Cloud computing is still more attractive to venture capitalists than it is to enterprise IT buyers, and that's unlikely to change in 2010. As IT buyers warm to the idea and implementation of cloud computing, 2010 is going to prove to be a very big year for cloud-computing M&A as big-fish vendors like VMWare, Microsoft, IBM, and Oracle round out their cloud product portfolios with little-fish innovators.
A competitive triathlete, Fenton has turned the standard marathon of open-source business-building into a sprint, churning out four big open-source sales--JBoss ($350 million), Zimbra ($350 million), XenSource ($500 million), and SpringSource ($420 million)--while most investors have yet to turn a profit on any.
Not that Fenton is a one-trick pony. He also just sold FriendFeed to Facebook and sits on the board of Twitter. It's fair to say that Fenton can now afford a second Aston Martin.
But Fenton … Read more
Venture capitalists are drawing their purse strings tighter than ever in reaction to the economic downturn.
Money from VCs to start-ups and IPOs sunk to $3.7 billion in the second quarter, a drop of 51 percent from $7.5 billion in the year-ago quarter. This marks the lowest ongoing level of venture capital funding over the past 12 years, according to a MoneyTree report released Tuesday by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA). The report was based on statistics from Thomson Reuters.
Although VC spending rose slightly from the first quarter's $3.2 billion, the ongoing … Read more
Recent data from Chubby Brain identifies $102.49 million in total VC/angel investment divided among 17 iPhone application start-ups.
The iPhone is a great mini-computer and may be the next big gaming platform, but I'm still struggling to get the math to work in terms of what a typical VC expects as their return on investment.
Macworld's App Guide lists more than 58,000 apps available for download with more coming online every day, though it's not clear that downloads are equating to sustained revenue for developers.
But, developing an iPhone application still seems like a good business move, provided you can market effectively and not fall into the boom and bust cycle that many applications find themselves in. … Read more
Venture capitalists are the latest group showing more confidence in an economic recovery that will revive business, according to a quarterly survey released Thursday.
For the second quarter, the Silicon Valley Venture Capitalist Confidence Index showed an uptick, hitting 3.37 on a 5-point scale, up from the previous quarter's mark of 3.03. This is the second consecutive rise since the index dropped to a five-year low in the fourth quarter of 2008.
Based on an ongoing survey of San Francisco Bay Area venture capitalists, the index measures their confidence level in the market for initial public offerings … Read more
Today: Windows 7 news, a new venture fund from the creator of the Mosaic browser, ABC goes live on Hulu, Toyota says yes to plug-in cars, and a short conversation about URL shortening services with CNET writer Stephen Shankland.Listen now: Download today's podcast
Since I started covering start-ups for Red Herring back in 1998, no venture capitalist has entertained me as much, or made me as envious, as Steve Jurvetson of Draper Fisher Jurvetson. He's of the few real dilettantes in the field, and he actually makes money from a studied lack of focus.
In comparison, most tech VCs, including titans like Vinod Khosla (at Kleiner Perkins) and Marc Andreessen, who just launched a new fund, focus on industry segments or coherent visions for certain markets. Khosla, for example, is a modern industrialist currently investing in companies attached to renewable energy or … Read more
Marc Andreessen, founder of Netscape and co-founder of Opsware, and Ben Horowitz, also co-founder of Opsware, are launching on Monday a new venture fund, cleverly named Andreessen Horowitz (previous story). The fund's mission is financially broad but technologically narrow. Andreessen told me the $300 million fund will invest from $50,000 to $5 million in start-ups, which means it's part angel fund and part typical venture capital firm.
Technologically, Andreessen is keeping things in one wheelhouse: his. "We're ruling out products we don't understand," he says. So no clean tech, no energy start-ups, no … Read more
I recently asked Cloudera CEO Mike Olson how a commercial open-source company balances community and commerce.
When it comes to open source, this isn't Olson's first rodeo; in his past life he served as CEO of the open-source database company Sleepycat, which was acquired by Oracle in 2006. Olson understands the fragile balance that exists in open source; he's a firm believer that good community relations are critical for open-source companies. Case in point--since we last spoke, Cloudera launched the industry's first certification program for Hadoop and MapReduce, open source projects that support data intensive distributed applications.
Cloudera on Tuesday is expected to formally announce the closing of a $6 million series B funding round led by Greylock (whose past investments successes include Red Hat among many others).
Olson reports that fast growth in the business and rapid adoption of Hadoop/MapReduce drove heavy interest from investors. For Cloudera, apparently it's a buyer's market, so it decided to secure funding now to allow it to expand the business rapidly on all fronts.
So, with $11 million in the bank from top-tier VCs (Accel led the A round and participated in the B) along with individual investments from Diane Greene (former CEO of VMware), Marten Mickos (former CEO of MySQL), and Jeff Weiner (president of LinkedIn), Cloudera has successfully raised the smart money to compliment the big data all-star founding team from Google, Facebook, and Yahoo.
For a brief overview of Hadoop and Cloudera check out the video below. … Read more
The venture capital industry took another big hit in the first quarter of the year, according to new data from Dow Jones VentureSource.
Venture capitalists invested just $3.90 billion in U.S. companies during the quarter, a 50 percent decline from the almost $7.78 billion invested during the same quarter last year, according to VentureSource. In terms of actual venture deals, 477 were completed, well below the 706 completed last year and the lowest quarterly deal total since 1996.
Hit particularly hard was the information technology industry, which saw its lowest level of investment since 1997, with $1.… Read more