Tag Archives: Steve Goldberg of Venrock

Nov. 14, 2012 SVF Main Event Getting First Round Of Funding

On Wednesday November 14, 2012 in Palo Alto at Cooley LLP, SVForum held its Main Event “Opening the Kimono: Funded Entrepreneurs and Early Stage VCs on What’s Getting Funded Today and Why.” Gregory Clark of Cooley LLP moderated panelists Steve Goldberg of Venrock, Michael Mayernick of Spinnakr and Devin Redmond of Social IQ Networks. They discussed how to get that first round of funding.

Copyright 2012 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Feb. 7, 2012 SVForum PWC

On Tuesday February 7, 2012 in Palo Alto at Pillsbury Winthrop, SVForum presented the SVForum Quarterly Venture Breakfast with Pillsbury Winthrop and PricewaterhouseCoopers. The topic was “2011 The Year In Review.” Allison Leopold Tilley of Pillsbury Winthrop moderated panelists Steve Bengston of PricewaterhouseCoopers, Casper de Clercq of Norwest Venture Partners, Steve Goldberg of Venrock and Ann Winblad of Hummer Winblad. They discussed the past year and prospects for the next.

Venture capital investments went up from $23 billion in 2010 to $26 billion in 2011. Fundraising went up from $10 billion in 2010 to $12 billion in 2011. This growth is seen as unsustainable when the top sectors of cleantech, biotech, and medical devices are vulnerable to scaling and regulatory issues. Despite the IPOs of LinkedIn and Pandora, the trend toward VC backed companies going public declined from 75 in 2010 to 50 in 2011. This does not help the unemployed if over ninety percent of job creation occurs after a company has an IPO. The Facebook IPO may generate more Silicon Valley angel investing, but such investment has not generated well paying jobs in the US.

According to the US Dept of Commerce and Wall Street Journal, multinationals over the past decade have cut 2.9 million jobs in the US and moved 2.4 overseas. One result is that over 80 percent of internet growth is overseas where more than 90 percent of the children under 15 live in emerging markets. One place the population may not be growing is in China, where the workforce will peak in 2015 and become the world’s largest economy by 2017 but be surpassed in population by India in 2020. Growth in Europe is unlikely considering their continuing instability as seen in Greece.

Despite more money going in, there are fewer exits. The current situation is unsustainable.


Copyright 2012 DJ Cline All rights reserved.


Nov. 16, 2011 WCA What’s Hot

On Wednesday November 16, 2011 in Santa Clara at Silicon Valley Bank hosted the WCA12th Annual VC Panel “What’s Hot (and What’s Not) in Mobility.” Carrie Walsh of Silicon Valley Bank moderated panelists Juha Christensen of Progression Partners, Steve Goldberg of Venrock, Tae Hea Nahm of Storm Ventures, Rama Sekhar of Norwest Venture Partners and Eric Zimits of Granite Ventures. They discussed the current and possible future of mobile technology.

While Apple makes most of the profits, Android is selling more phones. The diversity of devices from phones to televisions is forcing developers to prepare content for whatever “end screen” it winds up on. Much of that content will be social games running over an LTE or 4G network. Beyond games, users will navigate down the street with voice directions from services like Apple’s Siri. Once at a store, they will be guided with Location Based Systems (LBS) and scan Quick Response (QR) codes on items and compare them with online prices. If the price is right, they will buy it with Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, avoiding bank debit card fees.

While reusing available spectrum in developed countries is a major problem, getting the rest of the world online is the bigger opportunity. Most will use prepaid services and have trouble charging their devices. Solve these problems and build market growth where none existed before.

Copyright 2011 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Sep. 20, 2011 SVForum Transforming Waste Into Energy

On Tuesday, September 20, 2011, in Palo Alto at SAP, SVForum’s Interim CEO Jim Lussier introduced a Clean Tech Breakfast Series event “Transforming Waste into Energy.” Mikayel Nazloyan of PricewaterhouseCoopers moderated panelists Mark Bowles of ecoATM, Steve Goldberg of Venrock, Mike Jackson of the Westly Group and Patrick Mathews of the Salinas Valley Solid Waste Authority.

While there are strategies to keep trash out of landfills, eventually everything winds up there. Now high prices for oil and waste disposal are driving forces for transforming that waste into energy. The sources for biofuels feedstock have been traditionally agricultural products and waste. The cost can vary from a few cents to a few dollars fluctuating with supply. By using consumer waste, the feedstock cost falls to near zero. Seventy percent can be converted into cellulose that can be turned into to fuel for vehicles or electricity.

This energy strategy may not only reduce the need for new landfills, it may lead to the reduction of existing ones by mining the trash with high technology. In the Pixar movie Wall-E, a solar powered robot sorts through the garbage to find useful materials. A real robot might be running on the waste it finds.

Copyright 2011 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Jul. 19, 2011 SVForum Lighting The Future

On July 19, 2011 in San Francisco at Nixon Peabody, SVForum held a Clean Tech Breakfast Series on “Clean Lighting Solutions: Lighting the Future.” How many panelists does it take to change a light bulb’s efficiency? Mavis L. Yee of Nixon Peabody moderated panelists Mike Dauber of Battery Ventures, Steve Goldberg of Venrock, Tony McGettigan of Luxim, Carl Schlachte of Ventiva and Victor Westerlind of Rockport Capital.

Commercial building lighting uses 71 percent of overall lighting electricity in the United States. The panel discussed the economic, political and technical issues challenging adoption.

Most consumers care about up front costs. They will not pay forty dollars for an LED if they can buy an incandescent for a dollar. Most businesses don’t care about the environmental aspect unless it can reduce their costs by half. Retail businesses understand the importance of good efficient lighting to help sell their products.

Not many are aware of the hidden cost of CFLs over LEDs, which is the amount of mercury that must be safely disposed when the unit is replaced. LEDs also have the advantage of being easier to tie in with sensor networks that can turn on as people walk around a building.

Energy efficiency policy impacts economic efficiency and growth. California’s energy saving policies changed the lighting industry so much that state uses the same amount of electricity it did twenty years ago and still had double digit economic growth. China is adopting similar policies as it deals with even greater economic growth. Of course, with all the new construction, it will not have to retrofit existing infrastructure as in the United States. Both countries will have to do more with less to light the way.

Copyright 2011 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Sept. 21, 2010 SDF Smart Grid

On September 21, 2010 in Palo Alto at SAP, SDForum presented “Clean Tech Breakfast: Smart Grid.” Kris Brown of PricewaterhouseCoopers moderated panelists Lee Burrows of VantagePoint Venture Partners, Drew Clark of IBM Venture Capital Group, Andy Colman of GRIDiant Corporation, Steve Goldberg of Venrock and Jon Guice of AltaTerra Research. The recent San Bruno gas pipeline explosion has underlined the importance of building, maintaining and monitoring complex energy infrastructure. The panel discussed the investment potential of integrating large industrial and small residential technologies into systems that save energy and make money. Drew Clark thinks that the smart grid will be built off the core network. This will lead to the growth of high margin service businesses to the enterprise. John Guice had a great slide breaking the smart grid into network levels: transmission, subtransmission, distribution, facility and device. Creating any savings or efficiencies at any level is where the opportunities exist on the smart grid.

Copyright 2010 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Mar. 25, 2010 SDF Funding Womens’ Businesses

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On March 25, 2010 in Palo Alto at Pillsbury, the SDForum Tech Women’s SIG presented “Funding Womens’ Businesses.” Cindy Padnos of Illuminate Ventures moderated panelists Michelle Bonat of RumbaFish, Cynthia Ringo of DBL Investors, Vicki Saunders of Zazengo and Steve Goldberg of Venrock. They discussed how to attract venture capitalists and alternative sources of funding.

LouAnn Conner Managing Director of Sagacious Consulting wrote an excellent review of this event at:

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Copyright 2010 DJ Cline All rights reserved.