Neil Patel

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Eliot Horowitz is now on his third startup. After building a billion-dollar company and taking it public, he is now creating the technology that is fueling a new generation of robotics startups. His latest venture, Viam, has attracted funding from top-tier investors like Union Square Ventures, 12 West Capital, Tiger, and Union Square.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • Business models and product market fit
  • Simplifying robotics and autonomy


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About Eliot Horowitz:

Eliot Horowitz is the CEO and founder of Viam, a software company. Prior to starting Viam, they were the CTO and co-founder of MongoDB, Inc., a database software company.

Eliot also served as the CTO and co-founder of ShopWiki, an e-commerce company. Horowitz began their career as a software engineer at DoubleClick, Inc. Eliot Horowitz studied computer science at Brown University, earning an Sc.B. degree.

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Connect with Eliot Horowitz:

Read the Full Transcription of the Interview:

Alejandro Cremades: Alrighty hello everyone and welcome to the deal maker show. So what? Ah what an episode that we have ahead of us today. We have a very exciting founder. You know one of those founders that has actually helped to shape up the tech ecosystem in New York I remember back in the day when I was. Starting my first company you know like they were you know already paving the wave for many many many different stars that would come out. You know at the end of the day and mine actually being one of them. But in any case you know I think that today we’re gonna be learning a lot about building a lot about scaling a lot about financing also about going public. And product market fit of course so I guess without further ado. Let’s welcome our guests today elot holer horowitz welcome to the show. So originally originally you know you were born in in Connecticut living between Connecticut and New York

Eliot Horowitz: Ah, thanks I’m excited to be here looking forward to it.

Alejandro Cremades: Give us a little of a walkthrough memory lane. How was life growing up billiard.

Eliot Horowitz: Ah, going up, you know life was ah was pretty good Connecticut or New York definitely lots of ah computers I was always interested in computers and programming and such things also spends a lot of time playing in the in the water and.

Eliot Horowitz: A lot of marine stuff which has definitely shaped some of the more later robotic stuff. We’ve been playing with these days So pretty good. You know Computers boats. It’s a good combination.

Alejandro Cremades: And how how how did you get into the computers. How how do you get into the Computers Eliot.

Eliot Horowitz: So Both my parents are doctors. My dad was pretty big into computers and he actually bought a radio shack computer that was in our living room and he would occasionally write very silly on his early eighty s. Very silly computer games that I would play and then I started wanting to modify them and then writing my own and so very early on I was just you know, hacking on these random computer games that my dad was playing with and ah, kind of just went from there.

Alejandro Cremades: Now your case you ended up going to brown and obviously no surprise you study computer science and and after after brown you know you did your I mean obviously during brown you did your internship at Double Click and then you ended up going to work with him and I think that that they really put you. On the map and also you know help you to really build a network that they would help you to to get into the startup world later So tell us about that Experience. You know a double click and then what happened right? after that with shopwiki.

Eliot Horowitz: Yeah, so in college I interned at Doubleclick I was working with Dwight Meriman who was one of the original founders of Doubleclick and he and I kind of hit it off and I ended go interning at double hookck twice. After college I ended up coming to New York and I worked with Dwight again at Doubleclick and then so that was in 2003 I was at doublehood for about a year and a half and then in 2005 I started a company with Dwight. And Kevin Ryan who was the Ceo of doublecling at the time and yeah I mean I’ve been working with Dwight and Kevin mostly on for the better part of you know, almost basically almost twenty years now um and um.

Alejandro Cremades: That’s amazing and we we’ve also we’ve also had Kevin Ryan you know as well on the show. So definitely you know, recommending and listening to that episode so with with with shop wiki I mean obviously you go there to double click you hit it off as you were saying with Dwight and team.

Eliot Horowitz: Yeah, you know.

Alejandro Cremades: Eventually shop wiki you know comes knocking the idea of shop wiki. So how did that come about because that was the the first real you know startup that that you would actually you know be part of of the of the founding team.

Eliot Horowitz: Yeah, so the original impetus was you know this is way back when but Dwight was trying to find some bespoke parts for a bicycle and this was in 2000 and you know four 2005 era and Amazon wasn’t you know the e-commerce giant then it was obviously day but it wasn’t you know everything this is in the era when people were buying lots of digital cameras because you didn’t really have cameras on phones and you know people would comparison shop for how do I get the most number of megapixels and optical zoom in a reasonable price. When um price comparison shopping was a big deal because trying to find the best deal on a digital camera or Tv online was all the rage and you could actually go look at 10 different sites and at 10 different prices depending on the day and so we so and there was no 1 place where you could go and be like great I just want to find. Everything I can buy on the internet across you know 100000 stores and search and find things and comparison shop and so we’re like okay great. We’re going to go build a ah crawling engine for the entire internet of things you can buy on the internet and put it all into 1 place and make it really easy to find everything. And find the best deals. Ah we did a pretty good job. Actually we built a pretty cool product but in the interim in the time that we could build the product. The internet kind of changed Amazon kind of became much more of a behemoth Google kind of became the front page of the internet and so trying to change.

Eliot Horowitz: People’s patterns for how they shopped seemed um, not terribly viable at that point I mean that of selling shopquiki did well but it was a you know it was not quite going to be the company. We thought it was going to be.

Alejandro Cremades: Well definitely not the company that you ended up building next because that was quite a smashing success with Mongodb now we shop wiki at least you know like when the when you guys were able to sell the company that at least gave you access to really see the. Full cycle of a company. You know, like from inception all the way to the finish line. You know what kind of visibility did that give you.

Eliot Horowitz: Huge you know I think um, starting at how many the first time is a huge learning experience and second times and you know Mongo is a huge learning experience as well. And yeah, having now started a third company. It’s just a completely different world. There so many things that were like complicated or you don’t know what to do or you just make certain kinds of mistakes because you just have no idea what’s going on and then doing it the second and third time you you know what to do right? things that you’re really concerned of but before you just don’t have to worry about. Um, whether it’s how to hire certain kinds of people. The kind of people you want to hire how to manage meetings right? How to do all hands meetings. Just basic things that every company has to do that. The more experience you have doing it multiple times. Just everything changes.

Alejandro Cremades: So let’s talk about Mongo so after the exit of shop wiki. How did the idea of Mongo come about and how did you guys ended up polishing the business model to make it to something that they will be appealing to customers.

Eliot Horowitz: So the idea for Mongo came from a lot of shared frustration that Dwight and I had had in in quite a number of products both at shop wiki at doubleclick and other places and the basic idea was that working with databases was way too complicated the existing tools at the time. This is the fall of 2007 just weren’t good enough right? Whether it was the data models and how to scale them how to manage them. It was just much too complicated and so in some ways it was an easy problem to solve because we said great. Let’s build the database that we want. It wasn’t we have to go find users and do your researchers like no let’s just build the products we want and the assumption was that if we did that then other developers other users would be like actually we want that same thing too turned out. We were right right? getting the details right. Understanding how to make it easy to use how to you know, add all the features they need how to prioritize what really matters to the biggest breadth of developers. All those things take a huge amount of time and effort. But fundamentally you know developers wanted the same tools that we wanted. Because we’re not completely crazy and we built what we wanted and they wanted to do.

Alejandro Cremades: So what ended ended up being the business model of mongodb. How are you guys making money there.

Eliot Horowitz: So it was a big transition right in the beginning of mongodb we were selling fundamentally commercial support for the database and enterprise features on the database itself neither of which was sort of a an unbelievably great business model. We ended up. Starting to sell more enterprise management tools which was a better business and then in they get the year wrong 2 of them 15 or 2016 we launched Mongodb Atlas right and Atlas is the hosted version of Mongo. Um, and that has turned into the the massive growth engine for Mongo um, because everything is just fully managed any user can just go to say Atlas and get a database in seconds and it will to scale with you forever and it handles all these things for you right out of the bat and that’s huge right in that I don’t know the exact details anymore. But it is a the majority of Mongo’s revenue and is growing incredibly fast these days it also sort of is ah a really interesting concept of how you can take sort of open source software and now monetize it in the cloud in sort of really interesting ways.

Alejandro Cremades: Um, and what were what were the early signs of product Market fed at mongo.

Eliot Horowitz: So when we first you know you launch Mongo we hope you know I remember we launched it was we called it version 0.8 we put it out into the world. We had like 2 users and and nothing happened. It’s like cool. We did this thing it’s out there on the internet. Great. That’s it nothing happened at all and so what did we do? We went to meetups. We talked about it to people and 1 guy wrote a blog post but how he migrated his small website to Mongodb. And he did just a really great job of describing what and why and what he did and then over the next three months you just saw more people just kind of like trying it asking tons of questions and about a year later we held our first. User conference in San Francisco and it sold out in like 48 hours and we did it again in New York about two months later and that sold out 48 hours and that’s when we knew we actually had something but a lot of it was you know lots and lots of very small seemingly unimportant changes in details that we had to get right. And the only way we figured that out was by spending an inordinate amount of time working with users right? You know I remember being in irc in the user forms on emails with customers felt like twenty four seven just you know people would ask questions that were seeing me like okay well.

Eliot Horowitz: What’s wrong. Why isn’t this work. Why isn’t the documentation make this clear. How do we make this as as good as possible and we just spent a huge amount of time with users making sure that we understood what they’re doing what was easy. What was hard and how to make it better.

Alejandro Cremades: And how hard was it to to do all of this and to get started during an economic downturn because now you know you’re a master at launching companies when you know there’s a correction in the market. You know you’re doing it now with your latest company which we’re going to be talking about in just a little bit but. With Mongo you guys got started in 2007 so how was that experience like.

Eliot Horowitz: Very mixed right? So some things were were great. Hiring wasn’t that hard. Um, the real estate market was not great which for someone like me at the time who had no money and was trying to stay in Manhattan it was great.

Eliot Horowitz: The biggest challenge for us at that point was raising money raising money in 2008 2009 was not particularly easy. The good side was that Mongo was you know the cheap option relative to oracle for sure and so we had a lot of interest. And a lot of people were like looking at Mongo as a cost saving measure both from an actual database cost direct costs and also from a development standpoint right? The premise of Mongo was hey use the database. It’s cheaper and your developers are going to be more effective meaning you’re going to save time and money. So the the prospect was great during an economic downterm ah raising money was really hard besides that it was actually okay, it wasn’t the kind of product that was required a frothy market or needed. You know billions of dollars of venture capital to get going. It’s a big product for sure. But not nothing crazy.

Alejandro Cremades: And what were the um they I mean 1 of obviously the challenges there were they long cycles to get the customers. So how did you guys go about that and and and really optimizing.

Eliot Horowitz: Yeah, at Mongo and again at Vm now one of the big challenges is in a platform like that you’re sort of ah a 4 step process to to really being a successful business first step is getting users right? You got to get users users turn into customers. Customers slash companies customers and companies have to start then using using your product because both you know mongodb Atlas and Vm are consumption-based products. So your customers have to start getting customers of their own and generating their own revenue and then their revenue turns into revenue for to us. To the platform and so it requires a certain level of patience and long-term thinking right? You know neither business is a let’s see if we can you know make some money in the next three years and and leave or flip it or sell it. They’re like no these are big businesses. Big platforms. Huge spaces. Huge amounts of interesting problems to solve. How can you make really seminal amazing businesses over the next ten twenty years

Alejandro Cremades: So show with Mongo how much capital you were alluding about raising capital earlier before so prior to the ipo. How much capital had the company raised and what was the experience of going from one cycle to the next.

Eliot Horowitz: You’re ah you’re pushing the limits of my memory here feel like it was in the ballpark of about 300,000,000 over the course of about a decade. It’s that’s pretty close to right.

Alejandro Cremades: That’s correct.

Eliot Horowitz: You know, but the first rounds were very small. You know we did like I think it was like a million dollar seed round and we didn’t you know a couple million dollar a you know none of the early rounds were big as is again in an air. The rounds have gotten much bigger teams have gotten much bigger. We’re doing a lot with very little very early on you know I remember when we launched. Mongo 1.0 in the summer of 2009 and I think we did our a then that was a couple million bucks we were 8 people and trying to act much bigger. We got a call from ah a pretty big company that wanted to use Mongo and they were asking if we could send over a.

Eliot Horowitz: Salesperson a solutions architect or a consultant something like that I mean we’re looking around to each other like we don’t have any of those things. So I guess we’re going you know and it was much very much that kind of vibe.

Alejandro Cremades: That’s how I doing now. Now you guys ended up going public. Um, you know, really incredible experience. I’m sure how how was that how was that experience of going public and then also what was it like being the founder of um. You know before private company and now dealing with all the regulatory you know hurdles that you have you know when you’re a public, a publicistic company.

Eliot Horowitz: Going public was you know, kind of surreal mongo was is the kind of company that if you’re a developer if you’re really in the tech ecosystem people knew about mongodb before the ipo. But you know, no one outside of the tech world knew about longbodb and then it went from being like oh wow, there’s this company and people kind of know what it is and what’s going on and that was that was weird the actual ipo experience was kind of surreal the ah, the really interesting part and sort of the more emotional part is sort of actually. Continues to happen I continue to talk to people who are at Mongod be the and or I’ve been a mongo be since or at any point in time and you invariably hear stories like cool mongodb. Let me pay off all my student loans or let me buy my first house or let me put my kids through college. Ah and those are pretty cool, right? And that’s ah. And that continues to happen right? The next thing but that is it’s not like a ah one and done at the Ipo right? I still meet people who still have done incredibly well because of mongodb and that’s sort of a a very special feeling.

Alejandro Cremades: I mean Mongo they be today with a market cup of 14,000,000,000 so I mean having that the that level of impact. You know that level of value that you’re creating too. I mean it’s absolutely incredible now for you Eliot you know eventually came a time and that was in 2020 where you realize it’s time to to take a look at what and what is next and and perhaps you know turn page on the chapter. What was what was that experience like for you I mean at what point do you realize that is the time to turn the page and why.

Eliot Horowitz: Um, it had been. Yeah, yeah, so it had been about 13 years and you know when I as I said before when we started mondb we set out to you to build a database that we wanted. And at that point mongodb was the database that I wanted right? It was ah a big company who was successful. The product was great. A current company vm uses mongodb or a happy mongodb Atlas customer so it kind of felt like I had done a lot of the things that I wanted to do and wanted to look for. You know, really big, really new. Interesting problems to solve and so left in March of 2020 and took a little time off and then started looking at what are some really big unsolved problems that can really move the needle on moving things forward for people.

Alejandro Cremades: I mean six months off that you took I mean was it was it was it weird six months doing nothing like after being for so long in the hypergrowth environment.

Eliot Horowitz: It was we at a multiple levels. It completely. Coincidentally I announced that I was leaving you know two days after covid lockdown and happened in New York so the timing was bizarre. Ah but it was definitely weird. It was definitely very weird going from being very busy to being not that busy I did have 3 kids so harmless will do have 3 kids? Um, so wasn’t that bored and um, yeah, and then after a few months definitely was like itching to get back into something.

Alejandro Cremades: So then what was that? So so let’s talk about finding new interesting projects. What was that process that you went through you know, maybe like thinking about ideas thinking about problems until all of a sudden you know you came across the idea of Vm and.

Eliot Horowitz: And you know try to find some new ah interesting projects.

Alejandro Cremades: And and and and really bringing it to life.

Eliot Horowitz: Yeah, so I started you know with all like all good processes starting with things that really mattered to me that I really cared about and I started looking at things like the first one was ah and I mentioned before that I you know into boats and marine and water and I started looking at things like ocean cleaning. And ocean cleaning is this big amorphous problem and there’s all sorts of ideas at the heart of all of them is ah is a labor challenge right? There’s no way you’re going to get millions of people actively working on cleaning oceans because there aren’t people living in the middle of the oceans right? It’s a really hard problem then you look at other things in climate change. Like you want to plant a trillion trees. Cool. There’s a lot of people who need jobs in places where you don’t need to plant trees or can’t plant trees and how do you solve that problem you look into things like food quality or shortening supply chains. Ah you end up into a lot of different problems that all end up being labor challenges getting people. In the right places do the right kind of work. So the obvious solution to a technologist is then sort of robotics and automation. So I was like cool. Why aren’t there more robots doing useful things like you know I live in New York city why aren’t there robots fixing poddles I’ll be a nice thing to happen in the below. The mate. So i. Did what most normal people do is I bought a really high-end robot arm put it in my livinging room and tried to make it play Jess against me and it was kind of a infuriating experience I consider myself a pretty reasonable programmer and trying to program this robot arm was incredibly frustrating.

Eliot Horowitz: And incredibly exhausting and so I made it work I was not very happy about the process and started looking at sort of the robotics space more broadly and decided it was time for a new robotics platform to make it much easier for people to go ahead and build ah build robots.

Alejandro Cremades: So how do you guys make money with vm.

Eliot Horowitz: So Vm is a a software platform for robotics right? It’s everything from the hardware up so it makes it really easy for developers to interact with everything from motors to cameras to arms right? If you ask your average software engineer. Go ahead and build a robot or work on a robot. They’re not really going to know what to do so we solve those sorts of problems on robot and then we have cloud services to handle things like code deployment data management. All the things that you need to do alongside your actual robot. So everything that runs on robot is open source. And all of the cloud services are commercial and consumption with consumption based pricing. So let’s imagine you’re using Vm for data management and you want to store data from your robot and push that into the cloud so you can build more machine learning models or just keep track of things. Something really simple. You want to build a really fancy cat food feeder. So every time your cat eats. You want to take a picture how much how much you was eating taking a picture of thing on a food at the beginning man food at the end you want to store that in the cloud for the next three months you can go back and look and see what’s going on so we manage getting the data from the cloud. From the robot to the cloud and we charge you for managing the data in the cloud. Ah so it’s a completely consumption based pricing entirely based on on usage. Um, and you can go into more complicated things. Let’s say you’re building a construction robot that’s building. Something.

Eliot Horowitz: Then you might want to store a lot of very high-res pictures for a very long time in order to know that hey something happened to make sure the robot didn’t do something wrong three years later so it’s all about consumption. We we make money when our customers make money not any not anyway else.

Alejandro Cremades: And in this case I mean it has taken it has taken no no time ah as well. Ah, because you guys got got going in 2020 and you know you guys have raised about forty two million bucks from amazing people like Tiger Battery union score ventures amongst others. So.

Eliot Horowitz: Um, yeah.

Alejandro Cremades: Why raising so much money in so a short period of time. Especially you know after your Mongo experience. You were you know, pretty well financially. So what was that thought process of bringing these people and and also all these money you know so quickly.

Eliot Horowitz: Yep, so yeah and including in that list of people of money and is you know me and myself ah as well. The interesting part about the robotics platform space is that the the surface area of an Mvp is pretty large. This isn’t a kind of project where 6 people in a garage can go build a prototype in six months and we thought i’t know how to do that right in order to actually be useful to actually in order to actually make it easy for a startup to go build a successful robotics business using our platform is just a lot of things to build. And I wasn’t interested in spending the next ten years very slowly building out the platform I was like no let’s see if we can actually build a platform over the next few years that is super interesting that can move the needle on what it takes to launch a robotics business and that’s what we set out to do and I think we’ve done that but it’s all about like let’s. We know what we want to build. We know what people need we’ve talked to a thousand users. We know exactly the problems we’re trying to solve and let’s go build. Let’s go build the thing they need.

Alejandro Cremades: So how do you talk to users to really be able to understand the path a forward. What does that look like to be effective.

Eliot Horowitz: So I think it’s 2 things right? It’s one. It’s making sure you’re talking to a wide range of customers and users and people in the space and more importantly is when you talk to them. Making sure you’re not letting your own biases and assumptions overtake you right? It’s very easy to ask leading questions that let you you know? assume you’ve made the right choices because you just are asking the wrong questions. It’s really important to actually understand what they’re trying to do why they’re trying to do it. The struggles they’re having what they want to do and move in that direction I’ve seen so many ceos or heads of product or product managers go into a customer call or a customer conversation with an assumption about. What they want to build or what you know why they should build something and then on the customer side. They have assumptions about the exact product they need and what they want are looking for in ah in a product and you sort of see them talking past each other and a customer is like I want this feature X and a product manager is like that feature X sounds cool I’m going to go build it. And in reality neither really understands what the other one is saying and they certainly don’t understand how to take a lot of feedback from a lot of customers and turn that into something interesting right? It’s really all about really getting to the heart of okay, great I Understand what a customer is doing I understand why they’re trying to do it.

Eliot Horowitz: I can imagine myself trying to build that same product and I can imagine what I would want to build in those cases and with the tools I would want to use and then go build those tools.

Alejandro Cremades: Now in this case for you. Very interesting transition because you’ve been very much on the technical side of things as the Ceo of the previous ventures. So how has it been now to really shift in the. And really take the reins as the Ceo. What is that the transition. How does that look like.

Eliot Horowitz: You know in some ways. It’s a big transition other ways. It’s really not right I think that you know at Mongodv you know I as ah I just talking to someone I worked with at mongodb in its capacity. You know I was always. Talking to users and customers I was always trying to figure out how to message and market to developers and how to convince customers to use mongodb. Um, so I was always thinking a lot about marketing about sales about go-to-market things. And so and those are things that you know people are often surprised but I actually love working on those things I love working on messaging and game market strategy um, on 1 hand the you know being Ceo is sort of ah ah. Different job on the other hand when I left mongodb I think my team was around my direct reports or direct reports and my direct team is 60800 people somewhere in that ballpark and so being the Ceo of an 80 person company is not particularly challenging in management. And those things and that is where a lot of the experience of being a third time founder of being at somewhere like mongodb just is like okay, great like I’ve seen what to do I know what worked I know what didn’t work and so we can just go and copy what worked even a lot of the process stuff. It’s like okay, great I know the engineering and product process that I used at mongodb that we liked.

Eliot Horowitz: Developed it over the course of many years and I’m just going to do the same thing here I’m not going to go and reinvent the wheel and start from scratch I know how I like to work we’ve hired a lot of people that I’ve worked with before and let’s just keep going.

Alejandro Cremades: So imagine you were to go to sleep tonight earlier and you wake up in a world where the vision of Vm is fully realized what does that world look like.

Eliot Horowitz: Lots of mundane problems solved and lots of really interesting novel problems solved and humans doing more interesting things. So let’s take some simple examples like plothos. No one likes bados annoying but also. Having construction crews working in the middle of the day fixing poholes is also not great, right? That causes other problems at night. It’s hard. No one wants to work and 2 in the morning. So how do you solve this with robotics. But 1 of the big things that we see is that a lot of companies think they have to go from no robots or no automation to fully autonomous and sort of like really amazing 100% autonomous systems. We don’t believe in that you have people in other parts of the world who would love to work at 2 am New York time and why can’t they be driving around robots around New York city fixing poles in the middle of the night. Um same with cleaning oceans same with planting trees right? We see a lot of things about as hey like great. There are people working we can make robots that are semi-autonomous and have people anywhere going and helping them to use problems. Um, same with lots of things like you know construction you know again making a fully autonomous construction robot really hard making a 50% or 80% autonomous construction robot much easier. So there’s lots of robots and lots of things we want to see I think the the biggest thing for me in the short term.

Eliot Horowitz: If we really solve the developer problem is that you’ll see way more robotic startups right? There are I know of no company trying to solve the pothole problem I think there should be 10 startups. We’re going to work on that problem and the reason is that in order today. You need a lot of very specialized knowledge. And like most software engineers are scared of robotics. They think har is too hard and they’re intimidated about how to get started and how to go from a sort of’s like a little toy to a real project. How do I know because that was me I had always been interested in robotics I had always wanted to go and. Tinker with hardware and build little autonomous systems and I would always spend like 2 hours and I would always feel like okay, but this is like a toy. Yeah, of course I can go follow this tutorial online and build this thing that does something but to actually turn that into a product or to make that more robust didn’t feel like the tools were there and so I kept playing at this you know the space for. 20 years and I never really made Headway and when I talk to other software engineers a lot of them are also in that same place. So like yeah you know it’d be cool to build something a robotic but like I don’t know what to do I don’t know where to start and then you talk to robotics startups and they can’t hire. Regular software engineers because the regular software engineers are intimidated or don’t feel like they have the right knowledge and so sort of 1 of the big things I want to see is you know your one of the male average software engineer being excited about robotics and like they can actually make a difference.

Eliot Horowitz: And you know I don’t know what all the problems are are going to solve and I don’t want to know it’s actually 1 of my favorite things about Mongodb and Vm is that we’re enabling programmers and developers and engineers to go and come up with their own ideas and go execute and the coolest part is seeing. Everyone else’s vision for what’s going to happen come to life using your tools right? That’s the really cool part right? because again I can give you 30 robots that I wish exist is tomorrow but I guarantee when we let a million software engineers start building robots easily we will see way better way cooler way more ideas than I can come up with.

Alejandro Cremades: I love it now if I was to put you into a time machine and I bring you back in time back in time at that moment where you’re coming out of brown. You know you’re thinking about entering the world now you’re seeing you know like Hypergrowth companies. All of that stuff. And imagine you had the opportunity of having a chat with your younger self and being able to tell that younger Eliot one piece of advice before launching a business. What would that be and why given what you know now.

Eliot Horowitz: I think with all businesses the most important thing is really understanding your users right? understanding what they really want and what motivates them right? It’s very easy to understand superficially the thing that’s bothering them today but really trying to understand. What their goals are not just for their technology but for their business changes everything when you understand where someone’s going not in the next three months but the next three years the next six years you can both help them sort of articulate that and then you can make sure that you understand how you can partner with them. To make them as successful as possible because the best businesses are partnerships with their clients right? If if you’re just a tool. You’re probably relatively easy to swap out if you’re a partner because you understand where they’re going and you’re going to help them get where they’re going and.

Alejandro Cremades: I Love them.

Eliot Horowitz: You know there’s a lot of people who say that’s what they do but to actually do it that is unique and that makes very special companies.

Alejandro Cremades: Absolutely now for the people that are listening Eliot that will love to reach out and say hi. What is the best way for them to do so.

Eliot Horowitz: I’m easy to find you know, find me on Twitter at Elliot Horowitz or Linkedin Elliot Horowitz technically I’m an Instagram but don’t really do anything there. It’s um, I’m easy to find I would love to hear about anything from robotics ideas to. Other interesting stuff.

Alejandro Cremades: Amazing! Well Elliot thank you so much for being on the deal maker show today. It has been an honor to have you with us.

Eliot Horowitz: Thanks a lot. It’s been a really great chatting and hope to talk to people soon.

* * *
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Neil Patel

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