Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers to Launch Design Council and Design Fellows Program

Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, the Sand Hill Road venture capital firm, is launching what it’s calling the KPCB Design Council and Fellows Program, a three-month-long work program in which students will work on the design challenges of KPCB-backed startups in exchange for “community,” mentorship and leadership, including from “best-in-class” designers.


Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) announced today that it is launching the KPCB Design Council and Fellows Program to provide the most promising design students with mentorship, leadership and community and to nurture the interconnection of design and technology in developing innovative products and services. The importance of design as a critical part of product development and a vital strategy for companies to win in the marketplace is increasing, and KPCB sees design as a key factor in evaluating today’s consumer digital investment opportunities. In addition, to build the next generation of successful companies, the firm is also committed to attracting and developing top emerging design talent.

KPCB is uniquely suited to making the important connection between the next generation of design and engineering leaders with some of the most innovative start-ups in the world. Many KPCB partners have spent their careers at the intersection of design and technology and have led the building of innovative, high-performance applications and services at companies such as Twitter, Square, Electronic Arts and Palm.

The KPCB Design Fellows Program is a 3-month work-based program intended to give top design students significant exposure to working on design challenges at KPCB-funded start-ups such as Coursera, Flipboard, Klout, Nest, One Kings Lane, Opower, Path, Shopkick, Square and Zaarly. The KPCB Design Fellows Program builds on the success of KPCB’s Engineering Fellows Program, which focuses on students studying in fields related to computer science, engineering and software development. Candidates for the KPCB Design Fellows program can submit applications to www.kpcbfellows.com from November 20, 2012 through January 31, 2013.

The KPCB Design Council consists of a group of design luminaries who will be important resources for the KPCB community at large and serve as mentors and leaders to the Design Fellows. Council members include Zach Klein, DIY; Sahil Lavingia, Gumroad; Elle Luna, Mailbox; Gentry Underwood, Mailbox; Marcos Weskamp, Flipboard; Wesley Yun, Samsung; Matt Beebe, Tylr Mobile. The Council will provide:

Mentorship – the Design Council members will be matched with Design Fellows to support and guide them professionally
Leadership – the Design Council will lead discussion groups, panels and other organized events to gather the best in class designers to share trade expertise and discuss key industry trends
Community – the Council will create a community for designers to network

About Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) has backed entrepreneurs in more than 500 ventures leading to 150 IPOs, 350,000 jobs and a deep strategic network. The firm has helped build pioneering companies like Align, Amazon, Electronic Arts, Genentech, Genomic Health, Google, Intuit, Juniper Networks, Netscape, Symantec, VeriSign and WebMD. KPCB partners serve on the boards of Amazon, Apple, Bloom Energy, Flipboard, Foundation Medicine, Google, Hewlett-Packard, Nest, Square, Tesaro and Zynga, among others. KPCB accelerates the success of entrepreneurs with a team of partners delivering company-building services including strategy, operational scaling, recruiting, business development, product delivery and marketing communications. The firm invests in all stages from seed and incubation to growth companies. KPCB operates from offices in Menlo Park, San Francisco, Shanghai and Beijing. http://www.kpcb.com