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Uri Adoni is the author of The Unstoppable Startup: Mastering Israel’s Secret Rules of Chutzpah. He decided to write the book after spending 20 years in high-tech and over 12 years of being a partner at Jerusalem Venture Partners Media Labs. His purpose for writing the book is to share the secrets to Israel’s incredible track record of success.

Jerusalem Venture Partners have achieved over 12 IPOs, 30 M&A, and an exit value of over $20 billion. Uri goes behind the scenes in this book to explain the principles and practices that can make any startup anywhere in the world, an unstoppable one.

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

  • Uri Adoni talks about the mission completion mindset of the Israeli army and how it’s powering Israel’s startup community’s success
  • Why Uri decided to write the book: The Unstoppable Startup: Mastering Israel’s Secret Rules of Chutzpah
  • What is a chutzpah?
  • Why CYACTIVE was an unstoppable startup
  • Uri talks about Waze, another successful Israeli startup story
  • How a venture capital measures its rate of success
  • Uri discusses the fourth rule of chutzpah based on his book and why it matters
  • Uri’s low moment in his career as an investor and how he pushed past it

In this episode…

It’s an unpleasant but inevitable reality that many startups fail almost as quickly as they come on the scene and part of the reason why they fail is their inability to prove their viability early in the game. Surprisingly, when it comes to startup success, Uri Adoni says Israeli startups stand out in terms of venture capital per capita and high NASDAQ listings. Uri says Israeli startups’ success is a result of clearly defined principles and practices, which he explains in detail in his book, The Unstoppable Startup: Mastering Israel’s Secret Rules of Chutzpah.

Tune in to this episode of the Inspired Insider as Dr. Jeremy Weisz talks to Uri Adoni of Jerusalem Venture Partners about the secret behind successful Israeli startups. They discuss the kinds of startups that JVP invests in, how they measure the success of their fund, how the mission completion mindset of the Israeli army has helped power up the startup scene in Israel, and the things that startup entrepreneurs can learn from Uri’s book.

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Episode Transcript

Jeremy Weisz
Dr. Jeremy Weisz, Founder of where I talk with inspirational entrepreneurs and leaders and you know, Uri I like to point people to other episodes right. So Mois Navone of Mobileye talks about the Mobileeye’s journey, which I’m sure you know, being acquired for by Intel for $13.2 billion. What struck me with this story was not that which is amazing, but that at one point, he just had to sacrifice and the he had to take a pay cut, and he had to go back to his family and his kids and tell them, we’re pulling you out of all extra curriculars and no more eating out because the up and down of this journey, right, even in the Mobileye journey, and he talks about Mobileeye journey is kind of like the people of Israel journey, which we’re going to talk about before I introduce, Uri in a second who has got the book The Unstoppable Startup, which I’ll properly introduce. There’s also another one you should check out. My friend Sweet Process. Robert Sutton, Robert Sutton’s, a Professor of Management Science engineering co founded the Stanford technology ventures program and Institute of Design. Check that out on Sweet Process will be on inspired insider too. And I’m going to I’m excited to talk about The Unstoppable Startup. Any startup any business, you know, nobody wants to be unstoppable and have the pieces and you have will say, I know the recipe but sort of the recipe and we’ll I’ll introduce that in a second before I do this episode is brought to you by Rise25. Rise25 is the business which I co founded with my with John Corcoran and we help businesses give to and connect to their dream 100 partnerships and clients. And what we do is we help you run your podcast. And it’s the number one thing for me is in life is relationships. And I’m always looking at how do I give to my best relationships and a podcast is allowed me to profile other people’s thought leadership and their companies and give to them as much as I can. So if you’re interested in starting a podcast, go to check it out. There’s a couple of videos of myself and my business partner bantering like an old married couple and check it out. And, you know, early before we got started, you said you know, on my About Page of inspired insider is actually a video of my grandfather who inspired me to podcast and he’s a Holocaust survivor and his legacy lives on because of an interview because an interview that was done by the Holocaust foundation so yes, I think it’s been the best thing for my life to do a podcast but really, I think of we’re helping each other leave a Legacy beyond ourselves with this content. So check it out, and I want to introduce today’s guests Uri Adoni is author of The Unstoppable Startup and after spending 20 years in the high tech in over 12 years, 12 years of partner at Jerusalem Venture Partners Media Labs, he decided to write the book. The write the book is called the unstoppable startup mastering Israel secret rules of chutzpah, and he wanted to share the secrets to Israel’s incredible track record of success. And just to give you an idea of Jerusalem Venture Partners, they have over 12 IPOs over 30 million, or 30 m&a is an exit value of over $20 billion. And he actually goes behind the scenes in this book to explain the principles and practices that can make any startup anywhere in the world, an unstoppable one. And so if you know the stats, more than half of startups fail. So how do you limit that? How do you get over that and If you study Israel, Israel stands out because even though it’s a really small country, population more than 9 million, Israel has one of the highest concentrations of startups in the world. And venture capital per capita is one of the top countries in terms of the number of company companies listed on NASDAQ, and many more. So Uri, thanks for joining me.

Uri Adoni
Thank you for having me

Jeremy Weisz
Um, I want to start with, I always like to start and talk about struggle. Okay. And there’s two things right, and you were talking a little bit before we hit record about Holocaust survivors in your family. And then the second is what creates this grip this chutzpah and we were talking about Israeli army. So why don’t you start with Israeli army and what that what that influences been on you?

Uri Adoni
Sure. I think that one of the things that some people think about when they think about armies as a whole is that you know, there’s always And the most important thing is just the flow of the orders. And in the IDF, Israeli Defense Forces, it’s actually not the most important thing. The most important thing in the Israeli army is to complete the mission. That’s it. You can improvise, you can change the plan, you can do whatever you want. And as a commander of a combat unit, you are being trained to actually improvise. And so all sorts of issues that are coming because usually the plan don’t, like don’t go according to the plan. And when you find yourself in a hostile territory, or in some in some kind of operation, or in some kind of a fight, you’re kind of the commander on the ground and you’re expected first and foremost, to complete the mission. You can do whatever you want to go on to do that. And, and, and so I think that kind of a mindset is very powerful. And when and you know, most, almost all these Where you are going through the army. And so you get this kind of mindset in a very early age, like when you’re 1819. And when you take this kind of mindset into no business side, and especially for startups, which is always kind of a, some kind of a struggle, some kind of a high competition. Obviously, it’s not a war but it’s a it’s a tense situation. This kind of mission completion. mindset is very, very powerful. I think that’s one of the things that also behind the success of these startup startup nation

Jeremy Weisz
what I’m or sticks out to you and is really army story that sticks out to you either from someone’s told you or your personal experience.

Uri Adoni
I think that I think that mainly I would say, you know, without going into too many details, but when you’re in a hostile territory, outside of Israel and you’re on a mission, and you get all sorts of and unplanned situations, and it can be various matters, you know, you can wait for a helicopter to pick you up and you cannot land because of weather and that wasn’t anticipated or, you know, one of the soldiers is wounded, or one way that you thought to go through is blocked and you didn’t realize it through the max or whatever. It’s it’s a kind of a tense situation. And maybe I would say to the extreme when you’re when you’re under fire, which is very frightening. And anybody who will tell you is not frightening. I would find it hard to believe. But even though you are in these situations, you learn how to How to operate, how to kind of push this fear aside to control it and make sure you’re kind of making the right decisions. And, you know, obviously licensed lifestyle depends on that. And you want to make sure that the soldiers and you know, the soldiers are actually counting you, nobody will charge into fire just because we have some ranks and shoulders, they will run after you because they believe that you are making the right decisions. So I think that making decisions under pressure and the physical pressure could be mental pressure, it can be both. I think probably that’s kind of the main takeaway that I would take from these situations. And when you say, you know, when, when you’re relatively young, you know, you’re in the early 20s, when you’re in these situations actually gives, I think, good experience and the good kind of proportions to things and so that’s it main takeaway.

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