Blockchain and Immigration

I have been wrestling with an idea for a while and it’s not fully baked.  I thought I would share it in a blog and see where it goes.  Clearly, it’s an idealized idea at this point but I think …

The Chicago Bitcoin Summit

On October 10, FinTank is going to host a day long Bitcoin summit.  Here is a link to get tickets.  I will be attending.  Hope to see you there. One thing Illinois has going for it right now is that …

Jamie Dimon Says Bitcoin Is A Fraud

There was a lot of shock and awe on my Twitter stream yesterday when JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon said Bitcoin was a fraud.  He would fire any employee trading bitcoin for being “stupid.”  The cryptocurrency “won’t end well,” he …

The Robo-Advisor

Over the past several years there has been a slew of robo-advisors introduced to the market. I see the appeal. Part of it is that people don’t know what investment advisors or wealth managers do. They have been satirized for …

9/11

I have a daughter flying today. She says flying on 9/11 should be a safe day to fly. My parents decided to ride out the storm in Florida not listening to the advice of their children. It’s 16 years since …

Some Motivation

My friend’s Paul and Mark posted this video on Facebook. Most graduation speeches are boring. This one by Lou Holtz is not. Since it’s NFL kickoff, and we have a Category 4 hurricane hitting the coast of Florida, I thought …

Why Amazon Should Choose Chicago

Amazon said they are going to set up a second headquarters.  Currently, they are located in Seattle, WA.  Seattle is a great town.  But, for a distribution company like Amazon, it’s located in a tough spot geographically. Certainly, whatever city …

The Bitcoin Bubble

Eugene Fama once said, “You only see bubbles in the rear view mirror.” If you knew it was a bubble, you could take advantage of it in some way and the bubble would never happen.  The only way to “take …

When Does An Investor Intervene?

A lot of investors say they are “active investors”.  It’s almost in every pitch deck you see.  The definition of an active investor is fuzzy.  What’s it really mean? Does it mean you simply lead deals and take board seats? …

Should Google Be Broken Up?

There is a nascent movement afoot to have big companies broken up similar to what Teddy Roosevelt did back at the turn of the last century. If you went to public school, you were educated that the “robber barons” were …

Autonomous Tractors

Saw this video on Facebook.  Brings home my blogpost about how driverless vehicles will affect everything. Combine this tractor with IoT.  Eventually robots will be able to do livestock farming.  My first inclination when I thought about drones was how …

Driverless Will Affect Everything

A while ago, Benedict Evans had a really great blogpost about driverless cars and their effects on different things that you might not think about.  He is a VC for a16z and a great follow on Twitter.  For example, a …

Sear Vs Reverse Sear

Football season is upon us.  Tailgates will happen.  Since I am from Chicago, I tend to think I know a little bit about meat.  After all, it’s the steakhouse capital of the world.  I ran across this article on Sear …

Getting Out is Tougher Than Getting In

One of the things you have to contemplate as a seed investor is how to get out of an investment.  There is a “liquidity premium” that investors have to pay.  You put money in, and it’s locked up.  But, because …

Corporate Taxes Do Make a Difference

A friend of mine works for Ernst and Young.  He is an international expert on corporate tax policy.  He has been immersed in it for almost his entire career.  When clients ask, he takes them to better corporate tax jurisdictions. …

Last Day of August

Summer is basically over.  I hope you had a good one.  I got a lot done but never really “relaxed”.  Hopefully next summer.  We got most of what we wanted done on our cabin in Grand Marais.  We have a …

Why Can’t A Country Do an ICO?

Yesterday I saw where Burger King issued it’s own cryptocurrency in Russia, WhopperCoin.  It didn’t surprise me.  When I first started thinking about cryptocurrency, I hypothesized that big companies would use it for their supply chain management and to lock …

The Investor Can’t Execute

When it comes to early stage startups, success is determined by execution.  If the team can get the job done, they continue to ascend the mountain.  If they don’t, they go out of business. A lot of venture capitalists and …