Five years ago, Dave McClure decided to strike out on his own and start a little venture firm called 500 Startups. At the time, the pure ambition of giving his seed-stage investment fund that name sounded crazy (classic Dave!) and many questioned his plan to invest small amounts of capital in a massive number of startups.
Today, that thesis doesn’t seem quite so crazy. 500 Startups has nearly 1,000 companies in its portfolio, and the firm doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon.
McClure and his team have also become a global force, investing broadly around the world, and also supporting a diverse group of founders. 500 Startups has geographically focused “micro funds” in a number of regions around the world, including Mexico and Latin America, China, India, Korea, Thailand and other parts of Southeast Asia.
That philosophy of supporting those who are underrepresented in the tech community extends even further into 500 Startups, where a third of its investment partners are female and half of the overall organization is made up of women.
In other words, in many ways Dave McClure is changing the way the VC game is played.
A conversation with Dave is always insightful, never boring, and frequently raises the question of why there aren’t more VCs like him — or why he’s not like more VCs. All of that is why we’re looking forward to talking to McClure at Disrupt NY 2015 in May and hearing from one of the most interesting and controversial figures in venture capital today.
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