Category Archives: Best of the Web

Best of the Web 105

I am currently quite intrigued by the Montessori schooling. Both Google & Amazon founders are Montessori kids and can’t rave about it enough. Acquaint yourself in ‘Montessori and 10 famous graduates from her schools‘. 

“D-Mart managed to grow when the industry was collapsing, unscathed by the first wave of e-commerce. Now, as online players eye India’s brick and mortar space and partner with domestic players, what’s D-Mart up to?” Read more here #paywall

The Ultimate Learning Guide via Shane Parrish: A nice curation of some of the best learnings from Farnam Street blog. Find them here

Indian FMCG space is seeing a lot of startup action. It’s not just that the consumer preferences are changing, traditional FMCG companies have also started picking stakes in snazzy upstarts. I’ve shared some thoughts here

The Broken Window Theory In Product Design. Read here

Rewind (Best of newsletter #71)
‘A mile wide, an inch deep’ by Evan Williams. Read here

‘The days are long but the decades are short’ by Sam Altman. Read here

Lessons learned from scaling a product team from Intercom. Read here

Podcast Episode of the Week: When India’s Cash Disappeared, Part One & Two (Planet Money)
A deep dive into how India’s Demonetisation came to be. The background story of Anil Bokil, who originally came up with the idea and convinced PM Modi to make this happen. Also, has the original Arthkranti PPT. 

Listen here & here

Startup Trivia of the Week: PolicyBazaar 
In 2008, Yashish Dahiya pitched to Sanjeev Bikhchandani with a powerpoint and a prototype of PolicyBazaar. During the demo, he proved to Sanjeev that he was paying around 60% more for his Car Insurance than what he should be. That demo convinced Sanjeev and team, upon which they invested 20Cr in their Series A for a whopping 49% stake. Ten Years later, Info Edge is still participating in all their funding rounds and PolicyBazaar is currently valued at around $1Bn and Info Edge owns around 13% stake. 

Feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone who might appreciate it. If you’re getting this email from a friend, you can subscribe here.

Best of the Web 104

Paypal Mafia, Luck Vs Hard Work, Life in Weeks, History of Email Marketing & more

A very crisp and interesting read on the evolution of Email Marketing and a brief look at things to come. Find more here  

“Luck matters more in an absolute sense and hard work matters more in a relative sense”. James Clear gets deeper into the ‘Luck Vs Hard Work’ question. Learn more here

As Google marks their 20th anniversary, here’s a first look at the next chapter of Search, and their plan make information more accessible and useful for people everywhere. Discover more here

“The stock market is a place to make easiest money in the hardest way. The path is very complex, and you never get answers to a lot of things”. Read more here

Stupid, Aggressive or Smarter? How are Digital devices altering our brains? Read more here

Rewind (Best of newsletter #70)

1) ‘How To Tell The Truth’ by Ben Horowitz. Read it here

2) Stop Making Users Explore. Read here

3) Your Life in Weeks by Tim Urban(Waitbutwhy). Read here

Video of the Week:
The Incredible Story of The PayPal Mafia. Watch here

Startup Trivia of the Week: OYO 
In 2015, OYO was delisted from Makemytrip, Goibibo and Yatra. Around that time Goibibo also launched GoStays, a competitor to OYO. Back then OYO claimed only 10% of their business came from these aggregators. The status quo continued till Oct-2017 when Yatra decided to re-list OYO.In Feb-2018, MMT (and Goibibo) also re-listed OYO. Source

Feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone who might appreciate it. If you’re getting this email from a friend, you can subscribe here.

Best of the Web 103

Arc of Company, Understanding Uber’s Rebranding, Pitching Airbnb, Kleiner Perkins, Apple & More

Debt as a percentage of GDP, 2008-2018

Every day hundreds of Angels & VCs pitch their portfolio companies to other investors but surprisingly none of those conversations ever become public. In a rare exception to this, Paul Graham shared the 2009 conversation between him and Fred Wilson over Airbnb. Read it here

Investor Semil Shah shares ‘Reflections On The Big Shake-Up At Kleiner Perkins’. Read here

A solid deep dive into Uber’s recent rebranding exercise. Read here
 
Could China find itself at the centre of the next financial crisis because of its mounting debt?. Read here

Horace Dediu shares his observation from recent iPhone launch event on how ‘Fundamentally, Apple is betting on having customers not selling them products.’ Read more in ‘Lasts Longer’

Rewind (Best of newsletter #69)

‘Betting on Things That Never Change’ by Morgan Housel. Read here

The Arc of Company Life – and How to Prolong It. Read here

Twitter CFO Anthony Noto privately analyzes Facebook. Read here

Book Recommendation of the Week

The Victorian Internet by Tom Standage
(The Victorian Internet tells the colorful story of the telegraph’s creation and remarkable impact, and of the visionaries, oddballs, and eccentrics who pioneered it, from the eighteenth-century French scientist Jean-Antoine Nollet to Samuel F. B. Morse and Thomas Edison. The electric telegraph nullified distance and shrank the world quicker and further than ever before or since, and its story mirrors and predicts that of the Internet in numerous ways.)

Startup Trivia of the Week: Instagram 
In 2010, Kevin Systrom started ‘Burbn’, a multi-faceted app that allowed users to check in, post plans and share photos. He quickly raised $500k from Baseline Ventures & Andreessen Horowitz but Burbn was unable to get traction.
Later, upon observing usage data they found that the ‘Photo Sharing’ feature was getting most traction among existing users. Next, they quickly stripped down the app to ‘Photo Sharing, likes & comments’ and rest as they say is history.

Feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone who might appreciate it. If you’re getting this email from a friend, you can subscribe here.