Follow me

First-ever Survey of VC Tech Stacks

We think one of the industries with the greatest room for improved use of technology is venture capital itself.   Blue Future Partners, a fund of funds, and are now running what we believe is the first-ever large-scale survey of VC firms’ technology stacks.Filling out this survey [...continue reading]

How to Scale Support of Portfolio Companies

As I’ve worked to build out HOF Capital’s portfolio acceleration platform, the #1 question I think about is: how do we scalably support our companies?  Large private equity funds like KKR can afford to pursue a consulting model (Capstone), typically with associated fees, but that doesn’t normally [...continue reading]

Artificial Intelligence in Financial Services

I’ve presented at a few conferences lately on AI in financial services, particularly on how investors are using AI.  I’ve posted here an expanded version of my slides.  I provide an overview of why AI is a tool that so many people are exploring; what I think increases the odds of success for [...continue reading]

How to Run Your Company Based on Metrics: What, Why, How, Who, and When

I review a lot of board decks with a beautifully hand-crafted page with metrics for the company.  That makes me nervous.  I prefer to see a screenshot of an internal dashboard, not something created for the board, and I prefer to see that same dashboard in the same format at every meeting.  The [...continue reading]

18 Ways to Make Your Financial Model Stand Out to Investors

The median investor looking at your proposal is in her 40s.  Her eyes are going, not to mention her brain.  I look at a lot of spreadsheets and analytic reports, and way too many are difficult to read and therefore hard to understand.In an effort to make my life easier, I’ve summarized here the [...continue reading]

How To Lose Fat And Gain Muscle With Venture Capital

Both founders and researchers in healthcare are spending far too much of their energy in areas where they’re not going to make maximum impact. Most health problems are self-inflicted, but the innovation economy doesn’t reflect the power of preventive healthcare.  Dr. An Nguyen and I just completed [...continue reading]

Venture Capital Superheroes

CB Insights just included ffVC in 13 Micro VCs We’re Watching, along with a (highly inaccurate) superhero graphic.  CB Insights has become a very influential data source in the industry.  In fact, I recently had dinner with a well-known VC who said that he was surprised to see the CB Insights [...continue reading]

How to Create Competitive Market Maps With

At least ¼ of the investment proposals I get have a "market map" of some sort: a graphic analysis of the competitive landscape.  I think competitive analysis is critical.  Any useful startups is trying to perform some useful job for a client, and you have to understand what people are currently [...continue reading]

How to Prepare For and Run a Board Meeting

After spending quite a bit of time in board meetings, I worked with a NYU student team earlier in 2012-13 to prepare a template for board presentations to investors. In the deck below, I include our best practices on preparing for, running, and closing up on a board meeting, including what to [...continue reading]

Helping Startups Hit a Home Run, VC Style

 Lots of venture capitalists claim to add value to the companies in which they invest.  But how do they do it?  And does it really produce better returns for their investors? My coauthors and I just published in the Journal of Private Equity the first-ever research study on [...continue reading]

Notes from PluggedIn Ventures Real Time Data, Content, & Analytics Roundtable

Gregory Sanzone, an intern at, took details notes on today's Real Time Data, Content, & Analytics Roundtable, hosted by PluggedIn Ventures. Real Time Data Real time data is valuable in two ways, mainly. The first is that it crudely allows content providers to recognize spikes in [...continue reading]