The Balter Test

Not sure about your startup? Look inside your own heart.

My guest this week is Dave Balter, Founder and Partner of Flipside Crypto, a data solutions and investment club for cryptocurrencies. Dave really is a pillar of the Boston startup community… an innovation‐obsessed builder of companies, often as a Founder/CEO but also as a Board Member, advisor, or investor.

As an operator Dave’s probably best known for Smarterer, which he founded, led, and sold to Pluralsight for $75 Million in 2014, and BzzAgent, which he founded, led, and sold to dunnhumby for $60 Million in 2011. Dave was named one of 30 Most Disruptive People in Boston Tech by Boston Magazine in 2016, was a Finalist for E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year, and was recognized as a Future Legend by the Ad Club. He co‐founded the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), and authored two books on the subject including Grapevine and The Word of Mouth Manual: Volume II.

As both an independent angel and Venture Partner in Boston Seed Capital, Dave’s investments have included Draft Kings, Promoboxx, FitnessKeeper. and HelpScout. A longtime TechStars mentor, Dave also co-founded — a classroom space that helps star employees become managers — with his wife Sarah Hodges back in in 2011, and sits on the Board of Directors of Boch Center for the Performing Arts.


Dave and I go way back to the early 2000’s when we were both executives in the General Catalyst portfolio, and have been close friends since holding two Dave Balter Tech Prom’s with Sarah, Jennifer Lum, Cort Johnson and Nicole Maria Stata. He is literally one of my favorite people, a constant source of good humor, good music, and good advice both personal and professional. You’ll hear about Dave’s entrepreneurial journey in this conversation, and we’ll dig into what’s always been his superpower, the ability to spot opportunity and act decisively to pursue it even in the face of withering skepticism on the part of others. We’ll close with some inside scoop on Flipside Crypto, which is fast-becoming a leading light in Boston’s cyptocurrency startup space.

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