In this article, we discuss the 10 companies to watch in the latest investment portfolio of Naval Ravikant. If you want to read about some more stocks in the Ravikant portfolio, go directly to Naval Ravikant's Latest Investment Portfolio: 5 Companies to Watch.
Naval Ravikant burst onto the technology scene in 2010 when his website, dubbed AngelList, became an instant hit with startups in the United States. The website was started as a sort of an “online introduction board” for tech startups that allowed them to raise seed money from angel investors. By 2015, this service was being offered free of charge. The website also functioned as a job-hunting playground for those wishing to work at these startups. Initially, Ravikant roped in 25 investors that planned to invest around $80 million into emerging firms in 2010.
Over the years, Ravikant has gained legendary status in the tech world of California by investments in over 200 early stage firms that include success stories like Twitter, Inc. (NYSE:TWTR), Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:UBER), and Opendoor Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ:OPEN), among others discussed in detail below. The angel investor was born in India and moved to New York at a young age, finishing his schooling in the US. He has degrees in Computer Science and Economics from Dartmouth College.
Ravikant was also one of the earliest backers of the crypto revolution, founding MetaStable Capital, a cryptocurrency hedge fund, in 2014 that owned prominent coins such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Monero, among other currencies. By 2017, the assets of this fund had grown close to $70 million. Ravikant has also tasted success with Spearhead, an investment fund he founded in 2017 that provided founders with $1 million each to invest in emerging tech. The first four classes of this fund include founders from 68 firms worth more than $75 billion.
Other famous success stories of Ravikant include Genoa Corp, a firm he founded in 1998 that was bought by optical manufacturer Finisar. In 1999, Ravikant founded Epinions, a consumer product review site. By 2003, the firm had been taken over by DealTime and eventually evolved into Shopping.com. This website debuted on the market in 2004 and was worth $750 million after the first day of trading. There are various estimates for the net worth of Ravikant that place his wealth in excess of $50 million.
In 2007, Ravikant started an early stage venture capital fund named The Hit Forge with around $20 million in funding. This fund invested in many prominent companies and was a huge success as well. When Ravikant is not investing in high-growth startups, he is hosting a short-form podcast that discusses business and investing. He has also appeared on other popular podcasts like The Joe Rogan Experience, The Tim Ferriss Show, Coffee with Scott Adams, and The James Altucher Show, among others.
In a recent episode of the The Tim Ferriss Show, Ravikant answered a lot of questions about his views on emerging technologies. For example, when asked about the artificial intelligence industry, the investor was of the opinion that AI had broadened into “more specific AI” in recent years, pointing to self-driving cars and computer vision as examples. Ravikant outlined that he believed that general purpose AI firms did not have “much of a future” but specific AI firms, which were “solving problems” might be the “real” deal.
The companies listed below were picked from a careful assessment of the investment history of Naval Ravikant.
Elias Bizannes, CC BY-SA 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons
Naval Ravikant's Latest Investment Portfolio: Companies to Watch
HoneyBook is a financial management platform that is designed to help independent business owners manage their client relationships and cash flows. Naval Ravikant was part of a Series A funding round of the firm in 2014 that helped raise $10 million. Other investors in the round included Aleph, Hillsven Capital, Ooga Labs, and Ev Williams. Since then, HoneyBook has held many more funding rounds. By November 2021, the company had raised $479 million in funding in six different rounds, valuing it at around $2.4 billion.
HoneyBook was launched in May 2013. It is headquartered in San Francisco. The HoneyBook software provides business owners with a variety of solutions under one platform. These range from project management, booking clients, signing contracts online, sending invoices to handling payments. For projects, the firm helps with tracking progress. The software also offers automated appointment requests and follow-ups using personalized templates and notifications. HoneyBook also integrates with available tools like QuickBooks and Google Calendar.
Wish is a mobile-first ecommerce platform that connects buyers with sellers. Naval was one of the earliest investors in the project, contributing to a seed funding round in October 2010 that raised $1.7 million for the firm. Other investors in the project at the time included Felicis Ventures, AF Square, XG Ventures, Digital Garage, Fritz Lanman, Hank Vigil, and Keith Rabois, among others. By late 2020, in eleven funding rounds, the firm had raised more than $1 billion at a valuation of over $14 billion.
The parent company of Wish, Context Logic, took the platform public in December 2020. The company debuted on the stock market under the ContextLogic Inc. (NASDAQ:WISH) ticker but fell around 5% on the first day of trading despite selling 46 million shares, finishing the day with a valuation of around $13.3 billion. Among the hedge funds being tracked by Insider Monkey, Canada-based firm Maple Rock Capital is a leading shareholder in ContextLogic Inc. (NASDAQ: WISH) with 3.2 million shares worth more than $10 million.
Just like Twitter, Inc. (NYSE:TWTR), Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:UBER), and Opendoor Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ:OPEN), ContextLogic Inc. (NASDAQ: WISH) is one of the growth stocks that elite investors are monitoring.
OpenSea is a digital marketplace for crypto-related collectibles and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). It is the largest marketplace of its kind across the globe. The platform was launched in 2017. Ravikant has backed the platform since the beginning. In July 2021, he was part of a series of investors, including Ron Conway, Mark Cuban, Belinda Johnson, and Ben Silbermann, that invested in a $23 million Series B funding round for the firm. At the time, the firm was valued at around $1.5 billion.
By January 2022, the valuation of OpenSea had climbed to more than $13 billion after a $300 million Series C funding round led by famous names such as Paradigm and Coatue. The incredible rise in fortunes for the firm is largely attributed to the explosion in popularity of NFTs in late 2021 and early 2022. At the turn of the year, the firm saw transaction volumes of around $2.4 billion. These transactions fetched hundreds of millions of dollars in fees for the company, attracting the attention of elite investors.
Bolt is an ecommerce payment processing platform. The company recently announced that it will be acquiring digital currency provider Wyre in a deal worth $1.5 billion. The firm said the purchase was part of a larger plan to “bolster cryptocurrency services'' and “the opportunity of Web3”. Both firms plan to fully integrate services by the end of the year. The cloud-based payments model of the firm promises a sales boost and a raise in checkout conversions by around 10%-20%.
Some of the other services that Bolt offers include a data-driven security engine that uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to provide 100% coverage. The merchant dashboard of the platform also provides users with analytic feedback on tracked metrics. The Bolt system can also be integrated into systems like BigCommerce, Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce, and others. Naval Ravikant was one of the early investors in the firm. In January this year, the firm raised $355 million in a Series E funding round that valued it at around $11 billion.
Notion is a software firm that offers project management and note-taking solutions. The startup was founded by Ivan Zhao in 2013. Naval Ravikant was impressed by the ideas of the founder and invested in Notion in a seed round early on. At the time, the founders were not interested in meeting venture capitalists but accepted the funding made by Ravikant. By 2016, the firm had released the first version of their software. It has since been steadily increasing profits. Ravikant claims no other company has fetched a higher valuation with as little funding as Notion.
Notion took only about $2 million from various investors in 2013. By late 2021, the firm finally relented and started accepting venture capital money, raising over $275 million at a funding round in October that valued the company at more than $10 billion. Ravikant has previously said that the company does not need to raise too much from venture capital since it is self-sufficient. The firm recently launched the Notion Certified Program, an official accreditation that gives users the ability to expand their expertise.
In addition to Twitter, Inc. (NYSE:TWTR), Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:UBER), and Opendoor Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ:OPEN), Notion is one of the growth firms that hedge funds have on their radar.
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Disclosure. None. Naval Ravikant's Latest Investment Portfolio: 10 Companies to Watch is originally published on Insider Monkey.