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Hightower: The System of Record for Commercial Real Estate

Steve Schlafman May 19, 2015
A few years ago, Brandon Weber, CEO and Cofounder of Hightower, and I were catching up over a casual dinner in Brooklyn. We had met ten years earlier when we started our careers at Microsoft and quickly became friends.  A few months before our dinner, Brandon left the commercial real estate (CRE) brokerage powerhouse CBRE, where we was a Vice President, to start Hightower because he saw that the industry was broken. He explained in fine detail the great paradox facing...
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Apple Watch Venture In Residence

Steve Schlafman Apr 09, 2015
In just two weeks from now, the Apple Watch finally comes to market after months of anticipation and speculation. You may recall back in November, Apple released its WatchKit SDK to developers and companies to ensure there would be a large selection of apps when the wearable computer hits the market. In fact, Tim cook wrote in a memo earlier this week that more than a thousand apps have already been submitted to the App Store. Based on intuition and early screenshots, many of the initial...
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Why We Started Abra

James D. Robinson Mar 05, 2015
By Bill Barhydt and Jim Robinson   Yesterday at the Launch Festival in San Francisco we announced Abra.  Abra (A Better Remittance App) is an exciting new iPhone and Android software cash wallet and money transfer application.     We started Abra because we believe that the first generation of digital currency applications are technical marvels but don’t solve real consumer pain.  To make digital currency useful to “cash consumers”...
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The Most Important SaaS Metric Nobody Talks About: Time-to-Value (‘TtV’)

Feb 03, 2015
In a world where applications are delivered via cloud and distributed across billions of Internet-connected end-points, we’ve seen barriers to entry, adoption and innovation compress by an order of magnitude or two, if not crushed altogether. Compound this by advances in application and data portability and the implication for technology vendors competing in this global, all-you-can-eat software buffet is that customers’ switching costs are rapidly approaching zero. In this...
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Introducing Accion Systems: Revolutionary Propulsion for Satellites

Will D. Porteous Jan 07, 2015
We are excited to announce our investment in Accion Systems this morning alongside a syndicate of some of our favorite co-investors. This is our 2nd investment in a New Space company after we led the Series A round for Spire last spring. Accion is commercializing a new ion-based propulsion system for spacecraft. We were introduced to co-founder and CEO, Natalya Brikner by our friends at Undercurrent, who share our passion for new space...
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