Getting Back in the Saddle

by on July 24, 2012

Despite the fact that this post is coming from iNovia’s Calgary office we are not as “Western” as you may think. This post isn’t about cowboys or rodeos, but rather serial entrepreneurs.

I still remember my first glimpse into the startup world. I had recently arrived at Stanford for graduate school and I started attending various events on campus that featured entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. This world fascinated me, but one specific encounter set me on the course in to the world of startups.

I was excited to attend a talk on campus by Peter Thiel. At that time I didn’t know who he was, but was aware of his PayPal roots. Joining him was Dr. Alex Karp who at the time was just launching Palantir Technologies. The biggest impact meeting these gentlemen had on me was that they were both already incredibly wealthy and successful yet their passion to create and build was just as strong as ever. I dug further into what is now referred to as the ‘PayPal Mafia’ and found that almost every member of the team that sold their company for billions to eBay were starting new companies. Where I came from, anyone with this kind of windfall would be retiring on a beach. It seemed completely irrational! Yet, I could relate.

What I love about serial entrepreneurs is that they are seldom driven by money. Sure, money is important – it is a resource in building a company and is a good representation of the value created. However, it is not the core reason an entrepreneur goes for it again.

Yesterday our investment in Mitre Media was announced. Mitre was founded by Tom Hendrickson, formerly of Investopedia. Investopedia was bootstrapped to a very successful exit to Forbes in 2007.

It was during Tom’s time at Forbes that he saw an even bigger opportunity in the financial media market. During my time getting to know Tom he was passionate about not only duplicating the success at Investopedia, but in his words, wanting to take it to another level. He tasted success, but wanted to do it again and build something even bigger.

We considerate it a privilege to work with an experienced operator like Tom and are excited for the journey ahead with Mitre. I have enjoyed discussing the opportunities and vision for Mitre with Tom and am even more excited about seeing them executed. iNovia has a strong portfolio in digital media and adtech and Mitre Media will be a great complement to it.

Congrats to Tom, Cory, Denis, Mike, Michael, Paul and the rest of the Mitre Media team on the successful raise!