Companies that prioritize creating long-term value for the employees, customers and investors will outlast those chasing vanity metrics.
A company built around its customers has more loyalty than price or efficiency can provide alone. People should develop a burning emotional desire to be your customers. Companies earn this by living their cultural purpose in everything they do.
We believe capital should create innovations that make the world better. We don’t believe it should provide subsidies to buy market share. Companies that acquire customers on price will lose them on price. These companies are not 100-year companies.
The least productive thing founders do is raise capital. We make decisions quickly and react quickly to everything our founders ask. Even if the news is something founders don’t want to hear, we deliver it quickly so founders can focus on the things that build great companies.
We only invest in companies we want to work for. Only take our money if you could imagine us working for you. Interview us like you would employees. We interview founders as we would a potential employer.
Purpose defines everything we do. Companies and people with authentic, positive purpose infect the world around them. The culture of a company builds itself around that. Everyone wants the world to be a better place. The long-term winners help people find their better selves along the way.
We wouldn’t apply for a job with a company that we didn’t feel we could directly help. We believe investors and companies win when they are paired around businesses they both understand. We’ve found we add the most value (based on founder feedback) to companies in the retail and retail technology space along with companies building technologies that enable those companies to grow more efficiently. This is not a surprise considering the bulk of our partners’ experience is in retail businesses.
A healthy body creates a healthy mind. Healthy minds build better companies. If you’re eating a microwave burrito at your desk at 2am on a Saturday you’re doing something wrong. We prioritize our physical, mental and emotional health over everything else and push our companies to do the same.
Unfortunately, sometimes a healthy body isn’t enough for a healthy mind. Being a founder is hard and lonely and can bring you to a dark place. We’ve experienced some of these demons personally and with our friends and companies. It’s not a taboo topic to talk about with us. We’ve been there.
We love Las Vegas. Some of us live here. 25% of the investments we’ve made are based here.
We’ve invested more early stage capital into Las Vegas companies than any firm in state history. We see maximizing our impact as a long-term focus. If we can do for Las Vegas what Brad Feld did for Boulder, everyone wins. And we can’t do that by only investing in companies with Las Vegas ties. That’s why 75% of our investments are located elsewhere.
In Zero to One Peter Thiel notes “you’ve invented something new but you haven’t invented an effective way to sell it, you have a bad business—no matter how good the product.” We invest in businesses. Great businesses are equal parts engineering, sales, design, finance and operations. Companies lacking in one of those areas have a problem (which sometimes we can help solve).