"As 2013 draws to a close, the global economy looks to be exiting the slowdown of the past three years and entering a new phase of modest recovery and growth” wrote Willem Buiter, Citi's Chief Economist in his economic outlook for 2014 released in early December.
If 2013 was a year of uncertainty and the year in which the US almost fell off the fiscal cliff, it appears that 2014 is going to be a year of moderate recovery gearing up to a return to normalcy in 2015. While the Euro-zone is still a work in progress, China and India are forecast to continue to grow albeit at a slower rate than was forecast earlier in the year.
The uncertainty of 2013 also resulted in smaller fund raising rounds for the Venture Capital community but does quarter on quarter growth indicate a growing level of confidence and optimism for 2014?
We have pulled together some of the leading venture capitalists from Silicon Valley to seek their views and predictions for the year ahead and amongst others will ask:
- How will the economy fare in 2014?
- Is the Valley a bubble and will VC investment continue irrespective of the rest of the country/world?
- Which industries will lose popularity this year and which will flourish?
- Cloud companies have dominated the IPO markets in 2013 – Veeva Systems, RingCentral, Marketo to name just a few and then of course there were Twitter and Palo Alto Networks. What will the IPO market look like for Silicon Valley companies in 2014?
We will also see how accurate their 2013 forecasts were and will try to pin them down to some 2014 forecasts too.
Come and join a very lively debate and ask them direct what their New Year resolutions include. There will be plenty of time for drinks and networking. Tickets include wine (kindly sponsored by Delyse Nash & Associates) and both hot and cold hors d'oeuvres.
Our exciting panel includes:
Managing Director, Garage Technology Ventures
Bill Reichert has over 20 years of experience as an entrepreneur and operating executive. Since joining Garage in 1998, Bill has focused on early-stage information technology and materials science companies. He has been a board director or board observer at CaseStack, WhiteHat Security, ClearFuels Technology, Simply Hired, MiaSole, D.light Design, ThermoCeramix, and VisaNow, among others.
Prior to Garage, Bill was a co-founder or senior executive in several venture-backed technology startups, including Trademark Software, The Learning Company, and Academic Systems. Earlier in his career, he worked at McKinsey & Company, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., and the World Bank. Bill earned a B.A. at Harvard College and an M.B.A. from Stanford University. He was a founding board member and a Chairman of the Churchill Club, and a Board Member of the Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs. Currently he is the Chairman of the Small Fund Roundtable of the VC Taskforce and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.
Managing Director, Hummer Winblad Venture Partners
Mitchell Kertzman is a Managing Director at Hummer Winblad Venture Partners. He has over 30 years of experience as a CEO of public and private software companies. Most recently, Mitchell was Chairman and CEO of Liberate Technologies, a provider of platform software for the delivery of digital services by cable television companies. Before joining Liberate, he was chairman of the board and CEO of Sybase, Inc. Mitchell was founder and CEO of Powersoft, which merged with Sybase in February 1995.
A former programmer, Mitchell founded Powersoft in 1974 as Computer Solutions. He renamed the company and became a member of the Hummer Winblad family in 1991 when Hummer Winblad invested in the company, which became the leading provider of client-server development tools with its flagship product, PowerBuilder. The merger with Sybase in 1995 was, at the time, the most valuable in the history of the software industry.
Mitchell served as President of the Massachusetts Software Council from 1994 to 1996 and was 1990 chairman of the American Electronics Association. He is founder and former chairman of the Massachusetts Institute for a New Commonwealth (MassINC), a think tank focused on issues related to the standard of living and quality of life of America’s middle class. He served on the New York State Commission on Industrial Competitiveness and chaired its task force on industrial policy.
Mitchell was awarded an honorary doctorate of humane letters from the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. He currently sits on the Boards of Five9, Flite, HubPages, NuoDB, and Palamida.
GAURAV TEWARI (GT)
Managing Director, SAP Ventures
Gaurav has led or been instrumental with our investments in Recommind, Criteo, Marin Software (MRIN), and Violin Memory (VMEM). Previously, he was Principal of Highland Capital and led or managed investments in Coremetrics (IBM), Navic (MSFT), StyleFeeder (TWX), Beyond the Rack, and Rent the Runway. Prior to that, Gaurav was with McKinsey & Company and also held engineering and product leadership roles at Microsoft and IBM Research. Gaurav has lived in the UK, Egypt and India and, within the Bay Area, serves as Entrepreneurship Director for the MIT Alumni Network. He holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in Computer Science with high distinction from MIT and an MBA from Wharton, where he graduated as Ford Fellow (Valedictorian). Gaurav holds 9 issued patents.
Scale Venture Partners
As a co-founder and partner of ScaleVP, Kate is instrumental in building the firm’s team and strategic direction. She also leads investments in software and business services – including Infrastructure and Mobile. Kate has actively worked with portfolio companies such as Hubspan, Jaspersoft, mBlox, Tonic Software and Wayport.
Before joining ScaleVP in 1996, Kate was a Senior Vice President at Bank of America, where she led the development and launch of the company’s Internet banking services. In addition to technology management, she has significant experience in corporate finance and business development.
Kate holds an M.B.A. in Finance from Golden Gate University and a B.A. in Political Science from Stanford University. She also earned a certificate in Strategic Marketing from the Executive Education Program at Harvard Business School.
Kate is past chairman of the National Venture Capital Association and a current member of its Executive Committee. Through NVCA, Kate actively highlights the importance of venture capital to the U.S. economy, advocates for regulatory and economic policies that promote and reward entrepreneurship nationwide. She sits on the boards of directors of Silicon Valley Bank and the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library. She is a charter member of Environmental Entrepreneurs (Silicon Valley).
RICHARD WATERS (Moderator)
West Coast Editor, Financial Times
Richard Waters is the West Coast Editor for the Financial Times. His beat covers the technology industry. Before moving to the West Coast, Mr Waters was based in the FT's New York office for nine years. His roles there included Wall Street reporter, New York bureau chief, and the FT's first information industries editor, overseeing global coverage of technology, telecommunications and media. He previously worked at the FT in London where he held a number of positions, including editor of international capital markets, securities industry correspondent and accountancy and taxation correspondent.
Before working for the FT, Mr Waters worked as a reporter and editor for several financial magazines. He also worked for two years at Lloyd's Bank International and lived in Chile, also working as a teacher. In 2004, he was awarded Corporate Finance Reporter of the Year for his coverage of Google's IPO. He was shortlisted for the Business & Finance Reporter of the Year award at the British Press Awards in 2003 and won the award in 1992 as part of a team covering the BCCI scandal. In 1988, he was named Accountancy Journalist of the Year. He appears regularly on the BBC, CNBC, MSNBC, CNNfn and NPR.
Mr Waters received his Bachelor's degree from St. Edmund Hall, Oxford University.