tech deciphered – covid impact in world

My good friend Nuno Gonçalves Pedro, that also sits with me at Bright Pixel’s Investment Committee, is one of the tech VCs that I admire the most and a continuous source of inspiration and learnings.

He launched recently Tech Deciphered Show – a great podcast about tech and VC (unbiased opinion… really! I listen to a bunch of podcasts and this one competes neck to neck with the best of them!) – with Bertrand Schmitt, an entrepreneur with a great story and track record, that I had the pleasure to also e-meet recently.

I’ve listened to most of the episodes they’ve done so far.

I truly recommend to any entrepreneur or investor that should listen carefully to the two episodes that analyses the impact of covid19 in the world.

 

The full transcript is also here and is a good reading alternative:

Tech Deciphered – Impact of COVID-19 in the World- Venture Capital and Start-ups – Tech DECIPHERED Show 

backcasting

One of the best articles I’ve read in a long while…

Great concept that makes us all think that we should be looking at our reality in a different manner!

BACKCASTING RULES!

How to build a breakthrough …the secret of Backcasting

“I don’t care, I don’t care, so call me crazy. We can live in a world that we design.” — from the Greatest Showman

The future doesn’t happen to us; it happens because of us

READ HERE THE REST OF MIKE MAPLES JR.‘s ARTICLE

Investing like family

Our first edition of Bright Pixel Newsletter – subscribe here!

Live, Learn, Iterate, Share, Collaborate, Research, Recommend, Discuss, Think, Act.

Recently, we had an interesting discussion at Bright Pixel about our willingness to share more and give back to our community.

We have been dwelling about the fact that we have constant and regular access to interesting information related to tech investments, namely to some privileged and/or highly relevant content that could benefit a wider audience. We also have specialised knowledge and a growing experience related to early stage tech investments that are trying to scale in several geographies and explore different market opportunities.

So, we decided to launch a monthly newsletter, where we will share with you things that caught our attention, stuff that we have learnt, ideas for you to explore and research about.

We hope this newsletter can be useful for investors like us, entrepreneurs that are exploring their own projects, people in love with tech, innovators and curious minds. This is the first edition of many, we hope. Please send us feedback and help us improve. This is from us, with bright intentions, to you, the bright minds that will change the world.


Top Early Stage Investors – a family business?

Rocket Internet is a well known story, led by Oliver Samwer and his two brothers, Alexander and Marc.

When we started Bright Pixel based on a venture builder studio model, we looked at several players with similar approaches, namely the aggressive and highly criticized strategy, followed by Rocket Internet, that was known for extensively applying copycatting techniques in its portfolio companies, inspired by successful and proven formulas of companies in other geographies. At the time, we did not like that type of approach and built our startup studio with a different DNA.

Nevertheless, if you fast forward 4 years, clearly it looks like their aggressive approach has paid off. Now, they have reached a considerable size in terms of portfolio and assets under management, under now the umbrella of GFC. Oliver is also co-author of the entrepreneur’s handbook “America’s most successful startups”, that gathered several fans and haters (e.g. professor Jürgen Seitz identified 4 things Silicon Valley can learn from this investor)


To be a copycatter, or not to be?

Bright Pixel is reaching its fourth year of existence as an early stage tech investor focused on emerging tech opportunities. We have now 15 portfolio investments and we are always discussing how we can be a better investor, differentiate ourselves from the pack and add extra value to the entrepreneurs that we work with. That’s why we frequently look at what other more established players are doing in the market.

Dealroom is one of the many great sources of truth about the startup world. They have recently launched a European VC 2020 ranking that ranks all the players, based on quantitative and transparent criteria. As the European VC space has been steadily growing and maturing in the last years, Dealroom has improved their rankings, distinguishing the Top Seed VC investors from Top Series A Investors.

Global Founders Capital, tightly linked to the german based incubator Rocket Internet, leads the Top Seed VC ranking. They now have a 220+ portfolio with 36 deals in 2019, 7 potential unicorns and 8 realized unicorns, closely followed by LocalGlobe and Seedcamp in the second and third spot


We’re a family too

We actually respect more and see higher value in the approach followed by another family of VCs, based out of the UK, that currently are in the second and third spot of the Top Seed VC ranking. Localglobe was founded by Robin Klein, considered by many as a pioneer of Europe’s venture scene, and his son, Saul, that later also founded Seedcamp with Reshma Sohoni.

In 2015, Robin Klein shared his vision on what were the biggest mistakes startups should avoid making – something worthwhile reading! – and you can also listen to him talking about LocalGlobe’s approach when evaluating early stage startups, how he sees the european ecosystem and the next wave of disruption in the world.

At Seedcamp, where we have a well-represented Portuguese batch within their startup portfolio, it is interesting to understand and hear Sohoni talk about their vision of how Seedcamp can help their companies rise from difficult times to household names in the market. They also shared a great deal of information about essentials for startups


Powered with love… in what we do!

tech giants

A great read!

Benedict Evans’ great trends analysis – if you have something that you really should read to put your brain thinking about the future, is this excellent report – mobile & smartphone disruption is reaching its peak and its end in the typical S curve rollercoaster ride… What happens when everyone is online? What will be the next big thing in our lives?

Click here!

building blocks

Building Blocks Planning
This is an outline of a simple tool for planning innovative technology businesses which helps consider sequences and consequences.
Powered by:  Mick Liubinskas

Product Focus for tech companies in San Francisco

This method uses the metaphor of building blocks to plan the major steps from now to your big goal. The principle is that each block builds on the block under it and must be a logical extension forward. It stops ‘hope’ as a strategy or ‘dreams’ without structure. It gets you to ask the question, what foundation am I building and, when it is finished and strong, what can I build on that base to grow towards my vision.
It’s useful for the management of tech businesses who are trying to plan when there are complex interactions between parts and many paths to take.
Planning is significantly harder with innovations because there are a number of large unknowns or, at best, hypotheses, including;
Who are we building this for?
What problem are we solving?
What is it we are building?
How should we build it?
What resources will it take to build?
How long will it take to build?
How much will it cost?
Will the customers want/like/use it?
Will the customers pay for it and how much?

Continue reading “building blocks”

20 by 20

we decided at Bright Pixel to ask 20 people to try and guess what 2020 will be all about…

I was one of the lucky “bastards” to write about the trends that we will looking for in 2020…

20by20 site

My two cents below…

What is a trend? A general direction in which something is developing or changing. Or, simply defined also as… a fashion. So, a trend can be fleeting or here to stay. You will never know.
Perhaps the best way to try to predict 2020’s trends is to look back.
For example, twenty years ago, the first camera phones were launched (by Motorola) and now we know for sure that, for the better and worst, they are here to stay and take notice in any tiny detail of our increasingly less private lives, blurring today our assumptions of what is public domain and what is not. The year 2000 also gave us, unfortunately, our first successful reality show – The Big Brother – and that also redefined the boundaries of what is entertainment and of what could be shared with a vast audience. The gaming industry had also a big bump with the launch of Playstation 2 and a set of novelties from Nintendo and others.
If we pick these few examples alone of our not-that-recent past, we can spend hours discussing how they evolved and morphed into new realities now.
A wide array of filters and gimmicks are now available for our collective and instant delight. A full set of businesses were born exploiting our digital presence, from short videos to snapchats and tik toks (the most valuable startup in the world, go figure…), from social media to influencers and other annoying ways to digitally share and supposedly interact with people 24/7.
Not all is bad in having an enhanced ability to digitally interact or define our digital self. We have more immersive ways of interacting (virtual, augmented and mixed reality, to name some new realities…) and engage with other people and entities in several contexts – companies like Didimo (one of the great portuguese startup examples) will help us have a better experience in several contexts of our lives.
For example, our digital self will be able to do a lot more online in several retail environments, that for professional reasons I tend to follow closely. Who would believe in the year 2000 that buying clothes, shoes or almost anything that you can think of online… would become the norm? Or that we have today people paying absurdities for digital-only clothing? And that perhaps make-to-order retail models that promote a more personalised retail experience whilst reducing inefficiencies and, hopefully, other eco-conscious trends will start to pick up more and makes us a bit less fast consumer oriented over time.
Advances in how we manage our digital presence also will be key for several other areas of our lives – from healthcare to education, mobile and immersive gaming to other types entertainment (where the content wars will be on the rise, by the way, between the deep-pocketed streaming services, that are killing our once beloved traditional content providers and distributors (TiVo was born in the 2000’s!).
Our digital existence also brings us other tremendous challenges in 2020 and years to come… how should we manage and protect our data? To what extent should we explore the power of AI in analysing our data and what are the ethical implications around everything that we will do and have sitting around in our digital worlds? Cyber Security, Artificial Intelligence are just two taglines for a full array of trends around this existential issue of having this new resource to explore, protect and manage – our digital oil, called data. All of the companies within our portfolio are exploring in some way or manner this brave new world around our digital oil. They are the oil prospectors of the 2020’s.
Then, looking back, we also had the hype of the blu-ray discs in 2000… Is 5G our 2020 blu-ray equivalent? Or perhaps blockchain will also prove to be our digital blu-ray perfect example… we will always have fleeting fashions for our collective satisfaction. Enjoy 2020 while it lasts.

 

Should we duckduckgo?

What we search for isn’t that complex and perhaps we need duck and protect ourselves from bigger problems

Read this Wired Article 

It might seem ludicrous – DuckDuckGo has 78 employees and Google 114,096 – but often the outcome is the same. For the majority of your searches David, it turns out, is just as good as Goliath.

Bright teams do amazing things

Bright Pixel tussled and did it again!

There are moments to be proud of what we are able to accomplish…

This year I did not manage to help a lot in the team effort to prepare another edition of Pixels Camp! One week has passed and I am still amazed of how managed to pull it off…

We had our biggest and best Pixels Camp ever and still managed to help host the first SONAE IM Investors Day on the first day and a great INSERT COIN LIVE on the second day of the main event, that closed with a bang with the traditional but always exciting hackaton pitching session!

I think it’s all about team effort and specially a true joy and commitment of all involved in making and sharing with the tech community the greatest event possible in three 24/7 packed days of fun and hard work.

Only with really great bright and passionate people can we make this type of event happen with so little resources and time to do so!

It’s the anti-fyre event! 😉

Where genuine breadth, content and work surpasses any type of hype and social media frenzy to make some noise…

This is also only possible because ALL the sponsors and partners are truly involved in the process of making the event a great experience for who comes by…

Now, we are thinking about guaranteeing that Pixels Camp and all the relevant side events that we promoted, namely Insert Coin, have a way of maintaining the momentum going during the whole year, until it’s time for another great edition of Pixels Camp! (if you want to contribute in any way of fashion, send us ideas!)

Bright & Proud!