137 Ventures Justin Fishner-Wolfson talks with Samir Kaji, VC Banker and host of Venture Unlocked

August 10, 2021

137 Ventures Justin Fishner-Wolfson on why ownership is an overvalued heuristic, building lasting teams, and the current state of secondary markets.

Listen to podcast on Venture Unlocked

Today we’re thrilled to bring you my conversation with Justin Fishner-Wolfson, co-founder and managing partner of 137 Ventures, a growth-stage venture firm that provides customized liquidity solutions to founders, investors, and early employees of high-growth private technology companies.

With a total AUM of $1.5B, 137 Ventures has backed some of the most impactful companies of the past decade, including Wish, Flexport, SpaceX, Uber, and Airbnb.

Prior to launching 137 ventures in 2010, Justin worked on the investment team at Founders Fund.

In this episode we discuss:

  • 02:10 Justin’s journey into venture capital
  • 03:36 Learnings from Founders Fund
  • 05:52 Differentiating yourself in tangible ways
  • 07:45 How Justin thinks about the sales process
  • 10:34 Fund sizing
  • 14:59 Liquidity solutions for the future
  • 17:42 How efficient are the secondary markets right now?
  • 20:40 Justin’s philosophy on risk
  • 26:00 The considerations of check size and ownership requirements
  • 28:53 What are the toughest things to get right in building a firm?
  • 31:01 Avoiding talent atrophy and ensuring generational succession
  • 32:56 The hardest lesson learned in building a firm
  • 39:47 The most counterintuitive lesson Justin learned in investing
  • 42:19 Learnings from misses
  • 43:47 Justin’s inspirations

I’d love to know what you took away from this conversation with Justin. Follow me @SamirKaji and give me your insights and questions with the hashtag #ventureunlocked. If you’d like to be considered as a guest or have someone you’d like to hear from (GP or LP), drop me a direct message on Twitter.

Listen to podcast on Venture Unlocked