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The Consumer VC: Venture Capital I B2C Startups I Commerce | Early-Stage Investing

The Consumer VC takes a look into early-stage consumer investing and venture capital. If you are interested in learning about consumer trends, have a b2c business and interested in learning about the fundraising process at the early stage, you have come to the right place.


Mike interviews some of the top venture capitalists in the world that focus on B2C and consumer type companies or have a deep track record investing in these categories such as marketplaces, SaaS, social, CPG and non-tech subscription.


Mike also interviews founders that are building some of the most disruptive consumer facing companies in the world. The conversation usually includes the insight the founder discovered, fundraising strategy, and the pitch.


This podcast also includes bonus episodes. Each bonus episode dives into a particular subject that might not have to due with the fundraise or venture capital, but still would be helpful to founders. For example, a bonus episode on brand strategy or how to construct a board of directors. All bonus episodes will be clearly labeled.


For all episodes, please visit www.theconsumervc.com. For updates, you can follow @mikegelb on Twitter.

Episodes

85. Elaine Russell (Greycroft) - The Future of Retail, How to Choose a Co-Founder, and Running a Single LP Fund
Show Details38min 31s
84. Yury Lifshits (Openland) - How to Build a Community, The Hard Pivot, and Minimizing Friction
Show Details39min 42s
83. Bonus: Jordan Odinsky (Ground Up) - Cult Brands, Launch Strategies and the Importance of Celebrating The Failures
Show Details33min 31s
82. Wayne Wu (VMG) – His Ecosystem Approach, How He Builds Community In CPG, and Advice for Founders Located in Secondary Markets
Show Details32min 46s
81. Maya Horgan Famodu (Ingressive Capital) - Investing in Sub-Saharan Africa, What She Looks For When Entering New Countries, How to Build Startup Ecosystems in Frontier Markets
Show Details44min 49s
80. Nate Cooper (Barrel Ventures): Lessons Learned from Founding Two Companies, The Beauty of Chicago and Investing in Markets that are Overlooked
Show Details26min
79. Sarah Kunst (Cleo Capital) - The Future of Work, Complicated Consumer and How to Have a Diverse Portfolio
Show Details40min 2s
78. Sunny Dhillon (Signia Partners) - Grocery Store Technology, Why Beauty Brands Are Great To Invest In, and Changes in Retail
Show Details33min 58s
77. Hilary Quartner (Hilma) - Creating The "Clinical Herbal" Category, Her Fundraising Strategy, and The Decision Making Process with Two CEOs
Show Details20min 47s
76. Alix Peabody (Bev) - From Producing Events to Founding a Wine Company, The Challenges When Raising Capital, and How She Thinks About Opportunities
Show Details30min 50s
Office Hour 2. David Goldberg (Corigin Ventures)
Show Details16min 57s
75. Jiake Liu (Outer) - How Outer Became The Fastest Growing DNVB In The US, His Approach to Showrooms, and Why You Can't Rely On "Build It and They Will Come"
Show Details53min 5s
74. Dan Gluck (Powerplant) - The Opportunity He Saw After Reading "Born To Run" and His Inspiration Behind Investing in Plant Based Products
Show Details48min 55s
73. Alex Levitt (Yellow) - Inside Snap Inc.'s Launchpad for Startups, Building Products On Top of Social Platforms, and Her Diligence Process
Show Details33min 13s
72. Betsy Fore and Sofia Laurell (Tiny Organics) - Delivering The Healthiest Food to Babies, Approaching a Co-CEO Partnership, and Their Unique Way of Approaching Organic Growth
Show Details26min 46s
71. Mitch Hayes (Los Sundays) - Building a Tequila Brand for the Millennial, Focusing on Generating Demand, and a Taste of the Beverage Industry
Show Details32min 54s
70. Sasha Astafyeva (Atomico) - Growing a Real Estate Tech Company in Brazil, Series A Consumer Landscape in Europe, and How She Thinks About International Expansion
Show Details40min 40s
69. Nick Mindel (Amberstone) - Differences Between Trends and Fads, The Opportunity He Saw Investing In Consumer Brands, Why He's Bullish On Founders Located In Secondary Markets
Show Details39min 52s
68. Ezra Galston (Starting Line) - Benefits of Chicago, Managed vs. Lightly Managed Marketplaces, and Consumer for the 99%
Show Details37min 56s
67. Coulter Lewis (Sunday) - Introducing D2C & Environmentally Friendly Lawn Care, and Lessons From a Serial Entrepreneur
Show Details26min 28s
66. Adam Cohen-Aslatei (S'more) - Bringing Inclusivity and Honesty to Online Dating, and How He Successfully Fundraised
Show Details30min 2s
65. Jesse Draper (Halogen) - Why Investing In Female Led Businesses is Such a Massive Opportunity, Los Angeles Consumer Tech Scene, and Consuming Meaningful Content
Show Details39min 37s
64. Soraya Darabi (TMV) - The Care Economy, Where Change Needs to Start In VC, and How to Approach Market Sizing
Show Details45min 44s
63. Meera Clark (Obvious Ventures) - How COVID led to a Crossroads in Healthy Habits, Milestones at Series A, and How She Thinks About Sustainability and Consumer Centric
Show Details34min 25s
62. Eric Paley (Founder Collective) - Why Most Successful Companies Struggle To Convince VCs of Their Market Size, The Biggest Risk After Finding Product-Market Fit, and Why Pro-Rata Only Benefits Investors, Not Founders
Show Details48min 58s
Office Hour 1. Jason Shuman (Primary Ventures) - Recorded Live June 9th
Show Details16min 48s
61. Alex French (Bizzy Coffee) - The Cold Brew Competitive Landscape, Becoming #1 on Amazon, and Some of The Differences Raising from VCs and Family Offices
Show Details1hr 38min
60. Pippa Lamb (Sweet Capital) - Why Consumer Habits Developed During COVID Are Here To Stay, 99% Execution & 1% Vision, and Defining A Founder's Unfair Advantage
Show Details38min 27s
59. Compilation: Fundraising from the Founder Perspective
Show Details32min 1s
58. Dan Graham (Springdale Ventures) - How He Scaled buildasign.com to over $100 million, The Opportunity He Saw Investing in CPG in Austin, and the Differences Analyzing DTC and Retail Brands
Show Details47min 50s
57. Jessica Rolph and Roderick Morris (Lovevery) - Building Toys For Different Stages of a Child's Development, Advice When Co-Founding A Company, and Their Approach to Fundraising
Show Details45min 17s
56. George Milton (Yellowbird Sauce) - Becoming The Hot Sauce Guy While Playing Gigs in Austin, Early Distribution Growing Pains, Getting into National Retail
Show Details1hr 1min
55. Tyler Handley (Inkbox) -Tattoos, Defining and New Market, and Why Stickiness Lies Within The Technology
Show Details54min 5s
54. Kanyi Maqubela (Kindred Ventures) - Why There's Been an Explosion in Seed and Late Stage Funds, Diversity Amongst Investors & Market Risk, and Why he's interested in Learning Why Something Is Not Fundable
Show Details52min 43s
53. Catharine Dockery (Vice Ventures) - Cannabis, Alcohol, Nicotine, Gambling and Everything Vice
Show Details23min 37s
52. Compilation: One Piece of Advice Investors Have for B2C Founders
Show Details20min 37s
51. Nadine Habayeb (Bohana) - The Future of Superfood Healthy Snacks, How Eastern Traditions Have Migrated West, and Finding Product-Market Fit
Show Details44min 54s
50. Daniel Gulati (Comcast Ventures) - Execution vs. Network Type Business, How To Think About Winning a Category, and Evaluating Blue Ocean Opportunities
Show Details1hr 34min
49. Byron Ling (Canaan) - Analyzing Teams, Why It Might Be Harder to Raise a Series A vs. Seed during COVID, and Why Distribution is as Important as Product
Show Details35min 12s
48. Claire Fauquier (Highland Capital Partners) - Purchase Behaviors of SMBs, Stretching Consumer and Sourcing at the Series A
Show Details35min 33s
47. Anna Whiteman (Coefficient Capital) - Bold Marketing Using Non-Standardizing Channels, When a DNVB Should Think About Omnichannel, and Milestones for CPG Companies at Series A
Show Details53min 11s
46. Adelle Archer (Eterneva) - From Ashes To Diamonds, A New Way To Honor Loved Ones and Experience Innovation
Show Details41min 41s
45. Bonus: Sasha Strauss (Innovation Protocol) - Brand Strategy, Not Making Brand Too Personal, and Importance of Positioning
Show Details44min 51s
44. Michael Duda (Bullish) - Why TAM Is Overrated, Empathize But Don't Listen, and DTC 3.0
Show Details52min 44s
43. Joe Tonnos (Ketch Ventures & Mistral Equity Partners) - Cricket Protein, Tequila and Investing in Sustainability
Show Details42min 1s
42. Bonus: Arie Abecassis (ICONYC Labs) - The Board of Directors
Show Details38min 3s
41. Kate McAndrew (Bolt) - Distributed Teams, Fundraising Outside the Major Hubs, and Impact of COVID
Show Details47min 11s
40. Bonus: Brian Wang (Dashing Leadership) - Why A Founder Might Need A Coach and a Conversation About Curiosity, Judgement and Culture
Show Details46min 33s
39. Bonus - Zac Dearing: Paycheck Protection Program
Show Details24min 41s
38. Rishi Garg (Mayfield) - Consumer Distrust, Curated Experiences, and What’s Next For Social Media
Show Details48min 27s
37. David Goldberg (Corigin Ventures) - The Sharing Economy, Consumerization of Enterprise Software, and Distribution
Show Details32min 38s
36. Natalie Dillon (Maveron) - Subcultures, Sustainability, and The Differences Between Gen Z & and Millennials
Show Details37min 29s
35. Kiva Dickinson (Selva Ventures) - Best Time To Start A Brand, Why First Mover is So Important in CPG, and Why VCs are Scared of Getting it Wrong
Show Details1hr 21min
34. Madeline Keulen (Victress Capital) - Knowing Your Why, Analyzing Contrasting Trends, and Building Brands
Hide Details30min 41s

*Please note that this episode was recorded before the coronavirus global pandemic*


Madeline Keulen is Vice President at Victress Capital. Victress Capital is an early stage venture capital firm that provides visionary and diverse founding teams in the consumer space with capital and resources for growth. Victress has backed 21 innovative companies led by tenacious founders including Alyce, Daily Harvest, Harper Wilde, Rae, and Summersalt. 


Prior to Victress, Madeline developed her consumer expertise as an operator, experiencing first-hand the importance of customer-centric values while working at Apple and The Walt Disney Company. She then moved to Oliver Wyman, where she focused on partnering with leading consumer product and services businesses on strategic growth initiatives, operational improvement, and post-merger integrations.


You can follow Madeline on Twitter @mkeulen and check out her blog mkeulen.com To follow along behind the scenes of the show, you can follow @mikegelb and @consumervc.


One book that inspired her professionally and personally is How Will You Measure Your Life? By Clay Christensen. A couple other books that inspired her professionally are Sam Walton’s Made in America and Phil Knight’s Shoedog.


On this episode you will learn - 

  1. What attracted Madeline to startups and venture capital in the first place? How was she able to break into venture? A bit about Victress Capital? What she looks for at the seed stage? Her diligence process?
  2. Boston’s startup ecosystem. What is the value of a brand? How to think about competitive advantage and moat? How she thinks about contrasting trends? Is this the hardest period to build a brand in today’s climate since it seems so easy to launch a brand?
  3. How the DTC channel has changed? Why she is so bullish on consumer? What she would change about venture capital? Advice for founders in secondary and tertiary markets. The importance of knowing your why.


Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brands
30min 41s
Published Mar 30, 2020 at 7:00am
33. Logan Langberg (Imaginary Ventures) - DTC 2.0, Multiple Channels of Distribution, and Paid vs. Organic Growth
Show Details45min 3s
32. Charles Hudson (Precursor Ventures) - The State of Seed Investing, The Early Stage Ecosystem, and Why Consumer Has Been Out Of Favor with VCs
Show Details40min 34s
31. Bonus - Coronavirus: Feat. Robert Gelb (HeySummit) - How early stage investors are thinking about the current landscape?
Show Details30min
30. Laura Chau (Canaan) - The Five Pillars of Social Media, Moving Towards Status and the Power of Grit
Show Details28min 17s
29. Ethan Austin (Techstars) - Punched in the Face with a Problem, Analyzing Teams and EQ
Show Details48min 39s
28. Lee Hower (NextView Ventures) - Making Good Decisions Fast, Going With Your Gut and Why Trust at the Early Stages Is Vital
Show Details53min 2s
27. Bonus - Matt Hirst (West): Brand and Marketing - What is Brand?, How to Hire at the Early Stages, and Trusting Your Gut vs. Data Driven
Show Details44min 28s
26. Elizabeth Yin (Hustle Fund) - Investing When There’s No Traction and How To Mitigate Risk When Founding
Show Details30min 41s
25. Jason Shuman (Primary Ventures) - Payback Period, Market Timing, and The Importance of Distribution
Show Details29min 30s
24. Kate Boyle (Banjo Robinson) - Expanding Into Different Countries, Her Unfair Advantage, and Storytelling
Show Details45min 55s
23. Gautam Gupta (M13) - The Thin Line Between Success and Failure, Board Construction, and Why He Offers Learnings, Not Advice
Show Details27min 5s
22. Tim Katt (TACK Ventures) - How Tech is Disrupting Sports, Media and Advice for Founders in Secondary Markets
Show Details35min 42s
21. Sophie Bakalar (fable & Collaborative Fund) - What is Market Expertise?, Conscious Consumerism, and How She Sensed An Opportunity
Show Details39min 18s
20. Sumeet Shah (Swiftarc Ventures) - 4th Generation of Retail, Periscope Founders and What is Wrong in VC
Show Details46min 53s
19. Jason Stoffer (Maveron) - Mediocre Markets, Early Traction, and Knowing Your Weaknesses
Show Details28min 32s
18. Jordan Nof (Tusk VP) - Regulated Industries, The Importance of Timing, and Good Growth vs. Bad Growth
Show Details26min 54s
17. Eamonn Carey (Techstars) - Consumer Trends in Europe, Expanding to New Markets, and The Three Most Important Words in the English Language
Show Details1hr 9min
16. Greg Bettinelli (Upfront Ventures) - #longla, Why Los Angeles Has Become a Hub of Consumer Innovation, and finding Product-Market Fit & Founder-Market Fit
Show Details21min 10s
15. Paul Martino (Bullpen Capital) - What it Means to be a Contrarian Investor, The Arbitrage Opportunity at Post Seed, and Founders That Have Chips On Their Shoulders
Show Details32min 5s
14. Anna Barber (Techstars) - What makes the Los Angeles Tech Ecosystem So Special, Breakdown of Techstars Accelerator Program, Tips on How to Reach Out to Investors
Show Details30min
13. Mike Ghaffary (Canvas Ventures) - How to Evaluate Online Marketplaces, Why This is a Contrarian time to Invest in Consumer
Show Details40min 9s
12. Leah Solivan (Fuel Capital) - The Importance of Passion, When a Company Should Have Product-Market Fit, and What Founders Should Pay Attention To In Their Pitch Decks
Show Details33min 43s
11. Will McClelland (Elizabeth Street) - The Changing of Retail on High Streets, How to Analyze Competitive Advantages, ROI on Consumer Companies
Show Details55min 21s
10. Mike Duboe (Greylock) - Learnings as Head of Growth at Stitch Fix & Tilt, The Importance of Saying No, and Analyzing Health of Acquisition
Show Details35min 7s
9. David Wu (Maveron) - The Reinvention of Entertainment, The Founder Scorecard, and the Lessons Learned From Building a Houseboat and Cruising Down the Mississippi
Show Details42min 55s
8. Rick Heitzmann (FirstMark Capital) - The Future of Marketplaces, Why investing in B2C companies is different to B2B companies, Investing in Secondary and Tertiary Markets
Show Details34min 47s
7. Susan Lyne (BBG Ventures) - Why Investing in Women Founders is Still an Untapped Market
Show Details33min 24s
6. Caitlin Strandberg (Lerer Hippeau) - How To Identify Consumer Pain Points, The D2C Investment Landscape, and The New York Ecosystem
Show Details21min 8s
5. Ajay Kamat (Pear VC) - Clarity of Thought, Future of Audio, and Today's Investing Landscape
Show Details28min 4s
4. Amit Mukherjee (NEA) - The Gen Z Consumer, How to Evaluate Two Different Competing Companies
Show Details27min 1s
3. Nicole Quinn (Lightspeed Venture Partners) - Future of Media, Investing in Women, and Thinking Big
Show Details28min 17s
2. Hayden Williams (BrandProject) - Empathy, Investing in Smoothies, and the Fickle Consumer
Show Details31min 13s
1. Jay Kapoor (Launch Capital) - Persistence, Building Trust & Finding Founder-Market Fit
Show Details42min 23s
0. Why The Consumer VC
Show Details4min 59s