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

4

June 07, 2022 00:38:33
S6E4: Sarah LaFleur, Founder of M.M.LaFleur, is Leading an Evolution of the Modern Women's Work Wear

S6E4: Sarah LaFleur, Founder of M.M.LaFleur, is Leading an Evolution of the Modern Women's Work Wear

We are returning this week with another incredible guest, Sarah LaFleur. Sarah came up with the idea to create comfortable and fashionable, professional attire for women because she herself found that whenever she was searching for work outfits, it seemed that fashion would always be sacrificed for comfort. In this episode, we discuss the current state of the apparel market and how things have changed so rapidly due to the evolution of the internet and e-commerce, the future of DTC from the brand and consumer perspectives, and how previous work experiences influence a persons fashion choices. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 4:05 - What did Sarah take away from her college career, especially at Harvard?8:17 - What was the fashion industry like at that time of Sarah’s early career? 12:24 - What was the aha moment when Sarah knew that she wanted to become a founder?17:52 - What were some of the early supply chain processes of iterating and designing some of the first garments that were built for the “modern American woman?”23:07 - What advice would Sarah give to founders who are looking to raise today in retail and e-commerce spaces?23:34 - What advice would Sarah have to any founder today who might be thinking they’re going to disrupt retail?27:04 - What does Sarah think the future of selling directly to the consumer is?29:00 - Should women seeking to be mothers be freezing their eggs?33:33 - Who is a woman in Sarah’s life that has had a profound impact on her and her career? The Room Podcast is sponsored by our friends at Silicon ...

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3

May 31, 2022 00:41:10
S6E3: Sandra Abrevaya and Her Husband Brian Are Making the Battle Against A.L.S. More Accessible to the Public

S6E3: Sandra Abrevaya and Her Husband Brian Are Making the Battle Against A.L.S. More Accessible to the Public

Season 6 continues with Sandra Abrevaya, CEO and co-founder alongside her husband, of Synapticure. Synapticure's mission is to make sure no one living with ALS is ever told, “I'm sorry, I can’t help you” because Brian and Sandra know firsthand how difficult it can be to receive ALS treatment. We chat with Sandra about balancing a romantic relationship and a business relationship with your significant other, what the current treatment options are for ALS patients, and how the COVID pandemic affected business in the medical field. Check out Synapticure here!  For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 3:48 - What convinced Sandra to go to Law School?5:21 - What are Sandra's top three takeaways from her career in politics that she uses as an entrepreneur? 9:37 - Did Sandra ever think she was going to become a founder? 10:57 - What has Brian's journey with ALS been like and how did it lead him and Sandra to found Synapticure?16:32 - Are there many options for treating ALS currently?22:17 - Who was the first person to say yes to investing in Synapticure?26:20 - What advice would Sandra give to a founder who is looking to build a mission-driven startup? 25:33 - What are some of those unique challenges in building a product and getting it into the hands of customers?26:07 - How does Sandra interface with patients during this need-finding process?31:14 - How did the COVID pandemic accelerate part of Synapticure’s roadmap? 33:37 - How does Sandra balance her romantic relationship and her business relationship with her husband?36:16 - What’s next for Sandra and ...

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2

May 24, 2022 00:47:45
S6E2: Julie Bornstein of Nordstrom, Sephora, and Stitch Fix Revolutionzlied Personalized Online Shopping with Her Own Startup, THE YES

S6E2: Julie Bornstein of Nordstrom, Sephora, and Stitch Fix Revolutionzlied Personalized Online Shopping with Her Own Startup, THE YES

Season 6 of The Room returns with Julie Bornstein, Founder and CEO of THE YES, a personalized web-based fashion retailer that works with hundreds of brands, large and small. Julie describes what she learned from her time at Nordstrom, Sephora, and Stitch Fix and how she was able to use those experiences to create THE YES. Julie gives advice to new founders and the best first steps to take to raise capital from investors. Julie also walks us through THE YES’s algorithm and how they continue to provide an accurate and personalized selection for each user, as well as future goals for the company. Plus, she shares her insight on the future of online retail and Web3/ e-commerce 3 in general. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter. 3:58 - What was investment banking like when Julie was in college?6:31 - What were some of the innovations that Julie brought to Sephora to make them the cutting edge brand they are today? 13:10 - How did Julie end up working with Stitch Fix?16:35 - What was it like taking a company public after building it for over five years?18:29 - What led to Julie founding THE YES?22:30 - What does THE YES do?24:00 - Who were the early partners that said yes to working with THE YES?29:52 - What advice does Julie have for new founders?29:47 - What goals did Julie set for THE YES early on, and how did she carry out her vision?32:21 - How far are consumers from a fully personalized shopping experience?26:48 - How does THE YES’s algorithm learn from ...

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1

May 17, 2022 00:32:37
S6E1: Co-Founder & CRO, Shuo Wang, and Deel are Reimagining Payouts for Businesses on a Global Scale

S6E1: Co-Founder & CRO, Shuo Wang, and Deel are Reimagining Payouts for Businesses on a Global Scale

Thank you for joining us for Season 6 of The Room Podcast! We are starting strong with our first guest, Shuo Wang. Her company Deel was evaluated at over $5 billion last year from their revolutionary work in remote work and international payrolling.  Shuo joins us to talk about her experience at the Y Combinator and the impact it had on her work with Deel. Subjects continue with how the pandemic was a catalyst for the growth of Deel and what metrics Deel uses to track that success. Plus, we ask Shuo about her strategies for competitively innovating and expanding Deel. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter.  4:12 - Where did Shuo grow up and how has that shaped her worldview?7:01 - How did a Mechanical Engineering degree translate into founding?8:21 - What encouraged Shuo and her co-founder to start thinking about global hiring? 10:40 - How was Shuo’s experience at the Y Combinator and what was the MMVP of the Deel product?12:07 - What country first started using Deel’s services?12:45 - What is the core product of Deel?15:35 - Who was the first to say yes and invest in Deel?16:20 - How would Shuo define her role as co-founder and Chief Revenue Officer?17:15 - What was Shou’s strategy for competitively innovating Deel?18:52 - What tips does Shuo have for founders who think they over perfectionists?20:24 - What metric does Deel mainly use to track revenue?21:25 - How did the pandemic affect the growth of Deel?22:32 - When ...

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4

May 03, 2022 00:47:27
Movers & Shakers S2E4: Naomi Shah, Founder and CEO of Meet Cute, Discusses the Future for Romantic Comedies

Movers & Shakers S2E4: Naomi Shah, Founder and CEO of Meet Cute, Discusses the Future for Romantic Comedies

Season 2 of Movers & Shakers ends with another incredible guest, Founder and CEO of Meet Cute, Naomi Shah. Meet Cute is a “rom-com incubator.” Audio, written video, short-form video, long-form video, etc. Meet Cute produces them all. Naomi tells us what inspired the idea for Meet Cute and what it was like for her to raise funding at the start of her founding journey. Naomi also speaks on balancing inspiring other underrepresented founders while not being stuck in the box of a “female founder.” Other themes discussed in this episode include turning an investment thesis into a company, the “girl boss” trope and what it means for founders, and the future of the romance genre. Let’s open the door.  Watch Extracurricular Here! For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter.  0:05 - Where did Naomi grow up and how did that impact her view of the world? 2:34 - Did Naomi always think she was going to be a founder?4:10 - How did a mechanical engineering degree specifically translate into Naomi’s work?7:50 - What was the initial aha moment for Meet Cute?11:37 - In a few words, what is Meet Cute?12:47 - What is Naomi’s favorite Meet Cute series that they’ve made?14:43 - How was the process of getting the first funding for Meet Cute, and what did Naomi learn?17:49 - What advice does Naomi have for new founders?22:00 - How does Naomi balance paving a wave for underrepresented entrepreneurs, while also removing the stigma of being ...

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3

April 26, 2022 00:33:51
Movers & Shakers S2E3: Entering the Venture Capital Ecosystem with Rachel Goddard, Partner at Cooley LLP

Movers & Shakers S2E3: Entering the Venture Capital Ecosystem with Rachel Goddard, Partner at Cooley LLP

Our mini-series, Movers & Shakers, continues with Rachel Goddard, a partner at Cooley LLP for over 22 years.  Rachel walks us through her path to becoming a lawyer before becoming a partner at Cooley. She explains why she loves her job and what she and Cooley do to assist emerging managers to start their funds. Rachel also shares some best practices on things new managers might now know, like management fees and GP commitments.  We also get Rachel’s perspective on the next five years for venture funds in light of the past few years being a very hot market and non-accredited investors investing in venture funds. For The Room Podcast in your inbox every week, subscribe to our newsletter.  0:14 - Where did Rachel grow up and how did that shape her view of the world?0:58 - Did Rachel always want to be a Lawyer?1:41 - What was the pivot that led Rachel into law?3:34 - How is Cooley focused on supporting venture capital?6:04 - What comes up in early conversations with emerging managers?8:43 - Rachel clarifies some of the terminology used to describe different stakeholders. 10:42 - What are the four documents that Rachel always starts with?12:15 - What are some best practices on things like management fees and GP commitments?16:31 - What is the definition of a smaller fund to Cooley?17:21 - What are Rachel’s thoughts on non-accredited investors investing in venture funds?20:25 - What do you think the next five years hold for venture funds in light of the past few years being a very ...

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