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Showing posts from April, 2003
A VC revisits dot-com land

Bill Gurley of Benchmark Capital took a little time off recently to examine what had happened to the world of "dot-coms"--a category treated as the ultimate pariah by VCs everywhere for the last 3 years.

Here's what Gurley says he found in his latest column :

"Amazon's market capitalization has climbed 79 percent in the past year to $9.7 billion. Yahoo, over the same time period, has climbed 63 percent to reach a corporate value of $15 billion. And eBay, the cream of the crop, is up 61 percent to reach a whopping $28.4 billion. Cumulatively, that is more than $50 billion in value for the top three players in this newbie industry, which seemed very un-business as we crashed to earth in late 2000......

Other public Internet companies are seeing a resurgence, or at least are holding their ground. WebMD, Verisign, TMP Worldwide (, and DoubleClick all sport market capitalizations north of a billion dollars. Additionally, Over…
Why (and how) Silicon Valley needs to change

Here are some extracts that I found interesting from an article in by Naren Gupta, Vice Chairman of Silicon Valley-based Wind River Systems.

* Entrepreneurs need to pursue only those areas where they have unique expertise and those they are passionate about. I see too many mercenaries--masquerading as entrepreneurs--floating around Silicon Valley, looking to jump on to the next flavor of the month.

* In the last few years, VCs have assumed too much power and founders have been forced to cater to the whims of the VCs rather than follow their own instincts.

I have uniformly seen that great VCs, like Bill Draper, Bill Davidow, and others treat founders with immense respect and receive great admiration in return. They become trusted advisors, not taskmasters, to the founders.

* The expression "serial entrepreneur" needs to disappear from the technology lingo. To me this is an oxymoron. A serial entrepreneur sounds li…
Selling software as a service

"In the past few weeks I have had a number of conversations with my friends in the venture capital community that have convinced me that consumers really want to purchase software as a service and not a shrink-wrapped CD offering."

So says US Venture Capital executive Charles Hudson in his web log

He goes on to add:

"I am fairly convinced that consumers do not want to manage complex applications or worry about the impact that a new application will have on his/her desktop computing environment. In a world where big businesses seem to have had their fill of enterprise software, enterprising entrepreneurs might want to take a hard look at services that customers would be willing to pay money to use."

Andrew Anker of August Capital adds in response:

"The services or ASP model is unfairly maligned because of a number of unsuccessful attempts at it during the late 90's. Those failures had more to do with the product than the model. I…
To talk or not to talk
tech with a VC

Naval Ravikant of August Capital talks about the problem of entrepreneurs reluctant to reveal details about their company's technology when pitching their companies to Venture Capitalists. He also presents some potential solutions.
Click Here to read the full article