Unsexy Unicorns

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(Originally published on “Two Cents“)

A lot of unicorn startups don’t have the flashiest keywords.

At a cocktail party, if someone introduces themselves as a software developer for a payroll company, you probably will think, “that’s really boring!” and will probably try to figure out how to survive the next five minutes of small talk. But what if that company is called Gusto, one of the fastest growing HR company in the valley, officially in the billion-dollar valuation? This company is probably replacing a lot of recumbents and traditional jobs.

Think about the words “accounting”, “records”, “tooling”, etc. Super “boring” words that are probably not trending on Google. These nonetheless represent industries with trillion-dollar potential that few people are chasing after.

Perhaps, focusing on the most “unsexy” application is the way to go.

3D Printing is “sexy”, braces, hearing aids are not, but that’s where unicorns were born.