Founder & Managing Partner
I wanted to build a firm that was deeply personal and pragmatic in its approach with founders.
I organize my activity around four basic principles:
– People First – I’ve always found the single most productive thing in the venture capital business is to focus on finding the most extraordinary people I can, people I want to spend the next 5-10 years working with. Endeavoring to support them in the best way possible is the very best part of my job. I know that we and founders get to pick each other, but more than anything, I look for intellectual curiosity, tenacity and judgment.
– Always Be Learning – My life took a positive turn when I read Mindset by Carol Dweck and converted from a competitive mindset to a growth mindset. As a former athlete, it took some adjustment but I still get to focus on getting better every day.
– Know what you don’t know – Fortunately, venture capital in endlessly humbling. The limitations of what we know at any given time are immense. We’ll do the work (ad I’ll humbly say we will likely know more about the opportunity than other firms by the time we’re done), but the future is still uncertain. So I’ll keep asking questions, forming hypotheses and running experiments.
– Believe in the power of transformation (in all its forms) – Yes, I look for transformative technologies that can change lives. And I look for opportunities to transform markets. But more than anything, I look for founders who can go into the challenge of leading a company, bring their best and learn new capabilities in order to meet the moment.
When I follow these principles, I truly love my job and feel like I can handle any challenge in being the investor and partner that a founder needs.
Prior to founding Costanoa, I was a Managing Director at Sutter Hill, where I invested in early stage enterprise software startups, such as Merced Systems, AllBusiness, Youku, Quinstreet, and Feedburner. I was the first product manager at Netscape Communications where I wrote the initial business plan, coined the name Netscape, and built the SuiteSpot Business unit from $0-$140M. I also served as a business development manager at Cisco where I architected a channel management plan.
- B.A. Harvard College, Magna Cum Laude
- MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business