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November 19, 2006

Mike Moritz interview to Business Today

Business Today recently published an interview with Sequoia Capital's Mike Moritz.
I think American investors today understand that a lot of money has rushed into India and the shrewder American investors are pulling back. The shrewdest investments and shrewdest investors in India will be sitting on their wallets. Because of their very justifiable concern that this is already a very overheated market....

...With the exception of a very short list, venture capital as a category has been a very disappointing place for most people to invest for a long period of time. And for some reason, I think there is a whole conspiracy around the venture business of people conspiring to fool investors and prospective investors into thinking that they are going to make a lot of money by being an investor in venture capital, while the history of the last 30 years shows that you will not unless you are with a very short list of firms.

...we would always want the founders to look back and feel that one of the best decisions they made in the evolution of their company was to have Sequoia as their partner. This means, therefore, that we're helping them in ways that go beyond just writing a cheque. I don't want to (exaggerate) the extent of our contribution because I think all companies that prosper do so because of the founding management. But there are a variety of ways we can help-in recruiting more people, with relationships with other entities that they want to do business with, which as a small company they would have trouble doing. We think of ourselves as extensions of the company, while not confusing the difference between being an investor and management.

Arun Natarajan is the Founder of Venture Intelligence, which tracks private equity and venture capital in India and Indian-founded companies worldwide. View sample issues of Venture Intelligence India newsletters and reports.