We’ve been a multi-stage venture firm since our founding in 2009. And over the past nearly ten years, we’ve been lucky enough to invest in a variety of companies at different stages of development — from seed through later-stage venture opportunities.
But throughout this journey, we’ve made all of our investments — regardless of stage — via a single investing team. Today, that team is comprised of individuals who have deep domain expertise in the vertical markets in which they invest — e.g., enterprise infrastructure & applications, consumer technologies, life sciences, and cryptonetworks.
We’ve talked elsewhere about the structural changes we see in the venture landscape, including the fact that venture-backed companies continue to stay private for longer periods of time. As a result, we believe investment appreciation opportunities that previously existed in the public markets continue to shift to the private markets. Private investors, therefore, have more places to invest along the capital curve of private companies and for much longer periods in the development of the companies.
Given our belief in the importance of multi-stage investing in the venture world, today we are announcing our first new general partner dedicated to helping us expand our later-stage venture investing capabilities.
David George joins us from a distinguished career at General Atlantic, where he was responsible for leading or partnering on various investments during his tenure, including Airbnb, AppDynamics, Benevity, CrowdStrike, Mi9 Retail, Opendoor, Seismic, Slack, and Uber.
We talked with a lot of potential candidates for this role, but what impressed us most about David, in addition to his investment track record, was that everyone we talked to in the industry said he was among the most respected investors in the business. He also has the right temperament and EQ for this role — we were looking for someone who had the desire to work effectively with our early stage general partners to get the benefit of their insight, but also the gravitas to be able to say “no” when the product and tech was great but the financial risk/reward was inconsistent with our fund objectives. David fit the bill on both. My favorite anecdote from our interview process was David’s sheepish admission that he is a “business model snob”. He meant this in the most sincere way (he’s definitely not a snob), but it highlighted his ability to be deeply analytical in evaluating both the upside market opportunities for later-stage investments and the micro unit economics.
Although we hired David principally for his domain expertise in later-stage investing, he will partner closely with our existing general partners (whom we hired for their domain expertise in specific vertical technology markets) on all investment opportunities. In fact, we believe that this tight coupling of stage expertise with vertical market expertise is the best way for us to approach later-stage investing and best serve the interests of our portfolio companies and our limited partners.