In this podcast, Matt and I will cover his appreciation for his staff, the importance of culture within a company, his introduction to the ag space, getting laid off at Intrexon, his passion for wanting to start Benson Hill, his secrets behind innovation, the best ways to go about raising money as an ag-tech startup, the road to landing Google Ventures, the story behind the Benson Hill name, his decision-making process, his family, coming back online after the Coronavirus Pandemic, his love for St. Louis, Benson Hill’s new headquarters, the importance of branding, how important the protein shift is right now, Benson Hill’s new product launches, and what’s next for Benson Hill.
Just a little background… Lucy Stitzer‘s great-great-grandfather W.W. Cargill, founded the business as a single grain warehouse on the end of an Iowa railroad line in 1865. Today Cargill is our nation’s largest private business and the largest food company in the world. Lucy and her cousin were the first of her generation to sit on the Cargill Board. And Lucy served as a Director of Cargill from 1992-2010. Since 2011, Lucy has been chairman of Waycrosse, Inc., the family office of the Cargill and MacMillan families, where her primary focus is to ensure a successful future for both Cargill and the family. In 2016, Lucy founded “Dirt to Dinner” where she and her team are committed to helping consumers learn more about where their food really comes from, as well as highlighting the hardworking farmers who provide it. Lucy and her team are trying to help all of us in agriculture battle the onslaught of misinformation circulating amongst our consumers. This is a great conversation that touches on so many hot topics.
Jordan Van Trump sits down with Grant Wells, Owner & CEO at Wells Ag Supply, to talk about what it was like growing up on a farm in Iowa, being a top salesman for Cutco Knives, his ideas about changing the family business, getting chemical giants like DOW to believe in him at 20-years-old, his first big idea in the fertilizer business, how to take ag retail to scale in multiple states, building the right company culture, what to look for when hiring good employees, the importance of delegating as well as not micro-managing, family, exotic hunting trips he has been on lately, his new company BW Fusion, Bodie Kitchel, and the future of biologicals in the ag space. Enjoy!
In this podcast, David and I talk about a wide variety of life interests such as: what it’s like to live in Australia, how he got in the agriculture industry, being a jackaroo, what it’s like to run a company with 29 million acres & 600,000 head of cattle, his transition from being a farm manager to a CEO, his most important lesson for all CEOs, his hiring process, building company culture, scaling Australia’s largest landowner to the next level, what it’s like to run a publicly-traded company, why family is so important, places he has traveled, his enjoyment of art, and where the markets are going into 2020.
Guest: Codie Sanchez is a reformed journalist, turned institutional investor to cannabis investor and advisor, to now Founder at Contrarian Thinking and Cofounder of Unconventional Acquisitions. We help people think critically, and cashflow unconventionally while allocating to what we call “sweaty & boring” small businesses.
Throughout her career, she has worked at the intersection of marketing and money, finding contrarian ways to invest. She’s always balanced her profession with non-profit service to empower women, veterans and Latinos.
She joined Vanguard ETFs in 2008 to their ETF business, quite the time, then moved to Goldman Sachs Alternatives group. Following, she became an SVP at SSGA in institutional investing tasked with a $3 billion region, finally coming to First Trust ($63B) to build the LatAm investment business from the ground up. From there she became an MD and Partner at EEC, one of the largest cannabis investment firms. Codie has led global teams in all asset classes, negotiating JV’s, product creation and market entry across the Americas.
She is an advisory board member at EEC, Permian Capital, The Arcview Group, Magma Partners Venture Fund and a member of the free markets think tank, AEI’s Enterprise Club. She invests in women led startups through Plum Alley, WAVE and The Vinetta Project and cannabis companies through EEC. She received her degree in PR & Journalism from ASU’s Honors School, MBA from Georgetown University and PHD from Fundacao Gestulio Vargas. She was awarded the JFK Award for Print Journalism and the Howard Buffett Grant.
What’s the Podcast About:
Jordan Van Trump sits down with Codie Sanchez, founder & writer at Contrarian Thinking, to talk about investing in emerging markets, being a conflict journalist on the US Mexican border, learning to ask tough questions, becoming a full-time investor, working with Goldman Sachs, leveraging good debit, buying small businesses, how to better hire employees, developing agri-hoods, how to better cash flow as an individual, the one thing she would change to become a full-time investor earlier, learning from someone who has already done it before you, and her theory about collecting people. Enjoy!