John Collison is an Irish entrepreneur. He is best known for having co-founded Stripe with his brother, Patrick. The brothers are worth at least $1.1 billion each, after San Francisco-based Stripe raised $150 million from CapitalG, an investment division of Google parent company Alphabet, and General Catalyst Partners.
My guest today is John Collison, the Co-Founder of the digital payments company Stripe. Stripe’s mission is to increase the GDP of the internet, a lofty and deeply interesting pursuit. John is clearly a voracious learner across business and investing, which you’ll hear instantly. He started Stripe with his brother Patrick when he was just 19 years old, and has grown it to, at last valuation, a $36B business. In our conversation, we discuss conglomerates, the internet economy, the power of writing, and why board members are like Pokémon characters, each with different powers. It’s a lively and wide-ranging conversation with one of the entrepreneurs I’ve most enjoyed speaking with. Please enjoy.   For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast. Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag   Show Notes (1:30) – (First question) – Interest in industrial conglomerates (9:10) – Their thinking on acquisitions vs starting new companies (11:42) – How the payment landscape looked when Stripe was started (15:55) – View on the internet economy (20:09) – Exciting possibilities for the future of the internet economy (22:11) – The forces of size vs speed among startups (26:53) – Driving reasons why employees choose Stripe starting with clear communication (28:55) – Tips for better internal communications (30:09) – The importance of rigor in Stripe’s corporate culture (32:15) – Investors and investing styles that are most intriguing to him (36:02) – Teaching vs experiencing business lessons (37:56) – Lessons from going to market with new ideas (50:58) – Allowing teams to explore new ideas at Stripe (44:11) – Best startup companies to study to understand the history of this space             (44:52) – Softwar: An Intimate Portrait of Larry Ellison and Oracle             (48:18) – Cable Cowboy: John Malone and the Rise of the Modern Cable Business (48:43) – Infrastructures of internet businesses that are missing (52:03) – Does general accounting practices need to change to capture the true value of a company like Stripe (1:01:53) – Shared playbooks in Silicon Valley (1:02:02) – The transition to the no code movement (1:08:22) – Other businesses that pique his interest outside of software (1:10:21) – Future trends that excite him (1:11:10) – First memory when he felt like he was participating in the tech economy (1:12:46 – The role of board members (1:15:48) – Kindest thing anyone has done for him (1:18:49) – Advice for young people Learn More For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.  Sign up for the book club, where you’ll get a full investor curriculum and then 3-4 suggestions every month at InvestorFieldGuide.com/bookclub Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_oshag
Brothers Patrick and John Collison founded and sold their first company before they turned 20. They created software to help eBay users manage inventory online, which set them on a path to help make e-commerce frictionless. Today, John and Patrick are the founders of Stripe, a software company that used just a few lines of code to power the payment system of companies like Lyft, Warby Parker, and Target. PLUS in our post-script "How You Built That," we check back with Kirby Erdely, who saw a problem with flying beach umbrellas and developed a new kind of tent stake—with a twist.
Brothers Patrick and John Collison founded and sold their first company before they turned 20. They created software to help eBay users manage inventory online, which set them on a path to help make e-commerce frictionless. Today, John and Patrick are the founders of Stripe, a software company that uses just a few lines of code to power the payment system of companies like Lyft, Warby Parker and Target. Plus, for our postscript "How You Built That," how Robert Armstrong turned his grandma's cookie recipe into "G Mommas," buttery, bite-sized pecan-chocolate-chip cookies that are now sold in stores across the Southeast U.S.
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Creator Details

Birthdate
Aug 6th, 1990
Episode Count
3
Podcast Count
2
Total Airtime
2 hours, 47 minutes
PCID
Podchaser Creator ID logo 323396