Top Podcasts of the Week

Below is our “Top Podcast” list with our curator, Colby Donovan!

Today we have two great episodes on what’s going on in China, Meb Faber kicking off the Africa Startup Series, and Sam Quinones on the impact drugs are having on society today.

  • Panic with Friends — Howard Lindzon: Greg Bettinelli of Upfront Ventures on ‘Walking Tall’, Large Secondary Markets, and Innovation. Bettinelli is a partner for L.A.-based Upfront Ventures and joins Howard Lindzon to spend a large amount of time on marketplaces and what Bettinelli learned while at eBay. They also touch on the fractionalization of assets, investing during a time with sky-high valuations, and consumer trends post-COVID. [September 23, 2021–64 minutesiTunes Podcast | Spotify | Google | Breaker
  • Odd Lots: Michael Pettis on What Evergrande Means for China’s Macro Economy. Peking University Finance Professor and Senior Carnegie Fellow Michael Pettis provides a big picture perspective in China post-Evergrande and other measures taken by Xi Jinping. He shares how important real estate is to the Chinese economy and consumer: real estate makes up 80% of household wealth in China but only made up 65% of Japanese household wealth at the peak of the Japanese bubble. Then he looks at Xi’s attempt to redistribute wealth in the Chinese economy to shrink the income/wealth gap and addresses what roadblocks he may face and tradeoffs he may have to to deal with. [October 11, 2021–54 minutesiTunes Podcast | Spotify | Google | Breaker | Website Link
  • This Week In Startups: US inherits China’s Bitcoin Mining Dynasty + Jacob Helberg on the “New Cold War” with China. At 9:03, Jason Calacanis is joined by Jacob Helberg, the author of The Wires of War: Technology and the Global Struggle for Power. The book covers the tension between China and the U.S., and where Russia fits between the two. He covers the potential for conflict because of Taiwan, the global pushback towards China as a result of COVID, whether or not the world will wake up to what’s happening with the Uyghurs (which is similar to the Holocaust), and why the constant aggression of China worries Helberg for the future of his children. [October 13, 2021–85 minutesiTunes Podcast | Spotify | Google | Breaker |
The Meb Faber Show
  • #358 — Africa Startup Series — Zachariah George, Launch Africa Ventures — The Evolution of Tech In Africa Had To Always Start With Fintech. Zachariah George is the Managing Partner at Launch Africa Ventures, a leading early-stage VC fund in Africa, and the co-founder and CIO of Startupbootcamp AfriTech, a leading venture accelerator program in Africa. Zach starts the episode by explaining how volunteering at an African orphanage changed his life, convincing him to leave Wall Street and move to Africa and eventually launch the first accelerator there. Then Zach discusses all the areas technology is touching that he is excited about, including education, healthcare, finance, transportation, and more. At the end, he shares the challenges companies face when navigating the different countries across the continent. [October 11, 2021–67 minutesiTunes Podcast | Spotify | Google | Breaker | Website Link
  • #359—Africa Startup Series — Aaron Fu, Sherpa Ventures — We Really Care About The Ability of Our Businesses To Uplift The Other Businesses in Africa. Aaron Fu is a GP for Sherpa Ventures, which focuses on pre-seed investments across Africa. He’s also the co-founder of Venture for Africa, a fellowship for those interested in working for early stage startups in Africa. Meb & Aaron start by talking about the factors behind the explosive growth the continent has seen in the past few years. Aaron shares what led him to launch his own fund last year and the stories of companies he’s funded, which exemplify both the opportunities and challenges he faces. At the end of the episode, Aaron shares his views on the differences between the startup community in Africa and Silicon Valley. [October 13, 2021 —64 minutesiTunes Podcast | Spotify | Google | Breaker | Website Link
The Rest
  • EconTalk: Sam Quinones on Meth, Fentanyl, and the Least of Us. Quiones is the author of the 2016 best-seller Dreamland, which was a deep dive into the opioid crisis. His next book is The Least of Us: True Tales of America and Hope in the Time of Fentanyl and Meth, which is the topic for this episode and focuses on the devastation caused by both methamphetamine and fentanyl. He specifically argues the latest version of meth causes more of an emotional toll and is contributing to the tent cities we’re seeing across the country today. They tie the drug issue to broader societal trends, like lack of connectedness amongst each other, and assess whether or not these trends are contributing to drug use. [October 11, 2021–82 minutesiTunes Podcast | Spotify | Google | Breaker | Website Link

Chris Sacca (Founder, Lowercarbon Capital):

  1. Not Fade Away: A Short Life Well Lived
  2. How To Raise an Adult

Kathryn Haun (General Partner, a16z):

  1. The Company: A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea by John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge
  2. My Life in Full: Work, Family, and Our Future by Indra Nooyi
  3. Palace Walk by Naguib Mahfouz

Good investing,
Meb Faber