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Mike Duboe

Mike brings a growth-focused mindset to early-stage investments in commerce, marketplace, and vertical software businesses.

mike duboe
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Growth is about building systems to accelerate a company’s pace of learning. The founders I love to work with have an obsessive growth mindset. They experiment, learn, and iterate with increasing velocity.

Driven by curiosity

Learning velocity has been the north star for many of my decisions in life. I grew up a voraciously curious kid. I loved to take things apart and find interesting new ways to rebuild them – including my parents’ car, much to their chagrin! This curiosity led me to study engineering. In my view, most of the interesting, complex problems to solve are actually people problems – and this led me to shift into Industrial Engineering and study complex systems.

While I didn’t initially realize it, working on growth within startups was the perfect progression for me. When done well, growth is a systems engineering function. It uses rigorous cross-functional experimentation to set the learning drumbeat for a company. And this translates to personal life – a growth mindset means one’s objective is never reached. I am on my own journey to continually refine myself and master a craft, yet derive most of my joy from immersing with founders on their journeys and helping them realize the best versions of themselves.

The importance of focus

My two most formative startup chapters were essentially inverses on one key point: focus. In building Tilt, our failure to realize full potential was ultimately due to lack of focus. Growth was humming across multiple dimensions, and multiple customer segments. We were well-capitalized, high-energy, and high-ambition. Trying to pursue three business lines at once was ultimately our achilles heel. So when I joined Stitch Fix to build out the growth team, I was most attracted to a highly disciplined, constrained approach. There were many ways we could have expanded into market adjacencies early, but we didn’t – we built a solid foundation of highly retentive customers within one defined segment, and layered on growth from there.

When I meet with founders, especially those building marketplaces, I rarely pay attention to TAM. Instead, I look for a unique insight on a constrained market, with deep empathy for initial customers and a plan to build liquidity within. From there, expansion becomes much easier.

Obsessive founders

One quality that I seek out in founders is obsessiveness. For better and for worse, I’ve also grown up an obsessive person – from following my favorite band for ~100 shows to scouring forums to nail the perfect off-beaten-path backpacking trip. Many founders are so dedicated that they literally can’t sleep until they see a vision of the world come to reality. Like many qualities, obsessiveness can be taken too far and cause one to lose sight of the big picture or leave one (and one’s team) feeling depleted if a goal isn’t achieved. But when I encounter a founder who is clearly dedicated to her life’s work, this obsessiveness and relentlessness actually creates energy in a way that is highly contagious. It’s no surprise that obsessive founders attract obsessive teams. The best founders I work with are deeply curious & steeped in their market, yet maniacally driven to reinvent it.

Investing in B2B commerce, marketplaces, and vertical software gives me opportunities to spend time with many founders who have one foot stepped in industry and the other in technology. This is a unique balance to strike, but when it’s found, it can be magical.

One lens into obsession is what one spends free time on. Steve Sewell at Builder is a great example. He’s a developer building for developers, and spends his weekends tinkering on a new open-source framework or obsessively reading & replying to customer feedback. Front-end development is clearly his calling, and this shows in the product, in his content, and resulting community evangelism that has formed around Builder/Qwik.

Portfolio Companies

Beek Logo

The audio content marketplace for non-English speaking markets.

Domain

Consumer, Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

Mexico City

link
Builderio Logo

Headless no-code platform.

Domain

Infrastructure, Marketplace & Commerce, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Corinne Riley

LEADERSHIP

HQ

Distributed

link
inventa logo

Inventa is a B2B marketplace that connects brands & retailers in Latam.

Domain

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

São Paulo, Brazil

link
lithos logo

Lithos transforms farmland into carbon capture centers.

Domain

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

Seattle, WA

link
magic eden logo

Home to the next generation of digital creators.

Domain

Fintech & Crypto, Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

HQ

Mountain View, CA | USA

link
novi logo

Your goods, made great.

Domain

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

HQ

Distributed

link
Pepper Logo

The eCommerce platform for food distributors.

Domain

Marketplace & Commerce, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

New York City, NY | Remote

link
pinata logo

Your Home for NFT Media.

Domain

Fintech & Crypto, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

HQ

link
Postscript Logo

SMS marketing for growing Shopify stores.

Domain

Marketplace & Commerce, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Series B

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

Postscript is a fully remote company.

link
RabbitHole Logo

A learning platform for users to become contributors in web3.

Domain

Consumer, Fintech & Crypto

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

HQ

New York, NY

link
Treat Logo

AI platform for eCommerce marketers and designers.

Domain

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

New York, NY

link
Tydo Logo

Analytics for high-growth ecommerce brands and agencies.

Domain

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

link
Vori Logo

Vori makes supermarkets more efficient by connecting data across the food supply chain and digitizing workflows and analog data.

Domain

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

HQ

link
Beek Logo

The audio content marketplace for non-English speaking markets.

Beek’s mission is to empower people to live the life of their dreams through their headphones. We do this by helping local creators share and monetize the best audio content, and by helping users discover, listen, and remember it. At Beek, we’re building the audio content marketplace for all non-English speaking markets currently underserved in local language content, starting with the 572 million Hispanics in the world.

DOMAIN

Consumer, Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Pamela Valdés, CEO & Co-founder

Guillermo Sequeira, CPO & Co-founder 


HQ

Mexico City

Builderio Logo

Headless no-code platform.

Builder.io is a drag and drop visual builder that works with any site, app, and ecommerce store. It enables digital teams — ecommerce, product, marketing, growth — to move faster by breaking free from constantly relying on developers.

DOMAIN

Infrastructure, Marketplace & Commerce, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Corinne Riley

LEADERSHIP

Steve Sewell, Co-Founder & CEO

Brent Locks, Co-Founder & COO

HQ

Distributed

inventa logo

Inventa is a B2B marketplace that connects brands & retailers in Latam.

Inventa is a B2B marketplace that connects brands and retailers on a easy to use platform, offering a comprehensive portfolio at suitable prices, empowering and supporting them to grow their business with less financial risk.

DOMAIN

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Marcos Salama, Founder & CEO

Fernando Carrasco, Co-founder & CDO

Laura Camargo, Co-Founder, CFO & People

HQ

São Paulo, Brazil

lithos logo

Lithos transforms farmland into carbon capture centers.

Carbon removal using the power of enhanced rock weathering. We accelerate mineral weathering by spreading basalt on croplands to increase dissolved inorganic carbon with eventual storage as ocean carbonates. Our technology uses novel soil models and machine learning to maximize CO₂ removal while boosting crop growth.

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Mary Yap, CEO & Co-Founder

Dr. Chris Reinhard, co-CTO & Co-Founder

Dr. Noah Planavsky, co-CTO & Co-Founder

HQ

Seattle, WA

magic eden logo

Home to the next generation of digital creators.

Magic Eden is the #1 NFT marketplace on Solana. Our mission is to be the destination for discovering, trading, and creating NFTs. In its first two months since launch, Magic Eden has done ~$200M in trading volume to become the dominant NFT platform on Solana.

DOMAIN

Fintech & Crypto, Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

Zhouxun Yin, Co-Founder

Jack Lu, Co-Founder

HQ

Mountain View, CA | USA

novi logo

Your goods, made great.

Novi Connect is a secure platform and marketplace for brands, manufacturers, and suppliers to develop products that meet all the complexities of today’s market faster and with total transparency. Novi provides brands and manufacturers access to a data rich, transparent experience where they can discover, purchase and manage materials to develop products end-to-end. For suppliers, Novi helps market and sell their ingredients and raw materials, and streamline communication with their partners.

DOMAIN

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

Kimberly Shenk, Founder & CEO

HQ

Distributed

Pepper Logo

The eCommerce platform for food distributors.

Pepper is the eCommerce platform for food distributors. Thousands of restaurants, grocery stores, and convenience stores, across N. America, order from their distributors on an ordering system that’s powered by Pepper. On average, food distributors using Pepper see 14% sales growth and 77% reduction in order entry time.

DOMAIN

Marketplace & Commerce, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Bowie Cheung, Co-Founder

Chetan Narain, Co-Founder

Ivana Tesanovic, Co-Founder

HQ

New York City, NY | Remote

pinata logo

Your Home for NFT Media.

Pinata’s mission is to help creators provide an experience worth paying for.

DOMAIN

Fintech & Crypto, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

Kyle Tut, CEO

Matt Ober, CTO

Postscript Logo

SMS marketing for growing Shopify stores.

Postscript is the leading ecommerce SMS platform that enables brands to communicate and engage with customers through text message marketing. Built to connect directly with Shopify and Shopify Plus merchants, Postscript provides technology for brands to segment lists, create deep data flows, and respect the inbox of consumers.

DOMAIN

Marketplace & Commerce, SaaS

FIRST PARTNERED

Series B

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Adam Turner, CEO

Colin Turner, COO

Alex Beller, President

HQ

Postscript is a fully remote company.

RabbitHole Logo

A learning platform for users to become contributors in web3.

In a space of immense speculation and infinite noise, RabbitHole is paving the way for web3 users to become contributors in DAOs. RabbitHole equips users with on-chain credentials that represent their proven learnings based on their immutable wallet transaction history. DAOs use these on-chain credentials from RabbitHole to filter for contributor talent that wants to participate in DAOs rather than speculate on tokens.

DOMAIN

Consumer, Fintech & Crypto

FIRST PARTNERED

Series A

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe, Christine Kim

LEADERSHIP

Brian Flynn, CEO

HQ

New York, NY

Treat Logo

AI platform for eCommerce marketers and designers.

Treat empowers D2C marketers and brands to unlock the power of their data to fuel creative strategies, effortlessly generate high quality on-brand visuals, and achieve true personalization at scale. Treat’s AI intelligently uncovers the creative concepts that resonate with your target audience and combines them with customer behavior, preferences, and demographic data to generate highly personalized content that drives results.

DOMAIN

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Matt Osman, Co-Founder & CEO

Hugh Hunter, Co-Founder & CTO

HQ

New York, NY

Tydo Logo

Analytics for high-growth ecommerce brands and agencies. Think of us as your data team.

Tydo organizes complex data for DTC brands into rich and intuitive dashboards. Data that you can use to make clear decisions and take deliberate action on. Data that moves with the currents of your business.

DOMAIN

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Scott Sonneborn

Manav Kohli

Vori Logo

Vori makes supermarkets more efficient by connecting data across the food supply chain and digitizing workflows and analog data.

Vori makes supermarkets more efficient by connecting data across the food supply chain and digitizing workflows and analog data.

DOMAIN

Marketplace & Commerce

FIRST PARTNERED

Seed

CURRENT STATUS

Active

INVESTORS

Mike Duboe

LEADERSHIP

Brandon Hill

In the News

20VC

20 Minute VC with Mike Duboe

link
TechCrunch

Greylock’s Mike Duboe explains how to define growth and build your team

link

Insights

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