4 Ridiculous Comments that Almost Killed a $12 Billion Week

  • The Auth0 founding team of Eugenio Pace and Matias Woloski and former CEO Jon Gelsey grew their developer tools startup to a $6.5 billion purchase by Okta that was announced last Wednesday, March 3. While at Bessemer, I partnered with this team at the seed stage in June 2014 by leading their $2 million seed round and personally serving as their first board member. This seed investment was made at an $8m pre-money valuation — Bessemer just published that actual seed investment memo.
  • Rocket Lab founder Peter Beck and his team grew their rocket launch startup to the point that it will go public via SPAC at an estimated $4 billion valuation as announced last Monday, March 1. Bessemer’s David Cowan and I co-led this December 2014 investment and were both part of Rocket Lab’s board.
  • The Spire founding team of Peter Platzer, Jeroen Cappert, and Joel Spark have grown their data-focused small satellite constellation startup to the point that it will go public via SPAC at an estimated $1.6 billion valuation as announced last Monday, March 1. David Cowan and I co-led this June 2015 investment and were both part of Spire’s board (with extra thanks to Josh Benamram for his work on diligence and the broader Bessemer space roadmap).

Warning: Ridiculous Comments Ahead

#1 — “Sunil, you’re so lucky you get to invest in cool things. I have to invest in things that actually make money.”

#2 — “Sunil, didn’t a rocket just blow up last week. Rocket Lab must be risky.”

Yes the Antares explosion really looked like this. October 28, 2014. Photo credit: NASA/Joel Kowsky

#3 — “Sunil, you’re too young to remember, but Iridium lost $5 billion in the ’90s, so space is hard.”

#4 — “Auth0 must change its name to something that sounds better”

In closing

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Ubiquity Ventures is a seed-stage venture capital firm focused on “software beyond the screen” — turning real world physical problems into software problems.

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Ubiquity Ventures

Ubiquity Ventures

Ubiquity Ventures is a seed-stage venture capital firm focused on “software beyond the screen” — turning real world physical problems into software problems.

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