It's A Wrap

The Gotham Gal ends 2013 looking into the future and thinking about how her porfolio companies will grow next year. I am similarly minded as we wrap 2013. I am excited about 2014, and in particular the big opportunities that await many of our portfolio companies. 

I/we have a view about what is coming and I tried to lay that out at LeWeb earlier this month. We continue to look for investments in companies that fit into that view of the world.

But for me, it is the development of the companies we have already invested in that is always the most interesting work. And there are a bunch of them that are poised to have very big years in 2014 so that is what I woke up thinking about today and what I am most excited about professionally.

I am also very happy to have finally wound down Flatiron Partners, our previous venture capital firm, in 2013. My partners and I continue to hold interests in a few of our remaining portfolio companies but the business of Flatiron Partners has been wound down, 17 years after we started it, and that is a great relief to me personally. 

Like the Gotham Gal, I am also thinking about our impending empty nest status. This is something the two of us have been thinking about and to some extent planning for since 2007. Raising our family has been front and center for us for almost 25 years now and that phase is coming to an end in 2014. This means we can travel more, work more and less at the same time, and be more opportunistic about our lifestyle. I am looking forward to that.

We are spending New Years in Mexico then flying back to NYC tomorrow to start 2014. I am refreshed, relaxed, and ready for 2014.

#Blogging On The Road

Comments (Archived):

  1. Valarie Welte

    Happy new year all.Disqus needs a new year resolution so very urgently. I wonder if this comment will add up to 97th comment

  2. awaldstein

    I wish you a great New Years Fred.I feel personally amazingly fortunate. Great family, terrific friends, focused and healthy–and equally, excited by my work.And so lucky to be able to live in New York.

    1. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      True that ….though i have been a visitor from philly from 1997-1999…

    2. Donna Brewington White

      Happy Early Birthday!

      1. awaldstein


        1. Dave Pinsen

          When’s your birthday?

          1. awaldstein

            soon enough.i’m thinking of pleasant things like the choices for the evening for drinks, now complete and in process.

          2. Dave Pinsen

            Enjoy. Mine is in January as well.

          3. Donna Brewington White

            When? Happy Birthday!

          4. Dave Pinsen

            Thanks. Same as MLK’s.

    3. Kirsten Lambertsen

      Great picture! We had a very similar view tonight from friends’ house in Weekhawken. I don’t need any more than that view on NYE. Every time I see NYC, it’s like the first time. Total love!Happy New Year to everyone here πŸ™‚

  3. pointsnfigures

    HNY. Fun to have a cleaner slate. Empty nests are fun. Different, but fun.

  4. leigh

    Happy New Year to the entire AVC community. Always a great and interesting part of my day πŸ™‚

    1. Donna Brewington White

      “Interesting” is a loaded word.

      1. leigh

        Interesting is the best word πŸ™‚

    2. Aaron Klein

      +1. Happy New Year, everyone!

  5. tad


  6. LE

    This means we can travel more, work more and less at the same timeWhile this might not make sense to many people “work while traveling, huh???” it makes plenty of sense and resonates with me.What could possibly be better than being able to enjoy what you do to the extent that you like, and most importantly can and want to do it, while you are traveling?To me that is the ultimate lifestyle freedom. Back when my wife used to drag me to the beach I used to run off to check emails (and other things) at the Starbucks. On a sunny day. And I liked to do that.The first business that I had (circa 80’s) [1] was the type that if you went away you were totally disconnected from the day to day operations. I didn’t take a trip for +-6 years after starting iirc. Forgetting even connectivity (didn’t exist back then other than dial up to a Unix system which actually was pretty cool) you really needed to be on site all the time to keep in top of things. And make sure nothing got screwed up or you didn’t lose a “big” customer. A big customer that took you 6 months to land. In a world where you could only sell locally (at least with what we did at the time). [1] 17 years ago with what I am doing now (or at least part of what I do) it was the same. You didn’t have the connectivity to conduct business remotely as easily as can be done today. Even a bit later hotel rooms didn’t yet have wifi you needed to bring an ethernet cable and sometimes had to connect at the internet cafe.

    1. fredwilson

      Exactly what I meant. I am glad you got it.

  7. RichardF

    Happy new year AVC good health to you all in 2014, personally one of my favourite times of the year, its time to party!

  8. William Mougayar

    Any Bitcoin predictions or wishes for 2014 beyond what you said at LeWeb?That’s probably one of the most controversial segment of investment. It will either crash or take-off. Or will it continue to linger? Is 2014 the year when Bitcoin goes mainstream?As for Twitter, my prediction is it will reach $300 as a stock by end of 2014. They are starting to know a lot about us, same as Google knows, but differently.Bonne Annee, Happy New Year, Feliz ano Nuevo, Buon anno.

    1. fredwilson

      I am terrible at predicting prices and time frames. I am better at getting the trend right

      1. William Mougayar

        Ah, May the trend be your friend πŸ˜‰

  9. Mittromney

    The competitive advantage of $$.

  10. Donna Brewington White

    What a refreshing, hopeful, energetic post. Happy New Year, Fred! Thank you for another meaningful and inspiring year and for keeping the doors open for us.Pretty much every year for the past five or so I have been very glad to say goodbye to the year! But I can’t remember when I’ve felt more encouraged and excited about a new one. Bring it!

    1. Aaron Klein

      +1 and Happy New Year to you Donna. πŸ™‚

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Happy New Year, Aaron! I’ve been a little scarce lately in the places where I typically “see” you, but you are always a bright spot.

    2. Kirsten Lambertsen

      Happy New Year, Donna πŸ™‚

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Happy New Year, Kirsten!

  11. takingpitches

    In a year, where my wife and I just “built” (moved to the house in BK) and “filled” the nest (with the twins), while starting the new company, it was fun to read GG’s and your post about making it out the other side, although I am in no rush!Happy New Year to you Fred and the entire gang here!

    1. fredwilson


    2. ShanaC

      Sounds like a great year πŸ™‚

  12. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    We always wish for a good year … May that be 2014….

  13. Cam MacRae

    Happy New Year! Here’s to living the dream in 2014.SlΓ‘inte!

  14. Mike

    There is a 36% chance they will be back home before you know it, probably starting a business in the dining room.

    1. fredwilson

      I would love that but am not expecting it or planning for it.

      1. LE

        If the kids live at home they will inevitably ask for advice and/or you will be tempted to help them and give them to much advice because of what you know.Best thing I ever did was not ask my Dad for advice (other than what I learned from him obviously prior to going out on my own or when working for him in high school). That way I got to make mistakes, had to think all the time, and learned so much more.And he thought differently anyway. I remember when I wanted to lease a machine and told him and he said “do you have the business for it yet?”. Didn’t understand production and equipment.He was in a different business where you bought inventory (importer) so he didn’t understand the concept of buying a fixed asset to do work. And how it was chicken and egg. Had I listened to him things would have turned out much differently.Anyway bottom line is I am a firm believer in the value of not being a “crutch of all answers”. Not to mention the fact that with the internet there is already to much of an easy way out in figuring out many of the things you need to know. (But with that you don’t develop a seat of the pants feel for nuance “it all depends”).I’m not saying give no help at all but make sure not to encourage a lazy brain. [1][1] My dad used to play a guessing game with me where it could take an hour until I came up with the answer. He refused to let me just say “give me the answer”. I use this everyday now and I’m glad he “tortured” me so much back then.

        1. pointsnfigures

          you have to have the courage to “let them fail”-very often hard to bite your tongue.

  15. LIAD

    Empty nest….Chez Wilson. The newest and best pied-a-terre in NYC. Reservation hotline opening soon.

    1. fredwilson

      The plan is to have a few of them around the US and other parts too

      1. Jim Peterson

        Just use Airbnb! Go anywhere.

  16. BillMcNeely

    I loved your hopeful post this morning.Even though you are looking to the future you do seemed a bit sad that the house is emptying out a bit.My Dad and I argued this morning over my situation and how he wants his empty nest back and how that’s going to happen. It was not pretty. It’s complex.

    1. fredwilson

      I feel for both of you on that one

    2. ShanaC

      The economy killed so many people. Iwonder…

  17. Eddie Wharton

    Congrats on the closure (Flatiron) and new challenges

  18. matthughes

    Good stuff Fred.Kudos to you and everyone in the AVC community for the great insights and inspiration in 2013.

  19. Tom Labus

    Happy New Year Fred and to all of the AVC community.It took us a while but empty nest is pretty good but in reality they may be out of the house but never out of mind.

    1. fredwilson

      For sure

  20. ShanaC

    Happy New Years!Now if only I knew the lyrics to Aud Long Sang?Meanwhile I get to :Fully launchlearn to balance on my tippy toes. In 2013 IFinally started a companyPerfected pie crust.Onto the next things!

    1. Kirsten Lambertsen

      Wait… you *perfected pie crust*??? πŸ˜‰ Happy New Year, Shana. See you IRL soon.

  21. Dave Pinsen

    Like they used to say about Nixon, Fred will be tanned, rested, and ready.

  22. Carl Rahn Griffith

    Entropy is a beautiful thing. Best wishes, all … X

  23. JLM

    .Happy New Year to the entire community and to our master of ceremonies the much imitated but the original Fred Wilson — bar keep extraordinaire.2014 is going to be YOUR year — make it so.Best wishes for peace on Earth, your personal safety, prosperity and good works.Hope ya’ll drown in love!On Earth as it is in Texas!JLM and the Big Red Car http://www.themusingsofthebigredca….

    1. Tom Labus

      all the best @JLM:disqus

      1. Richard

        Happy New Year.

  24. Richard

    Best Headline of the Year. You nailed it!

  25. Kirsten Lambertsen

    Happy New Year to you and everyone at AVC πŸ™‚ You guys were a big part of my 2013. Thank you!

  26. Pete Griffiths

    A fond hope that ’empty nesting’ will mean more freedom πŸ™‚

  27. Matt Zagaja

    Happy (belated) New Years Everyone!

  28. Tracey Jackson

    The thing is Fred, the nest is never entirely empty. They may change trees, but they keep returning to the mother ship, You will have them around as long as you are! Happy New Year and Happy Birthday!

    1. fredwilson


  29. Dave

    Congrats on getting Flatiron wound down. A pioneering fund. I’m always amazed at how long it takes to wind-down a VC fund or VC investment portfolio. I still have investments and funds from 2000-2003 that are not fully written down so they continue to show up on my taxes.

    1. fredwilson

      It took us 17 years. I don’t think that is unusual