Let’s officially stop comparing Adam Neumann and Elizabeth Holmes

Hello and welcome back to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines.

This is our Wednesday show, where we niche down to a single topic, think about a question and unpack the rest. And, I mean, are you surprised what we’re working with this week? Of course we’re talking about Flow, Adam Neumann’s a16z-fueled return to real estate that is already reportedly valued above $1 billion.

This week, Natasha asked: Is the return is a result of vision, track record, or Adam Neumann-privilege? She’s joined by Anita Ramaswamy, the co-host of TechCrunch’s crypto-focused podcast Chain Reaction. The duo wrote a piece about the tech community’s reaction to Neumann’s new startup, so consider this episode a mic’d up follow-up:

 The news, what we know, and what we still don’t – including how much of that $350 million check is cash
 The reporter’s notebook take on how to cover news that is sensationalist in nature. Do we give oxygen to something that is meant for a reaction? And when is something worth capturing versus worth waiting to see materialize?
 Why folks get checks, and Neumann’s background in vision, track record and ability to raise money. After all, to succeed in becoming a venture-backed founder, all you need to be able to do is be good at getting venture backed.
How this fits into the female founder takedown story – and why people need to stop comparing Neumann to Elizabeth Holmes. Fraud, my friend, is complicated.


Equity drops every Monday at 7 a.m. PDT and Wednesday and Friday at 6 a.m. PDT, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

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