Posts Tagged ‘Ron Conway’

Correction to Mint.com Story; Shout-out to Felicis Ventures

September 21, 2009

I made a boo-boo on the recent Mint.com I wrote for BW. Turns out that Baseline Ventures did not invest in Mint.com. Ron Conway personally invested in the company as he was forming Baseline. However, Conway is no longer part of Baseline, Conway tells me via email. Over the summer, he started a sister investment firm called SV Angel LLC.

Credit to Aydin Senkut of Felicis Ventures for pointing out the error. Senkut says the organizer of STIRR, the networking event for entrepreneurs where Mint.com founder Aaron Patzer met First Round Capital co-founder Josh Kopelman, also referred Senkut to the deal after Senkut introduced Patzer to Conway and Paul Buchheit.

Buchheit is a rising star in the Valley, having coded Gmail as the 23rd employee of Google, coining Google’s “Don’t be evil” motto, and then co-founding social network aggregator FriendFeed, along with three other former Google employees. In August, Facebook acquired FriendFeed.

In other news, Senkut tells me that things are also going swimmingly well for this new firm. “Mint is my fifth exit in less than 4 years, allowing me to have a positive annualized IRR that’s right below the second highest in Cambridge Associates venture return study in 2008 (my firm was not included but it’s comparable),” writes Senkut. Way to go Aydin!

Batten Down the Hatches: Foundation Capital Warns Its Startups

October 13, 2008

On Sunday night, BusinessWeek.com published my scoop on the email that Foundation Capital sent to the CEOs of its 70 portfolio companies. Grosser’s admonition is one of several warnings issued by venture financiers to entrepreneurs over the last week or two. It’s reality check time in startup land.

Foundation Capital General Partner Adam Grosser sent the email on Sep. 29, about a week before angel investing big-shot Ron Conway sent his SOS and Sequoia Capital held their now infamous come-to-jesus meeting.

In a missive gingerly titled “Thoughts on the Economic Environment,” Grosser strongly advised the startups to rethink their operating plans for 2009 with a focus on cutting unnecessary costs, raising money, and curtailing the use of debt.

“It is likely that there will be extremely limited liquidity opportunities for the next two years,” Grosser wrote. In a separate e-mail he noted that his portfolio companies are performing well.

Read the rest of the story here.