002 – WeWork’s Venture Bailout

002 – WeWork’s Venture Bailout

The SoftBank and WeWork debacle has huge implications on the late-stage funding landscape and may cause SoftBank to adjust their strategy. Doug and Gene discuss WeWork, the pros and cons of public vs. private, how to value autonomy, and the possibility of air taxis.

Top 3 Takeaways:

  • Eventually, we may strike a balance between the discipline and hygiene required to be a public company and the benefits of thinking long-term and building based on a vision that are associated with being private.
  • There is a disconnect between public and private market valuations of the potential for autonomous driving, exemplified by the valuation of Tesla and a handful of private self-driving startups.
  • Both Doug and Gene agree that we will reach widespread fully autonomous driving before urban air mobility like air taxis are popular.

Show Notes

  • [0:44] More on WeWork, the first venture bailout.
  • [4:08] SoftBank rethinking the way they approach investments from the Vision Fund – growth vs. profitability.
  • [5:52] Swinging for the fences is an important part of portfolio construction.
  • [6:27] The narrative that public market investors are shortsighted is wrong.
  • [7:36] Zoox announces a $200M raise.
  • [8:03] How does Gene think about valuing autonomy for a company like Tesla?
  • [12:30] The paradoxical nature of valuing autonomy for Tesla vs. self-driving startups
  • [14:30] VTOL vehicles, air-taxis, flying cars, and Lilium’s fundraise.
  • [16:49] Will we reach widespread level 5 autonomy on the ground or air taxis first?

Disclaimer

Autonomous Vehicles, Liquidity Podcast