Transitions: Robel Leaves PWC for Hummer Winblad –

SAN FRANCISCO – Hummer Winblad Venture Partners in early June hired its sixth general partner, Chuck Robel, who will also serve as the company’s chief operating officer.

Robel, the former managing partner of the Silicon Valley high technology Transaction Services Group for PricewaterhouseCoopers, will manage Hummer Winbald’s operational activities, support personnel, and oversee the firm’s financial resources, as well as offer guidance to its portfolio companies.

The new general partner’s relationship with Hummer Winblad goes back about 12 years to around the time the firm was founded in 1989. Since that time, Robel has been an advisor to the firm and its portfolio companies – typically software and Internet entities – through his role at PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Ann Winblad , a general partner at the firm approached Robel a few months ago, he said, offering him an opportunity to join the firm. After 26 years at PricewaterhouseCoopers advising companies from a top-level position, he decided to accept the offer, which would enable him to work with a smaller number of companies on a more intimate level. “[The] opportunity to have a more active role in the development of portfolio companies,” Robel said, attracted him to the firm.

Robel’s main focus, he says, is to give portfolio companies a strategic advantage by helping them to develop new ways of arranging deals, distribution agreements and new ventures. He will also be spending time working with the firm’s limited partners, “making sure that the Hummer Winblad Fund is the most efficient and as focused as it can be,” he said. Robel will also evaluate deals and new investments and expand the firm’s network in Silicon Valley, he said.

Robel joins a team of five general partners: John Hummer, Ann Winblad, Mark Gorenberg, Hank Barry and Dan Beldy. None of these partners were available for comment.