There are many interesting ideas and developments emerging about how to fund companies in more sustainable ways. Four recent posts from thinkers I follow (which highlight that there’s not a one-size-fits-all solution):
But an IPO isn’t the end of a company’s story. In many cases, it’s just the second inning. Yet once a company goes public, it’s typical for its VC board members to roll off, leaving the CEO without someone to play an analogous role as an experienced partner. What’s missing is a major financial investor with patient capital who will partner with the CEO for the long term (i.e. the next 10 years) to take the necessary risks to reinvent the business and capitalize on opportunities for innovation and growth.
Overall, this is creating an ecosystem that favors large monopolistic platforms and disadvantages small, evergreen businesses. Our business environment, like our natural one is becoming imbalanced at both the individual and overall ecosystem level, just as our natural environment is with damaged ecosystems and mass extinctions. This isn’t healthy or sustainable in the long term. If you just have apex predators like Amazon Inc., you don’t have a healthy ecosystem like the Amazon rainforest.
Clearly, Blitzscaling is a viable blueprint for a select few to follow to grow their business and ultimately reach venture scale. But, it isn’t the only viable path, nor is it the only one we should orient our startup ecosystem around.
As we adapt to a different world, a public market that offers companies the resilience of long-term governance and supports the creation of value over time can help to put our society on the path toward a sounder future. The Long-Term Stock Exchange represents, I hope, one brick in a new foundation for our civic society.