KP Reddy, Co-founder & Partner at The Combine, recently appeared on Atlanta TechEdge with Rob MacLane. Rob and KP talk about The Combine, our process, portfolio companies, why we are based in Atlanta, and what’s going on with the Atlanta startup ecosystem. As always, KP shoots straight, and gives the audience a total download on The Combine and Atlanta. Below are a few key quotes from KP’s interview on Atlanta TechEdge. Or, skip to the end and watch the 6 minute video.
How does The Combine work?
On how The Combine works: “Most large companies are focused on profitability and incremental growth. But when it comes to innovation, they really struggle with the levels of investment required to take something to market, and sometimes that IP is not core to the business.”
An example of the corporate innovation struggle: “Say a Fintech company creates a new security protocol. That might be great for that particular business, but might be more valuable if you created a new company and sold it to the masses.”
Why should an enterprise work with The Combine?
On why an enterprise should choose The Combine vs. doing it themselves: “Large companies have “internal inertia” – lots of people on every project. Fifty people can’t work a startup with a $1m budget. Also, a billion dollar company doesn’t care about a $10M business: that’s a rounding error, coffee money for a billion dollar business.”
On The Combine’s Process – “We marry a heavy diligence process with Bain management consulting style. Every potential portfolio company goes through our startup diligence, customer discovery, market research, validation, and our global expert network. We vet each concept, then ask if we want to do it. We operate on a co-investment model to launch each company.”
Our Current Portfolio
On our Portfolio Companies: “Geeky.”
- Materials analysis software that will revolutionize the auto industry, reducing automotive weight by 10%.
- Konstru – cloud based version control management for structural engineering.
Why did The Combine choose Atlanta? “Our core talent is here. I used to run ATDC, and am a GT alum. Atlanta’s airport allows us to go anywhere at anytime. Georgia Teach and the Atlanta corporate community are fantastic resources.”
Atlanta, and the future of The Combine
On Atlanta’s Startup Ecosystem: “Atlanta’s capital lite software companies are struggling because those models are easily replicable. We focus on IP because it’s a great defense mechanism. “Seed stage” is $5m in NY, $5 – $10M in Silicon Valley. How do we compete with $500k (or less) in seed money? Many of Atlanta’s startups become market research for larger seed stage investments.”
On Our future: “We continue to focus on vertical sectors like health IT, energy, telecom, etc., and we are building portfolios with managers who have vertical sector focus. Wherever the best idea is, that’s where we’re going.”
Check out the short video below. Contact us for an introductory conversation to determine if your IP is a good fit at The Combine.