Partner, Formation 8
Over the last hundred years, five major trends have dominated Silicon Valley (SV): “Electronic Tools,” “Semiconductor,” “Enterprise,” “Telecom,” and “Consumer.” A sixth trend has emerged. We call it “Smart Enterprise.” The Smart Enterprise wave will disrupt nearly every major sector of the global economy and dramatically improve productivity within those sectors, because it disrupts non-linear decision-making processes that are central to how major industries conduct business and create value. These decision-making processes have been complicated over the last two decades by the vast growth of digital information. In the past five years alone, the amount of data in existence has grown nine-fold, to over 2 trillion gigabytes. This increase has brought a corresponding increase in data complexity, formats, and silos that require sophisticated technology platforms to help knowledge workers process and leverage the information effectively. Another tenet of the Smart Enterprise thesis is that technology is best utilized as a augmenter to human capital, not as a replacement. Humans and machines have fundamentally different strengths (machines with computation and linear processes, humans with strategic and abstract thinking), and it is naïve to believe that technology can replace humans anytime soon. Instead, Smart Enterprise companies produce technology which humans can leverage to solve big, unstructured problems which have outsized impact on our economy and society.
Joe Lonsdale is a Partner at Formation 8, a fund which invests in top Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and connects them with Asian conglomerates to drive innovation at a global scale. Joe co-founded Palantir Technologies, a multi-billion dollar software company which develops mission-critical analysis systems used by government and financial organizations around the world. He is also the founder of Addepar, a leader in private wealth management technology. Previously, he worked with the financial arm of PayPal while still a student, and then joined as an early executive at Clarium Capital, and was a key player in growing Clarium into a $5-billion AUM global macro hedge fund. On the side, Joe is Chairman of both ONEHOPE Inc, a charity-focused wine brand with partners such as the Mondavi family. Joe has a variety of philanthropic pursuits, including the board of cacs.org. He earned a BS in Computer Science from Stanford University in 2003.