Edward Lando is an investor in 500 early stage companies. He was the first investor in Misfits Market and an early angel in 10 unicorns. He’s also helped start several other companies – Atom Finance, Goody and more now through Pareto Holdings with his business partner Jon Oringer.
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John: Welcome to another edition of the impact podcast. I’m John Shegerian and I’m so excited to have with us today, Edward Lando. Edward’s the co-founder and managing partner, Pareto Holdings, and Edwards coming to us from Miami while I sit in Fresno, California. Welcome, Edward to the impact podcast.
Edward Lando: Thank you very much, John.
John: It’s an honor. I’m so honored to have you on. You are a fascinating human being and so interesting and we’re going to get into that in a little while, but I had the great pleasure of meeting you recently at the Goldman Sachs three-day event up in Napa Valley, and it was just so inspiring. My wife and I just were so inspired by what you’re up to. I just had to have you on the impact podcast. And before we get into, everything you’re doing at Pareto Holdings for and for our listeners who want to find you there, they can go to www.pareto20.com
Share a little bit of your fascinating back story. Where you grew up, how you got to Miami, and all the stops you made in between?
Edward: Sounds great. And I’m honored, so thank you again for having me. I grew up despite my accent. I actually grew up in Paris, France. My mother is French, my father is Canadian from Vancouver, West Coast. I grew up in Paris, it’s been my first eighteen years there and I went into college in the U.S. I went to Wharton undergrad and Philly. I taught myself how to code there. I was definitely interested in the classes, but I think I was more immediately pulled to building things on my own with my friends. And so I taught myself how to make websites. I taught myself that I make apps and I started tinkering on side projects with my friends. I would say that’s the most valuable thing I got from college. It’s those relationships. And I think we went through dozens of projects when we were undergrads. Some of them really just projects that we launched over a few days and others became small-side businesses. And then, when I was graduating in 2014, I had a couple of different companies going on. And one of them went through YC in summer ’14, y combinator. It’s called Gulf Predlics[?] the company. It’s in gulf tech, essentially a Bloomberg for the government that I started with a very close friend of mine who teaches statistics at Warden. It was not my idea, I just really wanted to work with him. He’s one of my closest friends and absolutely brilliant and I taught him at a code. He’s very sharp, and so he picked it up very quickly. We built a prototype. We got into YCE and he left that company for several years and it actually sold about a year ago as a great outcome.
But so that was the first sort of serious company that I worked on and then help do a couple of other things after that. Teamed up with another close friend of mine, Bobby Ramesh, who was working in private equity at the time. We started a coding boot camp together to help college kids get the experience that we got learning how to code in college. And we did that for a few years. I started investing at that time. Our boot camp was mostly bootstrap, but, but started growing nicely. And we also raised a little fund to do larger Investments and larger checks. And then a few years later, I was the first investor in and I helped them start a company called Misfits Market, which is in the online grocery space. That company has done very well and he’s let it incredibly and it’s now nationwide and it’s raised a couple hundred million dollars. And over the years, I’ve been essentially lucky to help start a couple of other things and then make a few hundred investments in startups. And these days, I’m in Miami. I’m here doing a lot of work with the business partner of mine, John Andrew, who started Shutterstock. And we’re making a lot of Investments, almost one a day and startups, and then we’re building new companies.
John: So let’s go back. It was parental Holdings, is it fair to call it an incubator of sorts?
Edward: Yes, people have all sorts of different names for things. They call things like [inaudible] is accelerators studios and all that stuff. My point of view is Pareto Holdings is accompanied to NLC[?] And John and I contributed capital to this company and out of this company, we both invest and we helped create new things. I don’t really have a name for it. It’s more of a vehicle through which we do our work together, and we’ve hired a great team inside Pareto that works with us. So that’s what it is. And that there’s a funny story as to why it’s called Pareto.
John: Let’s hear it.
Edward: The Pareto Principle is essentially often linked to the 80/20 rule which is an Economics concept that explains that 80% of the returns that you will get from something often come from 20% of the work. And so often people talk about power law. Essentially, another way to say it is most of the stuff that you do is not that useful, but then a small percentage, 20% of what you do. And actually, I would argue, it’s more like 95/5 of what you do is actually leads to all the outcomes. Perhaps in dating. If you go on a hundred different dates, none of them really matter, but then on one of them, you find the person you’re going to get married to. That one date was worth all of the effort or if you make five-hundred investments and one of them is in the next Google. That Google investment will lead to all of the returns. And so all of the other investments will be negligible in consequence. We like that concept in terms of thinking of things to build and things we invest in because power law and extreme power law to some extent dictate a lot of what happens in venture and start-up land[?].
John: Understood. Is the genius lies within the knowing where which is the 5% of which is the 95, and do people get lost in the 95. Thinking that they’re in the five and do the right to people who actually know what they’re doing knowing they’re in the five?
Edward: I love those questions. I think there are a few answers. One of them frankly is, my point of view is that a lot of early stage investors think that they are smarter than they are and a lot of them try to be too smart. So you hear of some saying, “I passed on this company because I couldn’t understand why this market opportunity was that compelling.” Or whatever it was but these people were clearly impressive. It turns out I think that they’re very humble with early-stage investing and thinking it’s messy. These people are smart. They’re going to hustle, they’re going to sort of find their way, is often a better way to do it. Because no matter how smart you are, I don’t think it’s possible for you to be able to predict every market or everything that’s going to happen.
However, another part of the genius is the terms of making larger investments or choosing what things to build. Yes, you can be a little bit thoughtful about which markets you pick. It’s a mix of being humble and thinking the next Google can come out of anywhere and you sort of like a highly motivated team. On the other hand, if we’re going to spend a lot of our time building something, there are probably certain markets that will do better than others.
John: So interesting. Edward, I get it. Because of this platform and the show, I get to interview so many interesting people which helps me stay connected to really what’s happening. And one of the real exciting reasons that we had you on, is when Tammy and I met you, you were not only both fascinating and interesting, but you talk about Misfits. We already know numerous of the brands that you’ve created and helped co-found and helped scale. And Misfits is just another wonderful example. But when you say you’re doing approximately one investment a day, that velocity sounds both overwhelming and just very, very large.
How do you manage that kind of both incoming pipeline and decision-making to get to choose what becomes an outcome of potentially one a day?
Edward: Yes. It ended up happening because of compounding. So I started Angel Investing about seven and a half years ago. I started because I knew smart people around me that I wanted to invest in that I knew from college or that I met on the West Coast in San Francisco at Y Combinator all these things. And I was just like, “You’re smart. I don’t get to build a company with you every day, but I would love to take part in what you’re doing.” And then I usually would commit fairly quickly, not ask too many questions and just believe in the person, try to help them make other intros, and then hopefully if you like working with you, they make more and more introductions and that’s how you build-up to faster velocity. I’m now I think between myself and Pareto, which is my angel vehicle with John at nearly five hundred investments.
I think the answer is to how to track all these things is by being very good at allocating your time. If we make smaller investments, which is the average a sort of like a “smaller investment” like an angel check will be helpful, will commit very fast with what within one call, will be helpful, will make a few intros for you will answer to your email when you ping us. We’re not going to build your company with you every day because we don’t have the time to do that. If we make a much larger investment and sometimes we read in seven-figure checks which is a lot because it’s our capital. Then we’ll spend a lot more time of the company or helping build a company we’ll spend a lot more time with the company. So I think it depends. Two years ago or one and a half years ago, this had never happened to me, but I was still living in New York and I was just doing like fifteen meetings a day or something with a lot of these founders and teams and I loved it. But I was starting to not feel great because I felt overstretched. I had meetings every thirty minutes or forty-five minutes. I was drinking a lot of coffee a day and I had a couple of panic attacks. I had never had those before. But I was sitting in meetings with people when I started freaking out or sensing that not feeling well. I knew that I had to change something about the setup of the way that I and now we operate with our team. And so I teamed up with John, we hired a couple of amazing people full time, on our investment team, they helped us review things. They’ve done hundreds of calls with us to sort of see how we look at the company is. We’ve created a better system to scale ourselves. And now we have really set of talent teams with a recruiter at Paredo that helps the companies that we work with higher. And we’re trying to build up more systems to be helpful while having the machine not break.
John: I love it. I come to Miami once every couple of months on business. The next time I come I’m going to invite you to dinner. Now I must say, take me to your office one day. And if I go to your office with you, is there a big wall of all your investments and how you’re tracking them? How do you track five hundred and how does it look in terms of you and John’s universe? And how often do you guys get together?
Edward: We see each other several times per week. I would say there are some days where we were just on the phone, but we were texting every couple of minutes. I think to answer the sort of post or question, we should probably have all the companies up there. One, you spend more energy. We’ve really doubled down on our model, which is to try to be the first high conviction investor that you will have anywhere in the world. I would say, the most exciting part of our investment activity is what we called the Pareto precede program where we tell companies, “Hey, you might be very early. You might be alone as a founder or you might have a small team and you’re tinkering on an idea or you’re just getting started anywhere in the world. Anywhere doesn’t matter. We’ve had applicants from all parts of the world. Apply. Fill out this quick form. If we find that what you’re doing is interesting or your background is interesting, we will do a 10-minute video call with you. And after 10 minutes, we will decide whether we do your entire precede round or not.” And often, we try to buy about 7 to 10% of the company. But those companies we spend more effort on because we’re higher conviction were the first Investors. In terms of tracking those, frankly, we’re building systems. We have a couple of different CRNS that we use now. But we’re really working on sort of creating more efficient things. I hold a lot of the stuff in my head, which is not that efficient, but we’re going to build a better machine.
John: Edward, you’re twenty-nine, which blows me away. Only in the most genuine and affectionate sense because we know that genius can come at seventy-seven years old. We know that Ray Kroc didn’t invent McDonald’s til in his mid-50s. And we also know Zuck created Facebook when he was eighteen or nineteen and put pimply-faced kid at Harvard. But what I love about you, what’s so attractive about you and I’m sure what draws other people to you as well is your unabashed courage. Where did you get that from? Does that was mom or dad an entrepreneur or was Grandpa or Grandma? Where did you even get the absolute courage to go from Paris to the States? Move around the States from great cities from Silicon Valley to New York to Pennsylvania. Now, to Miami, it means four of the greatest regions in, the nation. And to partner up with who you’ve partnered up with and make this kind of velocity of investments at your very tender age. Because when I was 29, it’s not like when you were you’re 29, you’re probably going to live to -If you look at the Actuarial tables, now- a hundred or more. [crosstalking] When I was twenty-nine, how not to die?
Edward: Read the book.
John: I see it right behind you. I’ve read that book.
Edward: This is the topic I’m very interested in and I’m reading a lot in the space right now.
John: I’ve read that book. I love that book. It’s a great book.
Edward: This is probably the topic that I’m most interested in. I would love to start a company in longevity, and that’s another topic. But first of all, thank you. I think…
John: Where does that come from? Because everyone wants to be the next Edward. Everyone wants to be the next Tesla and Musk or the next Bezos or Gates or Sara Blakely. But everyone’s courage is in short supply. Where did you [crosstalk] get it?
Edward: You’re putting me in great company. Thank you. I think the answer is a couple of things. One is some people and myself included are lucky in that we grew up with the safety net. My dad is retired but is a successful journalist. He worked for thirty years with sixty minutes producing with Mike Wallace. He’s a very accomplished journalist. I had an example of someone very successful in his field. My mom is retired as well. She had me at forty-two. She started her own business, fairly well with it. And I think I grew up knowing that if I failed, I could go back and comfortably live at my parents’ apartment in Paris and not starve. I think that that certainly [crosstalk] that is a huge advantage. A lot of people don’t have that starting advantage. I think that’s the first thing. It’s knowing that you have a safety net.
Some people, it helps them a lot. Other people, if they have too much of a safety net and if they’re too comfortable early on, you see that sort of like spoil them a bit and not give them the drive. I think I was in the sweet spot where I was comfortable enough. I also went to a very good high school in Paris where people were either really smart or really rich or both or whatever. And they’re surrounded by people who are the sons and daughters of very, very wealthy and successful folks. And I think it made me want to go out and achieve a lot.
I think the other answers are, there’s a little bit of an existential answer, like why not be courageous? I think a lot of people think that their lives are not as risky as they actually are. There’s no way to live life in a non-risky way even if you have a stable career. It’s dangerous to be a human being. Things can happen to you every day. You can get hit by a car, you can get sick, touchwood[?] you don’t. All sorts of things can happen to you. My point of view is you might as well take the red pill and do something or do something courageous or try to do something courageous because we all know where we’re headed anyway, and so why not try to do some insane stuff while we’re here. I think that’s another answer. And then I think that the main thing that I’m grateful for that motivates me that energizes me, is that I get to work with very, very incredible people. That’s the best thing I got out of college by far, is there are a few of the people that I worked with over and over where my closest friends I met there. I get to now do a ton of great work with John and the rest of the Pareto team. I think that part of my motivation is maybe a couple of hundred years ago we would have been nights going on an adventure in our horses or whatnot. And I think today, this is the equivalent. You’re going on adventures with your friends building companies and seeing what you can do in the world.
John: When we get back to the topic of one [inaudible] in a second for our listeners who just joined us. We’ve got Edward Lando today. Edward is the managing partner and co-founder of Pareto Holdings, you could find Edward and his partner, John, and their colleagues at www.pareto20.com.
And when we sat down with you, and we’re visiting over a little bite to eat in the Napa Valley, you made us lean in when you shared with us that you were one of the early people and co-founders of Misfits, which, of course we said, we love that brand and we use that brand. But you also shared with us one of your latest ventures called Goody. Can you share with our listeners what you’re doing with Goody, how you came to find it, and what your mission is there?
Edward: Yes, absolutely. And it’s timely because we have our Goody executive off-site happening in my house downstairs right now.
Edward: I think I told you this, I keep a very long list of ideas. There are many things that I would love to be able to work on in my life. And one of them over the last few years has simply come up over and over, which is an easy way to send gifts to people that I care about in my life. I love sending gifts. I have people that I care about in different countries, all over the U.S And in different contexts, professional, personal, all that stuff. And it’s always a lot of work to send a gift. I don’t have their information. I don’t really know what they want. The brands that are available are not that cool. Not that interesting. I know it’s not [inaudible] clever point of entry into building a compelling e-commerce company. Eventually, about a year and a half ago, I teamed up with a very close friend of mine. Who’s an absolute product genius, Mark. And I’d already worked on some things with Mark. He was wrapping up his work at another company. He was finally on the market and I was like, “Oh my God, I need to team up with him.” And we built a prototype for Goody which started off as an app that allows you to send a gift in 10 seconds or less. You open it, you pick one of the products, you tap someone from your contacts, you add a note, it sends it to them. They receive it. They can enter their address and other stuff. They can enter what size the shoe they are. If they wanted the chocolate cookies or the vanilla cookies. You don’t have to pick that for them. And if they don’t want the cookies, they can swap them for something else. So that was the premise we launched as a purely consumer product.
And then, we noticed very quickly that companies love using us. Because every company in the world needs to send gifts to their employees. Both their employees. So both internally and then also their customers, externally sort of like to help close deals or thank them. A lot of the solutions that exist out there pretty clunky not that good. Their selection is not that good. I’m sure you’ve received many holiday gifts from standard companies that you work with financial providers accountants that are like coffee beans and like an ugly mug, or whatever it is and you throw it out. Why not send something you better. It’s not necessarily much about the product. Although, our products are very cool. It is also about the message we really value. We were thinking of you at this moment or if you’re a new employee joining a company or you’re celebrating a milestone. It’s helping sort of be this happiness and engagement platform for employees. So that’s the TLDR. Our business is B2B and consumer, although I think we have more of a focus on B2B now. We’re essentially power and companies to make their employees and customers happy.
John: When did you launch it and how’s it going?
Edward: We launched in mid-December of last year. So we launched eleven months ago. A little bit less than eleven months ago. And it’s going very well. We built an amazing team of thirty-two full-time people and we’re pure software. The team gives us a lot of leverage and we can do a lot of damage with this team. They’re really, really good at we’ve raised three rounds of funding so far with index ventures and [inaudible] great Angels like David Solomon from Goldman Sachs. We did another round recently with SoftBank and we’re growing. There are other players in this market who have been around for years. As usual, a lot of good markets. There’s a bunch of players out there. I think we’re very unique because we started off as a purely consumer company. In the same way as when Sachs arrived for messaging, for businesses people were like, “Wow, this is much better than what I’m used to.” Or when Figma arrives to help people design a lot of things. Those are much nicer than the other folks out there. When Notion arrived for note-taking or when whatever, suddenly people had companies realized they’re allowed to have standards that are the same as at home. When they go back home and they use regular consumer products. The standards are really high because it’s very competitive. Usually, they’re used to clunky software at work because that’s what it is. I think we’re building a consumer-grade employee happiness platform and gifting platform for B2B that has not existed before.
John: For our listeners and viewers who want to find it, they could go to ongoody.com.
Edward: Indeed, yes.
John: Let’s talk a little bit about what interests you. You’ve got so much run. You have a great history behind you and have created some wonderful businesses already which again just continues to be informative. And as you say it also creates velocity in terms of your investment Thesis. What is interest in you? I saw that book behind you. I was going to ask you I’m glad you pulled it down because I’m very interested in that space as well “Longevity.” I’ve read that book. I think that book is wonderful. What are the two or three key topics that you and John, over the next twenty-four to thirty-six months are fascinated by and interested in really doing something meaningful in that space?
Edward: We have some overlap with John and then we have some different areas of interest, which is exciting.
Edward: John, for example, is particularly interested in mental health, mental well-being, and all that stuff. And so we’ve been looking at that space. He wants to start a company in that space, you know that for sure. John also had a dream about a video game that he wanted to start and woke up and message a couple of unity developers in the area and we ended up starting a video game company, which is just pure fun, and why not? It’s exciting and it’s just totally different from anything that we would explore[?] before. I tend to be attracted to consumer ideas. I really loved building things that people around me can use and love. I think it’s fun. I think perhaps it comes from having grown up in France, where a lot of the things that you admire are luxury brands and sort of things that you recognize those around you versus you know has a growing up in Palo Alto or it might be Robotics and other things like that. I like consumer ideas. And then I also believe that if you are in the position where you have the comfort of being able to work on whatever you want to work. You’re not required to work in something just to pay the bills. Then why not work on the things that are most important to the human condition? Why not make the world better and it sounds like a cheesy thing a lot of entrepreneurs talk about. But I do think that there’s a lot of overlap between things that make the world better and great businesses really you can make a lot of money. And, of course, there’re examples of businesses that make a lot of money that are bad for the world, which I would not want to work on.
I think that Misfits is a great example of a company that does great good for the world that prevents food waste that gives people affordable groceries. I think that Goody is an example of something of a product that makes people smile and feel valued. And when you use it in your personal use case a lot of people report feeling like a warm feeling after sending or receiving a Goody, just feeling good. Like they have a connection with a person or employees who received something for their great work. They’re told that they’re really valued and appreciated. I think that it’s a nice sort of way to make people feel valued and loved. The things that I would like to start, I’ve always cared a lot about healthcare. It’s something that we obviously are all impacted by and as we get older, we’re more likely to get some bad diseases and eventually one of these problems will kill all of us and it’s a big deal. I don’t know if I want to necessarily make us live forever, but I do think that why not help people live longer healthier lives. Why not give people the option of getting older in a way where they’re still fit and they can still move around and feel good. And not feel like they’re sort of losing their capacity to do things. So that is a problem for me. All things aside, you get the luxury to work on whatever you want to work on. That sounds fascinating like helping people live longer, healthier lives.
John: You want to democratize the blue zones of the world?
Edward: It’s funny because I’m actually just finishing that book. I’m just finishing the…
John: I told you I’m very interested in this space. That I’ve been very interested in quite some time and working in it in and around that space for quite some time. But is that close to what the…
Edward: Yes, and people should know whether this is actually not planned. It’s funny that you mention that book. I’m literally finishing it right now. Well, the Blue Zone thing is fascinating, and that the premise is that there’s a couple of areas in the world where people generally and there’s a higher rate of centenarians people who live a long and healthy life and healthy centenarians. And what are the common points? And the TLDR is that some of the common points are; that they have a sense of purpose in their work, that they have a sense of community. And that these people do not feel isolated from the world, their friends, their loved ones as they grow older, they’re not ostracized. Of course, there’s some element of like what they eat, which is better than eating junk food. There’s some element of doing healthy physical exercise.
These things are lifestyle things, which I think should be democratized. I think that people totally take care of themselves. I’m drinking turmeric tea here because why not. I think that there’s also hard Science stuff that you can do in terms of maybe replacing organs, or in terms of other sorts of drugs that you can actually take that people are arguing can make you live longer. We’ve already invested with Pareto and several longevity companies. And I would love to start a consumer-facing longevity company that just helps people just overall have a better life.
John: It’s desperately needed.
Edward: And it’s crazy. I’m curious, if you have an opinion on this, I’ve always asked myself like, why do more people not work on this? Because there are so many smart people building businesses in the world. And I love a lot of them. But like for example, I’m wearing little lemon pants. Little lemon is an amazing business but at the end of the day, you’re just making athleisure. Athleisure at the sort of like you’re making clothes and that’s great. But there’s a difference between doing that and building a company that helps people live longer and healthier lives. Why do you think more people do not build these types of important businesses?
John: It’s because sometimes I think it’s very hard. It’s hard and they see that it’s hard and they go for stuff that’s easier. They going for stuff that’s not going to have that much friction. I don’t think it was easy starting. When you read the story and you watch the rise of 23 and me. That was no easy, even though they had unlimited money, obviously, for who they were. But what they’re creating is really what is going to become, targeted medicine company. Targeted with one of the greatest gene pool bases on the planet. I just think it’s tough stuff. And I think also you’re fighting the machine of all the [crosstalk] massive advertising that we all grew up with. Pushing on us, McDonald’s and fast food, and Oreos, and all the wonderful comfort zones that we all grew up with. So, you’re up against it, but I’ve been studying this space. I became a vegetarian when I was seventeen. I am fifty-nine now, Edward. Started plant-based eating around half thirteen years ago. And I know I work with Longevity doctors from my own self. I have MDS and then I have MDS that are holistic Longevity doctors. And there’s so much runway there. It’s really unlimited opportunities there.
Edward: I’m healthy eating. We at Pareto we owned the domain name fastfood.com and we would love to start a healthy food brand around that. We think that that could be very fun. But it’s interesting. Several of them are more successful companies that I’ve been the chance to be a part of like Misfits or another one called Catalina Crunch, which does keto, cereal, and snacks are helping people. Essentially replaced bad habits of eating with good habits, which I think is one of the huge Longevity opportunities.
John: My dear people, I know that brand very well. I love it. I brought it over to my daughter’s house. So my granddaughter could enjoy it. And my wife doesn’t. Nobody in my family knows the difference that that’s not a junk food cereal versus a keto-based cereal with very low sugar in it. It’s unbelievably tasty.
Edward: You want to hear that 30-second story of how our company started?
Edward: My friend, Krishna went to Wharton a few years before me. He was a dual degree student at Wharton engineering, a really smart guy. People who have gone to school with him said that he was probably the smartest person of their year. He worked at a Quant Hedge Fund. He was really suffering for a while trying to start an auto insurance company and could not get it off the ground. He needed to raise too much money to do it and wasn’t able to get the traction. And then after a while, he got fed up and he said, “You know what? I’m going to solve one of my own power problems. I have diabetes.” Which he does. “And I’m tired of not being able to breakfast or snacks. And so I’m going to build a brand that allows me to do that.” And he started people thinking he was crazy. He started baking the cereal in his own Kitchen in New York in his tiny little kitchen. And a lot of the people who had been interested in backing him for the auto insurance idea were not interested in this market. Because who wants the back of cereal company? Not to pat myself on the shoulder but I told myself that I still wanted to work with him because I believe in him and I was his first investor and then help him raise some more money. And of course, now that brand is nationwide and doing incredibly well, which goes back to the earlier point of when you do early investing you cannot be overly analytical. Sometimes you have to be a little loose and say I just believe in this person.
John: The theme that I keep hearing from you though is that you’re somewhat less analytical and you trust your gut and your knowledge of the people more. And what I love about, what your thesis is you bet on people more than just even subject matter that they’re working on.
Edward: Yes, it’s a little strange. I both loved and regret it doing Wharton as an undergrad because it’s such an analytical place to go when you’re eighteen and you’re doing accounting and sort of intense finance and sort of like different models and spreadsheets. I think it might be more interesting to study Physics or Creative Writing or History, or Classics at that age. The people who come out of their office[?] and just incredibly hard-working and analytical, and sharp. I enjoyed those subjects. I enjoyed studying Finance and looking at public companies. But I’ve always loved looking at startups in a little bit less of a rationally disciplined way. And more than an intuitive way, which is strange. You sort of hear a lot of this term of pattern matching. And having done five hundred investments at this point, I’d probably taken over ten thousand meetings, probably more. For better or for worse, I hopped on the phone with someone or I meet with them. And very quickly within a few seconds or a minute, I know whether I’d like to invest in them. That’s not necessarily the same process that you use to figure out what company you want to build. But as far as figuring out whether you want to invest in someone early, I think that that is one of the better methods.
John: It’s fascinating. Since you’re so interested in Longevity, have you adjusted your lifestyle with all the information you’re taking in on Blue Zones? And obviously, you mentioned it’s approximately 7 Blue Zones on the planet right now that they talk about in the book. And the different algorithms that have proven to work for these centenarians and how not to die. What have you absorbed into your own lifestyle at twenty-nine years old, where pretty much most twenty-nine-year-olds you meet still feel indestructible and are carrying on and all sorts of ways that obviously going to catch up to them later on. What have you done to start walking that walk?
Edward: Well, first of all, I think one of the risks that I have and a lot of people have in the U.S. and when they work in a challenging career is, I have a lot of stress. I’m sure you have a lot of stress as well. A lot of things happening. And so that’s one of the things that I’m trying to manage, but there are all sorts of ways of doing that. I’m lucky in that I work out every day. Living in Miami has been great for that. I am going to go play tennis later. I get to play tennis for an hour or two every day. I tend to love eating a healthy Mediterranean diet. I try to order from a plate. I don’t really get the chance to cook much, which is not good. But I tend to order from places that have healthy Mediterranean food. I’m French so I enjoy drinking red wine and I drink it almost daily, which might seem insane but I actually went to see my doctor a few weeks ago. I was asking him that different doctors are different opinions, and I’m sure your Longevity doctors have their own. But I asked about drinking and he said, “I don’t know if doctors ever told you this. There’s a J curve for drinking.” Which essentially is a chart that shows the expected mortality rates and so on with men and women.
Some studies show you’re going to live longer if there’s a correlation between having a couple of drinks today and living longer. For men, I believe it was 2 to 3. For women, it was more closer to 1. There can be a debate around this, but it might be linked in terms of having a couple of drinks a day just simply helping people relax, loosen stress, and then also sort of antioxidants that go with that. Then also alcohol breaking down things and fights diabetes and other problems like that.
I think that’s another one. And then I do think maintaining its link to the people that I get to work with or that I’m maintaining very close social relationships is the most important thing. I’m sure when you like everyone else, when you feel [inaudible] and not close to your loved ones and not loved, you’re not going to feel good. When you feel warm and surrounded by people that you love you feel good. It’s pretty simple, we’re kind of like plants. We want to get food. We want to have sun exposure, all that stuff. These are some simple ingredients at least for part one. I think there’s a lot more that can be done.
John: It’s funny you bring up your friend who started the cereal company because he had diabetes. The New York Times just reported a fascinating story. I believe a part of the beginning of game-changing in long-term healthcare, the issue of stem cells. And they talked about this weekend. They wrote a huge article on the first stem cell breakthrough when it comes to diabetes and patient number 1 literally type 1 diabetes fully resolved with the stem cell breakthrough that they’ve made, which is the thing massive.
Edward: That’s incredible. I wonder what lab or a result that this came from. I know someone else very interesting in this Longevity space who believes that there simply is not enough funding that goes into some of these efforts. To some extent, yes, you need to make these lifestyle changes, but then you also need to back these scientific experiments and you need to give them more exposure. Because a lot of these breakthroughs are going to happen in the lab like fighting diabetes, fighting diseases, printing new organs if they fail whatever it might be. I think you just need to actually get the right ideas and people fund it.
John: I’ll send you that article later today. So you have it and you could read it. I think you’ll enjoy it and get a lot out of it. And explains the labs that it came from.
We have a lot of listeners and viewers are going to watch us around the world and say, “I want to apply to Edward’s company to get funded. I want to make sure this is done in an orderly way. Walk them through again what your expectations are and how to even apply on your website. To even have their voice heard.
Edward: If you want funding for your company, you can go to pareto20.com. And there’s a form for precede funding and you can apply. And then, if you want to talk to me about Longevity, anything like that, you can either direct message me on Twitter. I’m at Edward Lando. You can also email me to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I want to start one or several companies in Longevity. I want my back to a lot of companies in healthcare. That’s definitely a space of particular interest. So please reach out.
John: And for our listeners and viewers who also want to partake in and enjoy your newest brand, Goody. They can go to www.ongoody.com. [crosstalk]
Edward: If you’re a company, you can go there. And you can sign up for a business and start gifting to your employees or to your customers, especially with this holiday season. If you want to use it in your own personal use case, you can go to the App Store on your phone and just look up Goody. And we are the gifting app on there.
John: Edward, when you write the check and this is something you do a lot. So that’s why I’m going to ask you. The young entrepreneurs, of course, are very happy and it’s a big day in his or her life. What are the parting words on that day that you give them once you write that first check? What’s the guidance that you give them for what is becoming the beginning of the journey?
Edward: A couple of answers. I would say one is, you can learn from what other successful precede funds and programs have done. I think Y Combinator does this well. I believe that the reason that these programs do well is that they simply encourage people to push harder in their programs for a few months. There are all sorts of these accelerators. They just encourage them to work harder. They create a little bit of a sense of competition with their other companies around them. Everyone’s reporting and weekly growth metrics and they feel like that the push more. So people make a lot of progress when they’re put in cohorts and when they are asked to quantify their progress in some ways. Encouraging people to quantify things as hard as that might be early on. Reporting on it [inaudible] to us, not because we’re going to do anything necessarily. But because we’d like to keep them accountable for making some progress as one.
People make fun of me, my friends make fun of me for I use the word aggression a lot. And I love people who push more or more aggressive. I think people should move faster generally than they actually move. Most people do not have enough of a sense of urgency. I may be particularly allergic to that because I grew up in Europe and I think that Europe is wonderful, but it’s a little bit too slow. I love it. When I go to back home to France or when I go to Italy you enjoy your meal and it takes forever. You’re asking if you can get the main dish now or whatever. Let’s wait until the first course is fully done. They’re taking their time. I think you need a start-up plan to move faster. So, that’s another thing.
Another word of encouragement. In general, you’ll be a little bit crazier. As you said earlier, people build all sorts of businesses. I think a lot of people don’t allow themselves to sort of be ambitious enough and I do really believe that. And I guess once we invest, it’s too late to have them change often or change what they work on. I think that it’s just as hard to build a very ambitious company as it is to build like a decently ambitious one or maybe just a tiny bit harder to build a rocket company. You might as well do the hard stuff.
John: I love it. And for that, we’re going to leave it, but we’re going to have you back. Edward, to share that just Journey you’ve got so much to do in front of you and you’ve already done so much in the rearview mirror, but we want to have you back here to continue this discussion for our listeners and viewers again to find Edward, John and their partners and colleagues go to www.pareto20.com. You can go to find Goody, go to ongoody.com. If you really want to see a fun website with a lot of inspiration on it. You could check out Edward’s omelet[? ]website at edwardlando.com. It’s got a lot of inspiration, a lot of what drives him, and a lot of what’s informed him in his very young, but very successful life.
Edward, thanks for making the impact you’re making. You are truly an inspiration, and I’m so grateful that you shared some time with us today on the Impact podcast.
Edward: Thank you, John. Let’s catch up at some point in 2022 and see what progress we made.
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