With the competition ramping up ever further in the VC deal flow space, Harry Stebbing’s 20VC has acquired short form video specialist firm Good Future Media for an undisclosed amount. According to Stebbings, "You have to go to where your customers are, and when you look at the audience demographic of TikTok, this is where the next generation of founders and operators spend their time. We have to be there as well as on Linkedin and Twitter etc, etc."
The Invest Europe 2021 Highlights report chronicled 1,600 European venture capital and private equity firms, while the European Capital Map, saw, “550 venture capital funds, 272 private equity funds, 61 newcomers founded in 2021, and 146 investors with an office location in Europe but a headquarters outside the continent.” In total that racks up 1,029 potential players (or 1,600, or more?) vying for attention in the cutthroat game of deal flow.
Granted, 2022 has seen a marked slowdown in investments and company valuations, and it should come as no surprise that 2021’s blistering place could not have been sustained. In so much, we’re noting investors turning to increasingly creative ways to stand out amongst their competitors. Even before the downturn, and perhaps for a different reason, but one that is surely serving the firm now, Sequoia announced its scout programme, followed shortly thereafter by Accel heading down the same path.
Having more eyes and ears on the ground is one path to getting a leg up on your competition, however, another is through ye olde venerable content marketing. When executed well, and I know you know what I’m talking about, the impact can be immeasurable.
In so much, Harry Stebbings, no stranger to the value of content, and his VC firm 20VC have decided to continue with their winning strategy down the content route, only now, going full tilt on short-form video content, made available, on-demand, for portfolio companies.
In a conversation with Stebbings, he revealed that 20VC had recently acquired Good Future Media, the team behind Chamath Palihapitiya, Jason Calacanis, David Sacks, and David Friedberg’s All In podcast TikTok outlet.
Having scaled All In from zero to well to over 300,000 followers and millions of views per month on TikTok, Stebbings sat up and took note, “The videos were insanely good and they told a story so well. I realised that I had this insanely large back catalogue and am always creating new content and so could repurpose it with them and do 20VC TikTok.”
Upon engaging with Good Future Media, Stebbings regales, “They scaled 20VC to 105K followers in 4 months and 5M+ views per month. 23% of all net new subs for the podcast come from TikTok now. We get over 80 deals a month through TikTok and so the strategic value was clear but also clear they could do so much more if they were working fully on us and not other clients.”
While 20VC is initially pitching portfolio companies to utilise the service for talent acquisition, product launches, funding announcements, and partnership announcements, the media hound in me knows all too well that it won’t be long before the in-house media agency’s requests will soon outgrow these four verticals.
If there should be any question about leveraging deals through what most recently grabbed headlines via its buritto slap challenge, Stebbings quickly puts it to rest, “The other day I had a billion dollar founder send me a deal of an employee who is leaving his firm and is one of the best and he sent it to me not because he knows me but because he loves my TikTok and thinks the deal aligns to the type of deals I like, and he knows through TikTok.”
While pressed, interviewer to interviewer, Stebbings remained steadfast and declined to comment on the financials behind the deal.