How Venture Capitalists Evaluate Potential Venture Opportunities
1. Summary of the case and issues that were raised
The case study is about an interview, conducted to four venture capitalists from four of the most prominent VC Silicon Valley firms, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), Menlo Ventures, Trinity Ventures and Alta Partners. These firms invest both in seed as well as in later-stage companies, which operate mostly in the information technology sector. However, each VC has developed different sector portfolio depending on the expertise of the venture capitalists, the partner network and other factors. Professor Mike Roberts and Lauren Barley a senior research associate, both from Harvard Business School, have made a series of seven questions to their interviewees to understand how they evaluate potential venture opportunities and what they look at in order to decide if they will fund them and in which way. The questions were dealing with how VC’s evaluate potential venture opportunities, how they conduct due diligence, what process id followed for the decision making, what financial analyses is performed, the role of risk in the evaluation and how they think of potential exit routes. These questions were asked individually and revealed several similarities as well as differences in the strategy and the criteria that are used for the evaluation.
1. Analysis of the case
a. Prior to reading the case list your set of criteria for evaluating new venture as an opportunity
There is a range of criteria relevant for a decision of financing a new venture. To construct my list for the evaluation of a new company as an opportunity I have selected to refer to t...
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...onsider the market characteristics as not important. Hoel, unlike others mentions that a good location is also an important factor for success as it helps in hiring good professionals.
d. To what degree do you think that your proposed course project / venture idea should meet these criteria?
I think that our course project should address a strong pain point of the market for which customers will be highly interested. The technology and the business model must create barriers for others to copy. The team and the people that we know (our network) are certainly crucial for the success of the project as at this point especially; it is our core means for the success of our goals. The market should have a good size and significant growth prospects but since our idea is dealing with high technology and social media, this is likely a criterion for which we suffice.
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