Silicon Valley Watcher - Former FT journalist Tom Foremski reporting from the intersection of technology and media

How To Look Good As A VC...

Posted by Tom Foremski - April 20, 2010

Georges van Hoegaerden from The Venture Company pokes some fun at venture capitalists trying to look good while as industry tackles some hard truths...

The following extracts are from: VC roast; how to take Venture for a ride:


- You give speeches to the world about free-markets from atop a comfortable perch of the most closed, dark, unregulated, in-transparent and proprietary market mechanism in the financial industry.

- You write on your blog that Venture is all about relative performance and then compare Venture indices with those of 100-year old asset classes (with nominal greenfield and growth), so Venture still looks like a “star”.

- You make the world believe that the best companies to invest in start with the discoveries from white males, under thirty, only a technology proposition, twenty miles from Sand Hill Road and built in a garage where you spoon-feed them $250K tranches, minimizing investor downside risk. Ignoring comfortably that the long-tail of viable ideas should just no longer be explored.

- You decline to discuss publicly any rounds of funding into portfolio companies and its valuations, because at some point that may actually lead to the discovery of your real knowledge, vision and merit of decision making in Venture, or what a fool you really are.

- You start raising new money, four years after your first, making it impossible for your LPs to establish the real merit of your initial investment thesis. You’ve just added another 12 years to your already comfortable existence and enjoy the stability of a more secure job than anyone else in government.

- You tell the world about how holistic your job really is, and how you as a member of the Venture sector are responsible for generating all these jobs, forgetting of course that you are mainly the matchmaker in the process (between the assets from LPs and Entrepreneurs) and it is not your money you put to work but the public’s money (dispersed through LPs to VCs).


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