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On Wednesday, December 9 Axios' Dan Primack hosted a conversation on the future of venture capital featuring Mercato Partners director Joe Kaiser and Upfront Ventures managing partner Kara Nortman.

Kara Nortman unpacked the startup landscape, Los Angeles as an up-and-coming hub for venture capital, and trends in the industry.

  • On how the pandemic has changed founding startups: "You have to be intentional. You don't have serendipity. It doesn't exist. You have to even be intentional about your serendipity. My sense is more startups are starting really in a positive way, trying to solve big, real problems where you can collaborate with people in different ways and get to know people differently."
  • On how companies that prioritized resiliency are thriving: "A lot of companies that thought they would be impacted negatively actually became more efficient and really looked at how they're operating and really invested in culture...Startups that do what startups do best—which is move fast against macro changes—are coming out of this much, much stronger."

Joe Kaiser discussed the acceleration of 'work from home' and how geography will play less and less of a role in building successful companies.

  • "A couple of years ago, you had founders...moving to the Bay Area to build amazing companies. Today's [founders] are doing it in the towns where they grew up...We believe is going to be an explosive and dispersed entrepreneurial movement across the US. I think I think we are going to see a really distributed entrepreneurial environment for years to come."

Axios Chief Revenue Officer Fabricio Drummond hosted a View from the Top segment with president of the Venture Banking Group at Pacific Western Bank Sean Lynden, who unpacked how startups and the world of venture capital have approached the economic reality of the pandemic.

  • "I think that a lot of the venture capital community took a longer term approach to this. They saw this as being a short term hiccup...They've taken a long term approach, continuing to build good, solid companies that should come out of this stronger than ever. "

Thank you Pacific Western Bank for sponsoring this event.

Go deeper

Updated Jan 15, 2021 - Axios Events

Watch: Affordability and the next administration

On Friday, January 15, Axios' Caitlin Owens hosted a conversation on the future of health care affordability with a new Biden administration, featuring former CMS administrator Dr. Mark McClellan and former Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.)

Dr. Mark McClellan discussed the priorities of the incoming Biden administration and challenges in health care access and affordability exacerbated by the pandemic.

  • On President-elect Biden dealing with the pandemic: "[He] was elected above all else for an effective response to the crisis. And that means the first round of legislation has to focus on more effective vaccination, more effective testing, reopening the economy, and giving people the economic support they need."
  • On people not getting the care they need during the pandemic: "We've seen a lot of health care complications because people did not get help. We don't have a strong public health system in this country...Most people did not get help. If they were at risk for infections, they had to go find a way to get tested on their own."

Rep. Greg Walden unpacked the value of telemedicine and creating an affordable, patient-centered health care system.

  • How technology can bridge existing health gaps: "We've learned the importance and practicality of getting health care closer to the patient. I'm speaking specifically about telemedicine. I think it can be both cost-effective and so much more convenient for the patient...You shouldn't have to rush into a hospital for everything you need."

Axios Vice President Yolanda Taylor Brignoni hosted a View from the Top segment with the CEO of OptumHealth, UnitedHealth Group, Dr. Wyatt W. Decker, who discussed the pandemic as a moment for the industry to think differently about how they provide accessible care.

  • On the potential for telemedicine: "Let's put the decision-making, good information, and support in the hands of a person and help provide them with digital tools that can give them easy access to health care with excellent outcomes. We [can] do this in a whole variety of ways by providing telehealth solutions."

Thank you UnitedHealth Group for sponsoring this event.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: CDC director defends agency's response to pandemic — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Biden readies massive shifts in policy for his first days in office.
  3. Vaccine: Fauci: 100 million doses in 100 days is "absolutely" doable.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode again.
  5. Tech: Kids' screen time sees a big increase.
  6. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.
Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Alexey Navalny detained after landing back in Moscow

Navalny and his wife shortly before he was detained. Photo: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty

Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny was detained upon his return to Moscow on Sunday, which came five months after he was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok. He returned despite being warned that he would be arrested.

The latest: Navalny was stopped at a customs checkpoint and led away alone by officers. He appeared to hug his wife goodbye, and his spokesman reports that his lawyer was not allowed to accompany him.