Y-Combinator Begins "Launch YC"
Y-combinator and a16z news
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Like a good Reddit board, Hacker News (https://news.ycombinator.com/news) top daily trending is an amusing location to browse what people are reading. This is the first installment in a new column on Data Science Learning Center, called Hacker News, haha.
Y Combinator is an American technology startup accelerator launched in March 2005. It has been used to launch more than 3,000 companies, including Stripe, Airbnb, Cruise, PagerDuty, DoorDash, Coinbase, Instacart, Dropbox, Twitch, and Reddit.
Including our friend Substack. The comments on Hacker News about Substack’s recent layoffs are amusing.
At a time when a16z is becoming more like Y-Combinator, Y Combinator has announced Launch YC, a platform where people can sort accelerator startups by industry, batch and launch date to discover new products.
It’s a bit odd how YC startups end up being funded by a16z. Not exactly a coincidence I guess. The famed accelerator, which has seeded the likes of Instacart, Coinbase, OpenSea and Dropbox, invites users to vote for newly launched startups “to help them climb up the leaderboard, try out product demos, and learn about the founding team.”
I’m actually super interested in early stage startups, seed rounds and that sort of thing so I’ll be watching this website: https://www.ycombinator.com/launches
One of my fellow Substack Grow classmates in the UK does this for UK startups:
As I find myself writing more commentary on startups and venture capital, I try to monitor more what startup accelerators are up to and a16z and Y-Combinator have been busy.
TechCrunch summed it up well when it said:
YC makes a Product Hunt, Product Hunt makes an a16z, a16z makes a YC
Product Hunt is already pretty legendary.
Doing well on Product Hunt can give a new startups some buzz and get some media and additional PR coverage.
So Launch YC is supposed to rival Product Hunt? Really.
I must have messed up my search, because I found Launch YC on Product Hunt. Ooops. I found this super funny.
So far Launch YC does not look great. But at least we can upvote. Over time it would be nice to browse with segments like location, industry and so forth.
I really had no idea! In their blog they say: A version of Launch YC has existed for years on Bookface, our internal platform for YC founders. But now, we’re bringing “Launch Bookface” to the world.
TechCrunch who likes to state the obvious said:
Y Combinator is using Launch to target founders, developers, investors and job-seekers looking for the “Stripes and Airbnbs of the future.” Y Combinator founders, meanwhile, can launch on any day at any time. YC Head of Communications Lindsay Amos said that YC founders who are currently participating in an accelerator batch can announce via Launch before Demo Day. To me, it makes the biannual event a more evergreen affair.
As the SPAC and IPO market have exploded, some savvy investors are doing more due diligence on early stage startups in hot spaces like Quantum computing, cybersecurity, A.I. and so forth. As a Futurist, these are among my favorite things to watch.
For more than a year, Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) had been quietly piloted its own take on an accelerator for early-stage entrepreneurs; and in April, 2022 it and its partners announced the program’s official debut. a16z has become media company and not just a VC with a significant PR department to create hype in NFTs or Web3 or whatever else it fancies.
Chris Dixon and his colleagues at AH became very rich doing this with Medium articles back in the day about “Decentralization” and all manners of things that haven’t exactly come to pass. a16z for its part has investing in multiple NFT platforms, you might even call it a monopoly on early stage NFT Web3 platforms.
So how Y-combinator and a16z evolve will be really interesting to watch.
As a Futurist, too see the “propaganda” of Cathie Wood on “disruptive tech” or a16z on the “Future” makes me cringe a little. But these hype generation PR machines are very profitable because these VC firms are dealing with a segment of the mind-share that’s really lucrative.
Pumping up Web3 or the Metaverse makes a lot of people a lot of money.
Ryan Hoover founded Product Hunt back in 2013. Product Hunt was acquired by AngelList Talent for $20M on Dec 1, 2016 . While software continues to eat the world, it looks like VC monopolies and BigTech are also eating capitalism.
I don’t feel too great or optimistic about that, I don’t know about you?
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