Basic Info

Name:
Miles Spencer
Contributor Status:
Native AdVice
Initial Contribution Date:
10/21/2014
Primary Location:
New York, NY, USA

Career Info

Primary Industry:
Technology
Personal Career Headline:
Founder of Mojiva and TrustCloud
Business Description (One-Liner):

Angel investor firm.

Experience Timeline:
31-40 years of work experience

My Native AdVert

Career Snapshot:

For over twenty years, Miles has distinguished himself as a creator of ideas, a builder of businesses, and a leader of organizations. His angel group, Vaux les Ventures, has interests in over a dozen companies where he helped form the original team, provided the original capital, or both. Capital events following his efforts have realized over a billion dollars of value for shareholders, including notable successes in digital media like Register.com, Operative, TrustCloud, Aptaris and Mojiva. He is also a mentor at Grand Central Tech.

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How did you get into the industry?:

Well, I fell into it. Since I was a college dropout, I was always trying to improve myself with better ways to do things. Then I had lunch with one Lisa Johnson from Modem Media who proclaimed “the inter webs are going to be huge” . That was 1995, and I never looked back. We invested in Register.com a few months later. It turned out well.

Emerging industry trends?:

Mobile has lead we on a wonderful path of discovery. What intrigues me now is that mobile devices have enabled and powered the Sharing Platforms like Task Rabbit, Angies, and AirBnB to million of users by squeezing waste out of systems and process. Which is  great until humans get involved and five star ratings won’t cut it for Trust, Safety and Quality issues.

Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?:

At the time, it was about the carriers failing to be in the entertainment and content business. We knew that there would be better screens someday, and better content on them. And no-one would pay for that (see dot.com 101). So, we built an adserving platform to optimize ad delivery and a mobile ad network to buy and sell them. The iPhone launch was good timing.

What's next for the Business in the near future?:

I worked with a small team to solve that very problem: TrustCloud does Trust, Safety and Quality for sharing platforms, and we can guarantee it with the backing off an A+ rated insurance carrier. I joined the team as Chief Exec this summer and we were selected for 500 Start Ups / Batch 10

Your key initiatives for the success of the Business? Greatest Accomplishment?:

Greatest success as founder of Mojiva:

The people we hired and the team we built were among the best in mobile technology. After we sold Mocean Mobile earlier this year, they have mostly moved to the buyer. Leading such a large group of clearly talented, driven people was and is humbling. I plan to do it again.

Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?):

The sale of Mocean mobile left the ad network, Mojiva, on somewhat of an island strategically. We had put a significant amount of time, effort and capital into building it and it looked like it was going no-where. There were some dark days. And then I bought it back.

I have lead teams of several hundred before, and each time I learn so many things about leadership, governance, and integrity. Entrepreneurship is lumpy, and something no-one can control. We can only control how we handle ourselves in those situations. It took courage to remain focussed and professional.

Career advice to those in your industry?:

Be prepared for one of the most exciting, terrorizing experiences of your life. But don’t make it all of your life. Have a little balance: even skydivers chill out now and then.

My Native AdVantage

Motto?:

Live love learn. Leave a legacy.

Favorite People/Role Models?:

Robert E. Lee. Awesome loyalty, creativity, determination, flexibility, respect and personal morals guided him. Yet after Appomattox, he reinvented himself . Oh, and he could dance while wearing a sword.

Favorite Places/Destinations?:

My next one.

Current Passions?:

Two wonderfully nutty kids. Trying to keep them alive until they are teenagers.

What Else To Know

Your Business's Motto?:

We help sharing platforms scale by doing Trust, Saefy and Quality – better, faster and cheaper.

One food and drink on earth, what would you choose?:

Water. I can make Kool-Aid, Tea, Lemonade….

What literature is on your bed stand?:

Well it’s kindle so it’s a lot. Current books are Looming Tower (basis Middle East conflict), Seven Pillars of Wisdom (TE Lawrence) and How Trust Works.

Tell Us More:

Most interesting headline read this week:

Everything is Awesome: Lego is #1

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