Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Steve Lisson Austin TX Stephen N. Lisson Austin Texas

Steve Lisson Austin TX Stephen Lisson Austin Texas

Selected Buzz Descending in Chronological Order

Selected Buzz Descending in Chronological Order
"You are getting more exposure than you ever expected and I think you are using it wisely.
Keep it up!"  -  from the founder & managing partner of a major East Coast venture capital firm
"You're not overexposed, just listened to." - from a West Coast counterpart

The Boston Globe
  Waltham's Matrix leading venture pack on both coasts: Firm credits discipline, insistence on lead role for stunning '90s returns
There are dozens of other fine firms with great returns. But only one can be the best. People who run endowments and foundations corroborate Matrix's reputation. The recipe has paid off handsomely for entrepreneurs, too.
eCompany Now / Business 2.0
Death Valley
The Bay Area is coming to terms with the end of an era.

The Un-Wild Bunch
The hottest VC firm you've never heard of.


Behind the VC Music
Venture capitalists are the rock stars du jour of the financial world, but a new Website reveals that some funds pay out a lot less money to investors than you'd imagine. For individual investors who don't have a prayer of putting their money into funds that deal only with tech insiders, large institutions, and foundations, analyzing exactly how much the top funds make can certainly seem like an academic exercise.  But it's important that somebody do it.

New York Post

The inside scoop on VCs
For those who measure their worth by their  investments and their stock holdings - pretty much all of Silicon Valley - there's a new Web site that looks to be rivaling F** for sly, subversive attention. 

Day of E-tonement
Ouch. Investors feel the pain. This market is a bear, and it could get meaner. Much was made earlier this year of those triple-digit internal rates of return.


The House of Pain (Barron's Cover Story)
Ever since the IPO rocketship crashed to earth, the pros have been asking themselves when, or whether, the new-issue game will revive. If bad ventures henceforth go unfunded, all the agony may have been worthwhile.
internet VC watch

Rumors of Benchmark's Demise Greatly Exaggerated
For weeks, rumors have been circulating in the VC community that Benchmark Capital's third fund, Benchmark III, was in trouble, hit hard by losses in e-commerce companies like The rumors reflect a misunderstanding of how venture funds operate.

From Y2K to dot-com bombs: The year that was
Best-performing Sand Hill Road VC fund award; Worst-performing Sand Hill Road VC fund award.

The Daily
  Early-stage deals take center stage as exit strategies blur: The advent of good times for early-stage VCs and entrepreneurs as well
The quality of many early-stage deals and the size of the financings may actually increase. With valuations down, the VC party is only just beginning. It's just that many VCs don't want to admit it. 
eCompany Now

Bonehead Safari
Who's the Dumbest VC?  One reporter's quest to lavish this ignominious award.  I doubted her investors were laughing. 
Boston Mass. vc watch

V.C. Battle: East vs. West
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Matrix Partners are considered the cream of the crop among venture capital firms, the kind of VCs that limited partners are fortunate to be able to invest their money with.  So compliments paid, we set out to find out which was better.
Red Herring
CNN fn
  CalPERS tightens its grip on VC 
Observers were surprised by the move, questioning why a venture firm would want to let one of its limited partners play a more significant role, or to share its profits with yet another partner. 
The Boston Globe
Digital Mass

The thrill of defeat 

TA Associates' Kevin Landry is in the venture business because it's fun, he says. And to make money for the firm's investors and partners. Few complaints there

  For VCs the show is also over
(English text version)
When it's about return on investment VCs tend to be vague and not afraid of 'window dressing', making things look better then they are.

CNET Investor

KKR's 2.8 Percent Returns Hinder Raising New Fund  (Update3)
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. is taking a beating in the leveraged buyout business it all but created and dominated the past 15 years.

Seattle Post-Intelligencer
High tech's bloom has faded for Paul Allen It is unlikely that all of Vulcan's Internet companies will be able to raise more money in the future.  That's not bad for Vulcan.

Wall Street Research Net
Digital Mass

Rivals? Not when they see a good deal It's common lore in Boston venture circles: Where Matrix goes, North Bridge isn't far behind.

internet VC Watch

Balance of Power Shifts To VCs, LPs However, just as the most sought-after start-ups still command some power, top venture firms will still set the agenda. The result of the new venture environment will be a widening divide between the top VCs and start-ups and everyone else, conditions that could hasten a shakeout in the industry. 


Venture Firms Seek Protection From Price Declines on New Stakes Liquidity preferences have been around for 20 years and typically gain wider use in periods of declining returns.

Business Forward Cover Story

COVER STORY: Venture Capital - Climbing the Capital Hill Falling valuations are a double-edged sword for venture capitalists. Venture firms can only maintain overvalued companies on their books for so long. At some point, you either have to toss more cash at the money-losing enterprise or take the loss. For the right VCs, however, all the gloom and doom may actually turn out to be a blessing.
internet VC Linx
Benchmark Rumors Persist Now the rumor is that the firm's latest fund, Benchmark IV, is the one that's in trouble. No doubt Benchmark is holding its share of losing investments from the Internet craze. But so are a lot of other name firms. 

Globes Israel's Business Arena
Financial investors? Us? pierces the VC industry's verbal fog Managing partners gossip endlessly about the industry. 

The Los Angeles Times

As Start-Ups Fail, Venture Investors Back Out in Droves Financing: The stampede to put money into tech has reversed direction, with some partners selling out at a loss. 

The Boston Globe

Funds nationwide are seeing red Investors in Matrix Partners, a Waltham venture group that is arguably outperforming everybody else in the business, aren't complaining about the downturn. Yes, they may have gotten an astounding 19 times their money back on Fund IV launched in 1995. But they've also already reaped 12 times their original capital in the 1998 Fund V. 

The Industry Standard

Idealab's Identity Crisis With only 40 percent of funds invested, Fund II could be a hit or a bust, depending on how good its future investments are. This explains in part why Clearstone wants distance from Idealab.
The Red Herring
  How to rate a venture capital firm
Venture capital is like baseball without the stats. There are great arguments about who's the best -- and worst -- VC around. But unlike baseball fans, those who follow venture capital have scant data on which to base their opinions.

Until now.

As part of our annual Red Herring 100, we set out to determine the top ten VC firms using the best metrics we could come up with. To our knowledge, this is the first time anyone has come up with a list based on more than a single metric, such as the internal rate of return (IRR).

Before we get into each of the ten factors we examined, allow us a brief explanation as to why we didn't include the most common metric: IRR. IRR is a number determined by each VC firm, and although it's bandied about frequently, it can be easily tweaked to make a firm look like it's doing better than it actually is. It isn't uncommon for a VC that isn't performing very well to inflate its IRR by counting its own "carry," the money it makes from investments, into its IRR.

The only real way to know how a VC firm is performing is to look at its disbursements to its limited partners (LPs). This is the actual stock or money that VCs get from a liquidity event -- that is, a portfolio company's IPO or its sale to another company. The only problem is, VCs don't want to share this information.
The Red Herring Special Double Issue

Truth in Numbers
Deciding which VC firms are great requires determining which measurements really matter.  Among our criteria, disbursements to investors may be the truest indicator of a firm's success.

Internet VC Watch

U.S. Venture Returns Slipped In The Fourth Quarter The news wasn't all bad. Some top-performing funds that had "negative returns" not just in the fourth quarter, but for the entire year, actually distributed quite heavily to limited partners. Much of the appreciation in such funds had already been factored into the IRRs. 
The Boston Globe
Digital Mass
  Good news outweighs bad for Battery
Gone was the euphoria of last year, when the Wellesley firm announced it was raising a billion-dollar fund. This year the big money was expressed in paper losses.
The Industry Standard
Yahoo! Finance

Fallen Idols - High-profile and respected VCs weren't able to resist the Internet bubble. Now many are paying the price with troubled funds.
Venture capital firms information about their funds' performance, especially the current valuation of their investments, point to a fund in trouble. While any fund raised during the last few years is enduring tough times now, not every one is in the same boat. 

San Jose Mercury News
Redpoint struggling to crank out results - Despite the VC firm's hyped reputation, first fund could be running into trouble
Redpoint's partners are also still managing their previous funds at IVP and Brentwood, several of which were started in 1997 or later. And though these are what made Redpoint's reputation, some of them are turning out less stellar than originally thought.

The Daily Deal

Insight Capital raises $740M software fund
Later stage investing can be far less risky but also far less lucrative than other types of strategies.
Silicon Valley
The San Jose Mercury News
Elite VC giants still investing, if it's a home-run promise
Since the crash, 15 top-tier firms have raised funds of a billion dollars or more. Many -- including Worldview Technology Partners, Greylock, Austin Ventures and Oak Investment Partners -- closed their new funds this year, well after most of the market damage.  The amount of funds raised since the crash goes against the "drought'' thesis.

The Daily Deal

Matrix Partners raises $1B fund

Venture capitalists lure entrepreneurs on board

How `Internet Bubble' looks at the stock market now Sequoia Capital

VCs left holding worthless IPO shares

Venture firm plots safe course Morgenthaler Venture Partners

Summit Partners crosses the pond
COVER STORY: Venture Capital - Back to Basics Firms that engage in stage creep are asking for trouble.

VCs struggle to stay fit enough to survive Annex funds are not new.
Boston Business Journal

Rates of return down for Hub VC firms The reliability of internal rate of return data is questionable.  Moreover, it doesn't say how much cash and stock a venture capital firm has distributed to its investors. That is the real number that should be watched.
Forbes ASAP
What's a VC to do? Venture capitalists had better keep investing.

Matrix bets on wireless:  In a weak economy, Managing Partner Paul Ferri's winning streak is on the line

The Wall Street Journal

Boom Town:  The Next Tech Season Resumes As Sector Returns From Hiatus Like the last downturn, some of the same VCs now repeat their same biggest mistakes from a decade ago.

  After dot-bombing, SBVC rebuilds
Softbank Venture Capital

The New York Times
  Venture Capital Financing Is Further Sapped by Events
. . . recent events were reminiscent of the time around the Gulf War, when the industry had its last downturn. At that time, the ability to attract capital to invest in start-ups "fell off dramatically" but, he said, the industry bounced back within several years to enjoy the "best period in its history".
Private Equity Analyst, Asset Alternatives
  NVCA Advocates More Confidentiality on Returns
. . . acknowledges that the VC community could benefit from a healthy dose of transparency and humility. "Sunlight is the best disinfectant," he says. But he questions the value of making public IRRs and interim valuations, which by nature are based on subjective evaluations. "There should be less focus on returns and interim valuations, and more focus on building world class companies."
VC Like Me: Local Firms May Feel the World Is Against Them, as Investments, and Returns, Dry Up. But Some Venture Capitalists Say Now's the Perfect Time to Make Money. The bigger risk is not that VCs will take on new projects in less lucrative sectors. It's that they won't abandon the bad investments they might still be carrying.




The Wall Street Journal


Investment Dealers Digest
Private Equity Week 
The Wall Street Journal

San Francisco Chronicle
Venture Capital Journal
Washington Post
The Wall Street Journal

Washington Post

The Wall Street Journal


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