The Room Podcast

Welcome to the Room. A series interviewing your favorite tech founders and funders. Our guests were in the room where it happened and they’re sharing their stories. 

Latest Episodes

8

November 22, 2022 00:46:36
S7E8: Edith Harbaugh on Unlocking Feature Flagging and Feature Management at Scale with LaunchDarkly

S7E8: Edith Harbaugh on Unlocking Feature Flagging and Feature Management at Scale with LaunchDarkly

In the season seven finale, we chat with Edith Harbaugh, CEO and Co-Founder of LaunchDarkly, the feature management platform which allows development teams to innovate faster by gradually releasing new software features to any segment of users on any platform. Edith speaks to the lessons she learned during her earlier career as a software engineer and product leader. She describes the key learnings she had in selling a product she ardently believed in to buyers who didn’t know yet why they needed her platform. Today, Edith has been named on the Forbes Cloud 100 list, Entrepreneur's 100 Women of influence list, and NASDAQ Female Leaders Council. Themes you expect in this week's episode include; the trade-offs to a development team of building vs buying, the need for feature management across startups and enterprises, and how trust drives your go-to-market strategy with early customers. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 6:04 - Where did Edith grow up and how did that shape her view of the world?7:19 - Did Edith always think she would become a founder?8:38 - What did Edith learn when she stayed at her first job through an acquisition?12:17 - What was the “aha” moment that encouraged Edith to launch LaunchDarkly?17:59 - How did engineering and product teams manage feature flags before LaunchDarkly? 19:34 - When did Edith know it was time to leave TripIt and focus entirely on LaunchDarkly?21:02 - How has the LaunchDarkly product evolved since its creation?23:03 - Who was the first person to say yes to investing in LaunchDarkly?25:13 - What was a moment in Edith’s journey where things didn’t ...

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7

November 15, 2022 00:41:58
S7E7: Samir Vasavada of Vise on Building a Fintech Unicorn and the Future of Investing

S7E7: Samir Vasavada of Vise on Building a Fintech Unicorn and the Future of Investing

Welcome back to another episode of The Room Podcast! We are so excited to share another inspiring conversation with the co-founder and CEO of Vise, Samir Vasavada. Vise is an AI powered asset manager that enables financial advisors to build, manage, and explain personalized portfolios for their clients. Vise is on a mission to create financial freedom for all with a platform that allows all investors, regardless of age, net worth, or geography, to access personalized, automated, and intelligent investments across all asset classes. Samir started vise with his cofounder Runik when they were just 16 years old. After giving advice to finance professionals through expert networks, Samir and Runik decided to bootstrap the company before raising 128M from funds like Sequoia Capital, Founders Fund, and Bling Capital. In this episode, we sit down with Samir and discuss topics such as advice for young or first-time founders, tips on fundraising & going-to-market, and the mission of Vise and future of tech-enabled investing. Let’s open the door. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 4:45 - Where did Samir grow up and how did that affect his view of the world? 5:27 - How old was Samir when he started founding?7:06 - How and why did Samir switch from making apps to consulting?9:47 - What encouraged Samir to found Vise 12:25 - When did Samir know it was time to fully commit to Vise?14:11 - What advice does Samir have for founders who are in the stage of turning their idea into an actual product?17:51 - What is the mission behind Vise?20:33 - Who is the team behind Vise?23:31 - ...

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6

November 08, 2022 00:32:55
S7E6: Sarah Flint is Disrupting Footwear by Building Modern Luxury for Today’s Woman

S7E6: Sarah Flint is Disrupting Footwear by Building Modern Luxury for Today’s Woman

We are so happy to be joined by this week's guest, Sarah Flint. The Founder, CEO, and Designer of Sarah Flint, Inc. Sarah Flint proves that beauty doesn’t have to mean pain by creating comfortable and stylish luxury shoes for women who live any kind of lifestyle. When Sarah noticed a gap in the women’s shoe market, she began designing her own and she used her network to produce them at mass! She realized that it is time to consider the needs of the modern woman and she does this by creating luxury fashion designed by women on the go for women on the go. We chat with Sarah about her decision to go entirely online, to now opening up her own storefronts for the first time. In this episode, we discuss themes such as breaking into an industry with a non-traditional background, what it takes to disrupt the luxury brand market, and the future of retail 3.0. Let’s open the door. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 4:56 - Why did Sarah study fashion and what was her early career like?7:43 - What led Sarah to approach Italian factories to produce her products?8:56 - What type of person wears Sarah Flint shoes?10:04 - Did Sarah always want to become a founder?11:44 - What were the early stages of starting Sarah Flint, Inc. like?13:59 - What brought on the decision to take the store completely online?16:34 - How did Sarah make her decision on fundraising?18:09 - What is Sarah Flint’s favorite Sarah Flint shoe?18:54 - How has Sarah Flint, Inc. grown over the past few years?20:13 ...

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5

November 01, 2022 00:46:09
S7E5: Kashish Gupta and Hightouch Leverage “Reverse ETL” When Building Your Modern Data Stack

S7E5: Kashish Gupta and Hightouch Leverage “Reverse ETL” When Building Your Modern Data Stack

Joining us this week is Kashish Gupta, co-founder and CEO of Hightouch. Hightouch is a software for your data stack that syncs any data warehouse to the SaaS tools that your business runs on, making internal usage and sharing easier for everyone. Kashish talks to us about the current state of the modern data stack community and how the industry is constantly pushing forward. He describes how this plays into their sales tactic of “evangelizing” larger corporations by teaching them about “Reverse ETL” and how Hightouch works without pushing the sale. We cover themes such as starting a company with two of his good friends and the procedures they take when it comes to decision-making, the perfect modern data stack, and how to sell your business when the product is something that no one has heard of yet. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 6:00 - Where did Kashish grow up and how did that shape his view of the world?8:08 - Did Kashish always want to be a founder?9:27 - How did Kashish's education impact his professional goals?13:08 - What is the story behind Mama’s Cooking?15:01 - What was the “aha” moment that got Kashish thinking about Hightouch?18:10 - How do businesses take advantage of Hightouch?19:56 - How is Kashish's relationship with his partners, Tejas Manohar and Josh Curl?21:28 - How do Kashish's and his partners split up responsibilities and tasks?22:24 - How do Kashish and his partners handle things when there is a disagreement?25:03 - What part of the go-to-market is Hightouch going to continue investing in?27:58 - Who was the first person to ...

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4

October 25, 2022 00:40:44
S7E4: How Jamie Norwood and Cynthia Plotch of Stix Are Transforming Women’s Health, Starting With How Women Shop for Their Health Essentials

S7E4: How Jamie Norwood and Cynthia Plotch of Stix Are Transforming Women’s Health, Starting With How Women Shop for Their Health Essentials

We have another incredible episode in store with Cynthia Plotch and Jamie Norwood, the founders of Stix, the company transforming women's health experiences. Stix was founded to “create a convenient, discreet, and judgment-free way to get the products you need.” Cynthia and Jamie walk us through their negative personal experiences that drove them to create Stix. Plus, they share their ideas to evolve Stix past being just a DTC brand and becoming an entire community of women who can help each other with anything health related. Cynthia and Jamie also explain what led them to go down the VC route for funding this journey. Themes in this episode include knowing when is the right time to fully commit yourself to your passion project, today’s women’s health climate, and what's next in DTC. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 4:30 - What were the first few years of Jamie’s career like?5:17 - What brought Jamie to Hungry Harvest and broke her into the world of D2C?6:18 - How did Cynthia’s early career influence her decision to start Stix?9:35 - Did Cynthia and Jamie always plan on being founders?11:26 - When did Cynthia and Jamie know that they were ready to go full-time on Stix?16:41 - How would Cynthia and Jamie describe Stix?17:52 - What was the initial mission for Stix when Cynthia and Jamie founded it?19:29 - How has Stix been connecting to its community and helping solve their problems?23:30 - What prompted Cynthia and Jamie to raise VC funding?25:39 - What advice would Cynthia and Jamie give to founders thinking about starting in D2C? ...

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3

October 18, 2022 00:48:42
S7E3: William Santana Li and Knightscope are Using Robots to Drop Crime Rates on a Local and National Level

S7E3: William Santana Li and Knightscope are Using Robots to Drop Crime Rates on a Local and National Level

This week we chat with another phenomenal guest, William Santana Li, the founder and CEO of Knightscope. Knightscope is the developer and manufacturer of autonomous security robots. William explains how and why Knightscope was created and why he believes that the future of national security is autonomous. William details his professional experience in the auto and motor industry and how even that couldn’t prepare him for the unorthodox lifestyle of a founder. In today’s conversation with William, we chat about his unique founding story after being an entrepreneur and executive for 30 years. Plus, we dive into topics such as different ways to get funded, how robots are fighting crime in the U.S., and the future of robotics and technology in public safety. Let’s open the door. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter.4:48 - Did William have an interest in the vehicle and motor space from a young age? 7:51 - How was William’s early experience as a founder starting Knightscope?9:45 - What did William learn during the fundraising process of Knightscope?17:04 - Why is William so passionate about preventing crime and protecting the safety of Americans?22:19 - How was the experience of starting from the ground and creating a legitimate robot?26:10 - How is William staying focused on the blend of hardware and software with Knightscope?28:19 - What advice does William have for a founder with a product that is starting locally but wants to go nationwide?30:27 - When building Knightscope, was there a time when things didn't go as planned? 32:58 - How does William ...

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