My partner Tom and I invested $100,000 out of our first $6 million Social Leverage fund in the seed round of Robinhood back in 2013.
Charlie found this quote from me from an interview after the seed round in 2013…
In an age when people are attached to their phones, it is a natural fit to take trading and investing to a mobile-first format,” said Howard Lindzon, General Partner of Social Leverage. “Robinhood is shaping the future of trading for the GenY mobile-savvy investors who will naturally want to make seamless zero commission trades with the touch of their phone, and we’re excited to support their endeavor.
We invested again in a note before the A round and we were part of the Series A round for our fund 2 as Gary joined our team.
Later on some investors joined our syndicate on AngelList to participate in the round at a $1 billion valuation. Those people will do very well today. I have to be honest I thought it was a tad rich at the time 😭.
Today Robinhood is going public at over $30 billion.
I used Robinhood ($HOOD) to buy some IPO shares of Robinhood…definitely something I was not thinking about the day we invested back in 2013.
Here is the confirm I just got from Robinhood in the app:
I was one of the first 100 users of Robinhood…now 18 million plus users. The numbers are staggering to me.
I was very confident that Baiju and Vlad were going to build something big after our first meeting, but I would not have predicted the do-it- yourself, retail movement would be this big (or taken this long). I DID NOT foresee the $TSLA mania, FANG, COVID, Gamestop, WallStreetBets, Fat Nixon, Bitcoin/crypto and so many other things that the markets have digested.
I was sure that Robinhood would be a great tool to teach the language of the markets. I was sure that ‘fractional’ investing and ‘social chatter’ would be a huge part of the phenomenon.
It turns out that ‘yoots’ are using this language (and their money) to express their opinions. They are not just an emoji and TikTok generation.
You can’t undo this phenomenon or the language skills unleashed.
I have no idea where the valuation settles in the next year, but it is thrilling to be part of the process.