We go earlier and focus on making companies happen
We think a company’s culture and first strategy are set early on.
So, to increase the odds of success, we like engaging early.
Other venture firms have a different strategy. Many look for formed teams, an existing product,
customers and revenue. The marketplace is filled with these venture firms.
Specifically, we offer tangible value by:
Recruiting the BestWe source and recruit trusted-and-tried executives from our personal networks. For one new company, we personally sourced the CEO, CFO and VP Engineering; it was the CFO’s third company with us. For another emerging company, we found a CEO and co-founder before we even finished due diligence. For another company, we helped recruit the senior team, including a highly sought-after CEO who had been shown over 20 opportunities by many other venture firms.
Offering Access to Prospective Customers and Key PartnersA great way to test an idea or define a product is to go to people who make markets happen. For example, we have made several ad agency introductions for one of our companies that resulted in over $1MM of incremental revenues and new relationships with marquee customers. Companies we’ve worked with have met privately with senior IT executives at Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Fidelity, Putnam, State Street, Putnam, Marsh & McLennan and others. We also have set up meetings for our companies with key executives at Dell, eBay, EMC, Facebook, Google, HP, IBM, Microsoft, Yahoo!, and other strategic partners. They know we don’t waste their time.
Being the Founder’s and CEO’s Trusted PartnerWe strive to be the board member and investor whom the Founder and CEO calls first – the board member who is trusted and provides thoughtful feedback that helps resolve the thorny issue or that helps crystallize a new action plan. We may not always say what the Founder or CEO wants to hear, but it will be honest, measured, and direct. Before an entrepreneur signs on the dotted line, we encourage a conversation with one or more of our existing Founders or CEOs to get a perspective on working with us. They are our best references.
Working with UrgencyWe want to work as hard as our entrepreneurs. For example, we sponsored a critical partner meeting for one of our companies and flew out with the CEO, Founder and VP Marketing to be there. We then took a red-eye flight back with the CEO. We work as if our financial net worth depended on our companies’ success. It does.