SAN FRANCISCO – Joining the growing ranks of venture capitalists adding new partners with operating experience, Weiss, Peck & Greer Venture Partners in mid-February toasted the arrival of new Venture Partner Skip Glass, a veteran executive of start-up and entrepreneurial companies.
Mr. Glass will help the information technology and health care-focused Weiss, Peck & Greer scout deals in software, e-commerce and networking, as well as assist the firm’s portfolio companies with recruiting, sales, positioning and marketing. The former entrepreneur brings a wealth of experience in those areas, having worked at companies such as Sybase Inc., Netscape Communications Corp., IBM Corp., Sybase Inc. and KIVA Software Inc. which was later bought by Netscape.
“One of the toughest things … if you’re a new start-up is positioning yourself, getting the right [management team] and attracting customers’ attention,” said Mr. Glass, who was impressed with Weiss, Peck & Greer’s ability to help guide young companies through their early years with support and advice.
Mr. Glass, who spent 17 years working in start-up businesses, first became acquainted with Weiss, Peck & Greer while he was chief operating officer at KIVA and sat on the same board of directors as Manager Partner Phil Greer. He joined KIVA in January 1997, several months after the firm helped supply the company’s first round of venture financing. After working on KIVA’s board, Weiss, Peck & Greer extended Mr. Glass an open invitation to join the firm if he ever wanted to try his hand at VC.
Mr. Glass believes that his entrepreneurial experience is an invaluable asset as a venture capitalist. “What makes good companies is people,” he said, emphasizing the importance of putting together a strong management team. “You have to have a background and understanding [of start-ups.]”
Weiss, Peck & Greer’s partners were excited to welcome Mr. Glass to the team. “[Skip’s] entrepreneurial background is a perfect fit for the position and for our objective to support emerging leaders in the high-tech communications industry,” Managing Partner Gill Cogen said in a written statement. Mr. Cogen could not be reached by phone at press time.
Weiss, Peck & Greer Venture Partners VII closed in 1997. The firm is led by co-Managing Partners Cogan and Greer, as well as Partners Paul Low, Annette Bianchi, Barry Eggers, Christoper Schaepe, Philip Black and Peter Nieh.