Mexico is the fastest growing e-commerce market in the world. Mexico earned the #1 spot ahead of India, China, Philippines, and Malaysia. This increase in online purchases means that Mexicans are increasingly looking for more ways to digitally pay.

In China, home grown digital payments companies like Alipay and WeChat Pay have the dominant share of e-commerce. In the rest of the world however, debit and credit cards are the way people shop online, including in the US. And so it is with Mexico as well.

While cash is still king in Mexico, card usage is growing rapidly. Mexican card…


Part II of my 2021 Edtech Outlook. Part I here.

In Part I, I wrote about where we’ve been and where we might be going in edtech. I thought I’d take a step back and share how we look at edtech at Lightspeed and how some of the trends we’re interested in have made it into our edtech portfolio at Lightspeed.

Given that we’re beginning to have a sizable education portfolio at Lightspeed, I wanted to share how we think about the sector and the companies in our portfolio.


This is Part I of my 2021 Edtech Outlook. Part II here.

The most tumultuous year in edtech history (2020) has come to a close. Earlier in 2020 I wrote about what I expected would change due to covid and we ended up investing in a number of new edtech companies at Lightspeed including Outschool and Forage. This year has made me love edtech even more. Education is the great equalizer, and I love fighting for the underdog.

In this post I wanted to share some of the trends I’m looking forward to in 2021 and how they’re informed by…


*despite popular belief, stocks do go down

Retail investing hit its zeitgeist moment in 2020 and interest continues to soar. As I write this in January 2021, google search trends show “investing” is at its second highest peak in the last 16 years, with the highest peak being March 2020. Similar trends can be seen for “call options” and “day trading.”


#FMB: Founders are Made, not Born

Every few days I find myself on calls with exceptional people who are in-between roles and taking time to evaluate new ventures they might start (oh yes, quite the luxury). We brainstorm ideas, often in categories I’m very familiar with such as consumer, fintech or edtech, and I share broad strokes of trends I’m seeing.

When I was younger I thought you could only start a company if it was a burning passion area. While an important ingredient, passion is not always sufficient. Over time, I’ve realized many successful founders methodically chose their target…


A recap of our Virtual Town Hall

Earlier this summer after George Floyd’s death sparked nationwide protests, I was inspired to see so many of my friends and colleagues — of all races — engaging in tough topics around race and how institutions perpetuate inequitable outcomes.

I was reminded of the power of social media when black squares swept across everyone’s feeds on Instagram on Blackout Tuesday in June. I posted a square as did many of my friends. …


Part VI: Breaking the “Vulnerability ←→ Confidence Tradeoff” Myth

This is the “Founders are Made, not Born: How Founders Become Learning Animals” series, based on my Stanford Masters of Education research about founders & learning. Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI.

How Founders Become Learning Animals

Teams look to founders and CEOs for answers. They expect confidence in those answers. But during our conversations founders repeatedly said they felt a tension between optimizing for learning, which required being vulnerable with stakeholders, and presenting themselves confidently to all the stakeholders they needed to show up for — including board members, advisors, VCs and teammates.

This wasn’t isolated to the…


Part V: Scale yourself in phased mindset shifts

This is the “Founders are Made, not Born: How Founders Become Learning Animals” series, based on my Stanford Masters of Education research about founders & learning. Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI.

How Founders Become Learning Animals

During our chats, many founders described the difficulty of keeping pace with the growth of their company and identifying what type of leader they needed to grow into. Sometimes the company’s growth outpaced their own. This showed up in struggling to transition between leadership models and time management. Unlike many other professions, there are no clear standards or rubrics to follow.

Instead…


Part IV: Navigate Advice Overload with Frameworks & Conviction

This is the “Founders are Made, not Born: How Founders Become Learning Animals” series, based on my Stanford Masters of Education research about founders & learning. Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI.

This article was first posted in Techcrunch.

How Founders Become Learning Animals

“Opinions are like assholes. Everybody’s got one”- Simone Elkeles

Many of the founders I spoke with said one of their biggest early challenges was figuring out how to sift through all the advice they receive. Advice overload plagues everyone and founders have it especially bad given a “board of advisors” is practically written into nomenclature…


Part III: Self Awareness Must Become a Routine

This is the “Founders are Made, not Born: How Founders Become Learning Animals” series, based on my Stanford Masters of Education research about founders & learning. Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI.

How Founders Become Learning Animals

Self-awareness is an often-cited, universally-exalted trait that seemingly the best humans possess. Every self-help book or enlightenment journey will in one way or another tell you to start with self-awareness. We all know it’s important.

So it’s no surprise that when I interviewed nearly 45 founders about how they grew to be the leaders they are today, they (unprompted) consistently pointed to…

Mercedes Bent

Hard work is never overrated. Always curious.

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