It’s Simple To Care of Your Gluten Free Friends

This Sunday is the big game.  Super Bowl.  It’s become something of a national holiday.  Of course, I will be in Detroit, Michigan playing in Sam’s Game.  Read about it here.  But, I was thinking about how America entertains for …






Innovation in Education

Got a recent report on a company I invested in back in 2009.  It’s called Brilliant.  It is the largest social network of people solving math and science problems together.  They even have a Wikipedia for math and science.  The …






Two Big Financings In Chicago

There was some big news in Chicago this week.  Caterpillar is moving their HQ here from Peoria.  Bad for P-town, but good for Chicago.  At least they didn’t leave the state. In startup news, Brad Keywell’s Uptake raised $40M from …






Reading the Tea Leaves

Maybe the people buying volatility are right. From my friend Yra Harris blog, “The day that NAFTA began the Chines YUAN was devalued from 5.8 yuan/dollar to 8.7, a 50% devaluation. Today the YUAN is at 6.88 to the dollar. …






Thinking Bigger

Yesterday I did my normal 2.5 hours of yoga and then helped judge the Global New Venture Challenge at the Chicago Booth.  Always fun to hear a bunch of pitches that people worked hard on. As I make my way …






Challenges of Smaller Funds vs Being an Angel

As an angel investor, you can pretty much do whatever you want.  Angel returns in aggregate hover right around 27%.  VC returns are lower.  But, that too is aggregate and encompasses both funds that invest early and funds that only …






Gonna Lace Em Up One Last Time

On February 5th, I will be in Detroit to play in Sam’s Game.  The backstory on this is short and sweet. I met Dan Pelekoudas and Mike Spehn when I was a fifth-grader and we (along with some other guys) …






Bitcoin Trading Volume Falls Off A Cliff

The exchange space in Bitcoin has been interesting.  I have been observing it with a keen interest.  Exchanges have been interesting to me my entire life.  I was on the board of the worlds largest exchange.  Everyone thinks exchanges are …






When Government Shoots You In the Back

The Illinois tech community is doing great.  I see all kinds of really interesting businesses that are building.  I am invested in a few.  They are solving problems and creating value for customers.  Someday, they will be big.  In the …






Do You Think Like A Futurist?

It is awfully difficult to predict the future.  Macroeconomists have found it almost impossible.  In Venture Capital, you have to envision what will happen ten years from today.  Then, find a company that fits that thesis and invest in it. …






10,000 Bitcoins For a Pizza

The first transaction in bitcoin was 10,000 bitcoins for a pizza.  Hope it was Chicago style.  It reminds me of the assignment Craig Wortmann gives students.  He has them barter a pen for a few weeks to see what they …






Encryption, CyberSecurity, and Number Theory

Cyber security is front and center in the minds of everyone these days.  The DNC got hacked due to lax procedures but plenty of other organizations have been hacked as well.  Once your computer is hooked up to the internet, …






How Do We Rise Above The Violence?

Yesterday while the voters who were upset with the Trump election marched I was at the Memorial Service for Professor Paul Magelli.  It was live streamed to places as far away as China.  When the video gets produced I will …






Future of Fin Tech

I am always interested in what others see as the future of fin tech. Here is a short video on what some think. It’s tough to figure out the future. In this video, they talk about things that are unregulated. …






What Trump Inherits

Donald Trump enters the office with the highest debt to GDP ratio of any president since Truman in 1948 (post WWII). (via SRP) pic.twitter.com/Pw3W6v9RYy — Holger Zschaepitz (@Schuldensuehner) January 20, 2017 Today America will do something that’s always been pretty …






Venture Capital Is The Red Headed Stepchild, But It Shouldn’t Be

When you look at asset classes, venture capital is the one that people don’t plunge into with both feet. Money managers can allocate to five classes of alternative assets; Real Estate, Hedge Funds, Leveraged Buyout/Debt, Private Equity, and Venture Funds. …






A Short Thought About the Chicago Startup Community

Last night I was invited to speak at WeWork on Kinzie in Chicago for Startup Grind.  It was a lot of fun.  The presentation was from 7-8, I got there at 6.  I was there speaking with entrepreneurs until 10:30. …