The Entrepreneurs and VCs I Interviewed for My New Book

Posted by: Nick Leiber on March 19, 2010

I mentioned in my last post that I decided to write a book about venture capital and entrepreneurship, which is coming out next month. In this post, I wanted to answer the question: “Who did you interview?”

This is a post by guest blogger Jeff Bussgang.

jeff_bussgang.jpgSelecting interviewees was a tricky process. The purpose of the book is to be a helpful guide for entrepreneurs as they navigate the process of building their companies in partnership with VCs, so I wanted to capture the voices and insights of both entrepreneurs and VCs. In particular, I wanted to capture a diverse group - diversity in terms of geography, industry focus, gender and age. Here’s who I ended up with:

Entrepreneurs:

Tim Bucher (Zing, WebTV)
Jack Dorsey (Square, Twitter)
Gail Goodman (Constant Contact, Open Market)
Reid Hoffman (LinkedIn, PayPal)
Marsha Moses (Predictive BioSciences)
Eric Paley (Brontes)
Mark Pincus (Zynga, Tribe, SupportSoft)
Christoph Westphal (Sirtris, Alnylam, Momenta)

Venture capitalists I interviewed were:

Tim Draper (DFJ)
Irena Goldenberg (Highland Europe)
David Hornik (August)
Terry McGuire (Polaris)
Howard Morgan (First Round)
Henry Nguyen (IDG Ventures Vietnam)
Fred Wilson (Union Squrare)
Quan Zhou (IDG-Accel China)

Interestingly, three of these entrepreneurs became VCs after I completed the interviews (Hoffman/Greylock, Paley/Founder Collective, Westphal/Longwood).

So what do folks think? I know I missed tens, if not hundreds, of other great people. I emphasized people who were currently active in the business rather than historical figures, but tried to include folks with decades of tenure and perspective alongside younger voices. I do regret not having more international entrepreneurs to complement the three international VCs. Perhaps next edition?!

In my next blog post, I’ll talk about the outline of the material the book covers and the different approach I am taking (with the support of Penguin) to making the content broadly available.

Reader Comments

Nick C.

March 21, 2010 3:38 PM

A warning to all: Do NOT use PayPal for any of your events. Check out twitter handle @NYEWeek as they’ve had a horrible experience, stating that they’ll “be sticking with a trusted platform @EventBrite going forward. NEVER use @PayPal folks – they’re not there for the customer.”

Very interesting. What say you PayPal? Look forward to your response.

Grant Lawson

April 1, 2010 11:07 AM

Nick -

Congrats on the development of your new book. What is the date it is expected to be released and where will it be available for purchase? How much will copies run for? I have been seeking a book regarding VC topics and interested to see what your book will offer. Can you please describe how this will stand out against similar VC books?

Thanks,
Grant Lawson

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About

What's it like to run your own company today? Entrepreneurs face multiple hurdles new and old, from raising capital and managing employees to keeping up with technology and competing in a global marketplace. In this blog, the Small Business channel's John Tozzi and Nick Leiber discuss the news, trends, and ideas that matter to small business owners. Follow them on Twitter @newentrepreneur.

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