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Showing posts from June, 2004

Everything you wanted to know (and some things you didn't care to know) about ChrysCapital's Ashish Dhawan

New Delhi-based private equity fund ChrysCapital is vastly different from its former avatar, Chrysalis Capital. While Chrysalis began life (in Mumbai) as an venture capital firm focussed on start-up investments, today's ChrysCapital is best know for its late-stage investments (often in already public companies).

The fascinating part of this transformation is that one of the fund's original partners - Senior Managing Director Ashish Dhawan - has been firmly in the driver's seat throughout the process.

It's a story that needed to be told. As a cover story. Kudos to Business Today for telling it first.

Thankfully, unlike the glowing profiles that BT is famous for - including the one featuring infamous stock brocker Harshad Mehta with his Lexus on the cover - this one has a lot of facts. Some well known. And others less so.

That ChrysCapital's first fund would have been a disaster but for the pioneering investment in Raman Roy founded BPO firm Spectramind is well know…

Guy on Google's Gamble

In an interview to Red Herring, Guy Kawasaki, founder of investment banking firm Garage.com, had this to say about Google's plan to make its IPO via a "dutch auction" model:

"There are many ways to look at the Dutch auction. One way is, “Let’s make sure that no one over pays and gets spiked.” That’s one theory. Another theory is that doing it this way, the company leaves as little money on the table as possible. That’s a completely different outcome. That is what Google cares about. Maybe it cares about both, but you can understand how Google would care about the idea that “we sold our stock for $12 and it closed at $120, so we left maybe $100 on the table.”

So, there are many reasons behind its decision. But the interesting question will be: Will large institutions buy blocks of stock? Nobody knows the answer to this. We’re not going to know until it happens. So if the large institutions don’t go in and all the moms and pops go in and buy 100 shares, is that a stab…

Quiet Period T-Shirts for CEOs on IPO track

Google CEO Eric Schmidt reportedly attended Wall Street Journal's "All Things Digital" conference wearing a T-Shirt that read "quiet period" on the front and "can't answer questions" on the back. This follows the controversy surrounding the interview given by Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.com (another company that has filed for an IPO), to the New York Times. "Perhaps Marc Benioff should have had a similar t-shirt made up . . . and then stuffed in his mouth," says David Hornik, a venture capitalist with August Capital.


Vinod Khosla warns against nanotech bubble

Vinod Khosla, one of Silicon Valley most successful VCs, has warned against nanotechnology companies going public too early. According to a report in Private Equity Week, Khosla has severely criticized the move by Nanosys (a 3-year-old VC-backed nanotech firm which reported losses of $9.2 million on revenues of $3 million in 2003) to go public.

According to the PE Week report, Nanosys' has "locked up" 200 patents from major nanotech research centers, inked development agreements with Intel and Matsushita, obtained a grant from the US Government's National Institutes of Health to develop nanotech-based biosensors, and is steered by a CEO with a "remarkable track record".

Khosla obviously does not consider these factors good enough to make Nanosys an IPO candidate.

He warns against investing in a technology as opposed to investing in applications based on the technology. "Too many people get lost in investing or joining a startup in a [particular] tech…

How offshoring is changing Silicon Valley

It is quite well known that today, most Silicon Valleys VCs demand that their portfolio companies have an "India-China" strategy. But what impact will this increasing drive towards offshoring have on the San Francisco Bay Area and Sand Hill Road?

"Silicon Valley will be impacted in a serious way over the rest of this decade and beyond," says Sanjay Anandaram, managing director at leading Indo-US cross-border VC fund JumpStartUp, in a recent article for the AlwaysOn-Network blogzine. Apart from predicting how life is set to change for Silicon Valley VCs and start-ups, the article also points out new opportunities thrown up by globalization.

According to Anandaram, Silicon Valley VCs will need to pack their travel bags more often. "No longer can the VC only make investments in companies that are a short driving distance away. As startups become micro-multinationals with offices, employees, customers, and partners around the globe (in many cases, the bulk of the…

How IBM relates to VC-backed startt-ups

IBM has 18 business development executives dedicated to working with venture capitalists and their portfolio companies, says a report in CNET News.com . Under a program, started about three years ago, IBM actively courts VCs and the companies they invest in. "IBM is more dependent than ever on ensuring that we look outside of IBM for innovation," says Matt Doretti, managing venture development executive for IBM (Americas) in the report.