One of my favorite VC bloggers, Josh Kopelman, has an interesting piece on
the VC math problem as first envisioned by Fred Wilson. Having gone through
the fund raising process, and hearing this nonsense from VCs, I always
gnashed my teeth when a VC was setting valuations based on what they needed
to own. Not any intrinsic value of the business, but rather what they felt
their ownership percentage needed to be. This was much more of a problem
with the earlier stage VCs, and, interestingly enough, with some of the spray
and pray VCs, where you would think they might care less about overall
percentage due to the fact that they were investing everywhere.
Josh references a paper by Paul Kedrosky which takes a very detailed research
approach to examining this issue. The paper has been downloaded and will be
read tonight. However, the math that blew my mind was contain... (more)
Brandon Watson's "Many Niches" Blog
There’s been quite a bit of chatter on the web about the Azure Services
Platform. Obviously I’m excited to see people talking about our new
platform, especially when there is plenty of good, some bad, and some good if
not somewhat rambling. There will be no shortage of guessing as to what
Microsoft is “really up to” with our development efforts.
I wanted to take a crack at that one, but from a completely different
perspective. I want to frame the discussion centered on the motivations of
the platform providers, and let that be a guide to understa... (more)
The title here might be a bit sesationalistic, but the deal certainly shows
how VCs can act in a way that is counter to the wants and needs of the
entrepreneurs and management teams. The news yesterday that Zappos sold to
Amazon has been circulating with many emotions. CEO Tony Hsieh wrote an
amazing letter to his employees, which laid out the deal and what it would
mean for the company. Read it if you haven’t already.
Unfortunately, when the press and journos report on a sale, they focus on the
topline number, and it is rare that they report much beyond that. As most
of my ... (more)
Venture Capital Blog on Ulitzer
Apparently (apparently!), I have said something that hit a nerve. When I
posted my thoughts on the whole issues as to whether or not the VC model was
broken, I had no idea that it would be the most popular post I have ever
written (and it’s not even noon on day 2). Crazy.
Predictably, some of my VC friends showed up to the conversation to point out
that 1) am angry, and 2) that the “good” VCs don’t have associates.
First, I am not angry. It’s easy for the VCs and their ilk to cast those
aspersions, but the reality is that they have a fantastic ... (more)
Azure Cloud on Ulitzer
About one year ago I was fortunate to be working on the launch of Windows
Azure, Microsoft’s cloud computing platform. With the start of our new
fiscal year, I was asked to take over a team which was responsible for the
technical marketing for our developer platform product management team.
It’s been quite a journey, and I have been able to expand the scope of the
products on which I am working.
Today, we are announcing the availability of the beta bits for Windows Server
AppFabric, our platform for deploying and managing servers in the
enterprise. The... (more)