20VC: Accel GP, Rich Wong on When Is The Right Time To Scale A Startup, Optimising Initial vs Follow-On Investment Decision-Making & The Globalisation of VC In Recent Years
Posted on 4th December 2017 by Harry
Rich Wong is a General Partner @ Accel, one of the world’s leading venture funds with investments in the likes of Dropbox, Slack, Facebook, Deliveroo and Atlassian, just to name a few. As for Rich, Rich has led investments in the likes of Rovio (IPO), SwiftKey, AdMob, MoPub and more incredible companies. Rich also sits on the boards of the likes of Checkr, Osmo, Rovio and Atlassian where he was first outside Board member and lead investor. Prior to joining Accel, Rich served as SVP of products for mobile pioneer, Openwave Systems and CMO of Covad Communications.
1.) How Rich made his way into the world of VC with Accel from OpenWave and having been active in the mobile and broadband ecosystems?
2.) What does Rich mean when he states the rise of the “Globalisation of VC”? How does Accel both find and win deals in locations such as Australia, Finland? How do the founder’s mentalities differ to Bay area founder mentality?
3.) How does Rich think about price sensitivity when assessing opportunities? What would be considered a good return multiple when investing from the early stage fund? How does this differ from the growth fund?
4.) What is the internal structure of investment decision making at Accel? How does Rich analyze reserve allocation? How does initial to reserve decision-making differ? How does the Accel partnership determine the 10% of portfolio that are “winners”?
5.) Question from Manu Kumar @ K9: How does Rich decide when is the right time for a company to scale? What is the balance of not too early and not too late? How should unit economics play a role in this decision? What characteristic must be inherent within multiple functions of the business, pre-scaling?
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