Prolific investor Jeff Clavier has 81 deals to date, with several successful exits in his pocket— including Mint, Truveo and most recently Disney’s acquisition of Tapulous. As the founder of SoftTech VC, he is technically a micro VC, but he prefers the far sexier title of “Super Angel.”
We talked to Clavier on Wednesday on TechCrunch TV, for his take on the pulse of seed stage funding and the sectors he’s zeroing in on. Calling it a “seller’s market,” he says that valuations are still on the high end in the crowded market, but he is actively looking for attractive deals in the B2B, B2C web services segment. He already has 20 deals in this space, including EventBrite and DNAnexus. When I pressed him to be more specific, he said his next purchase will likely help “publishers make more money on something that they do.”
Unfortunately coy; however, he did expound on his acute regret for passing up on LinkedIn, Twilio and Foursquare. He had an opportunity to invest in Foursquare last summer, but didn’t recognize the long term opportunity at the time:
“So it wasn’t valuation at all [unlike LinkedIn and Twilio], I chatted with Dennis in July of last year, I liked the concept, I liked Dennis, very smart. I liked the gaming aspect that they were introducing to get users engaged… I didn’t see the long term retention. That was sort of in July, so I wasn’t exactly clear as to what I wanted to do. Went on vacation, came back , Foursquare was all the rage then and there was sort of no way to get back in. So I sort of passed by omission.”
While the valuations of the main players (the pure plays like Gowalla, Foursquare) in geo-location are now too high, he says, there are appealing layers within the space. He has just invested in one company (the investment has not been announced yet) that he says aggregates geo-location data from several sources and uses it for a very targeted, specific application. See the rest of our interview above.