BUSINESSWEEK ONLINE : SEPTEMBER 27, 1999 ISSUE
COVER STORY -- E.BIZ -- THE E.BIZ 25

L. John Doerr


L. JOHN DOERR

KLEINER PERKINS CAUFIELD & BYERS

Position: General Partner

Contribution: Backed blockbuster Net pioneers like Netscape, Amazon.com, and Excite. Knits startups together with the famed Kleiner keiretsu.

Ambition: Leverage the keiretsu to create whole new industries on the Web--including health care.

Venture capitalist L. John Doerr is a one-man Internet hit parade. Netscape (AOL), Amazon.com (AMZN), Healtheon (HLTH), drugstore.com (DSCM), @Home (ATHM), Excite--each received initial funding and early nurturing from Doerr. Sure, the Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner has had his losers in the past. Remember pen computing? Nevertheless, ever since he took a chance on Netscape Communications Corp., Doerr has wielded the Midas touch. ''John Doerr is not only the best venture capitalist in the world, but he is also one of the top business leaders,'' says Cisco Systems (CSCO) CEO John T. Chambers.

Doerr is also a master matchmaker. Who would have thought a bookstore had anything to teach a drugstore? Yet when drugstore.com's fledgling team needed some lessons in online retailing, Doerr arranged to have them mentored by a really big brother in the Kleiner keiretsu--Amazon.com Inc. And when then-@Home, the cable Internet access company, needed content as well as bandwidth, Doerr engineered its merger with Internet portal Excite.

Where is Doerr applying his artistry next? His latest ideas whirl around handheld computers. Five years from now, he says, people will tap the Internet far more frequently from palmtop devices than from desktop computers. By investing in Handspring Inc., a startup handheld computer maker, Doerr believes he once again has positioned Kleiner Perkins at the forefront of a revolution. ''Much sooner than a PC on every kid's desk, we'll have a handheld in every kid's pocket,'' he says. If that comes to pass, once again, Doerr will be the man who has beaten the venture-capital pack to the Next Big Thing.

By Janet Rae-Dupree

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[empire builders]
Jeffrey P. Bezos
AMAZON.COM INC.

Stephen M. Case
AMERICA ONLINE INC.

Timothy A. Koogle
YAHOO! INC.

[the innovators]
Louis H. Borders
WEBVAN GROUP INC.

Jay S. Walker
PRICELINE.COM

Margaret C. Whitman
EBAY INC.

Glen Meakem
FREE MARKETS ONLINE INC.

James H. Clark
MYCFO INC.

Christos M. Cotsakos
E*TRADE GROUP INC.

[bankrollers]
Masayoshi Son
SOFTBANK CORP., JAPAN

Robert C. Kagle
BENCHMARK CAPITAL

Lawton W. Fitt
GOLDMAN SACHS & CO.

L. John Doerr
KLEINER PERKINS CAUFIELD & BYERS  

Bernard Arnault
LVMH MOET HENNESSY
LOUIS VUITTON  

[the visionaries]
Mary G. Meeker
MORGAN STANLEY DEAN WITTER

John Hagel III
MCKINSEY & CO.

William Joy
SUN MICROSYSTEMS

[the architects]
Louis V. Gerstner Jr.
IBM CORP.

Pehong Chen
BROADVISION INC.

David C. Peterschmidt
INKTOMI INC.

Kevin J. O'Connor
DOUBLECLICK

Ellen M. Hancock
EXODUS COMMUNICATIONS

[the pace setters]
David S. Pottruck
CHARLES SCHWAB CORP.

John T. Chambers
CISCO SYSTEMS

Michael S. Dell
DELL COMPUTER



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