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๐ŸŒด Future of LA Venture Discussion at CogX

#019: Recap on panel 1 (of 2) at the CogX Festival discussing the future of the VC & startup ecosystem in Los Angeles

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๐Ÿ“ƒ Summary of this Issue

  • Event Recap: CogX Festival in LA

    • Observations of conference

    • Insights from our panel on the โ€œFuture of LA Venture Capitalโ€

  • FYI - Donโ€™t miss our partnerโ€™s event!

    • โ€œAI on the Lotโ€ by AI LA

Welcome to issue #019 of Emerging LA

The last week has been a whirlwind of conferences that took LA by storm!

First, there was FarCon, the developer conference from Farcaster in Venice, and we had our AI x Web3 event on May 3rd, which was a success!! (Pics and recaps, including the drone aerial video footage, will come soon.)

Then, the Milken Institute Global Conference took over Los Angeles for 4 days.

It started on Sunday when we went to Snoop Doggโ€™s compound for a Milken Kickoff. I attended the main conference for the first time and will share a recap soon!

Lastly, the CogX Festival came to LA from London. This will be the focus of this issue.

The festival was a full-day event on Tuesday, May 7th, at the Fairmont Hotel in Century City.

Many of the community members from Emerging LA were there, and it was wonderful to see you all in person!

Thank you for coming to watch, sharing photos, and supporting the panels we put together at the festival.

Takeaways from VCs, founders, and leaders at industry events!


There was a strong turnout for the CogX Festival, which was a pleasant surprise!

Since it was the first time that CogX had been in LA, not many had heard of it before, and it was happening at the same time as the Milken conferenceโ€ฆ I wasnโ€™t sure how it would turn out.

My biggest worry was that not enough people would show up, and the CogX organizers would never want to return to LA!

That would not have been good for our ecosystem, especially given how successful CogX has become in London over the last few years.

However, as the photos show, the Fairmont Hotel was packed and buzzing with people from various industries.


The Future of LAโ€™s Venture Ecosystem

With Emerging LA as a partner of CogX, I had the pleasure of moderating a panel with LA's rising leaders of venture capital:

  • Eric Pakravan (TenOneTen Ventures)

  • Aadit Parikh (Sony Innovation Fund)

  • Nate Mason (Starburst Aerospace)

What I love about this panel is how diverse it is!

These investors have different areas of expertise: AI & softwareโ€ฆ gaming & mediatechโ€ฆ space & defense.

It perfectly gives a sense of the breadth of opportunity here in LA.

We discussed LA's venture capital & startup ecosystem, reflecting on the last 10 years and forecasting the next 10 years.

Here are the 4 areas that were covered.

๐Ÿญ) ๐—Ÿ๐—” ๐—œ๐—ป๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜ ๐—”๐—ฐ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ถ๐˜๐˜†:

  • LA + OC startups raised 4X more capital at the end of the 2010s than at the start of the decade ($8B in 2019, pre-pandemic hype)

  • Significant AUM added to LA, from $680M in 2014 to $3.4B in 2020

  • LA's investor community has flourished in recent years. More funds, investors, and larger platform teams supporting local startups have led to more collaboration and synergy

๐Ÿฎ) ๐—Ÿ๐—” ๐—˜๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜†๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—บ:

  • Los Angeles has a trillion-dollar local economy ($1.0T), 3rd largest in the world behind Tokyo ($1.9T) and NYC ($1.7T)

  • SMBs drive most of the economic activity in LA, with few Fortune 500 headquarters. This is a HUGE opportunity for SaaS companies focused on SMB

  • LA has diverse sectors beyond the creative industries, including the new space economy, defense, deeptech, healthcare, construction & proptech

  • Remote work has cemented LA as a top destination for talent

๐Ÿฏ) ๐—”๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—œ๐—ป๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜:

  • Gaming is a huge focus, and seeing innovation from emerging tech (GenAI, digital assets, VR)

  • Sports and IP rights are overlooked opportunities within media

  • Space companies are creating breakthrough innovations that will change everyday life in healthcare, manufacturing, & communications

  • Aerospace & Defense in LA passed $180B, making it larger than all of media (ex. gaming)

๐Ÿฐ) ๐—–๐—น๐—ผ๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—š๐—ฎ๐—ฝ:

  • Collaboration and supporting each other will be crucial for LA's ecosystem to thrive

  • Bridging the gap in growth capital will be important for early-stage local startups

๐Ÿ”ฅ FYI - Donโ€™t Miss Event

AI on the Lot 2024 (05/16)

Join us at AI on the Lot on May 16th, the premier summit where Hollywood's creative minds meet the innovators of AI technology.

โ€‹We are excited to have Dell, NVIDIA, OpenAI, Synapse VP, Cooley, showrunners, and many industry thought leaders. โ€‹

Use the "ELA" promo code offered to our community for 20% off on the AI on the Lot event!

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click HERE to sign up

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