From Sonalight to $5B dollar company.
Today was a great day for Amplitude, they have started their journey as a public company. I can’t express how proud I am of the team.
I met Spenser Skates and Curtis Liu (the founders of Amplitude) at a coffee shop in Palo Alto, Coupa Cafe (I like giving credit to the Coffee shops where I meet great people).
They pitched me an idea for an early “Voice to text” app on android called Sonalight. I wasn’t so much interested in the product of Voice to text, but the enthusiasm they had for building, the excitement of building hard things, and their confidence in themselves was captivating.
I remember calling my Dad after and saying
“I think I just met the two smartest people on the planet.”
So naturally, I invested.
I invested about 10 years ago, before I founded Boost VC.
2 weeks after I invested, they came to me and said:
“Voice to text isn’t going to be here for another 5 years. The technology doesn’t exist to make it 98% recognizable yet, no matter what we do.”
I once went over to their apartment, and found a room covered in monitors. I’m sure my memory is embellishing, but I remember a ton of monitors throughout the apartment showing different analytics for their app. The unfortunate thing about their app was that they only had 500 users at the time… but 20 screens tracking every analytic.
When they came to me, two weeks after I invested, they said that they would not be continuing with the voice to text app, however, they would be trying to sell an analytic product.
That analytics product was amplitude. Today valued at $5B on the public market. The best part is that I feel like I got to say yes to two friends who wanted to build something great… and they are proof that sometimes it works out.