Mit Tim haben wir heute mal wieder über was nettes diskutiert…. Es ging um “Venture Capital vs. Bootstrapping”.
Aber ich will hier gar nicht ins Detail eingehen, aber ein witziges Zwischenergebnis war, dass es für den Gründer vielleicht auch was gutes dran, wenn man von einem VC eine Absage erhält. Man bekommt gutes Feedback, und macht sich nochmal ernsthafte Gedanken über das Geschäftsmodell.
Eine alte VC Gesellschaft z.B. hat sein “AntiPortfolio” veröffentlicht, und zwar waren folgende Firmen dabei:
(acquired by Hewlett Packard)
BVP’s Felda Hardymon was offered a small position in the company’s last private round, and waved it away: too small a position, he thought, at too high a price. In less than a year it was worth 17x.
BVP had the opportunity to invest in pre-IPO secondary stock in Apple at a $60M valuation. BVP’s Neill Brownstein called it “outrageously expensive.”
In 1994, Gil Schwed pitched his idea to BVP’s David Cowan, who said that Gil would never get distribution in the US. The next year, Check Point got a huge Sun OEM deal and sold $25M of firewall software.
“Stamps? Coins? Comic books? You’ve GOT to be kidding,” thought Cowan. “No-brainer pass.”
Incredibly, BVP passed on Federal Express seven times.
Cowan’s college friend rented her garage to Sergey and Larry for their first year. In 1999 and 2000 she tried to introduce Cowan to “these two really smart Stanford students writing a search engine”. Students? A new search engine? In the most important moment ever for Bessemer’s anti-portfolio, Cowan asked her, “How can I get out of this house without going anywhere near your garage?”
Rob Chandra met these guys in 2000 at the start of the telecom meltdown, and remembers saying something like, “Rajesh, I like you a lot but do you really want to build a communications semiconductor business right now?” He looked at Rob in a sort of funny way and then raised money from Greylock, Sequoia and others. They are now running at a $60 million revenue run rate by focusing 90% of their effort on the telecom boom in China.
BVP’s Pete Bancroft never quite settled on terms with Bob Noyce, who instead took venture financing from a guy named Arthur Rock.
Along with every venture capitalist on Sand Hill Road, Neill Brownstein turned down Intuit founder Scott Cook. Scott managed to scrape together only $225K from friends, including HBS classmate and Sierra Ventures founder Peter Wendell, who personally invested $25K to get Scott off his back.
|Lotus and Compaq
(formerly known as Gateway Computer)
Ben Rosen, one of the founders of Sevin Rosen, offered Felda Hardymon the chance to invest in both Lotus and Gateway Computer on the same day. Says Hardymon: “Lotus had just missed a payroll, and I was worried about the situation there. As for Gateway, I told him there was no real future in transportable computers since IBM could do it.”
David Cowan passed on the Series A round. Rookie team, regulatory nightmare, and, 4 years later, a $1.5 billion acquisition by eBay.
(acquired by Cisco)
Felda Hardymon: “[Sierra's] Pete Wendell asked if I’d like to look at Stratacom, which was doing a ‘fast packet switch.’ I gave him a blank stare.”
Tja, “nobody is perfect” & that`s life” sag ich da nur…..