Satya Patel of Homebrew on how they were able to raise their first fund in 100 days, creating enduring partnerships, and the art of fund sizing.
On this week’s show, we’re excited to bring you Satya Patel, co-founder of Homebrew, who he started with his partner Hunter Walk in 2013. Today, the firm is widely considered one of the top seed firms in the industry, counting companies such as Chime, Cruise, Eero, and Gusto as portfolio companies.
Satya brings a unique product background to the table as he worked on AdSense in the early days at Google, and later in various product roles at Twitter. He also spent time as an investor at Battery Ventures.
Satya and Hunter are incredibly thoughtful and detailed when they think about firm building, and during our conversation Satya and I discuss the hard conversations that potential partners need to have before starting a partnership, the unconventional way they raised their first fund, how Homebrew thinks about consistency with founder relationships, and fund sizing.
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In this episode we discuss the following topics:
01:13 How he and Hunter became friends and decided to work together again
03:12 Personal factors in deciding to start his own firm when there were so many other options for them.
06:50 How he and Hunter sorted through their strengths and weaknesses
09:07 How were able to raise their first fund in 100 days by targeting institutional investors instead of relying on family offices like most Fund 1’s.
12:40 How they used scarcity and a hard close date to drive the process
19:11 The thought process behind moving up weight classes in investing
21:28 Different stages of investment require different skills
24:10 Number of investments vs. bigger ownership in a smaller portfolio
26:38 Interview questions for new hires + how they compensate the team
31:04 Homebrew to announce an effort to systematically further diversify VC
34:45 The best lesson he’s learned
37:08 Best advice for someone starting out in VC
38:29 The investors that has been most helpful to his career
Mentioned In This Episode:
We’d love to know what you took away from this conversation with Satya! Follow @SamirKaji and give your insight and questions using the hashtag #ventureunlocked. If you’d like to be considered as a guest or have someone you’d like to hear from (GP or LP), drop a direct message on Twitter.