Saturday, March 10, 2007

Experiencing Venture Capital @ the GSB

Yesterday I had one of those special experiences I get at Stanford GSB.

I attended a panel organized by Charles Moldow of Foundation Capital who brought in the founders of 4 of his portfolio companies - an exceptionally smart gang: Barney Pell of Powerset, Ketan Shah of Weblistic, Gautam Godhwani of SimplyHired, and Bijan Marashi of Xoopit.

The group shared with us their challenge of targeting huge existing markets like search and email in contrast to creating new markets. They talked about how they compete with incumbents like Google, Yahoo, and Monstor. Brave thoughts!

After the panel around 10 gsb'ers went out for dinner with the group where we had more detailed discussions. I sat next to Charles Moldow so i had the chance to learn more about his experience both as an entrepreneur and VC. He shared his views about various issues related to Venture Capital - successful venture capitalist, seed investment and private equity and their impact on VC, investment in cleantech...

At the end we had a group discussion about how entrepreneurs seeking their first round of investment, valuations, term sheets, and investment shopping.

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