Do Tech Mafias Need a Modern Refresh?

Rumor has it, if you whisper the mafia to a capitalist or technology reporter for an enterprise, a seed investment and headline appears within minutes. This process is quickly converted into seconds if the mafia reference already includes the letters S, T, R, I, P and E. Tech mafias, otherwise known as a group of early employees of a company who jumped to start their own, individually successful companies, became a popular term for PayPal in the early 2000s. As for my duty, the term has since become a kind of clich.

Dear Startups Weekly Newsletter subscribers are a mafia of everything including you. Excluding the joke, I will present the argument that it is still a helpful way to track the way talent is going in the growing world in the beginning. Many enterprising capitalists continue to make subtle, and non-subtle, efforts to support the next generation of employees who have become star entrepreneurs. Wave Capital was originally started as a capital fund for an institutional venture explicitly to start new firms for Airbnb alumni.

Ross Fubini of XYZ Ventures introduced Palantir’s first business lease to his first engineer and now invests in the community outside of his funds. Contraerial Capital has launched Eric Tarakzensky Country Talent, a program that helps early career professionals entrepreneur navigate the world. This newsletter was going to be about disguised mafias that bring technology, but a recent exchange with some of you guys on Twitter took me in a whole new direction. Check out the thread if you want to know the next mufflio, but today, I want to discover a more modern way of thinking about these entities.

Rebecca Bastian, CEO and founder of OneTrial, is not a big fan of the Mafia – although she is technically a part of herself. The first founders were the former Zilo VP of the product and the VP of Community and Culture who felt that there were some problematic truths in the growing world of mafias. “While it is true that these‘mafias ’spoke well of the people in them and often spoke with pride, there are reasons that are problematic from an equity perspective,” he said.