May 16, 2018

Creating a Popular Product and Selling It to Governments with Tiffany and Danny of Remix

Remix is the first company I've talked to that sells to governments. Specifically, they've got over 275 local governments and transit agencies as their customers, and it took a lot of work to get to this point. I think this is a path that not enough founders consider breaking into, but if you're mission driven and you want to change the way your city/region/country works, you might want to give it a try!


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    I like seeing the original artifacts from the early days.

    Here is the website - https://www.remix.com/

    Link to the Gizmodo article - https://gizmodo.com/wile-away-your-friday-by-designing-your-own-fantasy-tra-1593813740

    Code For America original article - https://www.codeforamerica.org/blog/2014/07/07/transitmix-design-your-perfect-bus-system/

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    I really loved this podcast! I studied town planning now work as a developer, but one day I would love to fuse the town professions together!

    I'd be very interested to know of any other software companies / startups out there doing similar sorts of collaborations with local city councils?

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    So many YC companies...

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      Partly a result of YC having funded a massive number of tech companies, and partly a result of who I know and where I live. 😇

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        Yeah, I was guessing it was a function of network and I wouldn't be surprised if you knew a ton of ex-MIT founders, too.

        As an eternal outsider, fundraising + YC mentorship does seem like a magical thing that's impossible to relate to, especially after seeing... well nvm. It is what it is, but it's hard to tell what parts of stories told by people with such powerful backing are applicable to the rest of us.

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          In my experience: The YC program gets you funding and a decent press article at launch, the funding really accelerates your ability to hire, and the network is, well, a network. So those are probably the least applicable things and where I'd draw the line. Beyond that, the other challenges are largely the same as they are for everyone else, and thus the lessons on this side of the line should be portable.

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            It's hard to believe YC affiliation doesn't have a huge affect when it comes to selling to risk-adverse enterprise or government customers.

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              You'd have to talk to their sales teams, but I'd be surprised if any would say it's played a huge role. Based on my experience, most people and businesses don't know what YC is, let alone the risk-averse ones. Additionally, a great many YC companies flame out, making "went through YC" a poor signal of a company's staying power. I think a lot of entrepreneurs overestimate the popularity of the YC name and what it can do for startups, because it dominates our bubble so much.

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                That's a useful perspective. Thanks.