LA Venture Podcast: Why Rivonia Road Capital Focuses on 'Venture Credit'

Minnie Ingersoll
Minnie Ingersoll is a partner at TenOneTen and host of the LA Venture podcast. Prior to TenOneTen, Minnie was the COO and co-founder of $100M+, an online marketplace for used cars. Minnie started her career as an early product manager at Google. Minnie studied Computer Science at Stanford and has an MBA from HBS. She recently moved back to L.A. after 20+ years in the Bay Area and is excited to be a part of the growing tech ecosystem of Southern California. In her space time, Minnie surfs baby waves and raises baby people.
LA Venture Podcast: Why Rivonia Road Capital Focuses on 'Venture Credit'

On this week's episode of LA Venture, hear from Dan Zinn, co-founder and managing partner at Rivonia Road Capital. The firm provides a much more bespoke solution than traditional venture debt. We also talk about how Zinn built a billion-dollar hedge fund and small business lender XPRS Capital.

Key Takeaways:

  • Zinn distinguishes that Rivonia Road invests in "venture credit" — a phrase that hasn't yet been coined — as opposed to venture debt. That is, they bridge the capital gap for venture-backed firms that have cash flows, royalty streams and/or other tangible objects.
  • Rivonia works with companies at all levels of development, but they're particularly interested in early-stage companies that originate their assets online.
  • Rivonia offers free advice because the firm is in the business of helping business and wants to support founders -- especially in understanding the capital market — which Zinn says most founders don't understand.
  • Zinn's investment decisions have always focused on where the capital is not going— for instance: China, alternative U.S. credit markets or small business -- and then exploring them.
  • Rivonia focuses on sub-hundred-million investments.
"This is all a journey and you better enjoy it some interesting things along the way because...ultimately there's no destination that I know of that is necessarily satisfying." — Dan Zinn

Dan Zinn is cofounder and managing partner at Rivonia Road Capital. He was formerly a founder and chair at XPRS Capital and founding partner, portfolio manager at Orange Capital.

Want to hear more of L.A. Venture? Listen on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.

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Diagnostics Startup Polygon Raises $4M To Test Kids for ADHD and Dyslexia

Keerthi Vedantam

Keerthi Vedantam is a bioscience reporter at dot.LA. She cut her teeth covering everything from cloud computing to 5G in San Francisco and Seattle. Before she covered tech, Keerthi reported on tribal lands and congressional policy in Washington, D.C. Connect with her on Twitter, Clubhouse (@keerthivedantam) or Signal at 408-470-0776.

Diagnostics Startup Polygon Raises $4M To Test Kids for ADHD and Dyslexia
Courtesy of Polygon

Here’s how Jack Rolo describes his childhood: He was good at chess, and bad at spelling. He was good at math, and bad at reading. Rolo went on to study physics at Durham University in his native England—and despite often struggling in his courses, it wasn’t until after he graduated that he was diagnosed with dyslexia, a common language processing disorder that affects reading.

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Spencer Rascoff

Spencer Rascoff serves as executive chairman of dot.LA. He is an entrepreneur and company leader who co-founded Zillow, Hotwire, dot.LA, Pacaso and Supernova, and who served as Zillow's CEO for a decade. During Spencer's time as CEO, Zillow won dozens of "best places to work" awards as it grew to over 4,500 employees, $3 billion in revenue, and $10 billion in market capitalization. Prior to Zillow, Spencer co-founded and was VP Corporate Development of Hotwire, which was sold to Expedia for $685 million in 2003. Through his startup studio and venture capital firm, 75 & Sunny, Spencer is an active angel investor in over 100 companies and is incubating several more.

Ian Siegel, ZipRecruiter
Image courtesy of ZipRecruiter

On this episode of Office Hours, host Spencer Rascoff talked with ZipRecruiter CEO and founder Ian Siegel about how he built his company, the lessons he's learned along the way and how he's seen the pandemic drastically reshape the job market—probably for good.

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