Is it possible to challenge YouTube with a different business model?

YouTube is king of UGC video, and over the last decade it has transformed from a video hosting platform into a sort of social network for video. Just witness the huge growth in subscribers to top channels, and once you check in to see your favorite channels’ new videos, YT’s recommendation algo will keep you glued to the service (and maybe subscribed to a few more channels).

There are many flaws with YT but two stand out for this discussion:

1) It has a very high take rate on revenues generated from ads (ie YT keeps 40-50% of ad revenues), ostensibly because the content creators/channels don’t have an alternate video platform with a large audience where they can monetize their videos easily. Eg if PewDiePie moved exclusively to Twitch or Vimeo or any other video platform, his viewership would drop (and ad rates might be lower too) – he would need to convince his subs to follow him to another platform. So he stays put at YT like all the other top channels.

2) The content creators/channels essentially do all the content work, and they have to abide by all of rules of the platform without a real voice to how those rules are set ie they effectively pay a 45% “tax” to YT without any representation. Unless the content creators bought GOOG stock (out of their own pocket), they have no equity stake in YT either. Their loyalty is almost purely economics.

So the question is: Would it be possible for someone (Eg the failed Quibi or a new startup) to jumpstart a YT challenger by offering YT content creators incentives such as

A) Performance-based RSUs or stock options or preferred stock,

B) Contractual agreements that the new platform will negotiate the platform’s take rate every 5 years, including the right to negotiate the rules/policies and TOS. (Notably, a higher take rate for the platform increases the value of their RSUs, albeit at the expense of a lower take-home income from ads, so then current crop of top channels may prefer higher take-home income today but if their channels becomes less popular (ie overtaken by newer channels) they might opt for a high take rate to maximize their equity value.

C) Better economics for exclusive content on the new platform. Eg 90% of revenues from premium content subscriptions will be paid out to creators.

In effect, would it be possible to give away enough equity but not too much of it so

  • A critical mass comprising of tens of thousands YT channels would port all their videos to the new platform, and they’d urge all the followers to support the new platform, and

  • VCs and startup employees can still participate in the payoff of such an platform after ceding a lot of equity to content creators (effectively, paying them equity for their content library, their loyalty/support and their free marketing)

Note: YT is valued at $ 250-350B by some estimates. NFLX is worth $ 250B today. If the new platform could be worth $ 250B in 7-10 years, and assuming half of the equity is shared with content creators, this means $ 125B. For illustration only, if each channel gets $ 10M (on average), that’s enough to reward 12,500 of the top YT channels (some will get more than others), with $ 125B left for investors/employees/founders.

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

Redivus scores one of 11 spots in Germany-based global accelerator – Kansas City Business Journal

Redivus scores one of 11 spots in Germany-based global accelerator  Kansas City Business Journal
“startups when:1d” – Google News

Investors pour $5 million into Raleigh e-commerce startup focused on collectibles – Triangle Business Journal

Investors pour $ 5 million into Raleigh e-commerce startup focused on collectibles  Triangle Business Journal
“startups when:1d” – Google News

Fast-growing St. Louis agtech startup Benson Hill raises $150M in Series D financing – St. Louis Business Journal

Fast-growing St. Louis agtech startup Benson Hill raises $ 150M in Series D financing  St. Louis Business Journal
“startups when:1d” – Google News

Wise raises another $12 million to double down on embedded business banking

Fintech startup Wise has raised a $ 12 million Series A round. The company offers business bank accounts with an interesting go-to-market strategy. Wise partners with other companies so that they can offer bank accounts to their own customers.

For instance, if you’re running a marketplace or an e-commerce platform that matches companies with individual customers, you can leverage Wise to offer bank accounts to your partner companies. RemoteTeam is using Wise to improve its payroll experience for… remote teams. is leading today’s funding round with Grishin Robotics also participating. Seed investors Base10 Partners and Techstars are also investing again.

Wise isn’t a classic bank-as-a-service company as it doesn’t want to power neobanks and help them get started. Instead, the startup targets other companies that touch on financial services but can’t offer those services because it’s such a big investment.

Integrating Wise in your product doesn’t require significant development or regulation efforts. You don’t have to develop an entire banking user interface as you can just redirect your customers to Wise. The fintech startup also handles know-your-customer and know-your-business (KYC and KYB) processes.

When your clients have their own Wise accounts, it lets them do all the basic things you’d expect from a business bank account. You can hold money, pay with bank transfers, a debit card, a virtual card or checks, and get paid using card payments, ACH and checks.

Behind the scene, BBVA provides banking services, which means that your deposits are FDIC insured up to $ 250,000. The company also uses Stripe for some features and other infrastructure companies.

Wise co-founder and CEO Arjun Thyagarajan describes those partners as building blocks. The company can swap those partners and integrate with other APIs to launch in new countries for instance.

Interestingly, if you choose to offer Wise bank accounts to your partners, you’ll share the revenue on deposits and interchange fees.

Up next, the company plans to expand to other countries, such as Canada. It’ll also try to tackle specific verticals, such as marketplaces for telemedicine and healthcare startups in general. It could require adding different features for different types of customers.

Wise is also negotiating some partnerships with high-profile companies, which should bring new customers to the platform.

Startups – TechCrunch

39 Startups Receive Investment From Parallel18’s Business Continuity Fund – The Weekly Journal

39 Startups Receive Investment From Parallel18’s Business Continuity Fund  The Weekly Journal
“startups when:1d” – Google News

Why Business Leaders Should Talk About Their Mental Health

For those of a certain age, I’m sure that being transparent about your mental health was taboo. Take my friends’ father, who’s a boomer, as an example. He never opened up about how he was feeling until one day he lost it. The stress, and the emotional and physical toll it took on him, finally came to head. And, he just started crying. I was floored. I mean I was always told that boys don’t cry. Here is why business leaders should talk about their mental health.

There’s been a sea of change when talking about mental health, and we can all learn from the shift.

Take Gen Z. They are more likely to seek help then other generations. Unfortunately, that figure is still low with only 37% reporting that they’ve received help from a psychologist or mental health professional.

Considering that some 450 million people suffer from a mental disorder, we still have a long way to go. And, this is particularly true for those in a leadership role.

For starters, as noted by the World Health Organization, “mental disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.” As a consequence, this can affect people’s behaviorally, emotionally, and physically, such as:

The Link Between Mental Health and Work

Economically, mental health costs the global economy $ 1 trillion per year in lost productivity! Aetna Behavioral Health has also found that employee mental health costs rise twice as fast as other medical costs.

More specifically, mental health can be negatively affected by businesses:

What’s more, via the CDC, “Depression interferes with a person’s ability to complete physical job tasks about 20% of the time and reduces cognitive performance about 35% of the time.”

Besides impacting your bottom line, there’s another reason why you need to prioritize mental health at your company; employees demand it.

One study has found that 62% of employees want leadership to speak openly about mental health. But, other research has found this to be higher.

“Mental health is becoming the next frontier of diversity and inclusion, and employees want their companies to address it, write Kelly Greenwood, Vivek Bapat, and Mike Maughan over at HBR. “Eighty-six percent of our respondents thought that a company’s culture should support mental health.” However, it “was even higher for Millennials and Gen Zers, who have higher turnover rates and are the largest demographic in the workforce.”

“Half of Millennials and 75% of Gen Zers had left roles in the past for mental health reasons, both voluntarily and involuntarily, compared with 34% of respondents overall — a finding that speaks to a generational shift in awareness,” add the authors. “It is not surprising then that providing employees with the support they need improves not only engagement but also recruitment and retention, whereas doing nothing reinforces an outdated and damaging stigma.”

How to Promote Mental Health Wellness in Your Workplace

So, yeah. Mental health needs to become a priority for your business. By being transparent and removing the stigma around mental health, you’ll improve every facet of your organization. And, to get started, here are the steps you should take.

Change the culture.

Changing the culture is a top-down process,” writes Greenwood, Bapat, and Maughan. “It starts with transforming leaders into allies. Encourage executive teams, managers, and senior employees to share their experiences (or those of close family members or friends) at all-staff meetings or in other interactions with their teams.”

“Modeling disclosure and vulnerability as strengths, not weaknesses, goes a long way toward reducing the stigma and setting the tone for transparency,” they add.

Considering that almost half of entrepreneurs have experienced at least one form of mental health condition during their lifetime, you probably already have first-hand knowledge of this struggle. The challenge is to be open up about your experience. Once you do, this will help remove the stigma and encourage others to be more open about their struggles.

Additionally, if you want to change the culture, then you need to walk the walk. That means setting an example by showing others that you are addressing your well-being. For example, take breaks throughout the day and eat a healthy lunch. Most importantly, offer suggestions on how you addressed your mental health. If you spoke with a counselor, then refer an employee to that mental health professional.

Create an employee wellness program.

If you’re unfamiliar, an employee wellness program simply encourages healthy habits within the workplace. More importantly, it helps create a culture where health and wellness is a top priority.

To get started though, Howie Jones in a previous Calendar piece suggests using a Health Risk Appraisal (HRA) to assess your needs. “This is a questionnaire that reviews lifestyle practices like smoking and exercise,” explains Howie. “You could also conduct an interest survey and have your team rank what they would want the program to include.”

With this information, you can then design a program that works best for your company. For example, if a majority of your employees have admitted to dealing with a mental illness, then you may want to select a health insurance plan that covers mental health. You could also offer gym memberships, support services, or training to help them combat stress.

Focus on early intervention/prevention.

Let’s say that your bathroom faucet has a drip. You keep ignoring it thinking that it’s no big deal. Eventually, you may have to replace your sink because of water stains. Leaky faucets may also deteriorate caulk, grout, and damage ceilings and floorboards.

In short, don’t wait to solve this problem before it gets any worse.

The same is true with mental health. Educate your team on how they can cope with stress and anxiety. Provide support services, even if it’s paying for an app like Headspace. And, don’t punish them if they need to take a mental health day or leave early to speak with a therapist.

Enforce working hours.

Promote a healthy work-life balance by establishing boundaries. For instance, limit communication outside of office hours. That means not emailing an employee at midnight asking them a question that could wait until the morning.

You should also encourage them to set an out-of-office message in their calendar. Google and Outlook calendars have this feature. And, it’s a simple way to automatically reject event invites when you’re not available.

Cultivate a healthy and positive work environment.

Besides boosting productivity, healthy and positive work environments can improve morale and decrease turnover. Best of all, it’s not all that complicated to implement if you do the following:

  • Establish organizational guidelines that prevent bullying and harassment.
  • Show your gratitude and appreciation to your team members by recognizing their hard work.
  • Invest in your team’s well-being by investing in ergonomic furniture, providing healthy snacks, and placing plants throughout the workplace.
  • Help your employees curb vices and unhealthy habits.
  • Never motivate your team using fear.
  • Celebrate milestones and have fun through games and volunteering.

Frequently check-in with your employees.

Yes. You’ve got a million things to do. But, spend quality time with each team member. Get to know them better and ask how they’re doing. You don’t want to pry into their personal lives. But, checking-in with them builds trust. That means if they do have a mental health concern, they won’t be afraid to come to you for assistance.

Grant autonomy and flexible schedules.

Don’t micromanage your employees. Even better, provide flexible schedules and working arrangements so that they have opportunities to attend to their well-being.

Help them solve their time management problems.

Finally, help your team members improve their time management. That may not sound like much. But, if they’re struggling in this area, then don’t have the time to attend to their mental health. For example, help them prioritize their time so that they aren’t taking their work home with them. In turn, they’ll have more availability to work with a mental health professional or engage in healthy habits like exercising or meditating.

Why Business Leaders Should Talk About Their Mental Health was originally published on Calendar by .

The post Why Business Leaders Should Talk About Their Mental Health appeared first on KillerStartups.