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A startup framework Shaan swears by

Startup ideas from My First Million 💵 Episode #108 with guests Ben Gilbert and David Rosenthal

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Wes Kimbell

Sep 07 2020

5 mins read

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Hey guys,

Hope you’re having a great Labor Day! In this edition I list all the startup ideas discussed on the My First Million podcast episode #108 with timestamps and links. I also include some other discussion topics like startup frameworks. Enjoy…


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At 10:55 Shaan discusses a framework he learned for starting up a business. There are four personalities that come together to make a company, EPAI:


  • Entrepreneur: One kid looks out the window at his school and see grass. Another kid will look out the same window and says, “hey we need a parking lot,” because there’s never enough parking at school. An entrepreneur always has a pain point or personal dream. They are the visionary.
  • Producer: Not the ones who come up with the vision, but the ones who are really good at “downloading” the vision. They hear the vision and say, “yep, got it. Makes sense" and their brain starts realistically building the vision out and some sort of action.
  • Administrative: The person who supports the entrepreneur and producer so things can actually get done. This includes administrative, payroll, etc.
  • Integrator: Teaches the others how to work together to achieve the vision and be cohesive over time.

18:00 A “Waze” for Wifi app / wifi site for Airbnbs


  • Be able to book a AirBnB or VRBO and know if it has internet or not
  • This is a “bootstrapable” and “no code” thing that could be built
  • Maybe just screenshots of the internet speed test showing how good the internet is there
  • It solves the problem of needing great internet for Zoom and other remote work stuff
  • Particularly important for when you are on a business trip
  • You’ll have to get over the “cold start” problem of who is going to upload data around the world so the app is actually helpful?
  • Maybe this business could be built and then sold to VRBO or Airbnb in the future?
  • Maybe start 5 to 10 data points in every major city until it gets traction from “product hunt” nerds
  • There is a big need for this in the current situation we are in with COVID and remote work
  • Could be a wedge into something more interesting.
  • May be best not to charge user fees but instead do affiliates with Airbnb listings, etc
  • Could you use this to bootstrap into inventory of places? And then become its own network of “workcataions”?
  • Shaan interpreted this idea as simply being outdoors and having great wifi. If you created “wifi sites” (actually places) where you could make an outdoor co-working thing
  • Shaan also that of Boingo wireless, where you can get wifi on airplanes or coffeeshops better than what the company is providing. You can get free wifi in exchange for your email. You can potentially do this for Airbnb hosts. If you are a “Boingo” type company you could tell hosts, hey we will boost your wifi / mesh networks / routers in exchange for a small fee, etc.

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27:00 SPAC index fund


  • There’s a rush of SPAC creations
  • If you were to bet on SPACs as a whole
  • You could invest in a basket of startups that went public in a certain time frame and hope there is a Zoom in there
  • Could be an asymmetrical risk-reward way to invest

29:10 an “Angel List” for creating public equity indexes


  • It’s like curating an index over time
  • Where you maintain an index and get positive carry
  • It could be like a social network where you follow me as an investor and see what i’m investing in, buying, selling, etc
  • Make it easy for other people to start an index and let others follow / watch you

33:50 SPAC newsletter


  • Take advantage of keyword SEO on SPAC
  • There’s one called SPAC Research
  • It’s a paywall structure; get a free trial then have to pay
  • You could do a “Motley Fool” for SPACs

40:10 A new type of insurance company in the age of climate change


  • The fires in California are case in point
  • The insurance industry uses outdated models
  • A way to address the symptom of climate change but not solve the problem

41:40 Insurance for e-commerce businesses


  • According to Shaan, insurance for e-commerce is almost impossible to get
  • No underwriters could be found
  • Shopify should provide a preferred partner
  • Insurance is “the best business in the world because you get free money”
  • If you have a nice large investment business with excess float, then you can invest that float into other things and gain appreciation with it

49:25 Opportunity Zones for crypto entrepreneurs*


  • OpZones give you very good tax incentives
  • You can roll appreciated stock without paying tax (like a 1031 Like Kind Exchange)
  • You can defer your capital gains taxes for another 10 years
  • At ten years you only have to pay 80% of the tax bill
  • *May not be perfectly accurate, consult your tax attorney or CPA before doing anything

54:10 Buy and then build: Aquire profitable businesses like Tiny Capital and grow them


  • You can get an SBA loan and only put no money down or 5% to 10% on a million dollar business
  • Seller can carry 10% of the price as well
  • Every month you’ll be making 50% profit fro the revenue and the other 50% on paying off the loan
  • If you improve operations in one of the many obvious ways to do so, you only increase your profits and increase the value of the asset 2x to 3x what you bought it for
  • If you’re really good at one sales channel (like Youtube) and the target company isn’t using that channel, that could be an advantage to you
  • Shaan’s family member / friend bought a company for $300,000, and fast forward, it’s worth $300M now

At the end of the podcast, Shaan discusses the company he sold to Twitch and the story behind it.


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