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In The Media

Using Fred Smith’s Sequel Business to Close Deals as An Undergrad Founder

by Larry Chiang on December 14, 2013

By Larry Chiang
Holy crap!

Larry Chiang (@LarryChiang)
“My generation doesn’t FedEx”

I wanted to call this article…

Larry Chiang (@LarryChiang)
How to Close a Deal Via FedEx as an Undergrad Who Is a USPS User Virgin #LABCS3360 #LABCS

Don’t laugh at old people who don’t email because you are generationally challenged as well. As a Gen C-er, you’re 18-21 years old and have never mailed a letter via the 44c USPS maneuver

Did you know FedEx used to be Federal Express. Which is a sequel biz to us Postal Service. I mean it is no where near “Federal”. So, Fred Smith’s Express is a sequel business that risk minimized and pattern replicated. 
The Cautionary Tale of FedEx here in Silicon Valley. A bunch of smart Ivy League undergrads were flown in by Sequoia Capital– They’re cool like that. It’s called Stanford University eBootcamp
During a session lead by a VC not at sequoia, the VC said: “My wife wants me to bring in more Illinois into my (summer incubator).” It’s one of those sweet-ass “Free $50k (USD $50,000)-get-incubator’d-for-the-summer”
He was wearing a Cubs hat. 
the UNDERGRADS said: “Hey what if we are three engineers from Urbana?”
The said: “Cool, you’re in”
I said: “That’s a public verbal contract. Right!?”
The VC said: “Right”
Me and Ryan Shea (audience member and undergrad at the time and Princeton Entrepreneurship president and engineering 145 (#ENGR145) alum) just stared in half dis-belief / half amazement.
We just watched a deal close on a Saturday morning
God, I love Stanford eBootcamp*
So what happens next, breaks my heart and should serve as a cautionary tale (or not serve as a cautionary tale). The founders refused to follow-up with a $75.oo delivery expensed, FedEx package
Paying 75.00 for the $50k seemed wrong. 
Sending a Cubs bear to the VC who wore a cubs hat with the Cubs fan wife with the new cubs fan baby seemed wrong. So the undergrads from Urbana decided to not fedEx
They said: “It’s a generational thing”
What’s more, I had the FedEx number of Sequoia (a fed ex shipper number allows you to charge the package’s shipping cost to the holder of the shipper number 🙂
It’s like postage. 
Disclosure: I’d have gotten the tracking number and then text the Roelof Botha “Yo dude. 3 engineers just hit your FedEx account for 75 bucks. I’ll leave a $75 gift card for Cindy or just cut all y’all a check for 75. U pick!”
He’d text back a week later: “Don’t worry about it. Was that you at the CapDyn investor annual meeting? Anything good??”
But the FedEx package never happened
The Urbana, University of Illinois engineers never picked up the free $50k. I’m documenting the usage of FedEx and USPS TO CLOSE MORE DEALS AS ENGINEERS LABCS 3360
3360 = 

Larry Chiang (@LarryChiang)
How to Close a Deal Via FedEx as an Undergrad Who Is a USPS User Virgin #LABCS3360 #LABCS

ENGR145’s live action, just in time engineering knowledge for being a co-founder
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Text me on my cell phone down below: “I’m a USPS virgin. De virginize me please” to my PDA 650-283-8008
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