there's all sorts of skillsthat you build like writing, decks or you know, presents and clients or whathave you so when it came time to raise capital or do a pitchdeck you wer yeah,I could whip up a a pitchdeck. You kN W raised capital pretty well, you were.You were well trained, sometimes at least in my own experience.It's hard it's hard to. If you're in it to learn, did you feel like you were doing the learningso that you could then eventually apply this to the company one day or were youjust trying to soak up all the learning for learning's sake? At that point, didyou know what the learning was for, or were you just happy to be in it? Ithink I was a little bit of both, but more so just happy to be in it like. Iknew that I was learning all sorts of things that would be applicable and Iwouldn't know what they are at the time. You know I might be learning somethingin one project or from one manager. That would be relevant later on and Iwouldn't realize it so there was some deliberate like okay reflection. I wantto start a company at some point. Is this helping that or wha have I learned,but there was more of an Osmosis and one ofthe things I realized from my time at credit suize when I was at credit suisein the internship I sort of felt like you know what I don't really think like'm, I'm learning anything here and then I got back to school and I was workingon projects and I realized at that point only only at that point. Wow.I've actually learned a lot here, like I'm an excel wizard now like, and Ididn't really realize it's like boiling a frog put a frog in some cold waterturn up the temperature slowly and the frog never jumps out, and I I didn'treally realize that at credits weasontil after I'd left, and so thatwas a realization that you know has helped me since then I realize thateven now I'm still learning stuff. It may not feel like it every day, butI know that I am, and you know when you change context, then you might realizeit right as it seying something to the effect of and I'm paraphrasing entirely,but when you're in school, you forget what you're you don't really realize,how much you're learning but you'll realize it when you go home itThanksgiving or home at Christmas. Yes, and you sort of reinsert yourself intothe environment where people aren't doing it every day, you're like wow,okay, I've! Actually I realize now when I see the base line of people whoaren't in this intense learning environment. Actually how much I havelearned exactly so fast forward a little bit. Then when you you done BCDfor three years, not an atypical, inflection point. There's usually likedo I want to continue down the consulting path. Do I want to do my Mba?Do I want to reset somewhere else, so you chose at a certain ex acertainpoint to leave BCG and start your own company HM. Did you there'stwo different ways that we've had guests on talk about this? They say Ihave an inkling I quit now I'm going to...

...go work on the inkling or I have aninkling. I'M GN explore it, I'm going to test, I'm Gonta validate some thingsand then, when the time is right, once I've got an Afalidation, I'm going toleave so was it one of those or something different entirely. I thinkit's something different, maybe a little bit of a hybrid, but maybe it'skind of any pespective. Let's see so up on three years, have an inkling, nothat I'm interested in it, but basically what I did as I set a set ofhurdles for myself. So I said: Okay First, I need an idea check. Okay now Ineed a cofounding team check in that cofouding team. I need a technical,cofounter CTO for my particular business. I needed that check. Alright.Now we deed an agreement, shaeold agreement that you know make sure thatwe're all in it to win it, we're for the long term we're all vested check.We have kind of a safety net there and then we've all put you know money intothe bank checking. Basically, I settle these hurdles and, to be honest, Idefine the hurdles kind of at the beginning, and I didn't really expectthat we would go through them all. I thought that it was going to drop offafter n hurdle three or four or whatever, and so that approach, let mekind of go through, and you know validat that this is something tolaunch into. Without being said, you know, use the word validation. Inretrospect we did very little validation of the idea before welaunched into it we just launched into it so and from a customer, helpmenstandpoint or a product standpoint. We just took a big leap of faith, but Ireally looked to drisk things on the team front and on the sort of StructureFront, and I think that that created a stability and a tenacity that allowedthe idea to eventually valelate itself after loafter leaving go it aninteresting hybrid. I was GON NA. I was Gong to point that out that you hewanted to make sure that the team was right. Everybody was in it, but did notget out there and talk to customers and sell product and validate it that wayat all yeah interest. That's a learning right! I think that that's notnecessarily the most advisable way but to launch into it is. You know, there'ssomething to be said about just launching into it. Ah, but I didn'twant to launch into the team dynamac. I knew that one of the main reasons thatbusiness fail is. You know, team stability and things like that, yeah.Okay, so you had the court team. You would set up a bunch of thesevalidation checkpoints that you wanted to be sure of the internal validationcheck, poins, maybe we're in creating a new term. Here I like it yeah. So thenyou at a certain point, gave your notice to BCG Mi said I've got thisthing Goin to go and at they have to be encouraging. Of that. I know a lot offriends that have been at BC. G Have Gone on to start successful companies,so they wereherging. They were very encouraging it nice they like to putthe BCG logo next to successful. That's right: Th, they start putting me in allthe recruiting decks. You shust come wort BC. J Come Work here, you'll. Youknow you can become an entrepreneur, yeah, okay. So what was the originalidea, then that you ended up leaving BCD for so the original idea was asharing economy marketplace so think of Arbean B. But if we rewind to twentyeleven, there were a whole series of fragmented sharing economy businesses.So you know a marketplace for dog walkers and a marketplace for handymanin marketplace, four tools and a marketplace for vacation rentals, ArbngB and our vision was. We want to create a marketplace that spans all of theserorticles because there's a lot of smaller ones that will only survive andthrive if we can create trusts from other verticals to pullinate them,because really the barrier to inviting someone into your home to you know,Cook a meal or to walk. Your dog is in Yo to trust them, and some of theseverticles are a little less frequent. So we launch this horizontal, thevision of which was that the world is becoming a little too virtual and wewanted to increase human connections in the realworld and to do so in kind of an...

...organtic way where you know you'rpeople that you're living with in your condo building and you're, interactingwith them over sort of sharing time, nd and space and activities and and soforth. So when you say launched horizontal you weren't, you didn't say we are going to be a sharing, ACO t thenew dog walking, APP or website. You said generally, this pter P, Amercial,placis, lacking trust. We can be the place where all of these things livebecause we're going to have trust amongst the peers. Is that exactly yeah?So we didn't, we didn't lauch shake the dog walking marketplace. We we, youknow, thought okay, the product is, may be a little similar if you're hiring adogwalker or a babysitter or et cetera the flow, the user experience. You knowthe payment processing, everything's kind of shared so lets luvage that ArCross Verti cals, and so we lauchd this extremely broad market place at thebeginning- yeah, oh my gosh. So where did you even start with that n likemarketplace and unproven PR, Maye, not unproven, pure toppeer, but like notper peer of where it is today? So where? Where did WEU even go? You'V quit yourjob? You've got a business plan. Presumably, did you write a businessplan w yet wrote a business plan and could be Sichi fashion of Nice and herivy fashion and uh kind of you know, quit our jobs and then started buildinga prototype and then started. I guess threefold: building a prototype, soproduct building leads so very stealth mode generating leads of potentialSharin economy. Supply side leads so dogwalkers babysitters people who mightshare items, people who might offer cooking classes and then also raising around of capital. So we looked in that sort of idea, phase team and idea paceto raise this seed round. That would last US- and you know, get us to aphase of traction. How many people originally on the team? There werethree of us three full time all full time: Nice Yeah, that's key yeah,getting people to job jump in full time. Okay, so you've got your businessplanned. Did you have a revenue, my an idea of a revenue model in thebeginning, yeah? We we definitely did. We thought you know we're going to beprocessing payments and we'll take a cut of that we'll you know, have a sortof a commission model and then we thought maybe there will be otherrevenues streams in the future, around sort of data and so forth, andadvertising and other things don't know yet bu don't know yet, but our primaryrevenue model was going to be this commission revenue model got it and Yoyou were the destinnation or you'd, be the over the top sort of layer on otherpeople's peer to peer marketplaces or you were the destination we werevertically integrated. We were the destination we interestingthy. We hadsome vertical sharing economy. COMPANIES COME TO US and say: Hey youknow, can you be a layer on top of these other verticals? But no, we were,we were sort of vertically integrated. We were processing the payments and thedestination to discover these sering economy listings and to share them.Okay- and I mean we know the answer- E aniverse ended up piviting, but was itdid it work? somethings worked somethings didn't so we louched inJanuary of twenty twelfth, and we had built up all these leads, and we, youknow defined this pretty fully baked product like it was not a typical, likeMVP, minimal, viable product, as Yo would say so we launched and we builtup a mass of supply side leats. So just a ton of items and babysitters and dogwalkersand activities cooking classes yoga sessions. You know tens of thousands ofthese supply side listnings, but what we saw, then, is that there ware somecrickets on the demand side. So we had all these listings and no one wasrelatively speaking. No one was booking them, so we had kind of a liquidityproblem O or a demand side problem. Okay, so interest from the peoplerunning these peer of Er market places...

...some sort of partnership or somethingwhere they were listing them on your site Y and everything was launched andworking, but Nobun is actually buying what what next and did you raise? Hadyou raised money at that boint at this point, we'd raised Um, seven hundredand fifty thousand dollars, so you raise im significant yeah seed fundingbased on the idea, initial concept, yeah dicg into that for a second, becausewithout market validation- and this is a challenge that a lot of my studentsare other Otpoers, come to me with how much how much validation do I need tohave in order to start executing orde rate capital, and so you had. I guess Ihad a pretty good pedigree. Ivy Grad Investment banker consultant leaving tostart this thing, but didn't have market validation. So how did thoseyeahpitches go yeah? It was an interesting phase right anso. I reflecton this. It's a different style of pitch when Youre prerevenue and youridea phase, and so people were very much so investing in the team and theidea and the business plan and the vision and the excitement and that's what they were. They wereinterested in. So I think you know the pedegree. You know the experience atyou know: investent, banking and BCG engineering and IV, and all thesethings as well as twith others of my team as well. That was reallycompelling for people. So how did you? When? Did you decide to go, raise money?How soon after you quit or left your other job? Did you go raise money notimmediately the three of us we, you know well, first of all, we didn't takea salary for like a year and a half, so that was kind of an investment in ofitself, but we each put in call it ten grand and we kind of focused onbuilding up the the prototype fist, and we did that for a couple of months andthen at that point we went and set out to raise that that rout got it. And howdid you find those contacts so a lot through the through R, our personalnetworks, so people we'de worked with friends of of family kind of justbranching out and then it it kind of just had a bit of a ripple effect. Youknow we we'd bring in someone and then they'd go one degree removed and thenthe next thing you know we have the formercy of Fiferari who's, investing n.That was not a direct connection that was a a friend of a friend of a friendTyat's, pretty cool, though if you can get someone at least from what I'veseen. If you can get an anchor in early enough like that, that gives you somesort of sexy cred in the beginning, so that's cool yeah. He was. He was one ofthe later ones to come in that Roun, but I helped in future rounds. That'sfor sure. So so then you raised- and this was from how many people this itwas a. It was a lot of people in retrospect, so we had about thirtypeople in that Roundowah wow. So and one of the the ways that we did, thatis we we raised, what's known as a convertible note, so with that it sortof simplified the paperwork and simplified the discussions 'cause, wedidn't need to really deliberate with each person. What is the valuation ofthis thing because they' be Hav no attraction literally, we basicallydeferred the valuation to the next round and we said we're going to giveyou a discount on the next round of funding, and so that was a prettysimple in a straight forrd conversation, and that was the convertible note, sois in the form of a loan that they could convert to equity on the futureround. CRACKD, yeah, okay, okay, so you've got money in the bank. You'vegot a prototype more than prootype. You launch you go alive, that's right! H!You built it. They did not come what Nex Yeah. So what next I mean, half ofthe audience came right. We had the suppliers, but not the buyers, and so what came next is we had a a lot ofsttutiveness, a lot of tenacity and we said we're going to make this work, andso we focused on two ful. We looked at some marketing approaches and we lookedat some product approaches. On the marketing side. We started to createcampaigns around what we call theme weeks, which would engage people ondifferent themes. So we had a you know a food week and we had acaffeine week and we had a sports week...

...and we would engage you now we're inTronto, so we focused on the Tronto community and bring them intoactivities on the on the sort of marketing side of things and then onthe product side. We started to kind of growth hack things, so we focused onbuilding product that would give tools to our supply side, organizers, so theDogwalker, the babysitter, the personal chef to invite people to their listingor to bring their network in, and so we built a lot of social networkintegrations with facebook and twitter and Google, and then we provided thosetools to the Ofe enteogonizers so that they would bring their you know acouple of thousand people in their network onto the platform and thatreally started to pick up. So we that was kind of the next pase and wew'relike Oh this I this is something things are happening, yeah so get into thedetails here when, when the first, when the site goes alive and people aren'tshowing up who called the meeting well there W re, no one really called ameeting. It was kind of. We were meeting all the time. We were just in te office, all the time around a ping Pon table. I should mention so that wasour deskand. You know we had stand up meetings every morning and you know wewere just meeting all the time. TSO asking. Is itworking yeah? Is it working? Is it working? Is it working and it was Imean, was half of it? Was Yes, but the users eye wasn't growing. He per yourplan, I would assume, did you have an guess at how quickly you had hoped itwas going to grow? Ah Yeah? Certainly we did. We had. You know a lot ofprojections that we really had hoped. It would be a lot bigger a lot faster.We really had a lot of tenacity and we almost didn't really ask that questionright away. We just sort of stuck to it and had faith that we were going tomake at work and you know kept plugging away and we started to develop sometraction that we thought was looking good we'd go out and pitch investorsfor our next round. At this point, where you know maybe six months intothis this face, and then we started getting feedback that this attractionis not enough, come back, and so we we Gad a lot of stick to itnness. We justsort of stuck through it until we started to find her footing a littlebit got it. So if it wasn't one meeting, then it was a series of meetings over aseries of days weeks months whatever. But how did you decide what to do togrow? I think listening at this point, we're in a validation face listening tothe customers was big at this point, and so how did we decide what to do wew know? As mentioned, we were working in these theme weeks and we wereworking in the product and the theme weeks were focused a little bit more inactivities. Basically small events, so cooking classes yoga sessions. Whathave you? How did you sort nitty greety here on the specifics, but so themeweeks came from somebody, so at a certain point thes had to I don't knowyou came up with it or you guys were texting each other late at night or,like morning, stand up. Someone says themeweeks like how did you either have the discipline or thecreativity to throw those ideas up on a board? And then how did you pick theone ultimately to focus on? How did we we didn't wee? To be honest,we could have had a lot more focus, so we had. How did we pick I'd say we hada process where we would look at this sort of wheel of marketing channels andactivities, and we would do something in every single spoke of the wheel and one of them would stick and we you knowthis particular one was the theme weeks, but we had all like a hundred otherones that probably we could have veted in advance D, maybe screened out, butthat was our process e. We just throwing a bunch of stuff out theredring some spaghetti at the wall, Ond. Seeing what stuck trying them all atonce and then otheme week seems to be doing something. Let's just do more.What seems to be working? That's right, cool yeah! I mean it's interestingright, there's! No! It's not like! There's off it's not always these bigteam, strategic offsite meetings, where you lock yourself in a room for twodays and come up with the ideas it's...

...like in the early days, you're justtrying anything and everything and there's no real t doesn't have to berigor necessarily or process around it could could it have been helpful, maybeyeah, I think especially, is a first time entrepreneur right. So you youkind of learn by doing and then maybe next time around, I think wou'd be we'd,be able to use some intuition and be more decisive and know a little bitmore in advance. What kind of SCETTI sticks to the wall and which doesn'tgot it? Okay, so back to where we were so you're doingthemeworks teeme weeks, you're getting things going, users are starting tocome. You've got some traction. You started went to raise some money, butthey said need more attraction, so keep going yeah. So we found that the themeweeks were effective because we could go get one activity organizer or whatwe now would call an event organizer and they would bring. You know, tens ormaybe eventually, a hundred attendes- and that was a lot more demansizedgeneration than bringing on one Dogwalker who maybe bring zerocustomers or one customer, and you need to generate all her demant. So we foundthat that worked really well. We then found that we were having a lot ofatraction kind of the food space, so we had a lot of food events on universe,foot, food event, organizers, and then we got a a celebrity chef from topcheffCanada. He throu his birthday, Parton universe. It was five bucks, a ticket,three hundred people and they were all footies because it was, it wasliterally his birthday party, and so he had all this other shafts and foodcommunity people, and now we ha were like. This is great. We have this basiffood of Antoganizers. From there we went to the stops nightmarket, whichwas a very popular food festival in honest EAD, allyway and got that event, and then that that waskind of a a turning point, because in that one event we eclipsed all ofour sales from all of these other efforts. By bringing on this this onelittle food festival with maybe two thousand people. Can you elaborate onwhat was the pivot from sharing economy to events, so you were y a you had sometraction on to that per topure side, but then what was th? What was themoment where you made the switch like the the full switch or even thebeginning? So you 're talking about your morst food event, but at the timeyou were talking about, you were trying to like dogwalkers yeah wh. Where didyou get? When did the first event opportunity come up? It was a littlebitof a gradual thing so that you know it's it's hard to say what was thefirst, the first you could define the first as the first cooking class right.Maybe that was when it switched. When we had. You know ten or fifteen ortwenty people learning to make Nyoki. Actually in our office we offered ouroffice as a venue and maybe that's the switch or maybe it was when we startedto get into these larger events where they needed. You know qr codes thatcould be scanned on sight and so forth. Maybe that was the switch product wise,but it was only until later that we focused exclusively on events and cutout the more purist sharing economy, things like items and skills iwhen. I,when I think peerd appear D ybe. This is wrong, but hen, I think, per peeroff an thing one to one like you've got something I want it I'll give youdollars if you trus, we trust each other, but then to go to a cookingclass. I see how it would happen. I've got skills O' a chef. I want people tocome pay me and I will share you the skills, but now it's not one to one.It's one, O many yeah and to your point, the chef brought ten people with him.It was like ooh. This is more interesting than just one person at atime yeah. We veeed that I guess ye could describe it, maybe as per topeers right, we would have yeah. We had to peer toppeer one to one dog Walkerto dog or dog owner, but then we also viewed the sharing economy or part ofit as maybe, instead of going to a restaurant. Maybe you want to go attenda dinner party in your Cando building and maybe it's with strangers, butmaybe it's with strangers that you can trust because they are, you know acouple of degrees removed and you have.

You can see that they've done otherthings within the sharing economy that are proofpoints, that they're atrustworthy person. So we viewed that as part of the fabric of of the sharingeconomy, which is maybe beyond the typical definition, which is more oneto one yeah got it so now you find yourself almost as a like.When did you? When? Would you define yourself as a ticketing company, then?When was that switch? We still tried not to find ourselvs as hilting on acompany. We still talk about. I, as a marketplace, I was going to still tryto maintain some of that ethos and but to switch away more fully from thesharing economy. Wasn't until maybe a year or two after that. So atthis point we're facilitating this marketplace for activities which arenow becoming events as well as these want one interactions, and ourphilosophy and hope was that we would have these people run these activitiesin events. It would generate demand, they would come into the system and wewould cross sell them into other categories. They would start, you knowhiring that dogwalker or lending out their ladder um into their theirnetwork. So that was the the grand vision was. We would use this as a wayof generating demand that would unlock this massive sharing economy, visionand that started to play out. We we started to Generaly log demand, itdidn't all convert into the supply side or t e or the sharing economy side, andwe were resource constrained. You know we we had raised at the end of the dayover the course of time. We ended up raising two and a half million, butthat's not a ton in terms of trying to build out the Ebay for sharing econometer, the Amazon for sharing economy. That's you know. We were sort oflooking to build. Sixty four AIRBEAN bees. We had eight categories and eghtsub categories below each category, so we had sixty four of these subcategories and in order to really do justice to that, I think we neededprobably some more capitalization. We didn't have that. So you know the lackof resources, crecreated focus and forced us to focus on what was reallyreally working really well, and that for us, was this new approach tofacilitating events and helping events if entorganizers market their event sowas there ever? was there ever a moment where you kind of Drewon the sand andsaid this is a this? Is a pivot were pivoting, or was this his? The NaturalEr was a well T, was definitely a bit of a gradual approach as as disrite it.There was a moment that was a bit of a moment which was we listening to rarccustomer feebackhad a feature request. People wanted to be able to imbed their ticket sales, soin their own websites and they're n websites, and so we had two ways ofdoing it. We had kind of the quick way wer. We had a more advanced way wherethe person would stay on that external website after the purchase, and hethought you know. Let's, let's go I on a limb and let's try to build the moreadvanced one, because it'll be a different ator. So we did that and indoing so we built it for one half of the marketplace to make it quicker toget to market. We built it for the activities only and not the services,and we we built that we launched it, people loved it and then the next stepwas okay. Now we need to build this for services, because that's that was aapproach with all product we had to have it applied, O all verticals, sothat was sort of the natural next step, and at that point we took a stepbackand said you know what this feels like we're: building two companies here.This is slowing us down and at that point we had a lot of Sushi lunches ormicofounters, and I wealways kind of met, Ovusushi, lunches or Sushi dinners,and we took a step back and had to basically rally the cofounder team andthen later the investors and and other state holders around okay. We arefocusing on this and we are shutting down the rest, and that was v. That wasone of the best decisions we ever made because it sped everything up and madeit much simpler to describe it's, not...

...this sharing economy, sort ofconceptual thing anymore. It's a very tangible. We are an event marketplace.Wyo can bed your your ticket sales. It is much more crystal clear and fromthere we saw a really big inflection point so t what year was that? When didyou make that change that would have been Tryn? Remember Ithink it was. It was twenty thirteen or twenty fourteen, sohow many years in that was three years in yeah that I W S I thi itwas,probably two and a half years in it. ' s been souling a long time. That's along time, two and a half years or three years on the same idea with like same original business.MOEL, that's o! That's a long time! Yeah it was yeah okay. So then you thenyou switch over to becoming a not les say. I don't want n o call youticketting company, but you were effectively selling people were runningevents and selling tickets to people on their own websites. That's right! Sodid you face any backlash or have any fears yourself about thencompeting with some of the big boys? Because, if you, if you are, if you were not a ticketing company butcould be perceived as a competitor to the big players, you're in a wholedifferent world m having been in the live event, businesses on a businessthats right generally, people can just jump into there's a whole shark poolthat you've got TA, learn EAHIT's a very competitive space. So how did youfound yourself suddenly swimming with sharks? Yeah tell me how that went.Definitely! Yes, you know that was one of the that was some of the feeback Um.You know from cofounders and from investors is like you know, but shouldwe really do this? This is such a competitive space and you know it was.The answer was like. Well, yes, were ee listening to our customers,this is what they love our product for this we're listening to our employees,to our team, just like listening to all the stakeholders, and it was a pretty natural thing, we'd alreadykind of moved into it almost by accident. We started U with theseactivities, which graduated into larger and larger activities, which becameevents, and the next thing you know were we're in the world of ticketingand and events kind of by accident. Okay. So this is now you said: Twentyfourteen w twenty thirteen or fourteen D Twen,an thirteen fourteen. So what next to you focused on you, you found your call itniche within the sharing economy. That was working. Did you pick a nice withinevents that you wanted to focus on? We? You know we felt we had strengthen thefood sector, fruit events, so we kind of focused on that. We were definitelygeneral omission like we didn't, have any reserve seeding functionality, sowe were really focused on these small. You Know Indi evants, ranging from thatcooking class or a letter press. You know, class up to a food festival andthat's kind of the the content that we focused on initially, but then thatshifted, because we found that our product was applicable for differenttypes of content was applicable for technology conferences and you kno. Letme sound different than a food festival, but the underlying sort of technologywas was pretty similar and then our main focus of differentiattion at thistime was the inbedability. We realized that no one else had this. This issomething that's super unique people really want this and that that made iteasy to sell. That was the unique functionality at that time. That wasyeah, because, typically, if someone goes to purchase a ticket, Youdadvertise it on your website, but when it comes town to actually purchasingthe ticket, you click the link. It's GOINGTA put you over to ticketmaster orevent bride or somebody else exactly, and you could keep the experiencewithin their own interesting. So did you find yourself at a certain point,taking business from those other companies yeah? Definitely we we, Imean we weren't competing with ticket master Um, totally different scale, butwe found that our largest source of kind of Legenor or customers that wecould get were from coming from event...

...bright, interesting, so people thatjust exclusively the main reason they eed o come to. You is just for thativatability. We want to do the same thing, but we want to keep it on ourown experience and your sales Yo hammered that we just hammered that Yepwe found you know. Why did people like this invetability and just reallyhammered that home and kept enhancing it and improving it cool? So if we peelback some of the layers here, I want to get and get in the hood get under thehood to business model unit economics things, because when you changed, when you repositioned what you were asa company nd, what you were moving into did that require that you change yourbusiness model. Did the Unit Economics Change? Did you have to hire morepeople, fire people, open offices? What what changes did that force on youdidn't really create personnel changes, but h yeah, I mean we and the business or therevenue model was relatively similar, so it was still taking a commission Fof the sales, but we then crystallized that and and looked we now knew moredirectly. Okay, these are our competitors. There is these variousevent competitors out there and let's align our pricing to reflect ourdifferentiation and ability to compete and make it easy for the the customerto choose between these different offerings. So we adjusted our pricing,but the ravenue model remained pretty similar on the pricing side. Did you?How did you figure out what the price of that you were x? Investment bankerconsultant. Was this a ridiculous insane excel model, or how did youfigure out what you should price it? It was not he wanted to keep it reallysimple. So we basically looked at the landscape and said: okay, we're in aprice relative to this and and Kindof go from there, and we knewthat we weren't we were. You know we were smaller. We had some differentchators, but we had a lot less features right, so we you know, would price similar to ourcompetitors. Now we're you know we're able to kind of have a little bit moreroom and add more value and- and you know, capture some of their value, butthen it was sort of like let's price competitively compared to these. Theseother offerings can often be as simple as that talk about pricing recently,and it's look at what people are pricing at today. So who are your? Willyou consider your competition? How are they pricing? What value do they bring,and where do you want to position yourself relative to them? Whatperception do you want to give? So are you a higher quality person or highquated company or service relative to what's already out there, so maybe youput a premium on it, but then also making that jibe with your overallbusiness. So if we price it at this, can we make that work with our overallrevenue model cover our overhad, those sorts of things? Were you guys worriedabout that, or were you one of those venture funded companies that investorssaid like just get show usage show the people are using this like worry aboutthat and worry less about the unit economics and whether this theprofitable company. So we were worried about the unit economics, but less soyou know we were worried about runway and our unit economics, and we knewthat if we had unit economics that are favorable we'll just need to scale itto a certain point in order to become profitable. So we were more focused atthat phase. On the unit economics lic are we bringing are we able to generate?You know, leads, convert those leads into event: organizers, have them selltickets and take our our fee on those tickets and make more money on that than itcost us to bring in the aentorganizer in the first place, so we kind offocused on that on that engine, and once we knew we had an engine for that,that was. That was what we were into good. How did you think about buildingut the early stage sales team, because this is something that a lot of earlycompanies struggle with Um, and I know the folks on your team that were acharge of that having interacted with them before? I think I yhave even metwith them in San Francisco. It was a really nice running machine, at leastfrom an external perspective. So how did you? How did you build that out? Imean there's a lot of dimensions. We...

...could talk about Righti, there's thethe structure of the team. How do you structure a sales team? There is thesales process. I think that our our focus at first was: let's get thatsales process going so the way that we defined it as we and that we appliedthis approach beyond sales to anything where, as a CO founder, we would takeon something ourselves. We get our hands dirty. We would, in this case, beemailing potential perspective of entorganizers one by one and then we'dfind ways to automate this and then we'd find ways to hand that off topeople in the team, so that was kind of Er approach with everything. But I thekids, we're talking about sales, so Heah, I would just start cold,anmailing people and then, following up with them manually, you know from ouryou know: Google APS gemail accounts and just you know repeatedly doing thatand then learning that we can do this little bit more systematically and moreand more systematically and kindof take it from there and then we started togrow the sales team and brought in some people who had some of whom Sebasum Imet. He I met as a client, so I was pitching a client and he was running issint Patrick's Day event, and I said you know this guy he's an Ivy Grad, anISN, a family, keeping the families an Ivygrad. He is a promoter, he's he'srunning events and he's working for a telecom company and the TEX ector. Iyou know, I think he'd make a really great sales person, so we brought himin managed to sell him and- and he cameaboard- and so we brought on some people of that nature, and then westarted to enable them with these these tools and automation M to to drive thatpipeline nice. So then fast forward to ultimately, when do you get the call orwhen do you pursue ticketmaster? Yes, so fast forward to that? There's someinteresting junctures and steps in there. So along the way, were we'reraising P C, so we're Pitching v CS. We've got some interest and inparallel.We decide at this time just to recap: Ore Universe with two eyes at thispoint ohright you remember that yeah Y, ah universal, two es dotcom andinitially that was to represent the eyes, were two people. Two little headsand bodies meeting real life, one to one kind of you know real person, interaction, but this youknow it was kind of a if you're telling someone. Where do you work or what's Tename of the product, you always have to say universe with two eyes and itdidn't always look the most trustworthy. So we decided okay, let's, let's find away to see if we can buy universe. Dcom in. I tell you this, because this ispart of the the juncture and raising capital and everything that that was alit of acadalyst. So we found a really clever way to buy a universe O com bydoing a lease with a right to buy. So we contacted anonymously the priorowner of universe with one eye com and expressed an interest to buy thisnegotiated a price and negotiated a a structure where we could pay them amonthly payment lease it. But we had a contract where we could pay them. Youknow a bigger chunk and then own it outright and in the meantime the domainwas parked at an escro agent. So an ascaragion hold it. And if we defaultedon our contract, it would go back to the cellar and if we exercised ourcontract it would go to us, the buyer, and so this allowed us being a littlebit capiil constrained to not throw a whole chunk of capital at this randomdonam domain name, but to have the usage of it for a you know, a nominalmonthly fee, so you did actually actively start to use it. I mean youhad, because you had T in the ESCRA account you negotiated this teal. Theseare now you rebranded, we rebranded as universe with one eye tcom, and that was another inflection point,because now you know it was easy. Word of mouth for a customer is describe forus to describe. It was more trustworthy. ICINDO made a splash in the industryindustryis going out. You know there...

...must be something here: how Howe thesehise guys buying this expensive top tr Domai name, and so that kind ofreinvigorated. Some of these VC conversations amparallel to the VCconversations. We had a a ticketing company reach out to us whowe started to speak with. They were interested in buying us, and so we hadyou know these conversations and they were interesting, but then we thoughtmaybe we should. Let's brought this out a little bit. Let's see what would thislook like if we were to you know bring in some of the the bigger players andwe reactivated some of our partnership conversations that we previously had soearlier in the journey of universe, we had actively began partnership,conversations with some of the larger event players and even Google and Ebayand stuff to genuinely structure partnerships. You know, maybe theycould refer of entorganizers to us. Maybe we could be do it yourself, eventmarketplace that would complement their other businesses, and so we reactivatedthose conversations and Datadat sold to live nation and there'syou know, that's an interesting story, O knof itself that that negotiationthat process that was very exciting yeah. That's so can you give me just rewinding for asecond to the domain. Give me a feel for like what what is it top to yourdomain, sell for even range wise just so the people have an idea. rangewise.You know we're talking. Six figures, plus six figers, ga or okay, to the extent that you're willing toshare those negotiations or conversations with live nation might beinteresting. I always say that businesses don't generally get bought.They get sold, not all the time that someone may justhap you on the shoulder out of the blue, that you've never had a conversationwith before and say I'm going to buy you for Xys d, multiple of revenue.It's usually some conversation that had built over time and guess what what wesaid we were going to do. We did it. You know, we've got traction we servicein need that you don't currently service being selfserve ticketing. Sois there anything that you can share about those conversations yeah? I can'tshore everything, but theree are certainly some interesting insightsthat thiy can share. We did have inbound interest and so that's whatsparked it and that inbound interest helped us in the negotiations todemonstrate that there's multi parties who are interested in this- and whyhave we started these conversations, but then we did broughten it out and we,you know we were actively involved in selling it right and one of the Pivilal moments was. We discovered that live nation was veryinterested in this thing called distributed commerce, so they wanted tobe able to sell, let's say a drake ticket, an spottify or to be able tosell a blue Ja ticket on ESPN dotcom, and that was an ohomoment, becauseourkhy to frentiator is imvedable tickets, bbetable ticketing, and sothat was a a Senergy we were able to pitch. So it was sort of that wassomething that really resignated and to make this repeatable for otherencrepreneus. You know the process I would recommend. Is You know if youlook at you know: investor relations documents, you can look at the strategy.Documents of perspective acquires see what their top top level strategies are,and if you have something that can aligne to it, then that is somethingthat you can work on, and so that made the the conversation justvery interesting for for Michael Rappino, and it was thatpaired up with a Bestin class. You know: Do it yourself self serve ticketingcompany which complimented very well ticketmaster, which does much muchlarger stuff. So you Kinda have this dove tail of this longer tail.Chickening Company, plus this technologi'se energy of imbedableticketing, instant, distributed commerce,...

...could call you on it 'cause, you justcalled yourself a ticketing company. So when you were W en, you were meeting atthis point where w taking a cab, when you were meeting with live nation orwith with ticket master, we were you actually calling yourself a ticketingcompany. For those conversations, we were yeah yeah, OK, yeah righ. So today,then your post acquisition- you are still acvery, actually involved Um.What's going on today at Universe, yeah today, it's it's super exciting. Younow one of the reasons that I've remained as it's remained highlychprenorial. So a lot of autonomy and Micropino was very good at having hisacquisitions run. That way, that's kind of a philosophy that he has and sowhat's new is we've been expanding internationally quite dramatically, sowe've been opening up offices and London, an Australia and Nahong Kongand we've internationalized the product into many many currencies andalternative payment methods, so non credit card payment methods andlanguages and were real excited to see events all around the world musinguniverse. I so I've been you and I knew each other from from the event business.We knew each other ma before that, but we like started to interact more whenwe we yeah anthe event business. There was a lot of travel for both of us Yep.I think you do a really good job of embracing it, and maybe it's not. We don't see each other all the time,so I'm living vicariously through your instrigrant, but I think you do a good job of enjoying the journey 'cause. You couldview it as I have to do all this travel for work or I have the opportunity tosee the world through work. That is that matters. So just an observation,you do a really good job of that. So you still travel a lot for work yeah.You know a good amount and I enjoy the travel. You know we I get to travel togreat cities, great events and you know with great people, and so I think thatthat that makes a difference it's different than the consulting travel.Where you're you know, headed every week to some place that you may not beas excited about so yet'. I think it's some of those dimensions. Nice hasanything personally changed for you since the acquisition, because that is the dream of so many right. Youstart this saying this thing is working. You get tapped on the shoulder out of the bluefrom this giant company and they buy your company and then you sail off intothe sunset. So what is what has changed if anything from the acquisition? Foryou? Personally, I mean the business is a lot different, and so that makes it adifferent personal sort of set up were now almost seventy people and at thetime of the acquisition we were, you know about twenty five and so that's avery different business and it's it's a different sort of management style andwe're much more international now, and so that has changed sort of my day today it's it's definitely more around leading these these people and settingup structures and enabling this organization so that that's a bitdifferent yeah I mean personally enjoying the travel. It's a it's. It's a different environment. Youknow not, I guess the key difference is. I I'm not spending my time out raisingmoney from vcs anymore that before selling you know, we were alwayslooking to extent er runway and accelerate that next phase of growth,and so a big part of my role was going out and building relationships withPotential v CS and partners and raising that capital now weare as part of livenation. The largest live entertainment company in the world, wehave access tothat larger balance sheet, and so it's less so around going in and pitchingfor that. It's demonstrating success, c, more continuously and kind of being enabled by that, and sothat frees up time to focus on on other things within kind of running thebusiness. Can you comment on your relative levelof contentment or happiness or anything...

...like that, because I think that someit's easy to get caught up in the idea that more is going to lead to more, but now being at a point where I meanyou're: You're not stilling, into the sunsetfor all time, but you're in a good position. Has It changed your baselinelevel of happiness or passion or drive, or you know are other weeks where you justsay. I don't want to do it this week as it changed anything like that. Yeah! No,that's that's a good question and I think starting a company and thenselling a company. That was something that was on literally my bucket list.When I graduated, I created this pocket list and I've been ticking some thingsoff on it, and so it was certainly was this great accomplishment, but in termsof levels of happiness, just answer your question. I think that I was happybefore starting universe. I was then very happy after starting it duringkind of the building out of universe, including when we were taking themsalary, and I think I'm like a similar level of happy now. So I I think thatthe success and the you know the you know: wealth creation, isn'tnisn't,something that necessarily generates the happiness. I think it's somethingthat comes kind of from within withthat being said, and this issomething more after starting iniverse, so you know working in consulting. Iwould you know, make decent money and then maybe go out for a meal andobviously the food tasted good, but I always tell people that, after startinguniverse, you know each dollar that I made and when I, if I made food orwrent ef for dinner food, just tasteed better, because I you know I created it, it felt morefulfilling. So there was kind of a difference there, but I I was Yo knowI'm happy after selling the company I'm happy. I was happy before as well yeah.You honestly seem like the same. You haven't changed really at all. YOU HAVENOT C, I hope, Samethe same guy from before during after O. that's great, II think it's a testament to your character y. You have a good sense ofwhat's important to you and I think you're at least my perception of yourinstigramm life is like that. Actually is your life. You know you're,generally, you are a happy person. You Ah seem fulfilled and you're doing itright, you're doing it. Thi Yeah, some quick ones as we grap up here. Is thereanything if you could think back to twenty year old Craig? Is there anyadvice that you'd give to yourself back in the day, I would say: Do do what you love do more of what youlove double down on that a little bit more.I think, if there's something that you don't like doing then stop doing it andmaybe travel more. I think I certainly traveling. You know a good chunk now Itravelled back then as well, but I think I would say, travel even more.That's a piece of advice that I would give is just something that you lovedback then that you were like wish. I would have done there's that thing thatI wish I would have done more like there something P. I think they'reraveling a little bit. That's one piece: I had some Opportuniti us to go to somecountries and it 's Lik H. I don't know I gotta work on this or got this goingon and kind of deferred it, and it's just like no Lok looking back. It'slike should just go for it. So and generally I did go for it, but I'd say:Go for it even more yeah and you Kn W. I I loved rock climbing I loved,staying active and do even more of that would be advice to my coon year.Oldself. Should people start businesses right out of school? If they want to doit, then they should. I think that it's different per person- and I think, H, yeah I'd, say y. You know Youve got togo for I, if you know it's, it's the right time to start something then thengo for it maybe create that checklist of of hurdles for yourself and ifyou're passing through those hurdles, go for it yeah. Maybe that's for you.Maybe that's right out of school, or maybe you want some more experience oryou want to build up some more network, or you know a little bit of savingsthat you can invest into that company thefor so that you can get throughthose hurdles. That's my approach at...

...least. Is there a place that you doyour best thinking? I did a lot of my best thinking rockclimbing, so you know, I think, there's things thatpeople do where just sort of totally clears your mind if you're rock,climbing or maybe you're playing a sport, or maybe something else, there's this sortof state of flow where you're not thinking about anything else, and itclears your mind and then, when you emerge from that activity, you thenhave a very clear head and you're sort of in a very creative state, and so Ithink that that really creates some of the best thinking thatdove tails into my next one, which is what do you do to keep your selfphysically and Mentally Right, rock climbing? Still I wish I er rockclimbing more. I should get back into it at a more regular pace, but yeah, Ithink you know, staying active working out these days. A lot of you knowcooking cook. For Yourself, for myself, a lot eating out is not a it's boththat much travel you have to eat out, but I think that yeah, maybe I get alittle bit of a state of flow from just cooking, and you know it's a creativeoutlet. Yeah. Do you journal at all? I don't Udl, not in the traditional sense.So I do. I use a five minute journal. Have you've heard of that before? No,so it's in the morning, Isit's origially supposed to give into I'mguilty of not doing it every day, I', probably do it fifty percent of thetime. So in the morning it takes two and a half minutes. You write downthree things that you're grateful for what you're looking forward to that dayand it can be as small as I am able to stand up out of my own bed. I have abed, then I get to go to bed too, and my kids are healthy, an example andthree things that I'm looking forward to today would be getting to catch upwith you. I have the opportunity to teach a class tonight and we justboughe. I house so on Congress. I get to thank you. I Cen t sleep in my newhouse ye on a airbed, but I still get to sleep there and at the end of theday, you just reflect on what are what were the three best parts your day andis there one thing that would have made the day better and it's just trainingyour mind to look for being appreciating some of the smaller thingsand then looking forward to things througho theday. So it's just thepractice of gratefulness and thankfulness. I alsojournal on c collet crew ups, things that I've done well not done welllearnings throughout the years, so these are smatterings all over theplace. So I'm not like the guy that sits down every single day, realolyjournals, but I jot things down. That's cool. I like that Y, a I'll by you agratefulestournal great, an last one. Is there anything you wish youwouldhave learned earlier or a skill that you think if you would have had it buttoned up or on wack heading in theuniverse that it would have helped you in starting growing universe. I think, if I could, you know whisperinto my ear when I was starting, the company would say, pull a trigger on that focus a littlemore quickly. I think I knew that we would need to focus the Busi at somepoint. It was just a matter of where we cast this really wide net and you know, but I think yeah, you know skill aroundfolk focus focus both in terms of the types of customers are going after, butthe different you know marketing channels and all these things I thinkfocus is reallykey hard right, because people don't want to say no yeah tothings an example that I give often is when you think about starbucks we'redrinking our delicious Christmas Cup starbucks coffees here. So I'm lookingat the logo, but starbucks is at least if they, if, if they wrote down whotheir target market is it's forusbit's for a certain type of person MHM, butit doesn't mean that all the other people won't buy it right. Exact's, notit's not built. The starbucks isn't building their brand with my mom andmind, but you better believe that every year that Christmas strinks come out,she's the first one in line spendin eight bucks on a blate. So I thinkpeople have a fear of. If you focus...

...you have to say no to some people, butthat's actually a good thing. Yes, and the side effect is that even thoughyou're saying it's not for those it's not for everybody, there are people inthose not for everybody circles that willstill buy your product exactly, but it's hard yeah. That's definitely alesson, and I I tell people it's interesting that you know we've grownunivers a lot we're still growing very rapidly and ironically, we continue tofocus as we get bigger and bigger, at least at this stage. It's like let'sfocus further and further on specific category specific type of events andyea. It doesn't mean that these other types of events won't work with us. Itjust means that we're thinking about some focal areas a little bit moreclosely good. I am going to wrap up, but I wan to give one more chance totalk about I'm rewinding here so unit economics,yeah and the importance or the unimportantsof having an idea of how you were going to make money, how you were going toprice, how you woing to charge how you tracked whether you were hitting thosemetrics on a weekly monthly basis. How did you pproach that in the businessplanning processor in the pivot process, was there a master excel sheet that youkept revisiting? Did your investors told you accountable to those thingsand just give people a fear of feelfor at the stage that you guys were at whatRigora did you have around you yeah? We were always thinking aboutit and there were different levels of rigor and approaches at differentstages so prior to launch. We were thinking about it and it was part ofthe business plan. You know we were prerevenues, so there was a dynamic ofraising prerevenue where there, if you don't, have revenue they're, focusingon the other things, team, product or prototype and then business plan. But akeepart of that business plan is all right. How are you going to monitizethis? How is this going to scale? How is this going to pan out, and so therewas definitely some really good thinking in there sort of conceptuallyat that stage and then, if you fast forward, there was some a lot of rigorthat we put together around measuring on a cohort basis, so a cohort definedas users who signed up in Monthx what revenue did they generate for us in themonth that they signed up and then the next month and then the next month andetcetera? And as you project that what is the lifetime value of that cohortand then we trackd that month of Er month and we'd, say: Okay, the theKohert that signed up after that one? Maybe the covert was a little bitbigger. Maybe the cohord itself was a little bit smaller in terms of quantityof customers, but what was the value that we ere creating month after monthfrom them and what's the new lifetime value for that one and what we wereable to track as on a month of e month, as we progressd through time we're ableto make the product better for them more valuable for them and sell intolarger and larger customers that created more more valuable cohorts? Sothat was a key sort of unit economic analysis that we looked at and then thecounterpart to that is the cost. So that's the the top line and then theother side of the Noeconomic is what is it cost to generate those customers andwho ran that Fr? who were in that process? For you, the tracking process?It was yours. Truly, it was looking at theyeah a lot of excel crunching crunching. You know just rawexport data at thistime from our databases. Now, we've systemized it into tools that do it onan automated basis and allows us to step back and the dateis too big to doit an excel now but yeah on that side and then h. The other side is trackingthe the cost of acquisition and did you. Where did you learn to do that? I th the actual like unit economicstracking? Well, not necessarily, no, I mean the the excel skills and theanalytics. I think you know school, so even engineering school aswell as as business school, and then...

...you know consulting and investantbiningafter, but then the specific cohord analysis it was less so around. How didI learn to do that? More so round? How did I know that was the right questionto answer the right output and one of the biggest learnings for me was goingout and pitching hundreds of v CS and hundreds hundredts,I've pitched hundreds of v CS, and you know. Obviously you only takeinvestment from one or two. You get a lot of declines. D need a lot oftenacity, but some of those PC conversations, even if we got declined,we're extremely valuable. They were just illuminating. They would askreally hard questions and really pointed questions, and I found somefeces that were just really smart and really on point, and it was those vcs that I'm thinking ofthat. I start to prepare answers for them and do analyses for them, but thenwould help us ourselves as well as of course other VC pitches but, moreimportantly, help the business itself yeah. That's a good learning! Actually,because that's how we that's how we started to implement some of that rigoras well at intelitics, it was have conversations with vcs mmaybe a littletoo early right, but that's okay! That's okay, see what see what theirfeeback is see, what they tear down yep take some of it, make it better so thatby the time you're actually ready to do the raise you've been tracking yourunit economics and Cor Analysis and the metrix that was actly inthe, building arelationship along the way, Yat, so good good. Where can people find younow either through Universey or online, or any words to the listeners of thepogast? So you can find me on universe, tcom, of course, Andi with one eye nowyou can still type Intwo Isa, rederex and then on twitter, I'm at craigfalletand same one instagram, so awesome connect with me great to have you. Ithink this is a great topic for the class. I think people are going to finda lot of value in this and we will definitely get a case on the books forUniverse, tce s, then there's a lot of cool teachable points for for yourstory that we should bottle up for all the time. Yeah look forward to it.Thanks fare having me thank you. You've been listening to theIvioncminor potcast to ensure that you never miss an episode subscribe to theshow in your favorite podcast player or visit IV dotca forward, slashEntrprenershi. Thank you so much for listening until next time.

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