- lool Ventures – Early-stage investing
- Twitter – @maxmarine – 1000 followers
- Twitter – @loolvc – 2000 followers
- LinkedIn | “So you wana raise a seed” – Youtube Music Video
- Medium Blog
- Believes that a differentiator for non-established venture funds will be content. I agree!
Max Marine is a comedian. Or at least, that’s what I think he’d be great at (as well as being a VC)! I believe it takes a lot for anyone to do anything as audacious as a rap song, nevertheless, a video of rapping! I wouldn’t even try and I consider myself someone who loves experiments!
This is probably the first thing you’ll find when you google Max Marine, he’s the VC rapper! And from what I can gather, he’s the first-ever to go pro on the rapping scene combining venture capital. OK OK, so it sounds like he’s mostly a rapper and less VC, but that’s not the truth. The truth is, he’s an American, who found himself in Israel after a life-changing trip visiting there as a volunteer teaching English and he wanted to make it his home away from home. He began work experience at a pension fund, and slowly but surely got involved more and more in tech working at a consulting firm that helped Israeli startups and the startup scene in the USA. After working for a venture fund iAngels for a while he earned his keep and not too long ago, joined his current firm, lool Ventures.
“A career actually helping people instead of properties appreciate in value seemed more aligned with my personality. I’m a people-person at heart.”Max Marine | VCHunting S3E5
So what kept him in Israel as a place to live and do great work with startups? Was it the ladies or the industry? “Both” seemed to be the answer!
“Israel has been called the Startup Nation for decades because there is so much innovation here. I talked to so many entrepreneurs who told me their dreams and future and all these software products and I was blown away by their energy. Either you feel it or you don’t, and I felt it.”Max Marine | VCHunting S3E5
Max also felt that he can provide unique value to the Israeli tech startup world because he speaks English. Something that I didn’t know about! Being able to be a bridge for Israeli startups to other English-speaking countries is a powerful value-add.
“In life, we’re always looking for our angle, how we can be different and compete in a crowded market and seeing the opportunity to really help be a bridge between the Israeli market and the US market captured my interests… and yeh the ladies also.”Max Marine | VCHunting S3E5
So what is lool Ventures all about? Apparently, from the lool website, it’s a Hebrew word that means “hatchery, or a place where things are born and raised.” – However, they are trying to get away from that moniker, and focusing more on the 1’s and 0’s, code:
“The brand really is more about the 1001, which is binary code, which is digital, what we’re all about, investing in the ones and zeros that power everything around us. At the same time, this idea of taking something from it’s embryonic stage all the way to maturity is a nice metaphor for what the venture business is all about.”Max Marine | VCHunting S3E5
What Max loves the most about working with lool is the autonomy they give him, the freedom to create and do new things. This also gives Max the opportunity to figure out where he provides the most value as a member of the team. Everything they do at lool Ventures is a team effort, and there is no ego around who’s deal is whose. This type of atmosphere allowed Max to try his hand at pitching the GP’s an idea to do a rap about venture capital:
“I was in a monthly deal flow meeting with the partners where we discuss strategy and how to get in front of entrepreneurs at the right time and I told them to check out my OG rap video. They were laughing out loud, and I said that I think that this would be a cool format to create something about venture. At the time I didn’t really know what that would look like. They gave me the yellow light (not green).”Max Marine | VCHunting S3E5
What was born was a creation wholly new in the venture fund scene, a legitimate venture capitalist going above and beyond and creating a (very) fun rap music video(s) with even more to come! This is what I appreciated the most about Max’s story and this seemingly small (but to me) very large opportunity: content creation for the venture world. Exactly what I am doing now!
I believe we’re entering into a world of venture capital where video content+ will the differentiating factor for Tier 2 funds. While the large funds like Andreesen, Redpoint, and First Round are doing a great job with content creation (and with media teams to support it), almost all other funds are doing a terrible job at content creation. How will they attract deal flow? How will they find new startups to invest in beyond the usual channels? It is my argument that content should be at the forefront of any venture fund, and I believe that lool Ventures and Max are already doing it right:
“Creating a rap video allowed me to think even bigger, and what else can I rap about that I’m passionate about? And maybe the world needs to hear this message because their too impatient to read a book or a blog post. Maybe this is the new format for communication that is sharable and accessible, and digestible. That led to me writing the Startup Nation rap.”Max Marine | VCHunting S3E5
I couldn’t agree more with Max’s statements above. We now live in a mobile-first video-first world where the young entrepreneurs and founders will be going to video before they read, anything! To create a competitive advantage, content is king.
“The VC industry historically hasn’t had the same dynamics when it comes to content marketing, driving leads, conversions, and awareness. It’s been much more, hey, you come to us, and we get to decide. I think that’s the real shift that’s happening. We might see a shakeout in the next couple of years because there is an oversupply of capital, and an undersupply of quality assets. VC funds really need to differentiate.”Max Marine | VCHunting S3E5
It was my pleasure to get Max’s perspective on the value of content creation for venture funds and it gave me a ton to think about as a content creator for the venture media world.
I see great things happening for Max Marine in the future and I’ll definitely be rooting for him! I’ll also be sure to tweet out his next VC rap video as well.
Enjoy my retrospective!
Max Marine VC Rapper Social Media
Ah, the thrill of the hunt!