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How We Spent $7m To Spin Crunchbase Out of AOL

Santi Subotovsky is a General Partner at Emergence Capital. Prior to joining Emergence, Santi founded, AXG Tecnonexo, a SaaS e-learning company in Latin America. He expanded the company to 150+ employees with operations across Latin America and the US. Santi is also a founding board member of Puente Labs, an organization that finds and selects the best founders of high potential growth companies from Latin America and helps them scale their businesses globally. Santi currently serves on the Boards of Civitas Learning, CrunchBase, High Alpha, Quasar, Restorando, Tophat, Xapo and Zoom. Santi received an MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School and holds a BS in Economics from St. Andrew’s University in Argentina. He is Kauffman Fellow and an Endeavor Entrepreneur.

Signature of Santi Subotovsky

Outside of work Santi is passionate about traveling internationally. He spent 6 months backpacking around the world and continues to work on a personal goal of visiting at least 50% of the world countries. He is an avid opera and classical music follower and, like almost every Argentine, he is passionate about soccer.

Nathan Latka Podcast

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:48 – Nathan’s introduction to today’s show

01:40 – Why Santi enjoys being a founder more than being a VC

02:05 – How Emergence Capital has been funding B2B cloud software for 15 years

03:03 – Why they want to be leader of Series A rounds

03:24 – Why Emergence Capital’s biggest winners thus far have been Crunchbase and Zoom

03:50 – How Crunchbase has become the system of record for private companies

04:50 – How they spun out Crunchbase from AOL over the course of 9 months

06:55 – Why Santi thinks Mattermark didn’t work

08:25 – Emergence Capital’s thesis behind growing Crunchbase long-term

10:36 – How Crunchbase uses the power of the community to compete with companies like Owler

11:55 – Why contextual analysis of data from Crunchbase draws visitors

12:54 – Why Emergence Capital uses a multi-pronged approach to source deals

13:50 – Emergence Capital’s resources to help companies scale sales and marketing

14:45 – Why they are extremely proactive in building relationships with entrepreneurs

16:01 – How their last fund raised was $330M and why they look to invest in 20 companies per fund

16:20 – Why they spent $7M to spin our Crunchbase from AOL

17:21 – Santi Subotovsky’s favorite business book

17:45 – CEO Santi Subotovsky follows

18:32 – Santi Subotovsky’s favorite online tool

18:50 – Average hours of sleep per night

19:20 – If you could let your 20 year old self know one thing, what would it be?

Famous 5

Last business book read?—Candid

What CEO do you follow?—Eric Yuan of Zoom

What is your favorite online tool?—Zoom

How many hours of sleep do you get?—7

If you could let your 20 year old self know one thing, what would it be?—Silicon valley exists!