Fabrice Grinda is a Founding Partner at FJ Labs, is a stage-agnostic consumer facing-fund headquartered in New York City. They invest in ambitious founders solving big problems. They have investments in more than 600 investments around the world including Alibaba Group, Airbnb, Beepi, Fanduel, Dropbox, and many more, and have had over 300 million investment exits.

Fabrice was a Co-founder and former CEO of OLX, and drove the company’s business development, investor relations, M&A and product development efforts in his capacity as co-CEO. Prior to OLX, he was the founder and CEO of Zingy Inc., a mobile media startup which he successfully grew to $200 million in content sales in just four years. Fabrice was also the Co-founder and former CEO of Aucland, one of the three largest auction websites in Europe.

Forbes named Fabrice as the number one Angel Investor in 2018, which was measured by the number of investments and exits that he has done over the years.


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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Fabrice Grinda shares how Snoop Dogg, Wu-Tang Clan, and 50 Cent figures in his entrepreneurial journey
  • How Fabrice’s company became profitable after deciding to scale down his business to 50 items and not owning any assets
  • The four key selection criteria that FJ Labs follows when evaluating a company to potentially invest in
  • How COVID-19 has affected Fabrice’s investment portfolio
  • Fabrice talks about the disruptions in businesses and education that resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Fabrice reveals his craziest exits, big misses, and the role of luck and foresight when investing in a company
  • Fabrice’s framework for making the most important investment decisions
  • Top book recommendations from Fabrice

In this episode…

We all have to make decisions every day. Some decisions are incredibly crucial because they could be life-changing or business-transforming. This could come in the form of choosing which company to invest in or finalizing the next steps in your business. Whatever it is that you need to decide on, there’s one thing that’s absolutely certain: you don’t want to base your decision on a guess.

Now, what if there was a framework that you can follow that will help you make these critical decisions in a more informed and structured way? Prolific angel investor Fabrice Grinda has a four-step framework that he uses to make groundbreaking decisions. He says that following this framework helps him and his company, FJ Labs, determine which businesses they should consider investing in. What does the framework do and how can you maximize the results that you get from using it?

In this episode of Inspired Insider, Fabrice Grinda, Founding Partner at FJ Labs shares some amazing insights and tips on how to make the right decisions with host Dr. Jeremy Weisz. They’ll also be talking about Fabrice’s illustrious career as a successful venture capitalist, the criteria he uses to select potential businesses to invest in, and the things that Fabrice learned through some of his craziest wins and biggest misses. Stay tuned.

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Sponsor for this episode

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Rise25 was cofounded by Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran.

 

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Episode Transcript

Jeremy Weisz

Dr. Jeremy Weisz here, Founder of InspiredInsider.com where I talk with inspirational entrepreneurs and leaders and Fabrice so I’m fascinated with with by people who invest invest in companies and people, you know, have startups are investing themselves in the companies. I remember Yuri Adoni the author of Unstoppable Startup and after spent 20 years in high tech 12 years as a Partner at Jerusalem Venture Partners, he wrote a book called The Unstoppable Startup check it out. The he shares the secrets of Israel’s incredible track record of success. And also I want to talk about the Yossi Vardi. He talked about why he passed on investing in Waze. And I love asking VCs it’s interesting to see, even with the specific selection criteria we’re talking about Fabrice your framework for important decisions and for selecting companies. We you know, no one’s perfect. We all miss things. Jon Medved passed on Salesforce. Like why and so I love to hear why he passed on these things. And before I introduce you to today’s amazing guests, this episode is brought to you by Rise25, which I co-founded my business partner John Corcoran, Rise25. I started I talked to Fabrice in 2012. And he was featured on Mixergy and I was doing work at Mixergy at the time. Now all I do is I help businesses run and launch their podcasts. That’s all I do. The number one thing in my life is relationships and I’m always looking at a way to give to my best relationships. podcasting is one of the best ways to profile thought leadership and companies and get their ideas out to the world. So if you have questions and you’re thinking of starting a podcast in your business, email us go to Rise25.com check out more. I am also going to give a shout out to Chad Rubin who I will give credit for reconnecting us after since 2012. Chad is a Founder of Skubana which was the most powerful operations platforms in e commerce and help sellers save time, money and automate workflow so you can check out Skubana.com Fabrice Grinda. Fabrice Grinda, I mean, he’s a Founding Partner at FJ Labs, he’s an investor with more than 600 investments around the world they’ve invested in he’s invested in Alibaba Group, Airbnb, Beepi, Fanduel, Dropbox, so many more. And this is probably, you know, outdated Fabrice, but they’ve had over 300 million investment exits. And he was a co founder and former CEO of Aucland, Zingy and OLX. And Aucland was one of the three largest auction websites in Europe. Zingy was a mobile media startup, which grew to $200 million in revenue. And he was named also by Forbes as the number one Angel Investor in 2018, measured by the number of investments and number of exits, Fabrice, thanks for joining me.

Fabrice Grinda

Thank you for having me.

Jeremy Weisz

Let’s always argue I’m like on your pocket, and people could check out playing with unicorns where you do it. My argument for us to have some guests on because listen, I just covered your backstory. Now we could talk about whatever we want to talk about. And I’m going to talk about what how Snoop Dogg Wu Tang clan, 50 Cent relate to your entrepreneurial journey. And you’re laughing and but we will talk about your framework for decisions. Before we get into your framework. I want to go back a little bit and touch a little bit on that. So how does Snoop Dogg Wu Tang Clan, 50 Cent relate to your journey as an entrepreneur.

Fabrice Grinda

So after my first startup kind of failed, there was like 2000 2001, the internet bubble and exploded and it looked like tech was not going to be a thing anymore. But I wanted to be a tech entrepreneur I wanted I love tech, I didn’t like the idea of having a boss and I, I like creating something out of nothing. And I’m like, Okay, if the internet is gonna be the small thing, does it look those would be big anymore, and probably more make any money out of it. But frankly, it doesn’t matter. I didn’t get into this to make money. I just did it because I loved it. And so I was like, okay, given the constraint of no capital being available, what type of company can I build really profitably, and with very, that were with profits, because if only I can raise capital, and can be successful in 2001. And I saw that around the world ringtones are starting to become a thing. And in the US, there is really no ringtones are available because there is no messaging. There’s no carrier billing. And so I’m like, okay, it’s bigger than the rest of the world. There’s a reason shouldn’t be big here. And let’s try to make it a thing. Now the issue of course, is I came here and the phone companies were not interested that music companies were not interested. And I needed to start getting licenses for the content. And so it required creating relationships directly with artists and you know, it’s fine. As I was listening like shy, introverted, 26 year old kid who’d never like listen, using my life never bought a CD, and all sudden I had to start hanging out with like Snoop and Wu Tang, you know, ODB and 50 and Eminem etc. and but it was really like kind of a clash of cultures. And by age, it proved very successful for both of us.

Jeremy Weisz

What do you say in those meetings? So you’re with Snoop Dogg here with what do you what do you give me an example? Like, what take me back to one of those meetings?