Welcome to "Profiles." We have created this newsletter to give you
information vital to the success of your business. Each week we profile
potential investors, and once a month we profile potential customers and
acquirers, so that you have leading edge information at your fingertips!
This week, we're excited to present Matt Miller, General
Partner of another exciting open funds in the valley, Walden Venture
Capital. You can meet Matt Miller, keynote at "Creating Your Portfolio of
Strategies," November 6, 2002, in Palo Alto, CA. The description of
this event is located under Right-Hand Partners Events. You can register
the interview, you'll find a list of upcoming RHP events and other
information. Be sure to send us your feedback... we want to hear what you
would like to see in upcoming newsletters! P.S.: This email is best
viewed in HTML format.
Matt Miller, General Partner, Walden VC
o Amount of funds available for investment: current fund is approximately $250 million with the majority available to invest
o Firm’s investment focus: software, media and new platforms
o Personal investment focus: software
Question #1: What is your mission as a Venture Capitalist?
It’s hard to answer this question in any way but to say our mission is to generate the best possible returns for our investors in the markets we focus on.
Question #2: What types of deals are you seriously looking to invest in today (i.e. market, technology, industry, etc.)?
Today we are most focused on companies that have already received customer validation and have a predictable revenue model without undue technology risk. We believe there is excellent opportunity in some segments of software as well as new platforms that will deliver the next generation of media or information. We are not too focused on seed stage companies, though we have done series A deals for companies that have their first paying customers and a strong pipeline. We tend to invest $5 to $10 million over the life of an investment and have a strong preference for local companies since we like to hands-on as investors. We also tend to co-invest with firms we know well.
Question #3: What are the top five priorities a company must have for you to become interested enough to schedule a meeting?
1. Reference-able, paying customers with growing commitments.
2. Strong pipeline of opportunities and a demonstrated ability to forecast it.
3. A seasoned executive team. There are too many good CEO’s out there to get too excited about an unproven one.
4. A business model that includes recurring revenue. Predictability in the tech business is elusive and we value a model that allows forecasting accuracy.
5. A target market that is not already choked with too many companies. These are few and far between today!
Question #4: What companies have you funded in year 2002?
1. Qiva Corporation – Led a round that started at $17 mil and extended to $24 mil for this Global Logistics software company.
2. RealVue Simulation Technologies – Co-led a $5 mil round with SI Ventures.
Question #5: What message do you want to relay to entrepreneurs to help extend their venture’s lifetime?
1. This is not 1999….it is 1985. We have returned to the real world of building companies. When I did one of my first startups in the early ‘90’s, the model was simple…you needed to take a few small rounds of money and get profitable by $10 mil in revenue. Usually this means keeping staff under 30 or 40 until profitability. You usually took a few hundred thousand in seed money to get a first version out. You took an A round to get a few paying customers and a B or C to get to profitability over 3 years or so. You went public if you could keep profitable for 4 quarters or more. While I will not say those are the exact numbers we have returned to, they are more realistic that the 1997-2000 model.
2. Location, Location, Location. This is no longer the mantra only for real estate. I used to worry most about technology risk in startups, now I worry most about overcrowded segments. I have seen too many segments where there is good customer uptake but each of 10 well-funded startups got 2-3 good customers. Now they are all starving and looking for more money. By the time Gartner has published a report on your favorite target segment, you might want to look for a new one…
You can meet Matt Miller on November 6, 2002 at "Creating Your Portfolio Of Strategies".
Matt Miller's Bio
Carr & Ferrell LLP: IP and corporate law firm providing legal and technology expertise
PeopleConnect: Search specialists for the healthcare, technology and scientific communities
Right-Hand Partners Events
Fearless Leaders’ Forum - November 4, 2002
Our first guest is Kevin Kalkhoven, ex-CEO of JDS Uniphase. Kevin became CEO of Uniphase in 1992, and took it public in 1993. Then he led the acquisition of JDS Fitel in 1999, and Uniphase became JDS Uniphase. He is highly regarded for the super-growth of the company that was started with only $200K in Angel funding; reportedly 67-fold growth in sales from 1992 to 2000, and the hyper-growth of the market cap from $35M to $100B. And, he obtained no VC funding! He will disclose his predictions about next generation end-user technology in the Telecom industry.
After the interview, Kevin Kalkhoven will present "Lighting The Future, Or History Repeating Itself," which will be followed by a 15-minutes Q&A from the audience. Kevin is now a co-founder and partner of KPL Ventures in Menlo Park. Go to Mollyguard to register.
Creating Your Portfolio of Strategies- November 6, 2002
Do you know what you are going to do when your target customers don’t place orders, the market changes, or your competition leapfrogs your product? Learn to identify viable business model options to increase your agility in a dynamic market. And, learn how to translate your business model and core technological advantage into a long-term business opportunity through alternative executions. The keynote speaker is a seasoned CEO turned General Partner at Walden VC, Matt Miller. Panel speakers include Craig Wichner, CEO of KindMark and Andrew Preston, serial entrepreneur. The moderator is Tyson Freeman, Venture Reporter at The Daily Deal. Breakout session facilitated by Patrina Mack, Managing Director at Vision & Execution. Go to Mollyguard to register.
Red Carpet Event - November 13, 2002
The Red Carpet Event is a "first-of-its-kind" event bringing together an elite group of CEOs of funded companies to learn about today's *HOT* topic of "Marketing For Super-Growth", and sharing best practices with each other. The keynote speaker is a seasoned CEO, Abe Kleinfeld, CEO of Accorus. Panel speakers include Rich Moore, VP at Battery, John Metcalfe, EIR at NEA, and Dustin Grosse, VP of Strategy and Worldwide Marketing at Placeware. This event is hosted by Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. Go to Mollyguard to register.
Working Effectively With Your Board, And Everybody Else - November 20, 2002
Is your board your biggest asset or your biggest headache? Learn about realistic expectations for what a board can and can not do. And, learn to effectively communicate the company vision both up and down by repackaging your information for board members, employees, investors and customers. The keynote speaker is a seasoned Entrepreneur turned Managing Director at Sigma Partners, Greg Gretsch. Panel speakers include Giovanni Colella, CEO at Healinx, others TBA. The moderator of the panel is Alison Macondray, Publisher of Wired News. Breakout session facilitated by Chris Gill, President at CGS&M Associates. Go to Mollyguard to register.
Affiliate Community Events
Elevator Pitch Workshop - November 1, 2002
Learn to craft a compelling elevator pitch to gain investor, customer and partner interest. Live coaching and feedback provided. Register at Mollyguard
Investor Presentation Workshop - November 12, 2002
Make the most of your time with investors. Tighten your story to attract and engage the right investors. Learn how to simplify your technology so others will "get it". Register at Mollyguard
Profiles Deluxe Subscription Information
The weekly Profiles (Basic) newsletter offers weekly profiles of potential investors.
Profiles (Deluxe) will provide profiles of potential customers and acquirers once a month starting January 6, 2002 for an introductory price of $99/year.
About Right-Hand Partners
Right-Hand Partners (RHP) is a bizdev agency. Our mission is to catalyze business transactions.
To find out how RHP can make introductions to profiled individuals, please email Rebekah Wu, Founding Partner.
Thank you to the following sponsors for sponsoring this issue of
Carr & Ferrell
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