I was fortunate to have Kleiner Perkins’ investment partner Ted Schlein join me on Ask A VC this week. Schlein, who joined Kleiner in 1996 and has nearly two decades of experience in the VC world, discussed what’s changed in the VC industry as well as what the expectation is for a return on investment for startups. We also tackled what’s next in the enterprise world as Schlein sits on the boards… → Read More
This week, I invited Bijan Sabet of Spark Capital back to Ask a VC, because it’s been a while and there were a ton of questions we didn’t get to last time. Sabet is in the middle of some of the most interesting companies on the Web today including Tumblr, Twitter and Boxee. And as you can see from his last time on the show, he’s a great guest. Last time we talked about everything… → Read More
Ask a VC has been sporadic with my travel schedule, but we’re back this week. My guest is Izhar Armony of Charles River Ventures. He brings a different perspective to the show for a few reasons. For one thing, he’s from the East Coast. And as a former member of the Israeli army– aka the country’s entrepreneurial finishing school– and a former exec for Tel Aviv-based… → Read More
Mike Maples, my guest on Ask a VC this week, is known for backing some of the best Web 2.0 entrepreneurs early on and hunting down “Thunder Lizards” or the 15 truly disruptive companies that hatch each year. But some of his most celebrated investments have turned controversial. In this video he defends Digg’s honor against some tough reader questions and defends Chegg’s co-founder and chairman… → Read More
I’m leaving the country for a few weeks, so I’m trying to get a few episodes of Ask a VC in the can before I go. We have two exciting guests we’re taping this week: Mike Maples of Floodgate Fund and Peter Barris of NEA. Maples was early on both the super angel and Web 2.0 bandwagons, investing in companies like Digg, Twitter and Chegg. He’s noted as one of the guys who… → Read More
We had a last minute cancellation on Ask a VC this week, so filling in is Satish Dharmaraj who was our second ever guest on the show. For those who don’t remember, Dharmaraj is a relatively new partner at Redpoint Venture Partners, after selling Zimbra to Yahoo for $350 million and Onebox, which he sold for $850 million. Not bad.
Dharmaraj focuses on a lot of Redpoint’s consumer Web portfolio… → Read More
After a Holiday hiatus, Ask a VC is back and we’re kicking off the new year with Jason Green of Emergence Capital. Emergence was started to fund the software-as-a-service craze of the early 2000s. That wave has had mixed results, but Emergence had several of the big hits including Salesforce.com and SuccessFactors. Green himself was also an investor in hits like DoubleClick, aQuantive and… → Read More
My guest on Ask a VC this week was Dana Stalder of Matrix Partners, a newbie in the venture world, but a seasoned manager and entrepreneur in Valley Internet circles. Stalder answered a range of reader questions including basic advice for pitching Matrix and how Google failing to acquire Groupon impacted the social commerce space. (Matrix is an investor in the number three player BuyWithMe and… → Read More
We have a new VC in the hot seat this week, Dana Stalder of Matrix Partners. Stalder is a relatively new VC, but he has deep Valley pedigree. He joined a young, pre-revenue Netscape in 1994, staying on through the AOL merger, and leaving in 1998 to help found Respond.com, before jumping to eBay in 2001. Among other things, he ran eBay’s search engine marketing and customer acquisition… → Read More
I’m hearing rumors that Ask a VC is getting big in pockets of Harvard Business School, which explains an increasingly sophisticated caliber of email questions over the last few weeks. Appropriately, we had the only suited VC in Silicon Valley on this week to answer them. (Ok, not in that picture. That was taken before his “MadMen” phase.)
Jeremy Liew of Lightspeed Venture Capital joined me this… → Read More
Jeremy Liew is my guest on Ask a VC this week. He’s a guy with plenty of Web battle scars. He was an early employee of CitySearch back in the mid-1990s, a senior executive at InterActive Corp. and a senior executive at AOL. (You know, before AOL was cool again.) He’s been at Lightspeed Venture Partners since 2006 and his investments include Playdom, Kongregate, LivingSocial, RockYou! → Read More
Ten years ago, most VCs refused to invest outside of Silicon Valley. Now, most of them have funds in Israel, Europe, India or China– and lately many of those Chinese funds are outperforming the US counterparts. But August Capital is still sticking with the kind of local venture capital that built this industry, and David Hornik explains why in this week’s episode of Ask a VC.
But, Portland? Yeah… → Read More
David Hornik of August Capital has bailed me out in a short week by hopping into the Ask a VC chair that I neglected to book in advance. The timing wasn’t planned, but it’s appropriate. The first time I ever interviewed Hornik, I was still at BusinessWeek and when I asked him to send a headshot he emailed one over where he was dressed like some sort of pilgrim. It was clear back then… → Read More
Oh, Nic Brisbourne. Unlike most VCs who come on Ask a VC who are used to my rude, outspoken American ways, Brisbourne is British and therefore incredibly polite. As this interview goes on he gets more visibly uncomfortable until the end when he brings up Spotify, and I just go a little pit-bull on him.
But social graces aside, we have a fascinating chat about the investing scene in London and… → Read More
Nic Brisbourne of DFJ Esprit is in town this week — along with seemingly every successful Brit– so we asked him to be our first in-studio guest ever on Ask a VC. Brisbourne is well positioned to answer any questions about the funding scene in Europe, which last I checked was one of the only markets in the world where investing activity was actually declining this year. Are things… → Read More
My guest on Ask A VC this week is Bill Tai of Charles River Ventures. He’s also a professional kiteboarder. You may ask: Why would a guy who has been a VC since 1991 need kiteboarding sponsors? That was my first question.
Generally in this video we talk about how the venture business has changed during the last 20 years and how kiteboarding has changed over the last 10 years. There are a lot of… → Read More