Posts Tagged ‘Venture capital’

Early Venture Capitalists Immortalized in Film

Monday, March 14th, 2011

If you are at the South by Southwest Music and Media Conference and Festival in Austin this week run don’t walk to the nearest movie theater screening Something Ventured, a new documentary offering an insider’s look at the genesis of some of the most successful tech companies in the US. Something Ventured, narrated by Po Bronson, features interviews with the original VCs of the 1950s and 1960s, and offers a rare glimpse of what the Silicon Valley was like 50 years ago when the two words “venture” and “capital” were auspiciously joined to form an industry that would eventually fund 27,000 companies to the tune of $47B.

Luck of the VCs

In this 85 minute film, the original investors and founders of such companies as Apple, Atari, Cisco, Fairchild Semiconductor, Genentech, Intel and Tandem Computers share their memories of successes and failures.  Listening to the candid and occasionally self-effacing recollections of these gutsy investors and entrepreneurs who brought us the personal computer, fault-tolerant computers, human gene-splicing and the router among other innovations that we take for granted today, it is striking how much of their success is due to serendipity. The investors and entrepreneurs interviewed in this documentary include Nolan Bushnell (Atari), Reid Dennis (Institutional Venture Partners), Bill Draper (Draper Richards), Pitch Johnson (Asset Management Company), Dick Kramlich (NEA), Tom Perkins (Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers), Arthur Rock (Arthur Rock & Co), Don Valentine (Sequoia Capital), Dr. Herbert Boyer (Genentech), Jimmy Treybig (Tandem Computers), and Sandy Lerner (Cisco Systems). Each has a fascinating story to tell about how they followed their gut to bet the farm on long-shot investments. (more…)

Film on Early Venture Capitalists to Debut at SXSW

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

 

 © Copyright of Geller/Goldfine Productions

Apple's Steve Jobs and investor Mike Markkula in the early days

A one-of-a kind documentary film chronicling the early years of Silicon Valley’s venture capital industry will debut in the Spotlight Premiere category of the South by Southwest Music and Media Conference and Festival in Austin in a few weeks (March 11-19). “Something Ventured” is a must see for everyone in the tech business, but it will captivate most anyone who uses a computer, creates PowerPoint presentations, once played Pong, or has ever started a business. As told by the original VCs of the 1950s and 1960s, the film offers an insider’s look at the genesis of some of the most successful tech companies in the US.

I first wrote about my impressions of the documentary when I saw an early screening at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA last year. Since renamed, the film offers a rare glimpse of what the Silicon Valley was like 50 years ago when the two words “venture” and “capital” were auspiciously joined to form an industry that would eventually fund 27,000 companies to the tune of $47B.

For more information, please visit the official site of Something Ventured.

The Original Venture Capitalists: A New Film

Friday, March 26th, 2010

Dictionary definition of entrepreneurAn early screening of the first documentary film about the founders of Silicon Valley’s venture capital industry mesmerized an audience of investment bankers and VCs, lawyers, entrepreneurs, technologists and others when it was unveiled by the Western Association of Venture Capitalists as a work-in-progress at a reception last night at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA. (more…)