Jon Sakoda's Blog

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Jon Sakoda is a Partner at NEA and is an entrepreneur turned venture capitalist. The views expressed here are not necessarily shared by NEA.

http://www.jonsakoda.com/

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    Q&A with NEA's Jon Sakoda on big tech challenges - Silicon Valley Business Journal
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Nov. 11, 2014, 10:58 p.m.
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    Do your VCs have an uncomfortably high burn rate?
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Nov. 3, 2014, 1:01 a.m.

    * This blog is a follow-up to Fortune’s Dan Primack and his post:  The startup world’s other ‘cash burn’ problem” where he suggests that venture capitalists, by and large, have a burn rate problem. 

     Over the past several weeks, much attention has been placed on unquestionably high start-up burn rates and whether entrepreneurs should change their current operating models in the face of a potential downturn.   But an equally important question for entrepreneurs is whether the VC industry, and ...

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    UPDATE: Signal or Noise? NEA's Experience with Signaling Risk
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Sept. 19, 2014, 6:49 p.m.

    *This updated post is a follow-up to my interview with Connie Loizos at StrictlyVC who posted my Q&A: Never Mind What Angels Say, VC’s Have Your Back.  My original post was published in July 2013.

    NEA is one of the largest VC firms by assets under management, and has quietly become one of the most active seed investors in the industry. Launching a seed program was controversial, both within the firm and throughout the seed investment community.  The ...

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    Genius or Insanity? Break Down the Boardroom Walls!
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Sept. 7, 2014, 8:40 p.m.

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    What happens when you invite the entire company to watch your board meeting?  My guest post on VentureBeat shares my personal experience with Blue Jeans Network’s first board meeting broadcast live over video conferencing to every employee!

    http://venturebeat.com/2014/09/07/heres-what-happened-when-we-opened-up-our-board-meeting-to-the-whole-company/

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    "When an entrepreneur asks you to step-up, you step-up!"
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Aug. 20, 2014, 4:33 a.m.

    Fun video of Bryan Schreier of Sequoia and I responding to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.  Thanks Clara Shih and Steve Garrity from Hearsay Social!   Next up — Scott Sandell and Forest Baskett from NEA, and Doug Leone and Jim Goetz from Sequoia!  

    https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10152215680515588&set=vb.672255587&type=2&theater

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    Lessons from Opower: How can you compete against Google and Microsoft?
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on April 10, 2014, 2:13 a.m.

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    Opower went public this week on the New York Stock Exchange — this was my first investment as a partner at NEA and was a long and fulfilling journey.  The WSJ wrote a great article on how Opower bested Google and Microsoft — great lessons here for entrepreneurs!  http://on.wsj.com/1n5Mhln

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    Opower IPO: Big Data is a Big Deal for Climate Change
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on April 4, 2014, 2:15 p.m.

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    “Give me a place to stand, and I shall move the world” – Archimedes, c250 B.C.

    Today we are excited to be a part of Opower’s IPO—an amazing milestone for founders Dan Yates and Alex Laskey, who shared the vision that a software company using big data and behavioral science could one day affect climate change. 

    We first met Dan and Alex six years ago when Opower was piloting a new kind of energy efficiency program to just ...

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    Elevator Pitch: Jon Sakoda on why NEA is sticking to seed investing, trends be damned | SiliconBeat
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on March 31, 2014, 8:13 p.m.

    Elevator Pitch: Jon Sakoda on why NEA is sticking to seed investing, trends be damned | SiliconBeat:

    Even though many VC firms are backing away from seed investing, NEA is just getting started!  My interview with Silicon Beat…

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    Swiftype: Making Site Search Simple As the Web Moves to Mobile
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Sept. 30, 2013, 1:01 p.m.

    We are excited to announce our Series A investment in Swiftype, a rapidly growing “search as a service” platform that makes it possible for any website or mobile application to add modern search to their product in less than a minute.  As an early seed investor, we have had the privilege of watching Swiftype grow from a proof of concept to a service that is today used by over 100,000 customers including some of the largest e-commerce, media, and ...

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    Seeing the Future When Video Clouds Collide...
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Sept. 18, 2013, 1:01 p.m.

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    We are excited to be a part of today’s $50 million financing in Blue Jeans Network, the world’s fastest growing cloud-based video conferencing service.  NEA invested in Blue Jeans over 2 years ago and has had the privilege of watching the service grow from a proof-of-concept to a disruptive product now serving over 2,000 customers and 3 million participants.  The premise behind Blue Jeans is very simple – make video conferencing as pervasive and easy to use as ...

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    At This Altitude, Not Everyone Can Make the Climb
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on April 2, 2013, 2:05 p.m.

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    “You are on Mount Everest.  This is not for everyone” – Sherpa Tensing, June 2001

    Note:  I went on a trek to Everest Base Camp in 2001 prior to starting my first company.  I unexpectedly learned one of the hardest lessons about entrepreneurship, loyalty, and leadership while on the mountain.  This post is for entrepreneurs that have scaled their companies to the highest of altitudes, and have come face to face with the realization that not everyone on their team can ...

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    "Treat your entrepreneurs as if they will be your investors someday. If all goes as planned, they..."
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on March 15, 2013, 11:48 p.m.

    “Treat your entrepreneurs as if they will be your investors someday. If all goes as planned, they will be”

    - Successful entrepreneur, now an LP in NEA

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    "Building a start-up is 10% having a great idea, and 90% making sure it stays that way"
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on March 12, 2013, 4:26 a.m.

    “Building a start-up is 10% having a great idea, and 90% making sure it stays that way”

    - Unconventional wisdom

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    "Entrepreneurs are not delusional. They are just trying to do their jobs"
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on March 11, 2013, 6:44 a.m.

    "Entrepreneurs are not delusional. They are just trying to do their jobs":

    WSJ coverage of the challenges entrepreneurs face in the hyper competitive environment of Silicon Valley.  

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    A Crisis in Education is a Terrible Thing to Waste
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Nov. 13, 2012, 7:05 p.m.

    A crisis is a terrible thing to waste” – Stanford Economist Paul Romer, speaking to a group of venture capitalists, 2004 

    The U.S. education system is facing a public crisis of confidence.  Students at the K-12 level consistently underperform in math, science and reading compared to peers in China, Japan and Australia[i].  School tuition is prohibitively expensive for many, and graduates of U.S. higher education institutions today carry more than $1 trillion in collective student debt.  Those who ...

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    Desire2Learn: Leading the Renaissance in Education
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Sept. 4, 2012, 3 p.m.

    Today we announced our investment in Desire2Learn, one of the largest and fastest growing cloud learning platforms for the education industry.  The $80 million financing is the first ever for the company and is one of the largest investments we’ve made in our latest $2.6 billion fund.  Over $1 trillion is spent on K-12 and higher education globally, and schools are in the midst of a technology renaissance that is re-inventing the classroom as we know it.  Textbooks ...

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    Joining the @MongoDB Revolution!
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on May 29, 2012, 2:52 p.m.

    Today we announced our investment in 10Gen, the commercial powerhouse behind MongoDB, the fastest growing open source database on the planet.  NEA led a $42 million investment in the company, providing a huge warchest for 10gen to continue its assault on the relational database market.  Frustrated by legacy products like Oracle and MySQL, developers have flocked to Mongo en mass – Mongo is downloaded nearly 150,000 times a month and today reaches ~8 million developers globally.  The mission behind MongoDB ...

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    WibiData: The Next Frontier in Big Data...
    on Jon Sakoda's Blog on Feb. 7, 2012, 7:30 p.m.

    Today I am excited to announce NEA’s investment in WibiData, an extraordinary company that is solving one of the fastest growing problems in Big Data – making Hadoop accessible in “real-time” for people and applications.  Our history investing in the deluge of unstructured data began over 10 years ago when Data Domain (acquired by EMC for $2.4 billion) was incubated in our offices in the summer of 2001.  It’s been over a decade since our initial investment but ...