In the world of business and entrepreneurship, diverse experiences often shape innovative minds. Josh Felser, born in Maine but raised in the vibrant water-based town of Miami, embarked on a journey that led him from the ocean to the world of politics, Japanese currency trading, media, and, ultimately, becoming a successful founder and investor.
Josh has created a VC for climate technologies that has attracted capital from top-tier investors like StepStone, Mayfield, HG Ventures, Brown Advisory, and MIO Partners.
In this episode, you will learn:
- Growing up in Miami shaped Josh Felser’s nature-centric worldview, and his journey from trading to founding startups ultimately led him to envision a flourishing world called Wallable.
- Josh’s choice to study political science stemmed from an interest in understanding the psychological aspects of leadership, which later became a foundational element in his entrepreneurial journey.
- Josh’s ability to speak Japanese played a crucial role in landing a job in currency trading, showcasing the value of diverse skill sets and adaptability in his career.
- Josh emphasizes that there are two kinds of founders – those who know early on and those like him, who mature through life experiences before taking the entrepreneurial plunge.
- Before founding his first company, Josh explored diverse roles in media, telecom, and more, emphasizing the importance of varied experiences in preparing for entrepreneurship.
- Reflecting on the acquisition of his first company, Josh shares a humorous story of negotiating with Aol and highlights the often unpredictable and psychological nature of M&A deals.
- Build or Sell: Josh discusses the practical approach he and his co-founder took in assessing whether to build or sell, emphasizing the importance of aligning the overall tech sector, the specific sector within it, and the company’s position within that sector before deciding to sell.
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About Josh Felser:
Joshua Felser is a Co-Founder and serves as the Managing Partner at Climactic. He was a Co-Founder and served as a Board Partner at Freestyle Capital.
Josh serves as a Board Member at Arrive and as an Advisor at Seeds. He served as an Advisor at Catalyst Investors and Seeds.
Josh also serves as a Board Member at Camio and Meru Health and as a Board Observer at ApplePie Capital.
Previously, Josh co-founded and served as Chief Executive Officer at Grouper, a company that uses P2P technology to allow users to share their personal media within private groups.
He previously served as Vice President of America Online and as General Manager of AOL’s music brands Spinner, Winamp, and Shoutcast.
Josh was the co-founder of Spinner.com, a leading Internet music destination, and served as President until its May 1999 purchase by America Online.
In July 1996, he founded Internet music startup RadioCo (a division of Organic Online), which ultimately merged with DJ.com (renamed Spinner.com).
Previously, Josh was a Director of Business and Product Development in the Multimedia Group of U.S. West, an executive with News Corp., and a Manager of Business Development for News Corp.’s Fox Inc. in Los Angeles.
He was also the Co-Founder of FYI Living and served as Chairman of the company.
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Read the Full Transcription of the Interview:
Alejandro Cremades: Alrighty hello everyone and welcome to the dealmaker show. So today. We have an amazing founder founder turn investor you know a founder that has had several exits incredible exits and now an investor on the other side you know he’s on his second you know now. Fund or or or company fund you know structure a structure type and we’ll get into that but we’re going to be covering quite a bit of stuff you know from really surfacing the things that matter as a founder really being laser focused on those knowing when to get out. You know when to sell your business your baby went to let go of it which is very difficult. And then also assessing people especially on the investment side as well as you know questions to ask during diligence and how to filter through things and lastly lastly, but not least you know is ultimately founders in climate tech you know which is the segment that right now he is investing in. You know they have the world on their shoulders and what that means and how to go through those roller coasters too so without farther ado let’s welcome our guests today Josh Felser welcome to the show.
Josh Felser: Yeah, thank you for having me I’m really excited to be here I have ah 2 coffee cups of coffee under my belt. So I’m ready to go.
Alejandro Cremades: Amazing I love it so hey born in in Maine but grew up in Miami so gis I walked through memory lane. How was life growing up. Yeah.
Josh Felser: Well I mean growing up in Miami back then we were always on boats. We never Miami beach wasn’t it wasn’t in existence yet as the destination spot for you know for the crowd we see there today and so Miami was a very water-based town and and I was lucky to grow up in nature. But my nature was the ocean. And this and the and the piscain bay.
Alejandro Cremades: Now in your case you know, very interesting that you decided to study out of all things political science. Why.
Josh Felser: I I was I was a kind of a clueless student at Duke and and I think it it was the it was the most psychological major that wasn’t psychology right? Political science and starting the ambition of of leaders. Really was what drove me the human side of political science was really what drove me to major in in that world.
Alejandro Cremades: And in your case in between that and then also um, grad school you were trading So the whole thing with trading How did that come up fine.
Josh Felser: So I studied japanese at Duke and I could kind of get by and I have a funny story about that that I can tell you and when I after I finished my my language study I just I I felt like I wanted to be active I didn’t want to you know I’m impatient like most founders. I didn’t want to I didn’t want to become an analyst somewhere where I wanted to actually do something and trading was something after school that I could jump right into and immediately begin having an impact and so I interview with this japanese bank during the interview they were asked me all these questions about am I an individual am I too much of an individual am I part of the team. And they didn’t know I could speak japanese and they’re asking these questions and they would discuss some japanese amongst themselves and at some point I had to say hey I speak japanese and there was silence in the room dead silence when they realized I understood everything they had said about me and they still hired me so it worked out so yeah, currency training. It’s still. All the things I’ve done in my life. It probably has the greatest impact on me today as a founder as an investor It’s a very helpful skill set to dealing with people and to making decisions about business.
Alejandro Cremades: Now talking about business because obviously you’ve gone to become a founder but but it took you some time to get there. You know it took you you know taking a rodeo there in the media side of things working at fogx doing sky you know Tv there in the uk also working at a telco company in Boulder I guess. Also from traveling and from being in so many different places like you have whether you were born and you were only one year old and then you went to Miami then from Miami to l a you know to Uk I mean all over the place. What kind of what kind of world you you’ve got him from like moving so much around.
Josh Felser: Well first of all Alejandro you just said that I’m an old founder. Ah which I was no, it’s ah it’s a good lesson because you don’t have to be 22 and found a company I was I think thirty thirty 2 30 1 32 when I founded my first company.
Alejandro Cremades: I and.
Alejandro Cremades: That’s amazing.
Josh Felser: You know I just wasn’t ready and so part of the moving around and having those different experiences really helped prepare me to be a founder and some people need preparation. Some people are born to do it and they do in their twenty s or even in their teens I actually needed I wasn’t confident enough yet I needed to go have some life experiences. And then found a company and so that kind of there are 2 kinds of founders right? There’s not one that wins. There are 2 kinds of founders. Some are just know when they’re very young. They want to be a founder and some have to mature and go through life to actually get to that point I was that second founder.
Alejandro Cremades: What what do you think What do you think needed to happen. You know whether you were working at Fox Sky Tv or the telco company What do you think needed to be those pieces that needed to come together for you to start? you know thinking hey I think this is not for me. I think I have to start something on my own and then pack the backs and arrive in San Francisco I mean that’s kind of like ah like ah like a three sixty
Josh Felser: Yeah, it was it really was um, confidence is one of them I just didn’t have confidence in my in who I was I didn’t know who I was I wasn’t confident in my own skin that was one the second was I had to get fired from a job. You know I had to get fired it and I remember I got basically pushed out when I was in London at at Newscorp and it just made me so angry and then it made me turn inward and understand what had happened and then I I realized that I needed to be my own boss I actually didn’t want to play the political game I wanted to actually. Be a leader and I wanted to be in charge of my own destiny and not depend on maneuvering within a big company to kind of make things happen that combined with my confidence kind of led me to start my first company.
Alejandro Cremades: So let’s talk about that. You know obviously you are at this point packing the backs you land in San Francisco what is the ah the the process of now being going from corporate to ah. To to the venture world and and then figuring something that is exciting to ah to really take action. How did that look like.
Josh Felser: I mean for the most of us have that have jumped from like a big company to start a company you know start to to do a startup have had enough have pushed up against the walls within those big companies to realize it that we need to change. We need to do something different. And I think I was no exception to that and I remember when I got to San Francisco and it was amazing here then like just amazing. Everything was starting to happen. Nobody knew where it was going. We just we just started to get glimmers of of the future of our lives like when we when I landed in in San Francisco and I started out. Basically as an entrepreneur and residence at a big design agency they were doing all the most innovative work building websites for Nike and and Levis that was where the innovation was in the beginning in the design world. But while I was there I just the the bug grew in me right that this startup bug grew in me and. Had this idea along with my colleagues at at the company that you know my design agency that music was so dated and needed to change and we had no choice. We had to just listen to what radio threw at us and I met my eventual cofounder at a conference and we just had a meeting of the minds and he was doing a music thing and I was doing music thing. And my initial jump into into the world of the internet was really a merger between the 2 of our ideas and so I joined forces with Dave Samuel who became my partner for many many years and we created this amazing music company that was the first of its kind.
Josh Felser: So we really were part of the we we literally were part of the digitization of everything and because we were taking Cds that we would go buy at the local music store. We’d rip them onto servers so we could deliver them in the cloud to people all over the world.
Alejandro Cremades: And then obviously the yeah the company ended up getting acquired quite a sizable acquisition know being the first day you know rhodeo in the venture world getting an acquisition there for 320000000 you know it’s pretty good. So I guess. What? what would you say were the ingredients that needed to be in place for that kind of outcome to happen.
Josh Felser: We were the leader in the space. We were the first we were the we were by far the leader in the space and and Dave and I were a really good match. I mean I had a lot of the business experience in media and he was you know, kind of the techie operator at. And we joined forces and we knew we each did best and we let the other one do we didn’t try and try and micromanage each other. We just kind of unleashed our superpowers together and it was exactly what the company needed and so in my first startups case we were a rocket ship. We never looked back. We never had we had issues along the way. But we just kept going and I remember there was an article published in cyber bowl. 1 of the rag that’s long, long gone and in the article they said we think that Aol should buy spinner. It was amazing. They telegraphed it and then like within a few weeks. We got multiple offers one of them was from Aol. And it came over a fax machine. Yeah.
Alejandro Cremades: Wow, that’s incredible and and and what was it like to to go through that first transaction you know for you.
Josh Felser: Yeah, so um, everyone in the company remembers that I was I was in charge of the negotiation and I walked around with a massive ah tub of tums and I was constantly throughout the day for the week of the negotiation I was just was just eating tums all day long, not healthy, but I was so stressed and so anxious and I finished that that whole tub by the end of of the week and I remember they flew us out to to dulles Aol did and we’re sitting in this room and invited one of our investors by the way this this only happens when you have total. Trust. 1 of our investors I totally trusted and I had her sitting in another room during negotiation and we would kind of have the negotiation with the board of Aol and then we’d I’d go into this room and I’d say. Okay, here’s where we are and at one point we were having these crazy negotiations. It seemed like they were rooted in some kind of data or science. But really. It was just Dave and I saying okay, 350000000 sounds good. 320000000 sounds good and I remember they they um we decided to set a very specific price. A very specific price thinking that would make a well believe that we had some calculation we were doing but it was just air right? We weren’t really were. Remember we went in and I said okay, we’ll sell for 326000000 and I knew it would come back with some even number that happened to be 320000000 and it was that loose and we accepted it and we signed it was over but it was just there’s this idea.
Josh Felser: Mystery of how how m and a works and in many cases, there’s no mystery. It’s it’s people 2 people trying to out move each other psychologically with numbers that aren’t rooted in actual numbers right? It’s just we’re trying to come up with numbers that I think will work that will help both sides are trying to think of a number. That sounds good and sounds like it was well thought out but really, it’s total chance and that’s kind of what happened to us.
Alejandro Cremades: I hear you now once an entrepreneur always an entrepreneur so the chapter of you know, obviously your spinner comes to an end with the acquisition. You did the vesting and resting at Aol for a little bit now as they would say and then right after that you know you um, basically went to the next chapter which was starting crackle. So. Second second go at it. You know obviously you had a little more clarity and visibility into what the full cycle looked like so why crackle out of all things.
Josh Felser: Well I mean it’s crackle started out as a I went to like all of us out here I went to burning man and that’s a whole other interview but let’s just leave it it I went to burning man and I came back with all of these it was right when there were um. There were lots of portable cameras that were appearing this was obviously before the iphone and and I had all these photos and videos I wanted to share with my friends and family. There was no way to do it right? There was no easy way to do it. There were Ftp servers which most of your audience won’t even know what that is and. And so I decided I had to create a company that would enable us to share our personal media with our friends and family and so we built this this dark net that we made light. It was a mass market darknet where we actually enabled people to connect applications on their desktops. And share media with each other including listening to music on your hard drive. So we were the first to to kind of do that too which is really interesting before you know before Napster and all the others that came after and ah and it worked. We had a million downloads but the internet was enabling cloud cloud-based sharing and and. And the days of desktop software were kind of over you know and so we we saw that coming and so one of the hardest things we’ve ever done was realizing that we were on the wrong path and I had to convince the entire company to actually switch gears and focus on a public video sharing company which is what crackle became.
Josh Felser: And move away from this Peer-to-peer Environment. We’d created that was more private and I remember the way that I did it was I didn’t tell everybody what to do I Just said here are my worries here’s I’m open to ideas here’s what I think the solution is. What are your ideas and so I made it very collaborative consensual and consensual and it worked not a single person quit the whole company switched gears and focused on this new direction and it ended up being a success. I Can tell you why we sold it in a second but I want to make sure that answers your question.
Alejandro Cremades: Yeah, know that did that did so so tell tell us why? why did it become a success. Okay.
Josh Felser: So um, we just saw this we were one of the first to actually start building a public video sharing experience so we were early. Ah we weren’t we were early enough to be successful, but not early enough to be the winner. So so while we were building. Youtube launched and Youtube I remember seeing seeing what they built and I’m like oh my god they’ve done everything right? like they really have built a beautiful platform and I reached out to the founders and I said hey why don’t we merge and we talked about it because we had. We had an amazing team. They were still very small. But you know when when you talk about merging 2 startups egos get in the way and everybody’s so excited what they’re building I saw what they had built and I’m like this is this is the shit and and so we tried for about for a few weeks but they were off to the races because in the middle of that negotiation. There was a clip that that got shared on youtube lazy Sunday clip which became very famous and it put Youtube on the map and there was no Youtube was not going to sell and so we just parted ways and we went off and built our company but I knew we were always going to be second to Youtube.
Alejandro Cremades: So then at what point that’s shony come knocking.
Josh Felser: Well so I wish it it had been that simple right? I wish so what happened is that at some point I decided that we had to sell and I had to engineer that cell that cell um and so I reached out to partners that we could build operating relationships with. Like partnerships versus acquisition and I felt like by building that partnership we would showcase what we were capable of like they would see the talent we have they would see what we had built and that could turn into an acquisition. It’s exactly what happened because we had multiple offers the most the biggest of which were from real networks which. Most folks don’t know today. But at the time they were the powerhouses and and audio on the internet and and Sony and so we were we met with Sony to build the american idol to basic actually take american idol and move it online and we went through this long process I don’t think it made any sense for us to build American Idol Online but that process allowed us to showcase who we were what we could do and in the middle of that negotiation I got a call from you know from Sony from a very high up person at Sony and they said we want to buy you and I said we weren’t for sale I just said we weren’t for sale because we were still talking to Fox at that moment about american idol but I had. Had showcased what we were doing with Fox with Sony and they said what do you mean You’re not for sale. Why would you not? Why would you not sell to us and I said well we’re still building which made them want us more and eventually through a competitive process. We were able to sell a Sony at a price that made sense for us and so we sold.
Alejandro Cremades: So in this regard then you know how do you know when is the right time to to sell and and let go.
Josh Felser: And I stayed there for 2 years
Josh Felser: So we’re very different than you know were we’re we’re passionate founders Dave and I were but every time we raised funding. We actually would look at each other in the eye and we’d say listen are we going to build are we going to sell are we still do we think we still have it in us to build. Do we think this company is worth building or should we sell and. Every time we’d raise money we would do that and most you know you could see most of the time for the first few rounds we’re builders but at some point in both cases we’re like this this category category the internet is hot the category we’re in is hot and our company is hot. Those 3 things will never happen again. Probably we need to sell. That’s kind of how we look at we look at each of those areas the overall overall tech our sector within the tech and then our company within that sector and I promise most founders when they reach the point when they see that those 3 things are in alignment. It’s a great time to sell you’ll probably max the price then. And then you can go out and build something else and maybe the next thing becomes a thing that goes public or or you know becomes a unicorn but I think you have to be practical like that as a founder you can’t let your emotions get in the way of your decision making and in our case, Dave and I were very practical about this part of our business.
Alejandro Cremades: So obviously here are 2 companies two exits. So really good. The hit rate Josh Felser. So.
Josh Felser: Yeah, thank you, Thank you.
Alejandro Cremades: So while while what made you you know, switch sides of the table. Why why going at it now and starting a Vc fund it sounds like a completely completely different.
Josh Felser: I mean founding a venture. So first of all I I purposefully purposefully both cases decided I needed to start a venture capital fund. So it’s not like being an entrepreneur of a company but it is there are some similarities right? It’s it’s certainly less stressful but you’re fundraising and you have to decide. Who you are how to differentiate in a way that matters. But it’s you know one hundred to one easier than actually starting a company and running a company I just couldn’t handle the stress of being a founder again I mean it’s the the second company at crackle I got sleep apnea from the stress which is very unusual. You know? so I went through a whole process of getting of of healing myself which I I don’t have it anymore but that your body doesn’t lie when you’re feelinging stress your body doesn’t lie and my body was saying hey you need to maybe not be a founder again. Take a break and so we founded freestyle Dave and I did and it’s the same guide worked with for both companies. And it was the right thing for us and it’s less stressed but also having an impact and being close to founders. So we decided the next best thing to being a founder was actually investing in founders and helping them build their companies and that’s why we started freestyle back in 2010.
Alejandro Cremades: So freestyle 7 funds that you raised 250000000 a under management and then also you had the opportunity there to invest in 4 unicorns. What were what were those unicorns and and obviously 4 you know gives you more of an idea a pattern or of things that repeat. So.
Josh Felser: Um, yes.
Josh Felser: Right.
Alejandro Cremades: What were those unicorns and what were the patterns that you saw repeating.
Josh Felser: I mean the main the main pattern that that is still with me the pattern recognition I use every day now when I meet with founders is how to recognize what a commander looks like and I don’t think of a commander like a war commander but someone who can command the room they can. They can. Take command of a room of a situation. They don’t need to do it by yelling at people or or being a dictator. They do it in whatever way is needed in that moment. They’re able to adapt because they also know what they don’t know so there are a bunch of things when you’re a confident commander you recognize. Where you need help where you don’t need help you recognize what you don’t know you don’t know what your blind spots are because that’s heart. They’re blind but you know that you have them and and with all of that together. You are an amazing Recruiter. You’re an amazing fundraiser. You know when to you don’t have your eagle in it. You know when to pivot you know when to stop you know when to keep going if you come if you are the commander in the room you’re doing all these things better than everyone who is not and so we look I’ve seen in all those unicorns. All 4 of those ceos that I was involved in personally they all are similar in that way. They’re not the same. So. There’s no, there is no formula for being a founder right? Founders come in all different shapes sizes ethnicities. But but this idea that you are comfortable in your own skin.
Josh Felser: And that you are comfortable. Both leading by saying here’s what we’re going to do and by seeking consensus and seeking input in what you’re going to do that’s what we look for that combination of both of those skills usually most so many founders I meet with either have 1 or the other they feel like they have to dictate. And lead by dictator by it being a dictator or they’re constantly seeking consensus neither is the right way. It’s being able to incorporate both of those and know when to apply consensus when to apply you know, being more of a leader direct leader and and really telling everybody what you think needs to happen. Great leaders incorporate both those things.
Alejandro Cremades: So as you’re thinking about this, you know the the patterns are we’re talking about leaders and commanding a room diligence. Obviously it’s a big deal here because you you got to make sure that you’re investing in stuff that that makes sense now and and that is going to generate Return. So. When it comes to Diligence. What would you say is the most important question that you would ask a founder.
Josh Felser: The most. Well most of my questions center around trying to understand that founder’s ability to be the commander. We’re looking for right? and so I ask questions that I know they won’t know the answer to to see how they respond and the best founders. Will say the following here’s what I know great here’s what I don’t know great and here’s how I’m going to figure out how to resolve what I don’t know. It’s simple. Those are the 3 things we look for and it’s amazing. How many founders fall short on 1 or more of those. You know they think they they pretend they know more than they do or they say they don’t know but they don’t then take the next step which to talk about how they can answer what they don’t know so that’s that’s my simple focus on founders. Usually that kind of dialogue answers. Most of my questions about who they are. And then we switch to the second most important thing which is understanding the size of the market opportunity because you know that could be a greative market opportunity that isn’t venture a venture backable opportunity but we need to understand the size of it how they maneuver from where they are today to hitting that to to achieving. Something big in that in that large opportunity is less important at this stage at the seed stage because you have a great leader. Great commander. You have a huge opportunity. They’re bound to maneuver along the way they have to be able to they have that flexibility and that knowledge to maneuver along the way.
Josh Felser: So even though it’s important. The third thing we focus on is the roadmap right? The product roadmap but we know that roadmap is going to change. We know what really can’t change the market opportunity and the quality of the Ceo. But that third thing and when all those 3 things align at the same time. Obviously our decision is easier but oftentimes, you’ll find that 2 of the 3 will be a fit for us and and we we typically need those first 2 items. The quality of the ceo the size of the market to check out.
Alejandro Cremades: So after about 12 years at freestyle. Um, there you go there, you go. so so I mean twelve years I mean come on. it’s it’s it’s quite some time you know, many many things that you’ve done many investments many founders something trigger there a shift.
Josh Felser: Back to being old. Um, yeah, yeah, on time. Yeah.
Alejandro Cremades: When it comes to investment thesis that they trigger also a changing chapter for you and starting. You know your latest thing so walk us through that.
Josh Felser: Most um, most founders who have become investors even though they’ve reduced the stress in their lives dramatically by switching from one to the other.
Josh Felser: We’re still looking to be pioneers. We’re still looking to try and figure out how can we be different in a way that matters because to be like everybody else. You know, no founder wants to be like everybody else. No investor who’s been a founder wants to be like everybody else. Even if there’s wealth involved in being like everyone else right? It’s just not. And so when when covid struck there were a bunch of ingredients that needed to be in place when covid struck I um I decided to try and do my part to help our state and I pitched our governor um on creating a task force. To really help leverage the private sector to solve many of the problems. The state was having and I invited my friend bill trencchard to join me. Bill’s ah partner at first round and we took time off from our jobs to do it when that happened and we had success around food insecurity and track and trace software in other areas when that happened it. Actually changed my whole mindset on climate change I’ve been involved in the nonprofit world of climate change for a long time and had modest impact and Raj was very similar. He had his own nonprofit that was doing something around climate change that that also was not really moving the needle when I saw how powerful. Private sector was in solving these big existential challenges. The state was facing I had to leave and start climactic. It. It was um, it became kind of a religion for me ah to actually redirect all of my energy.
Josh Felser: Into helping the planet and Raj felt the same way we felt we could do it and energize businesses we felt we could reimagine how businesses operate as part of our contribution to fighting climate change that was the opportunity that drew us the decarbonization of everything. The first opportunity in the 90 s that Raj and I saw was the digitization of everything and now we’re seeing the opportunity to decarbonize everything and reimagine everything businesses do how they operate how they move people and things around how they manufacture it was a massive opportunity and we felt like our backgrounds. As software founders and and software investors especially smart software which has been around for a long time and is already having an an amazing impact in climate change. We felt. We could really be pioneers and differentiate in a way that matters to founders and to this. Opportunity around fighting climate change.
Alejandro Cremades: And so obviously now with climactic. You know, incredible. The yeah, the stuff that you guys are looking at doing and investing in in founders that are really solving some of those critical issues that they that we’re dealing with and in fact, now you guys are going to be announcing Soon. You know the close of your fund which is a is amazing congratulations on that. And I guess ah along those lines you know the question that I like to ask you is those founders that you guys are investing in I mean they have the world on their Shoulders. You know, talk to us about what that means and and what that looks like to.
Josh Felser: So as ah, you know you know having been a founder yourself as a founder. There’s nothing There’s no more stressful job in tech right? your you have the burden of the company on your shoulders all the employees all the funds you’re raising and then you obviously are trying to achieve something amazing. It’s the most stressful job I’ve ever had then you throw on top of that you’re now working on the planet and and the way it’s positioned today is. You’re just trying to prevent the planet from burning up right? that’s the that’s the mission right? It’s not to the way we’ve positioned climate change and climate tech today is really more that that’s a burden and every day every day you’re reading about something else happening to the planet. That’s horrible. You’re in that. That’s that’s your zeitgeist right? because you’re you’re reading articles on this, you’re you’re following you know all of the the cop you know the cop meetings and and your cop 28 you know, which just happened was both exciting and terrifying because we see where we’re headed as ah as a plan so you throw that existential. Stress on top of the founder stress and it’s almost unbearable founders already have higher incidence of mental illness than than almost any other profession and so we as investors we go in knowing that right? we know that that is part of being a founder in climate tech and we know that.
Josh Felser: This is something we have to address head on and so we talk about it with our founders. We Also are you’re going to hear from us in the coming months we’re building and going to offer a mental health platform for our founders that we think will really help them with those challenges and hopefully help them before it becomes an issue right? help. Identify when they’re stressed when they’re when they have anxiety when they’re feeling the Burden. It’s too much before it becomes too much and so I hoped I Hope that is really I hope that when we announce that it catalyzes other investors to do something similar.
Alejandro Cremades: That’s amazing now. Imagine if you were to go to sleep tonight Josh Felser and you wake up in a world where the vision of climactic is fully realized what does that world look like.
Josh Felser: We are living in a in a in a in a vibrant flourishing world where everyone right? not just the Western The Western folks Everyone the developing world. And and the Western world have free access to energy. The energy is all renewable and every product you buy never dies every product you buy has a life that extends always extends beyond the product. Whether it’s reused as a product resold as a product whether it’s turned into or upcycled into a different product. Everything is constantly being reused in circular and all of our energy is clean and it’s abundant and free for everybody. That’s the world of wallable.
Alejandro Cremades: Looks I looks like a beautiful world as for sure now I Want to talk about the past but doing it with a length of reflection. Let me let me put you into a time machine and I’m gonna bring you back in time to that moment where you had decided.
Josh Felser: Yes.
Alejandro Cremades: You know to give your notice at the telco company in boulder and you are now packing your backs to go to San Francisco let’s say on the way out, you were able to stop that younger self that younger Josh Felser and you’re able to give that younger Josh Felser 1 piece of advice before launching a business. What would that be and why given what you know now.
Josh Felser: Choose your cofounder very carefully choose your if you choose your choose understand yourself understand what you need to compliment you to build your amazing business. And don’t look at bringing on someone that looks like you acts like you sounds like you just because it makes you more comfortable find someone who compliments you who’s different than you are who brings different skills even if it makes you uncomfortable because. If you do that right? that partnership can live for decades and it can and you can you can take that partnership that work experience to do amazing things building companies building a venture capital fund So Choose that co-founder wisely.
Alejandro Cremades: I love that I love that I love that George so for the people that are listening that will love to reach out and say hi. What is the best way for them to do so.
Josh Felser: Ah, Linkedin ah Twitter I would say both my profiles Linkedin and Twitter which I can share I’m Josh Felser media on Twitter and I’m Josh Fels around Linkedin and I do listen to and respond to my Dms on both.
Alejandro Cremades: Amazing! Well is he enough? Well hey Josh Felser thank you so much for being on the deal maker show. It has been an honor to have you with us today.
Josh Felser: Thank you so much I really am honored to actually be here. Thank you.
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