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Sparking Innovation

We need to find and fund moonshots.

Somewhere around mid-2020, we came across Jay Zaveri’s “World’s Hardest Problems”. Those got us thinking – how do we begin to solve these?

In Jay’s own words: “The wonder of the world’s hardest problems is they're all meta problems that can be broken down into many sub-problems that are important questions themselves. The second thing is they don't have any preconceived solutions hidden in them. But there could many companies that might need to exist to solve each problem.”

So again - how do we find these “many companies”? How do we find the right people – the dreamers, the believers, the thinkers, the doers? How do we fund moonshots, maybe even from the ideas stage?

Before we attempt to answer these questions, a step back in time to meet with Thomas Edison, one of the most prolific inventors of all time, with the incandescent light bulb, the phonograph, and the motion picture to his name, and who also further built upon the telegraph and telephone. In his lifetime, he acquired an astounding 1093 patents, across many different industries. Closer to the present, Steve Jobs disrupted six different industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing and digital publishing. You might add a seventh: retailing, which Jobs did not quite revolutionize but did reimagine. In the now, we have Elon Musk rewriting the rules of transportation, space technology, solar energy, satellite internet, telecommunications, artificial intelligence, robotics, medicine, infrastructure – the list goes on.

This isn’t new.

In 1925, AT&T and Western Electric founded Bell Labs, and assembled scientists and engineers from different disciplines to advance the field of telecommunications. Bell Labs invented the transistor, the first lasers and photovoltaic cells, winning nine Nobel prizes in the process. Ever since, corporate research labs, such as Xerox PARC, Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works, DuPont’s Experimental Station, have played a central role in producing breakthrough inventions. Of course, Alphabet (Google X), Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon etc. all have corporate research labs, albeit in different shapes and forms.

You can see where we are going with this – the point is that pathbreaking innovation happens with multi-disciplinary knowledge and with multi-disciplinary teams.

Innovation is the alchemy that happens when creativity and passion and determination meet – with freedom. It is the result of ideas, both pursued deliberately but also through serendipity, accidentally, unplanned through conversations and experimentation – the microwave, the Post-it, penicillin, X-ray, Champagne, pap smear, Botox are just a few.

And this is why you are here. This is why we are here. So together we can spark innovation through an exchange of ideas, thoughts, knowledge to drive change – and create, find and fund moonshots to solve the world’s hardest problems. This is merely the beginning of even bigger things in store.

To begin with, we have on board angel investors and VCs – some of whom have been most generous with their time and money, and agreed to not only fund ideas, but also advise those of you who might want to launch startups, and bounce ideas off them.

And what’s on the cards in the days ahead? There is much, much more - just believe this. It's going to be a turbocharged, high-octane ride for all of us. What you see now is the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Fasten your seatbelts real tight for this drive!

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