Friday Finds: Entrepreneurship Stories Of the Week in July

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Jennifer Wang
Jennifer Wang

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Five must-read pieces for business founders and builders.

July 22, 2022 -- Happy Friday and welcome back to Friday Finds! From mobility tech opportunities in Japan to socially conscious gifting, here are The Hustle's picks for inspiring and insightful entrepreneurial reads. 

  1. With an aging population and an increasing focus on climate initiatives, Japan is becoming an important market for mobility tech. Startups are competing in the autonomous driving and micromobility (e.g. scooters) space, while established companies like Toyota and Honda are making pushes towards electric vehicles.
  2. Leeatt Rothschild used to see client gifts pile up during the holiday season. To make sure the money is really well spent, she created Packed with Purpose, a socially conscious gifting startup that sell boxes filled with products from companies that focus on sustainability, women empowerment, youth development, and other worthy causes.
  3. Canadian startup Clean02 is making hotels more sustainable by converting the CO2 from its water heaters into potash, an ingredient that can be used to make products like soap or shampoo. The technology also help hotel owners save on heating costs by capturing and reusing the waste heat.   
  4. Are you accomplishing your New Year's resolutions? While founders are busy supervising their employees, sometimes they forget to hold themselves accountable to their goals. Entrepreneurs share their tips for keeping themselves on track, such as creating feedback channels and being more choosey with their calendars.
  5. A well-oiled social media operation can be essential in building brand awareness and developing a loyal following. But with so many platforms, it can be hard to stay organized. To ensure you're on top of your game on every channel, check out 13 social media calendars, tools, and templates to plan your content.

July 15, 2022 -- Happy Friday and welcome back to Friday Finds! From creator-turned-investors to climate risk startups, here are The Hustle's picks for inspiring and insightful entrepreneurial reads. 

  1. Prominent social media creators have used their profile to pivot to angel investing. Unsurprisingly, many of the startups they invest in focus on the latest trends among millennials and Gen Zs, such as Poppi, a prebiotic soda maker, and Lolli, which allow users to earn Bitcoin as rewards while shopping online. 
  2. Holding various people -- employees, customers, business partners -- to their commitments is one of the tricker parts of being a founder. To ensure all your stakeholders are fulfilling their responsibilities, try tips like understanding each person's incentives and setting realistic expectations. 
  3. As climate change intensifies, startups have popped up to create algorithms that predict the probability of natural disasters hitting specific locations and the damage they may cause. The data will become increasingly important to bond investors, who will need to evaluate the climate risk before investing in debt issued by municipalities and states. 
  4. Investing in private properties (e.g. apartment complexes, data centers) can be a lucrative choice, but is usually only available to wealthy investors in private equity funds. Investment platform Fundrise is changing the game by allowing everyday investors buy stakes in real estate, starting as low as $10. 
  5. You never get a second chance to make a first impression -- and a bad opening line in an outreach email can kill your chances with prospective customers. Learn to write killer openers by reading 7 awful first sentences that are killing your outreach emails.

July 8, 2022 -- Happy Friday and welcome back to Friday Finds! From due diligence for startups to affordable sustainable homes, here are The Hustle's picks for inspiring and insightful entrepreneurial reads. 

  1. While many VCs conduct due diligence on a startup's financials, few go the extra mile to assess the firm's technology. To gain a better grasp on potential investments, evaluate factors like the tech architecture of the product and the quality of the startup's developers.
  2. Sustainable homes are good for the planet, but can be pricey to build. Bill Gates backed startup Vantem aims to change that by building prefabricated units using proprietary ceramic-like tiles. The result? Affordable, modular houses that can resist hurricanes and wildfires, while saving on the energy bill.
  3. It's never too early to get your taxes in order. For tax year 2022, the minimum reporting threshold for transactions conducted via peer-to-peer platforms -- like PayPal or Venmo -- has decreased from $20,000 to $600. Small businesses should be extra diligent to ensure they report their earnings correctly.
  4. As the son of immigrants, Alex Feldman grew up in the eyeglasses business. As an entrepreneur, he took his own luxury eyewear brand national by focusing on custom, high end fitting services and partnering with independent boutiques to distribute his unique frames. 
  5. Being your own boss as a freelancer can be a dream, but it's also tough to establish your reputation and attract steady work. Creating a beautiful website can be the first step towards building your audience -- check out 22 best WordPress themes for freelancers in 2022.  

July 1, 2022 -- Happy Friday and welcome to Friday Finds! From smarter chatbots to healthier ramen noodles, here are The Hustle's picks for inspiring and insightful entrepreneurial reads. 

  1. As the chances of stagflation rise -- a mix of slow growth and higher inflation -- founders should be on the lookout to protect their businesses. Actions they can take include reducing dependence on external funding, reassessing assumptions like product demand and pricing, and focusing on customers' needs.
  2. Young Chang had a lucrative job with Warner Bros. but decided to give it up to sell Taiwanese instant noodles that are healthier and lower in sodium. The brand, which is known for its homemade tasting noodles, is now sold in all 50 US states and Canada, Mexico, Europe, and more. 
  3. The first 90 days at a new job can be formative -- and even more so for Deborah Liu, who took over as Ancestry.com's CEO shortly after the company was taken private by Blackstone. Instead of going in guns blazing, Liu suggests spending the early days listening to employees and learning from them before making any changes. 
  4. Chatbots have become a ubiquitous tool for customer service, yet a majority of people find them frustrating to use. With the advancements in AI, there is a lot of room for growth in this space. Potential ideas include remaking chatbots into virtual assistants that remember and build on previous conversations, instead of a reactive bot that spits out standardized answers.   
  5. Businesses today have access to more data than ever, yet a 2021 report by Experian shows that 95% of business leaders reported a negative impact to the business due to poor data quality. To make sure you're leveraging data to help your company, check out data quality: a comprehensive overview (+examples).
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