The No Cap Newsletter (018)
A bi-weekly newsletter ran by the RippleX Fellowship, covering key program learnings, industry news, and fellow spotlights.
🚨 RIPPLEX FELLOWSHIP FALL 2022 RECRUITMENT 🚨
The RippleX Fellowship program is now recruiting for the Fall 2022 cohort. Join our community of fellow founders and aspiring venture capitalists, learning about the intricacies of company building and venture capital through hands-on workshops and discussions.
Also, you might notice something new on our website. Big news incoming and we'll share more soon. 😉
Learn more about the program here: https://bit.ly/3FizHNE
Apply here: https://bit.ly/3oimo9z
Check out our testimonials here: https://bit.ly/3qOdnas
Applications are due August 15th at 5 PM EST.
🛠 Opportunities in Web3 Development Environments
If you didn’t already know, Ripple Ventures is an early-stage venture fund focused on enterprise software, developer tools, and web3 infrastructure & tooling. Within each vertical focus, our team conducts in-depth research on areas of interest to find the best companies to partner with. We’ve started a new blog series to share our internal research on categories that we’re actively investing in. Next up, here is our overview of Web3 Development Environments.
Despite the current market conditions, our point of view is that infrastructure and developer tooling in Web3 will be one of the most important areas for investment as they will unlock applications/protocols to applications/protocols to create in order for the success of their projects. We’ve seen the recent applications around NFTs, DeFi, and more start to break the infrastructure in Web3 (gas fees, security, latency) as adoption increased. Tooling will be the constant foundation for innovating scale for applications as we reach each new inflection point in the market.
Across the value chain of Web3 development, we are excited to explore vertical tools that help engineers compile, deploy, test and debug blockchain software. This includes the management and automation of processes to build smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps).
Why We’re Excited:
Development environments are core to building every software product. We’ve seen that integration, compatibility, and ease of use have enabled developers to build with better efficiency, but this is lacking in Web3 development today.
Building in Web3 requires developers to interact with a totally new set of tools including smart contract development, decentralized storage systems, and security protocols. Winning solutions will be modular systems that provide flexibility in implementation and integration.
As the ecosystem of L1 and L2s continues to mature, the uncertainty around which applications should be built on which infrastructure exists today. This creates the need for development tools to be chain-agnostic to allow developers the flexibility for building on top of different technologies and compartmentalizing their stack with the best options.
Where We’re Cautious:
Web3 developer tools become less prominent if existing Web2 platforms and technologies (i.e. extensions, SDK, etc.) are able to fill in the missing gaps or integrate better with Web3 tools. This means that the existing tools are able to provide effective support without requiring additional steps from the developers.
Companies building for developers in this category will need to fill the large shoes of the functionality breadth they are used to in Web2 IDEs while satisfying the integration and infrastructure needs in Web3. This means that the value proposition must be 10X and have a short learning curve.
Interested to dive deeper into our thematic research covering the industry drivers, market dynamics and more? Keep reading:
❓ The Tough Questions
When it comes to building out a company, it should always come down to an iterative process where you’re actively questioning the steps you take. This process of evaluating your startup consists of asking a few tough questions that revolve around the market, product and team. So let’s dive right in!
Who are you going after as customers? (i.e. who’s the buyer?)
What are those customers spending on solutions to their problems today?
How many customers are there that can use your product?
What is the spending power/budget capacity they have for new tools?
Which markets are your initial targets, where are they, and what are future ones?
Who are the other competitors, and is this solution materially better?
Is this a market opportunity that’s over $1B? If not, can it get there?
Does this product provide a 10X solution to the problem compared to the status quo?
What are the drivers and drags for adoption?
Is the product you’re building mission critical to your users’ ability to meet their goals?
How long does it take for users to get value out of the product?
How does the product integrate or augment existing workflows?
How much time will users spend time in the platform, and how can this grow?
What do engagement, retention, usage, and growth of the product look like?
Has the team had any prior experience working together before?
Does the team have any experience working in the industry they’re trying to sell to?
Is the team balanced with founders that can build and sell?
How fast does the team move on the product, fundraising, sales, etc.?
Would you want to work for the founders of this company?
How does the team make decisions together?
Is the team passionate about what they’re building?
The lesson doesn’t stop here, there’s much more to cover! Take a peek into our course accessible to anyone:
💡 Fellow Spotlight
Naman Singh - Founder & CEO at MassApply
As a job-seeker, the application process is a daunting task combined with immense uncertainty of the outcome. Back at the start of the pandemic, we witnessed a scarce amount of jobs and internships as COVID-19 took a toll on numerous companies. Unfortunately, a similar situation is taking place in the current job market with college students and new grads relentlessly seeking out opportunities. If you’re in this boat, MassApply could help you out!
Introducing Naman Singh, Founder and CEO at MassApply from cohort #10 who is actively building a platform to empower job-seekers.
MassApply is a platform tailored for job-seekers to propel themselves in the recruitment process by easily applying to companies, reaching out or cold-emailing recruiters, and of course, tracking the progress from start to finish. With over 12,000 users, MassApply has proven to be a very useful tool with numerous students landing offers amidst COVID-19 cancellations.
One of the best things to note is that MassApply started off as a hackathon project that developed into a platform that continues to impact so many individuals! Interested to learn more? Check out this great article on Interseller.
See what Naman had to say about his experience with the fellowship program 👇
“As a founder, I felt I didn't have a good understanding of the VC-side. RippleX filled these gaps in my knowledge and introduced me to really smart people!”
Sponsored by Jeeves.
Interested in being featured? Looking to share exciting news? Please reach out to Turja at firstname.lastname@example.org. Authored by Turja Chowdhury (Cohort #9).
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