Look! Another IPO!

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Don’t Look Up is a 2021 American apocalyptic black comedy film written, produced, and directed by Adam McKay, and starring an ensemble cast including Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Rob Morgan, Jonah Hill, Mark Rylance, Tyler Perry, Timothée Chalamet, Ron Perlman, Ariana Grande, Scott Mescudi, Cate Blanchett, and Meryl Streep.

I was on a zoom call, as part of a due diligence process, for Neotribe Ventures, and after the discussion with a founder (and CEO, of a Quantum startup, looking for Series B investment), Kittu and I (classmates from IIT-Madras) were chatting, just catching up on the fund and such, and he said:

You know, we had an IPO in February.

We did?

Yes. More than $2B dollars.

Oh, I was not paying attention.

Yes. Energy Vault.

Good return?

Without going into details, yes. We have a very comfortable 9 figure exit.

How much did we put in?

You will laugh. Mid Seven figures.



So, after the call, I looked it up. Imagine my surprise that it involved:

Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio (/diˈkæpri/; Italian: [diˈkaːprjo]; born November 11, 1974) is an American actor and film producer. Known for his work in biopics and period films, he is the recipient of numerous accolades, including an Academy Award, a British Academy Film Award, and three Golden Globe Awards. As of 2019, his films have grossed over $7.2 billion worldwide, and he has been placed eight times in annual rankings of the world’s highest-paid actors.

You probably have not seen this:

Energy Vault is also pleased to announce that actor and environmentalist, Leonardo DiCaprio, an existing investor in the company over the last two years, will join the Strategic Advisory Board.

Wut? He has been co-investing with us? Here is an article that brings Leo and Physics together:

Leonardo DiCaprio deepens ties to gravity storage startup

Here is some more color:

Actor and climate activist Leonardo DiCaprio has joined the newly formed strategic advisory board of Energy Vault, one of a few startups looking to commercialize gravity-based storage tech using solid materials….DiCaprio, who recently starred in the climate-focused Netflix hit “Don’t Look Up,” praised the company’s “innovative” tech that “allows clean power to be used around the clock,” and use of recycled and waste materials to make the composite blocks in its system.

Of course, if you watched the Oscars this year, you remember that Amy Schumer had a quip about Leo:

He’s done so much to fight climate change and leave behind a cleaner, greener planet…for his girlfriends. Because he’s older and they’re younger. Okay, you get it.

Here are my favorite movies with him (beyond Titanic, of course):

Blood Diamonds. Catch Me If You Can. Gangs of New York. The Departed. (Although I liked the Japanese original Infernal Affairs much better.) Inception. Shutter Island. Django Unchained. The Wolf of Wall Street. Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. The Great Gatsby.

Don’t get me started on the Directors:

  Martin Scorcese. Quentin Tarantino. Christopher Nolan. Steven Spielberg.

Small world.




1 comment

  1. I too loved every one of those Leonardo films. Others too, like What’s Eating Gilbert Grape and Revenant.

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