Welcome to

For the first twenty years of my career, I (co)founded a series venture-scale software companies, growing each from an idea to a company earning millions in revenue, collectively serving tens of millions of customers.

I now use the knowledge gained from those twenty years to help new entrepreneurs.  My goal is to have them increase their odds of success by not repeating the common mistakes that I and my peers once made.  I do this in many ways:

Books

The Next Step series of books guides entrepreneurs step-by-step through the process of getting from idea to operational startup, breaking the paradigm of startup investing, and explaining years of lessons teaching entrepreneurship.

Podcast

The Next Step: podcast shares the lessons from the books plus other advice, anecdotes, and interviews, all in bite-sized audio pieces.

Accelerators

Fledge is a global network of conscious company accelerators, providing intense guidance, mentorship, investment, and support for a small set of entrepreneurs.

Africa Eats is the first spin-off of Fledge, taking a few dozen graduates, all run by native-Africans, all focused on building the food/ag supply chain across Africa to lessen hunger and poverty, wrapped as an investment holding company to provide capital, guidance, and support beyond what is typically done within a business accelerator.

More

Answering questions from entrepreneurs on Quora.

Plus in these various efforts, I do my best to uncover hidden assumptions, break investment paradigms, and seek solutions to income/wealth inequality.

And despite writing checks to entrepreneurs, I still consider myself first and foremost an entrepreneur, and as such every so often I simply have to create something new, such as:

The philanthropic investing service at Realize Impact, a 501c3 public charity that I co-founded, which lets any philanthropist turn a donation into an impact investment.

I hope something from this long list is of help to you.

Latest blog posts

The Next Century of Computing

While I’ve been down the rabbit hole of nostalgic computing, others are looking at the coming century of computing. TL;DR (but please do read the post, as it’s good), the end of Moore’s Law is going to set off a “Cambrian Explosion” of new hardware designs. I’ve not seen that prediction before, and it seems likely to me. In looking back at the 1970s era of...

The power of instant loops

In the last few months I’ve re-experienced the power of speeding up these iterative learnings, not in business but in my re-kindled hobby of programming. I’ve been turning my nostalgic visions of what 1970s computing could have been into an emulated Apple II4, complete with an emulated 652402 CPU. Why? It’s a hobby. It is fun to once again write code without being paid, taking...

Shortening the loop

Building a successful business is a series of lessons. Many fail. Enough succeed. What I’ve learned from doing this process for three decades is that the quicker you learn the lessons, the easier the path to success. And by lessons, I don’t mean the big lessons that the world throws at entrepreneurs, but the little lessons that you set out to learn yourself, as you hypothesize on how...

Pitching isn’t about the slides, it’s about the story

I thought it would be enough to write a book about the startup pitch. I was wrong. I thought maybe that was too many rules, too many details, simplify it down to a slide-by-slide guide. Far more often than not, wrong again. What is missing from the vast majority of the pitches shared with me is the story. Pitches are supposed to tell a story. A nice, simple, logical story of a business. What...

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