Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

About: Since its founding in 1972, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers has backed entrepreneurs in over 600 ventures, including AOL, Amazon.com, Citrix, Compaq Computer, Electronic Arts, Genentech, Genomic Health, Google, Intuit, Juniper Networks, Netscape, Lotus, Sun Microsystems, Symantec, Verisign and Xilinx. KPCB portfolio companies employ more than 250,000 people. More than 150 of the firm’s portfolio companies have gone public. Many other ventures have achieved success through mergers and acquisitions. The firm has offices in Menlo Park, California; Beijing, China; and Shanghai, China.

The firm was named after its four founding partners: Eugene Kleiner (emeritus), Tom Perkins (emeritus), Frank J. Caufield (emeritus), and Brook Byers. When the firm was formed in 1972, the founders of most venture capital firms came from financial backgrounds, however Kleiner Perkins’s founders distinguished themselves through their industry experience – Kleiner as a founder of Fairchild Semiconductor and Perkins as one of the leaders of Hewlett-Packard’s early computer hardware division. See Kleiner’s Laws here and his obituary here and here.


Key Personnel:
The Partners are:
Brook Byers, Chi-Hua Chien, John Denniston, Amol Deshpande, John Doerr, Juliet Flint, John Gage, Bing Gordon, Al Gore, Wen Hsieh, Bill Joy, Randy Komisar, Ben Kortlang, Joseph Lacob, Ray Lane, Aileen Lee, James Li, M.D., Michael Linse, Dana Mead, Thomas Monath, M.D., David Mount, Matt Murphy, Ajit Nazre, Jordan Ormont, Daniel Oros, Jessica Owens, Ellen Pao, Ted Schlein, Beth Seidenberg, M.D., Risa Stack, Trae Vassallo.

Note: Democrat Al Gore joined as Partner in Nov 2007 while Republican Colin Powell joined as Strategic Limited Partner in July 2005.

We look at specific companies related to cleantech only:
Greentech – Altarock Energy, Altra Biofuels, Amyris Biotechnologies, Ausra, Bloom Energy, Fisker Automotive, GreatPoint Energy, Hara Software, Lehigh Technologies, Lilliputian Systems, Mascoma Corporation, Miasole, RecycleBank, RPX Corporation, Silver Spring Networks, Verdiem.

News: In March 2008, KPCB announced the iFund, a $100 million venture capital investment initiative that will fund innovators developing applications, services, and components for Apple’s iPhone and iPod touch platform.

In May 2008, KPCB was raising funds for a $500 million growth-stage clean-technology fund called the Green Growth Fund. Another $700 million fund called KPCB XIII Fund will invest in greentech, IT and life sciences ventures. By October 2008, KPCB’s Green Growth Fund led a $75 million investment round into Silver Spring Networks, a leading provider of Smart Grid technology solutions. The new funding, a portion of which has been reserved for strategic partners, included returning investors Foundation Capital, JVB Properties and Northgate Capital.

Here is an interview with Ajit Nazre, a partner who also leads the firm’s India investment initiative.

See a video posted on Vodpod or here for John Doerr’s speech on greentech.


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