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James Altucher


10 New Business Ideas - Feb 15 (please like the ideas you think are most interesting)

Keeping track of my new business ideas. A couple of things to note: A) this is just to exercise the brain. B) most of these ideas are probably bad . I don't judge them here but when I write them I still try to think of "good" ideas in order to maximally exercise my brain. C) Feel free to steal any ideas and give me no credit. Again, the idea of writing this is to just exercise. D) If you want to MAKE any of these ideas with me, let me know!

    1. Alpha Insurance (AI based insurance).

    A chrome extension that reads (privately) people's emails and determines if they deserve lower insurance rates by the AI observing their emails.

    First, we'd have to do an experiment to create a dataset to learn from. Offer 10,000 people money to install an extension that checks out their emails. The software notes grammar, spelling, content, sentiment analysis, etc on the emails and builds a vector of all of these heuristics for each user. Then we look at the person's insurance during the test period. Did they require more insurance or less? The datasets are divided into two: "good" or "bad" for insurance risk.

    Then, when a new customer comes in, he/she's email is analyzed the same way and then statistically matched vs the good or bad set. If they match "good" then the insurance company lowers their rates. Similar to an idea from Kai-Fu-Lee's book 2041.

    2. Sabremetrics for Basketball

    The book and movie "Moneyball" by Michael Lewis is about using statistics to determine how to better draft / trade players in baseball. It turns out that scouts often use the wrong metrics for determining a good draft pick. For instance, you would think a good home run hitter would be a good pick. It turns out that the players who get pitched lots of "walks" are more correlated to more wins. This, and many other unusual features of baseball, were determined by statisitics, adn then famously, the first teams that used these ideas ended up crushing it. See the movie.

    For basketball it's much much harder. It's not as discreet as just analyzing at-bats. As Marc Lore, owner of the Minnesota Timberwolves, explained to me, you can analyze arc of the shots, 3 point shot success, how much have they already run during the game, and a million other things.

    Who ever develops the first sabermetrics for basketball will make a killing. First step would be determining where the data is for this stuff.


    3. The NFT TIcketmaster

    I am convinced whoever does this will make billions.

    Idea: When the NY Mets sell me a ticker for $100 they make $100. But when I sell the ticket to a scalper for $200, who then sells it the day of the game for $500 the Mets make nothing.

    Making every ticket an NFT means:
    - the Mets make a royalty on every secondary transaction
    - no forgery of tickets
    - can provide future access to memorabilia perhaps.

    Some sports teams are beginning experiments with this but the key woudl be to make a platform making it trivial for venues to make their tickets NFT tickets.


    4. Buying e-learning apps.

    Some sites are mega-sites for e-learning. Like UDemy, Teachable, etc.

    But many apps out there are small pieces of the puzzle. For instance, you can do a "word search" puzzle in multiple languages to help people learn languages while having fun via solving puzzles. A simple app, not a course, that contributes to learning.

    Or a history quiz app where people compete.

    There are 100s or 1000s of these apps for sale on sites like Flippa,com.

    In a "rollup" style of business, 1 + 1 = 3. e.g. if you buy 5 laundromats, you can consolidate back-office and also get buying synergies because you are buying in bulk. So your earnings per laundromat go up the more you buy.

    Similalrly with a rollup of small learning apps. the key would be to buy 100 apps for $x each. Then it would seem the entire company is worth $100x. But actually, because of the rollup aspect, it would be worth around $500x. So then you sell the company.

    5. Chess cheating software.

    Maybe not a huge idea but one close to heart. Sites like have 80 million users. Some of those users (many) cheat using computers.

    Sites like this have chess cheating software (e.g. how correlated is each move to the move a computer would make - if 100% then a cheater).

    But there are many edge cases (what if the cheater only uses the computer 1 out of 6 moves). Also, it's bad to have false positives. You don't want to accuse non-cheaters of cheating as it ruins reputation.

    Better chess cheating software solves a huge huge problem that affects over 100mm people and many websites. Would be worth something. Not sure how to do this one.

    6. CityCoin

    I was talking with Eric Adams, now mayor of NYC. He was telling me how during the pandemic we got into the habit of sending all of our money to Seattle. People make $1 of income in NYC and then instead of going to local store, because it was closed, people would buy on Amazon. And now everyone is in the habit. How do cities get their citizens off of that habit?

    Answer: NYCCoin, or SFCoin, or LACoin, etc. Idea: CityCoin.

    A coin (tailored to the city), that will be redeemed dollar for coin in ten years. You "mine" new coins (i.e. make future dollars) by accepting the coin adn getting transactions (if you are a local store) or if you use the coin to buy local. This is like a negative sales tax (i.e. you make money per purchase) if you use the NYCCoin, encouraging people to buy in the city or even come as tourists into the city.

    CityCoin would be the platform any city can use to make their own local coin.

    7. Staking-as-a-Service

    When you stake a crypto token (at a DeFi exchange so they can have more liquidity, or as a miner (for Proof-of-Stake), you get more coins as a reward. This is like a dividend yield although usually much higher.

    Many people ask me: how can I stake? Where is safe? How much can I make? Do I need more wallets? Is it locked up? Which coins to stake? Etc.

    Someone should set up a platform where, with cash, a customer can put in $100 for instance and automatically stake the 50 coins the service has determined are safest and offer best yields.

    This solves a huge problem many have.

    8. IPO your home

    Usually the only way to get money from equity in your home is via another mortgage. More debt!

    How about take 10% of your home and turn it into a coin where people who buy the coin benefit from any appreciation in value of your house. So, for instance, I can take 10% of my house and make 1,000,000 JamesHouseCoins and anyone who buys 1 coin will own 1/1,000,000 of 10% of my house which they can then trade or wait until house sells for a higher value (hopefully) and get their pro-rata share of the sale.

    - another way to get cash out of house (perhaps to pay down debt)
    - people can invest in real estate around the country by betting on the areas they think will rise the most in value
    - similar but different to investing in a REIT. In a REIT you participate in their vision of how real estae will work adn they might invest in things you dont like (as well as things you do like).
    - for instance, I can do specific research and see: Idaho, Tennessee, and Alabama in specific counties/towns might be going up because big tech companies are moving there. So I can buy tiny pieces of houses in advance and diversify my real estate portfolio.
    - as those areas appreciate in value, the tokens will appreciate in the DeFi exchanges where they trade.

    Whoever sets up a platform for doing this will make billions.

    9. Tokenization of future income

    When a student graduates she is often confronted with high debt. Maybe $200,000 or more.

    What if you can "tokenize" 10% of your next 10 years of future income?

    Let's say I just graduated from a not-so-great law school and I have $100,000 in debt. I want to pay down that debt so I make 1,000,000 coins (JamesCoin) where the holders of each coin each year get 1/1,000,000 of 10% of my income that year.

    One would buy this coin if they think my income will be good or if they think my income will be even better than expected.

    For instance, if I graduate an ok law school but i've interned with a Supreme Court Justice then maybe my coin might be undervalued. Someone could buy coins on a Defi platform where this trades and if I start going to better than expected law firms the holders of these coins might make 20-50% a year on their initial investment if expectations exceed what everyone thought was my potential.

    A brand new asset class

    10. Crypto Quant Fund

    A lot of money has been going into crypto hedge funds. Most of those are long-term funds or funds based on insider chatter, meme coins, etc.

    There's been enough data now on how all the cryptos trade on different exchanges to make a quant-based fund. Get the data for all the cryptos, use a system like Wealth-Lab to program software to detect statistically patterns. Trade accordingly. This used to be my daytrading strategy on stocks in the early 00s and I used that to start a hedge fund.

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