Today I'll be analyzing two different views about the crisis we're currently inmersed in. First, we'll talk about Tobi Lutke's, CEO of Shopify, vision on how his company has been and is reacting to the Covid-19 crisis. Then we'll discuss Laurie Garrett's, author of the 1994 book The Coming Plague, interview on the New York Times.
Hello, everybody, and welcome back. This is take two for today’s live stream. We had some technical issues once again, sorry about that Happy Friday to you. Hopefully this is now working correctly. If not, I will get a frantic message here in a little bit, but I think we’re going to be okay now. And like I was saying before I was cut off because it wasn’t working. Today is Friday, but we don’t have a guest scheduled. Instead, I’ve got some, I think some good content for you.
But we’re going to start off backwards today. So today I am actually going to start off with these shameless pitch. And that is because if you’re an entrepreneur and if you’re not an entrepreneur, why the heck are you watching me? I mean, come on, go check out Netflix or something, you know, probably a lot more interesting than this guy with funky wallpaper. But if you are an entrepreneur you should be I really honestly believe you should know something about blockchain. You should know Something about cryptocurrency.
And if you’re in the industry, you really need to be also thinking about what is the good that we’re doing? What is the problem I’m solving. And that’s what my book behold the crypto printers is all about, definitely go to Amazon, grab a copy paper version or save the tree, get it on Kindle version, and I would really appreciate some feedback. Let me comment a review on Amazon. That would be like, awesome, you just make my day.
Anyway, uh, with that being said, today, what we’re going to do is we’re going to contrast a couple of articles that I just read in Alaska just just today. I thought they were very poignant and very interesting. So one is an article was about the call that the CEO of Shopify did just this week, and the other is an article of a expert journals, pulitzer prize money journal. Was Laurie Garrett. So, Toby latke? hope I pronounced that right? Toby is the CEO of Shopify. Laurie Garrett is the author of a book that was published in 1994, called the coming plague. And she’s a Pulitzer Prize winner.
She’s been talking about this sort of what we’re living through, but she’s been predicting it now for quite a while and gone and done a lot of research. So I’m gonna start with with Toby Doe, and I’m going to start talking about Shopify. And, you know, the reason this stood out to me is because it really resonated with a lot of what we’ve been talking about on these live streams. He one of the things he says is that every now everyone now has a 2020 quality software in basically a 2030 world. So what he’s saying is that want to or not we have been pushed forward a decade as far as our needs.
Our expectations as far as where the in all of industries, most industries are at now, the the the trends that we thought were going to take 10 years have taken, you know, 10 hours or 10 days, you know, really that is the push we’ve had. And so so it goes on to say that so everyone’s software just got 10 years worse. And given the requirements and the needs that customers have. Now, I want you to put that into context. This is the CEO of Shopify, this is one of the most successful, you know, e commerce platforms in the world.
Very, very solid technology. We use it with Shopify for quite a few of our clients. And so so this isn’t just a fly by night opinion. And lucky goes on he said to his whole team early in the Coronavirus, just when this was starting to delete all their existing plans and rewrite them based on this new reality and the That is exactly what I’ve been talking about. For the last eight weeks with you guys or seven weeks. I don’t know how many they are. Now I’ll go back and count them a little bit.
You know that you really have to throw all the old plans and all the old messaging and all the old marketing out the window and redo it, rethink it, replan it, re strategize it for this new the new reality that we’re living in. And so I thought it was really interesting that that’s exactly what he had Shopify start doing very early when they saw what was going on, you know, when they just began and you know, it’s not because it’s a told yourself moment, it’s it’s that, you know, this is a, you know, this is just necessity, it’s survival. And in the first quarter, Shopify revenues jumped 47% to 470 million US dollars.
They blew out all the expectations, and the total goods sold on Shopify went up 46% to over 17.4 billion. From the same quarter a year ago, okay, now think about that that’s a 47% increase in revenue at 46%. You know, increase from in the goods that are going through the platform. You know, obviously, you know, if with retail stores shutting down physical brick and mortar stores, basically out of business, you’re not doing business. You know, if Shopify stood to to profit from that, but the reaction wasn’t Oh, wow, this is let’s just sit on our laurels and and, you know, ride this this unexpected way.
No, it was, Oh, stop through all the plans out start refocusing start. We’ve let’s let’s reorganize everything we have in the pipeline to accelerate all of the innovations that we can put to bring to market as quickly as we possibly can without sacrificing quality. And that’s what they’re doing, and it’s been, it’s successful, it’s working. So he goes on, he says, Yes, I think it’s exactly what we’re seeing. I really believe that when it comes to the retail industry, like maybe it’s not 10 years, but it’s, we’ve jumped a lot of years in the future.
And I think one really important part about this, and I’m quoting him here. And I think it’s really worth for everyone to try to use software that was released in 2010, without updating and updating it and patches, and you’ll kind of get a feel for what the experience used to be. And you’ll say, Hey, I remember using this and I remember really, really liking this back then. But now it seems they’re old and somehow not appropriate anymore to what I would expect of this particular category of software.
And so this is really, you know, it’s it’s, it’s hard to explain, but it happens, we know where people can just sort of intuitively tell that the product is kind of made for the current times or not, and if it fits the current times, and it uses Sort of capabilities that people make assumptions about. So what he’s saying there, and he’s making a reference to the software industry is specifically saying, you know, if you don’t believe this, go back and test a program you use 10 years ago and, and see how clunky it is right now how it doesn’t fit. But he’s saying that’s what you have to do now.
And I think that’s a really powerful message for any entrepreneur, that, you know, everything you were doing two months ago is now at for the users, for the clients, for your customers, for the for the people in your market, it feels like it’s 10 years old. Okay. So how do you make what you’re doing feel like it’s adequate and appropriate for what’s going on now? And then finally, what a minute, he says. Now imagine the vacuums that exist with all the businesses that they’re only available to retail like this is now a huge driver opportunity for challenger brands.
And it’s an imperative that people aren’t prepared to jump into the opportunity. So I think there’s also lots of effects that are going on right now, where that where that’s important to understand, to know way easy to find, to kind of understand what exactly are the cause and effect here like this is very complex, chaotic system right now, in which a lot of people from from rural farmers all the way to fortune 50 companies find utility in this thing with belt.
So what he’s saying is that this is having a broad reach to everybody. And he’s saying yeah, of course Shopify is is is trying to be agile and adapt to this new reality. But beyond the message of Shopify is is an underlying message about entrepreneurship. It’s an underlying message about you know, really taking a step and saying, What do I do in my business? Okay, so that was a really cool article.
I will leave you links out in the comments after we get this over. So if you want to read the the article, I read Well, you can, you can jump over to them. Now I want to talk to you about Laurie Garrett. And Laurie Garrett is not a CEO, she, she’s a journalist, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist. But she’s been talking about, you know, she was ahead of the the AIDS epidemic, she was ahead of the ball of the SARS and AB alive. She’s been in Africa. She’s been, you know, this is sort of, she wrote that book in 1994, the coming plague.
So she’s very well versed in what we’re living through, and just have a few quotes from an interview they did ever and I thought it was really interesting to comment on them and share them with you. And then we’ll put a little bow on this livestream and we’ll let it go. So she says, I’ve been telling everybody that my event horizon is about 36 months, and that’s my best case scenario. Okay, once you see they were asking when is this this Isn’t Memorial Day behind us in the rearview mirror. Okay, her best case scenario is that in 36 months, we’ve recovered some sense of normalcy, okay.
But then she goes on and says, I’m quite certain that this is going to go in waves she had it, it won’t be a tsunami that comes across America all at once, and then retreats all at once. It will be microwaves that shoot up in the morning, and then in New Orleans, and then in Houston, and so on. And it’s going to affect how people think about all kinds of things. They’ll reevaluate the importance of travel. They’ll reassess their use of mass transit, they’ll revisit the need for face to face business meetings. They’ll reappraise having their kids go to college out of state.
Okay, so here she is, she’s giving us some context. She said this is going to affect you know, on so much of a profound level about how individual human beings react to what we’ve been living through that there is no going back. Okay? Now, you know the the best case scenario is that we’re going to we’re going to have a you know, we’ll get a virus and we’ll get a vaccine eventually and then it’ll be tested and then it’ll get, you know, the logistics will get worked out and maybe, you know, maybe in in 12 1836 months, something really good has happened there.
Maybe there’s no guarantees, okay, we don’t even know that there will ever be a vaccine. Okay, but let’s let’s cross our fingers and hope there will be. But the reality is, regardless of that, the changes the profound changes in the market are not going away. They are already they have that that commitment has already been made in the, in the psyches of your clients of your customers, they’re thinking differently I’ve been talking to you about this.
They’re that that’s why the messages have to be different because the the eaters The eyes that are receiving those messages are different. Okay? And then she goes on. And she says if America enters the next wave of Corona virus infections with the wealthy having gotten somehow wealthier, of this pandemic, by hedging by short lived by doing all the nasty things that they do, and we come out of our rabbit holes and realize, oh my god, it’s not just everyone I love is unemployed or underemployed and can’t make the maintenance or the mortgage payments or the rent payments.
But now all of a sudden, those jerks that were flying around in private helicopters are now flying on private personal jets, and they own an island that they can go to and they don’t care whether or not our streets are safe, then I think we could have massive political disruption just as we come out of our holes and see that what 25% unemployment looks like she said, We almost we may also see what collective wage looks like.
Wow. Now that is, that’s a pretty powerful statement for to be to be making and I think it means something we should really be And as entrepreneurs, we need to be thinking like both of these experts. Okay, we need to be thinking like the CEO of Shopify, and figuring out, you know what that means to our business.
But we also need to be thinking about Laurie Garrett and what it means to our market to our customers to the people we serve as business owners, because get our in the end it we’re all you know, our businesses don’t work it there aren’t is that isn’t a, you know, a viable market to buy our products and our services. So we need to be figuring out how this matters, on a specific level to our businesses and on a wider level to the markets into our markets.
And I really believe we, we can’t opt out of this. We can’t just cross our fingers and we can’t just hope that everything’s going to come out hunky dory. Okay. Instead, we need to step up, but we need to figure out how to be part of the solution. And I really believe and I’ve said this, so many times it entrepreneurship is part it’s a fun time. part of the solution, but we as entrepreneurs have to do it, it doesn’t happen by itself.
And so you know, I think that that is why there’s so much opportunity to be had if you take these steps as entrepreneurs and you really focus your your thought process on how to position your business and how to position what you’re doing and how to use the resources you have been there many are few to actually making an impact a positive impact in the world we live it and with that being said, I wish you all a very healthy safe weekend.
Hope you’ve enjoyed this. This This was didn’t turn out to be a bit shorter. I think we’re only 14 minutes today, so that’s good. Anyway, thanks for listening in. Please leave me some comments. Leave me some feedback, hit the like button. Like I said, check out my book on Amazon. You’ll like it. It’s a fun read, if I do say so myself. So take care. Talk to you next week and have a great weekend.