On December 4th 2015 I dropped out of grad school, packed my suitcase and moved to America.

I bought a one-way flight to San Francisco not knowing what I would do here once I landed.

No place to stay and no job in sight.

I had six weeks. Six weeks to figure that all out, before my flight departed from Shanghai, where I lived at that time.

No clue why, but David Semerad agreed to have me join his team after a few calls we had leading to my departure to San Francisco.

He took me on board and changed…

I decided to launch a podcast for European founders looking to succeed in the US!

Introducing Conquer America!

The backstory

On December 4th 2015 I landed in San Francisco and have been hustling in Silicon Valley ever since (I recently relocated to Los Angeles, but that’s another story).

Every time I go back to my homeland, The Czech Republic, I’m approached by local entrepreneurs who are looking to expand their businesses into the almighty US market.

I’d often get questions about things like, “what should I do to get my product into the US, how should I find partners, investors or a…

The Story of My Product — Rapid

We recently launched Rapid — our real-time, cloud-hosted database service on Product Hunt (PH) and we did it with a fair amount of success. I decided to share my experience launching on Product Hunt. This post will show you how to avoid getting buried under the vast amount of daily product listings on Product Hunt and help you get into the top 10 products of the day!

Making it to the top 10 makes a huge difference as it guarantees being featured on the PH homepage generating more organic interest in your product.

Our Product Hunt Post

Note: I won’t go into detail about…

When Google releases a product identical to yours

For the last six months, my development team and I have been doggedly working on a new cloud-hosted service that would allow software engineers to build real-time user interfaces. We released our beta version to an enthusiastic test audience last spring and officially launch our product, Rapid, during our hackathon in San Francisco this past July.

We started getting traction and saw that developers are really finding Rapid useful. Our high lasted until last week. Tuesday morning. G-Day.

It was a standard Tuesday, I got to the office and opened Android Headlines, just like every other day. Scrolling through the…

This is Silicon Valley: Chapter 3 of 6

Looking to land the first investment in your startup? I feel you. A dozen founders like yourself will start a dozen businesses before you finish your morning coffee, so things can get tough when it comes to attracting investors.

Since founding the Startup Fund, I’ve seen too many people demotivated after a few unfruitful attempts to raise their first round. Does it surprise me? Not really. If you happen to be a first-time founder, it’s easy to grasp the idea that success either happens overnight or doesn’t happen at all. …

This is Silicon Valley, Chapter 2 of 6

It will take time and effort to expand your network, no matter where you are. Whether you’re new to Silicon Valley or are planning on moving here or even if you’re just coming for a visit to “expand your horizons” or meet potential investors, clients and partners -you will need a network. How do you build one from scratch without knowing anyone, quickly and efficiently?

I was in that exact situation when I moved to San Francisco in 2015. Not only did I not know anyone in the city, I didn’t know anyone on the entire continent as it was…

Pitch everyone

Frequent pitching will take your pitch to the next level. You’ll receive feedback and through questions you are asked, you’ll learn more about your own business. This will also prepare you for investor meetings. Investors want to work with entrepreneurs who are prepared.

Fundraising is a means to expand your network

Use fundraising meetings to expand your network and create valuable connections. You’ll run into the same investors over and over. In most cases, investors don’t invest after the first meeting.

Investors invest in lines not dots

The first time you meet an investor, that’s day zero of your track record. Investors want to see progress over time. This is the advantage of accelerators…

Being in LA for the weekend and having nothing better to do on a Sunday I decided to run the marathon. I made that decision the day before — on Saturday. So as you can imagine, I didn’t have much time to prepare.

I never jog for more than 15 minutes at a time and only as a warmup on the treadmill when I hit the gym — which is close to never.

Anyway, I decided to run the marathon.

Picked up my registration Saturday afternoon at Huntington Beach and went for a proper pre-marathon supper: hot dogs and beers.

Note to my 19 year old self: “quit smoking weed in your dorm room and start that side hustle”

Everyone loves using digital products like Instagram, yet so few of us actually ever create any. One of the reasons is that it’s perceived to be technologically challenging to do so. However, it’s easier today than ever before for anyone to create their own website or web and mobile app even if you don’t know how to code. There are numerous examples of people who make a living creating digital products despite not having the ability to code, Justin Jackson is a good example.

It can be as simple as starting a blog, creating Youtube videos or a starting podcast…

This Is Silicon Valley, Chapter 1 of 6

What’s the difference between San Francisco, Silicon Valley and the Bay Area? This may seem confusing at first, that’s because it is. But first things first.

This is California.

This is the City and County of San Francisco. Most people just call it “San Francisco” or “The City”.

David Drobik

Los Angeles based entrepreneur, host of Conquer America Podcast www.conqueramerica.com

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