Adam Draper

Founder and CEO, Boost VC

THIS CHAT HAPPENED ON April 11, 2017

Discussion

Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
Hi - I'm Adam Draper and my dream is to build an Iron Man suit. I'm the Founder and Managing Director of Boost VC, where we are making Science Fiction a Reality. We were the first investors in the Bitcoin space and have since built unparalleled ecosystems in VR as well. I have invested in 200+ startups and am a 4th generation venture capitalist. I also love comic books, but I don't think that would be a reason to ask me a question. I have a range of information to discuss, feel free to ask me anything.
Niv Dror@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
How is the real-life Iron Man suit coming along? 🤔
Niv Dror@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@nivo0o0 How do I embed a video?
Niv Dror@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
@adamdraper paste in the regular YouTube URL and it will auto embed 💫
Ben Parr@benparr · Co-founder and CMO, Octane AI
Why are you so handsome? And what do you tell your friends and fellow investors about Octane AI? 😃
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@benparr on the handsome question. It's all make up and hair gel, I usually stand next to attractive people just to make myself look more handsome on a general scale of handsomeness. On the OctaneAI question: Everyone should learn from @Benparr and Matt Schlicht, these guys are the ultimate in hype. OctaneAI was just on the front page of the NYT because they are crushing it so hard. #portfoliocompany
Jacqueline von Tesmar@jacqvon · Community at Product Hunt ⚡️
What are the most important thing you look for when look for when investing - is it founder, team, initial traction?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@jacqvon someone who gets you excited by just talking about their idea. They should know it back to front and have tried a lot of ways to get going. There's nothing more intoxicating than getting taken for a mental ride by a founder who knows their crap and is doing something crazy.
Ben Tossell@bentossell · newCo
If you had to swap lives with a tech CEO for a week who would it be and why?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@bentossell Great question. My life is pretty epic, but if I had to swap lives with one person it would probably be Mark Zuckerberg... because can you imagine being able to make one change on the product and impact one billion people?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@bentossell Thought about it some more. Elon Musk would be awesome, Rockets and electric cars.
Ben Tossell@bentossell · newCo
What is something you believe that not many others agree with you on?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@bentossell that bubbles in space exist.
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@bentossell My daughter will never drive a car. There are different densities in Space. The best movie that has every existed is Van Wilder. Bitcoin is an inevitability. People are inherently good. Round Table Pepperoni Pizza is the best pizza on earth.
Alex Biet@alxbiet · Product Designer & Blockchain Consultant
Hi Adam! What was your biggest challenge in founding Boost VC?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@alexandrubiet Oh snap, great question. It's always a challenge (in the best way), but over time the challenges have changed. 4.5 years ago, it was hard to convince people that a 26 year old failed entrepreneur was going to add value to their startup. So I had to sell hard. I was in every meeting selling everyone on why they should join Boost VC. But as our portfolio grew, so did the trust in the value we provided, and pretty soon we were at the top of the #Bitcoin pyramid and have now funded 180 startups, and our companies have raised upwards of $250m. So all in all, the biggest challenge has been building trust with the market over time. Its also the most important thing.
Seth Williams@sethbwilliams · Designer, Product Hunt
What does success look like for each of you?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@sethbwilliams Success is building value that aligns with your internal core and humanity at large. Also when I beat my co-founder at Super smash brothers on the N64, that's a great feeling of success.
Chad Whitaker@chadwhitaker · Product Designer at Product Hunt 👋
What does the average day look like for you?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@chadwhitaker Wake up at 5:30am, stretch, write for 30 minutes, outline my day with the questions I want to ask every meeting, work on my 3 core priorities, make eggs for my 2 year old daughter.
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@chadwhitaker That was my daily routine. When I get to work, some days its a blur of meetings with entrepreneurs, investors. Some days I speak in front of audiences. Most days while we are in session, I get to hang out and work with the entrepreneurs in our Tribe.
Marius Chawa@mariuschawa · UX Designer @ Hewlett Packard Enterprise
@adamdraper if you wake up at 5:30am every morning...what time do you go to bed every night
Emily Hodgins@ems_hodge · Operations @ Product Hunt
Hi Adam thanks for joining us today. What is the most Science Fiction thing you've made a reality so far at Boost?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@ems_hodge Boost VC. We create and encourage the believers in the Sci-Fi of the future. Really by starting Boost VC, I created a more Sci-Fi future... that's the most Sci-Fi thing that could be done.
Emily Hodgins@ems_hodge · Operations @ Product Hunt
What lessons have you learnt from your family being a 4th generation VC that you've taken to your role today? Does this give you an edge?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@ems_hodge I'm very proud of what my family has accomplished, but they all accomplished it their own way. My great grandfather was 4 star general who became a VC later in life. My grandfather worked with his dad, then started his own fund which eventually became Sutter Hill, he left to be the head of the Export Import Bank and Under Secretary General of the UN for 10 years, and then came back and started the first VC in India. My Dad Built the largest network of venture capital funds that has ever existed with DFJ. The one common theme is that entrepreneurship is everywhere. I believe that entrepreneurship is everywhere but Silicon Valley has an unparalleled infrastructure to help people start companies, so we bring entrepreneurs here for 3 months and coach them and connect them.
Jake Crump@jakecrump · Community Team with Product Hunt
What are your top tips for founders looking to get their first investment?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
Jake Crump@jakecrump · Community Team with Product Hunt
What is your morning routine?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@jakecrump I responded above with a bit of this, but I wake up at 530am, stretch, write for 30 minutes, grab a coffee, go to the bathroom (poop), and then go through my day and figure out what questions I want to ask people in my meetings. Then it's time work on my priorities for the week, ideally it's one thing, normally is 3.
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@jakecrump yeah. I wrote poop.
Baptiste Grève@baptistegreve · Founder at Unimersiv
Do you remember the precise moment when you decided to invest in VR?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@baptistegreve I do. We had internally been debating taking on a new vertical with Boost VC, and we had debated VR a bit, but I had yet to try it. So someone put a Samsung Gear on my head, and I was transported to the Moon. And not only that, I was on the moon and I was watching the movie transformers... Bumblebee was mid-flight when I decided that "VR is a thing".
aditya sudhakar@aditya_sudhakar · I build SenseiHub, an expert adviser
@adam as an early stage investor, how do you think about tech readiness, market readiness for your investments?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@aditya_sudhakar @adam This is a debate we constantly have. It's difficult to figure out timing. VR had a false start 30 years ago with VRBL, and a bunch of other things like that have happened. We try to assess whether the platform for developers to build is ready, and that is generally a good indication that there will be lots of businesses built on a new platform. If you are referring more to individual companies rather than market timing, we care more about the individual founders and them proving to us that they can build what they said they would build. Entrepreneurs are awesome.
David Ciaffoni@davidkc · Illusion.ai 💬✅
My roommate and I are planning to apply to Boost as soon as applications open. What do you look for in an great application?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@davidkc Why are you the best person to solve this problem? At the end of the day, if the problem you are solving, is actually a problem and big enough that people are willing to pay for it. The only question that matters is why are you the person who will win?
Cam Mullen@cammullen · International Growth, Yik Yak
hey adam! I'm curious what you think about the future of 360 videos -- why, for example, do you think more famous youtubers (like video bloggers) are not yet filming in 360 with a 360 camera?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@cammullen Story telling is more difficult in 360. I think that 360 film shooting is more like a play than a film. Hollywood is just starting to experiment with the medium. My one suggestion if you plan to shoot any type of content - Don't move the camera, everyone get's sick if you move the camera. Unless your intention is to get them sick, like a rollercoaster. I think that there will be a wave of 360 content, but the number of people who watch 360 content isn't large enough to warrant the youtubers commitment to it, I would guess.
Oliver Pecha@oliverpecha · Comfortzoneless @ Collect
@cammullen The reason why there is no more 360 creators is because production is complicated. We are about to see much better content as apps like http://collect.video and 360 mobile cameras continue spreading. This is a great example of how influencers are starting to create awesome pieces:
@adamdraper the future of 360 video is obviously collect :D #OpportunityLost
David@davidkwele1
Hi @adamdraper ! What is the real potential of the blockchain technology and Bitcoin in the global financial market? Can it go mainstream? Is it the goal?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@davidkwele1 as mainstream as the internet. I don't say "I'm going to TCP/IP you a message" I just say I'm going to message you or email you. I think of Bitcoin as the backend for transactions not the front end. I believe, at least in the short term, that Bitcoin will not replace fiat or government issued currency. You will still have your precious USD, but the way that you pay people for things will be over the rails of Bitcoin. The real potential is that it will evolve the way that we transact. What happens when banks no longer hold the value of your money, you can just do it equally secure in the internet? What happens when audits happen automatically on a blockchain? What happens when all the middlemen get cut out of transactions? These are all very exciting questions, and I think that the world will look different because Bitcoin was developed. It will be better. I mean, I'm not going to be paying for things in Space with cash.
Syed Ahmed@tabishis · Altimus Solutions, Inc.
Are MOOCs here to stay as an alternative to traditional learning? What kind of MOOC related issues you think startups should focus on solving?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@tabishis I think that VR will change the way we learn more than MOOCs, although the definition of a MOOC will probably evolve to include Virtual Reality. I think education is about to be disrupted in a major way. Universities have been selling the holy grail for too long, causing the belief that your college will make your life better. Information is now democratized, anyone can learn anything. What does a university become when anyone can learn anything.
Syed Ahmed@tabishis · Altimus Solutions, Inc.
@adamdraper Agreed, anyone can learn anything but medical, dental, law and other schools for related majors requiring verified credentials to practice in that field are probably be around for at least a century. Hah. As far as tech learning goes, a degree is pretty much useless, in my opinion. I learned to code at 16 in VB6 and that was 18 years ago. Eighteen years later, there is a plethora of information for anyone to utilize to learn to code. But, self-motivation plays an important role. Something I and my cofounder are working on solving major issues around MOOC-based learning. Will have more to discuss with you perhaps in a month or so. :)
Marius Chawa@mariuschawa · UX Designer @ Hewlett Packard Enterprise
At what point should founders start seeking for funding?
Adam Draper@adamdraper · CEO, Boost VC
@mariuschawa When they know what they would be using it for. It's ok to seek funding when you don't have a product, if you know that you need the funding to build the product. Everyone needs to seek at different times. Ideally you have attempted to build the product and experimented quite a bit before you seek funding, so that you have proof there is a real need.