Recode Media - Gary Vaynerchuk

He can't wait for the startup armageddon

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Ben Tossell
No-coder 👉
Gary Vaynerchuk is a serial entrepreneur, and a relentlessly optimistic one, at that. The son of an immigrant liquor store owner, he turned himself into an early YouTube celebrity with Wine Library TV, and then parlayed that into a career as a social media and advertising guru. After Google bought YouTube for $1.6 billion in 2006, Vaynerchuk made lucrative investments in Web 2.0 companies like Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr. But now, he is also full of gloom and doom. "There’s nobody building a startup business anymore. Everybody’s creating a startup financial machine," Vaynerchuk said on the latest episode of Recode Media with Peter Kafka. "I cannot wait for the armageddon that is going to put out 97 percent of these fake entrepreneurs. This is the greatest era of fake businesses, ever." He said he expects to see an early-2000s dotcom-esque bust sometime soon for startups with inflated valuations and an entrepreneurial culture that prioritizes new funding over all else. And he blamed people like himself for enabling that mindset. "A lot of super angels made money, and then we thought we were all so fucking smart," he said. "I’m going to lose so much money in this last six or seven years betting on companies that have no chance, because I wasn’t able to diagnose early enough that we were creating a culture, that every student on Earth decided, ‘I’m not going to get a job! I’ve got an idea!’" On the new podcast, Vaynerchuk also discussed how he parlayed early personal success on Google AdWords and YouTube into his own digital agency, which charges a $50,000 retainer to help other brands succeed online. In addition to running VaynerMedia, which has 650 employees in five offices worldwide, he’s also a social media celebrity in his own right, with more than 271,000 subscribers on YouTube and more than 950,000 on Facebook. "I’m a workaholic," Vaynerchuk said. "My real challenge is work-life balance, having two small children. My challenge is not running a business and then also, on a side hustle, having a persona that is predicated on me being a businessman."
Ryan Hoover
Founder, Product Hunt
Great episode. Interesting to hear @garyvee shifting his investment focus toward later stage. Makes a lot of sense for him and his lean team (👋, @philtoronto) considering how busy they are.
Phil Toronto
SVP, Special Projects
@rrhoover @garyvee 👋🏻👋🏻👋🏻
Ivan AleksicProduct Manager @instapage
Love the dude. Really love from time to time to go over his Facebook page and consume the hour or two of his videos at the time, really good content - especially regarding the volume that he is producing it. This podcast is average comparing it to the stuff that he is producing it for him self. But, as always is good to hear him talking.
@ivalex I agree that when comparing third party content to the stuff @garyvee (and team) puts out, it never lives up. I feel like that comes from trying to cover so many different topics in a 20-minute window. He's not able to take a deep dive in a rant with D-Rock. Still a great recap though. Like @rrhoover pointed out, the most interesting part, for me, was hearing that he's shifting his investment strategy.