TikTok and Bootstrapping and Convoy.com

·8 min read

TechCrunch is more than just a site with words. We're also building a growing stable of podcasts focused on the most critical topics relating to the startup and venture capital worlds. To help you find the right show for your interests, we've compiled our audio output from the week.

Embedded below is the latest from Chain Reaction, our stellar crypto-focused podcast hosted by Lucas and Anita. You will also find Found, a long-form bit of work that goes deep on the real saga of company formation, from Jordan and Darrell. There's an audio-only version of TechCrunch Live hosted by Matt that features founders and investors discussing successful pitch decks. Finally, there's Equity, TechCrunch's long-running, Webby-award-winning podcast focused on venture capital and the latest startup news, hosted by Natasha, Mary Ann and Alex.

And if you are more into the written over the spoken word, we have newsletters on the above topics as well.

The TechCrunch Podcast

Episode 13: Instagram is being Myspaced by TikTok and other TC news

This week on the TechCrunch Podcast, Becca Szkutak comes on to talk about the fraught state of extension rounds for many early-stage startups, and Devin Coldewey talks about upcoming changes to Instagram that a lot of users agree will make the app much worse. And as always, Darrell will catch you up on the tech news you may have missed this week.

Articles from the episode:

Other news from the week:

Chain Reaction

Episode 17: Hackers are stealing crypto in the nicest way possible

Welcome back to Chain Reaction; this week Lucas and Anita welcome Jacquie Melinek as a new permanent co-host on Chain Reaction. They dove into the hot crypto topics of the week, including the $190 million draining of the Nomad bridge by both "black-hat" and "white-hat" hackers. They also discussed the widespread Solana wallet attack and a particularly deep round of layoffs at Robinhood.

You’ll notice something different about the show this week besides a new co-host -- we’re splitting up the news analysis and interview segment into different episodes! On Tuesdays you’ll hear us sit down with experts in the crypto space and on Thursdays, we’ll dive into the hottest web3 topics of the week. Catch us early next week for an interview with Uniswap COO MC Lader.

Subscribe to the Chain Reaction newsletter to dive deeper: https://techcrunch.com/newsletters

Helpful links:

The TechCrunch Live Podcast

Episode 14: Convoy.com's secret growth hack (hint: truck stops)

Dan Lewis launched Convoy in 2015 into the highly fragmented industry of trucking. Now worth $3.8 billion, the company is a leader in bringing digital services to trucking and freight. I’m thrilled to have him on TechCrunch Live this week, along with Chris Howard, founding partner at Fuel Capital, which invested in Convoy’s first several rounds.

As you’ll hear, in 2014 and 2015, freight was ready for reinvention. Uber was becoming a verb, and the trucking industry needed a digital solution to connect the different parts of the industry. Convoy launched at the right time, CEO Chris Howard told me. Starting in 2014 wireless carriers started offering free smartphones, and once truckers got their hands on these devices, the industry quickly started to change.

But there's more to this story than just free smartphones. Lewis and his fellow co-founders spent countless hours with truckers, trying to understand the market and how digital services would impact their businesses. Dan even explains that the company occasionally holds off-sites at truck stops.

During this event, we’ll look at Convoy’s early pitch decks, which illustrates why Convoy launched when it did and how it established clear guiding principles.

Register for future TechCrunch Live events, and watch past events here.

Found

Episode 70: Making the creator economy comic book friendly with Chris Giliberti from Zestworld

Comics are the foundation for so many movies, TV shows and video games; however, creators still struggle to be fairly compensated for their material. Chris Giliberti founded Zestworld, a creator-centered platform that offers solutions for the artist to publish their work, manage commissioned artwork, and own their IP and licensing. In this episode Chris and Darrell nerd out about upcoming projects, the best ways to monetize digital custom art and building a community online that feels like walking through your local comic book store. Jordan is also there, just not nerding out because she has yet to find the comic book for her.

Subscribe to Found to hear more stories from founders each week.

Connect with us:

  • On Twitter

  • On Instagram

  • Via email: found@techcrunch.com

  • Call us and leave a voicemail at (510) 936-1618

Equity

Episode 551: Robinhood's hangover, YC's reduction and Uber's return to form

Hello and welcome back to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines.

Alex, Natasha and Mary Ann got together with Maggie and Grace this week for our weekly roundup show, and per usual, there was a lot to talk about including the fact that there were even more topics than usual to pick from as the summer slowdown seems to be fading away.

What else did we get into? The following:

  • To kick off our Deals of the Week, we discussed the fact that a startup which focuses on depression, suicidality and related mental health conditions is buying a company called KetaMD in an effort to extend its telehealth prowess and, in particular, to expand its tech-facilitated ketamine-based treatments. Don’t know what ketamine is? You’re not alone.

  • From there, it was time to talk about a new $100 million fund, which boasts some high-profile LPs and partners, that is out to invest exclusively in Latino(a) startup founders. We then dug into the hows and whys of a fintech company that aims to get consumers to deduct everyday expenses directly from their paycheck -- a concept that took us a bit to wrap our heads around.

  • We then moved on to Robinhood and the news that the retail investment behemoth had laid off 23% of its staff -- just 3 months after letting go of 9% of its workforce. The three of us had thoughts on CEO Vlad Tenev’s acceptance of responsibility for the layoffs, and of course, on just how much dang news has surrounded the company in the past 18 months or so.

  • Next up? We chatted about Y Combinator’s somewhat surprising decision to shrink its cohort by 40% -- what that could mean for the early-stage venture scene. We also get into its increased check size and in-person return. So many variables! Only one experiment!

  • Lastly, we riffed about Uber and how the company both reported positive free cash flow and yet was deeply unprofitable in the second quarter (thanks to Alex breaking that down for us).

And we had a blast to boot! See you next time!

Equity drops every Monday at 7 a.m. PDT and Wednesday and Friday at 6 a.m. PDT, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

Episode 550: Is it the bootstrapper’s time to jump on the venture treadmill?

Hello and welcome back to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines.

This is our Wednesday show, where we niche down to a single topic, think about a question and unpack the rest. This week, Natasha and Alex asked: Is it the bootstrapper’s time to jump on the venture treadmill?

The episode was inspired by Natasha's recent Startups Weekly column, "The bootstrapped are coming, the bootstrapped are coming" and the companion TechCrunch+ piece, "Will once-bootstrapped startups turn to venture during a watershed moment?" But, of course in classic Equity style, we continued the conversation with nuance and numbers as a focus.

Here's what we got into:

  • The definition of bootstrapping, and our own additions and subtractions.

  • The trend of more bootstrapped companies taking on venture, or at least more venture capitalists being interested in bootstrapped companies.

  • What the heck is a venture treadmill, and what to drugs have to do with it?

  • We ended by both agreeing that we are, indeed, the best.

There's ample history when it comes to bootstrapping companies eventually raising money. We just want to know if it is going to happen more often today, and earlier. Let's chat!

Equity drops every Monday at 7 a.m. PDT and Wednesday and Friday at 6 a.m. PDT, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

Episode 549: Public tech's espresso shot is quite literally The Cloud

Hello and welcome back to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines.

Last week we said that you needed to pay attention to the public markets, and we weren't kidding. It was a huge week for earnings -- with notes from all over including the ad market and cloud spend. But this week's Monday show was more than just another entry in the series, it was an experimental live show! Natasha joined Alex for the fun, and this is what they got into:

So, what'd you think? Should we go live again? Next time with Equity-themed espresso cups that no one can enjoy other than us? Let us know, and don't worry, the Equity team is back on Wednesday with a smashing bootstrapping show.

Equity drops every Monday at 7 a.m. PDT and Wednesday and Friday at 6 a.m. PDT, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

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