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Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup - Class 15 Notes Essay

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Peter Thiel: It is very hard hard for investors to invest in things that are unique. The psychological struggle is hard to overstate. People gravitate to the modern portfolio approach. The narrative that people tell is that their portfolio will be a portfolio of different things. But that seems odd.

Things that are truly different are hard to evaluate. Suppose someone wants to start a rocket company. You might ask, quite reasonably, âWhat experience do you have with rockets?â The answer might be âzero.â Elon didnât have any experience in making rockets before he started SpaceX. Or suppose a VC wants to invest in a rocket company. The question becomes: âWhat on earth do you know about rockets?â Again, the answer is probably ânothing.â No one has invested in rockets in over 40 years.

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