Here’s the not-short-enough version…
I’m a finance tech industry veteran shifting back to online business, startup and investment pursuits.
It’s not my first go-around on the startup and digital marketing front. I was the ‘web guy’ at a NYC design studio in the late 90s. But a trading technology shop lured me away and a long, productive career run ensued. I worked in various roles, from tech vendors to a top investment bank and back again.
Now I’m applying my fintech product and business development experience to building and investing in software and online businesses. And I can’t help but view the startup and online space through the lens of my finance industry experience. It’s sometimes exciting, other times inane but always interesting.
Personal Scatter Plot
This site is sort of a personal scatter plot of ideas. I’m not sure where the best-fit line will point, but I plan to incorporate at least two broad areas of focus.
One will be to share my in-progress, mid-life migration into new business endeavors. My current initiatives include a marketing tech saas product and content site development across a number of niche verticals. The common theme is about developing digital assets and multiple revenue streams.
I put a premium on diversification of income and monetization methods. So, I am also building out my portfolio of private investments and alternative assets alongside my traditional holdings. I’ll provide as much ongoing detail and color on all these efforts as is practical and (hopefully) useful.
The other topical focus of this site will be around self-learning and upskilling, and the challenges faced by those educated in the old paradigm but facing the realities of the new global economy. To wit, I will explore how a college drop-out moved to New York City to play music yet ended up working nearly two decades in the finance industry, from startups to a Fortune 100 investment bank. And what I learned in the process.
I’ve managed to do a lot with an average brain and below average qualifications, but I’m only halfway done. The aim is to grow as fast and as far as life and time permits, and to positively impact others along the way.
Conceiving and Co-Existing
Conceiving of and assessing an idea or opportunity requires both qualitative and quantitative skills. The online business and startup space magnifies the importance of both. Working in the trading and finance industry made me process-oriented and data-driven. But the humanities, writing and music are in my bones. Alas, the analyst and the artist can co-exist. And the intersection of these two also sets a general thematic scope for the site (and my life).
I’ve managed to do a lot with an average brain and below average qualifications, but I’m only halfway done. The aim is to grow as fast and as far as life and time permits, and to positively impact others along the way. But the people I meet on the path ahead will likely help me more than I can help them.
So, welcome to my new thing. If interested, please follow along. For those that do, thank you in advance for all I will learn and gain.
Btw, I also write about personal finance at Digital Downshift and you can know me better by checking out my personal principles page. If you want a bit extra then see my now page.
— J Paul
Here’s the TL;DR…
- Stumbled through school, skipped out on college, worked lots of jobs, played lots of music;
- Took a long walk, stopped in NYC, first ‘serious’ job in finance, quit to get serious about music;
- Joined a design studio (thx classifieds!), managed web strategy (in ’95), launched first blog (in ’97);
- Started first biz, sold to a partner (still going strong)…started a family (had wonder twins);
- Re-found finance (via music), startup employee #9, rode two acquisitions to a top global bank;
- Co-founded a startup (2010), made NYC fintech fashionable, missed target but learned tons;
- 4 acquisitions, 3 spin-outs and 2 continents later, I’m prepping for fun and fortune in my next 50;