Edwin Goodman has been a successful entrepreneur nearly all his life, spotting talent early on in major companies like Apple or Staples, and it all started within the family. His business career began at Bergdorf Goodman, the renowned New York fashion retailing business where he worked with his father and grandfather (the store’s founder) for five years, until it was then sold in 1972 to Carter Hawley Hale Stores, a New York Stock Exchange company.
At the same time, he joined the Bedford Stuyvesant Development & Services Corporation in Brooklyn, and was quickly promoted to the top – co-chief executive. Following, he took an interest in technology and managed WBAI FM for 3 years (1970-1973), an educationally licensed, listener-sponsored radio station in New York, and then joined Patricof & Co. (now Apax Partners) in 1974,where he worked all around the business for seven years. The most notable investment was $250,000 in the final financing round for Apple Computer in 1977.
Next, in 1981, he began working for Hambros, a London-based merchant bank, and contributed to the growth of the business, helping to take it from $5 million to $150 million paid-in-capital, and once again, took the top position as CEO. He was with the company for 17 years. In that time, the venture team invested in more than 100 different types of businesses, including most notably, Staples (when it was just one store!), Petsmart, Inc., Allied Waste, PCA International and Solectron Corporation.
In 1999, after decades of experience, Goodman co-founded Milestone Venture Partners, an early-stage venture capital fund focusing on digital health businesses and other IT. He has maintained his position there ever since, and has invested in businesses such as SkillSurvey, ExpertPlan, Inc. and Medidata Solutions, Inc.
Goodman estimates that he has participated in over 100 deals in his career as an investor, and that number is only going to increase as Milestone Venture Partners matures.
Goodman holds a BA in English literature from Yale College (1962) and an MS from the Columbia University Business School (1979). He also served in the US Marine Corps Reserve.
Company/Firm: Co-Founder at Milestone Venture Partners (Founded 1999)
Sector Focus: Early-stage investing, private equity, IT, healthcare IT, consumer goods
Selected Investments: Happy Toy Machine, SkillSurvey, RichFX (acquired by ChannelAdvisor), Knovel Corporation, Medidata Solutions, Inc., ExpertPlan, Inc. (acquired by Ascensus, Inc.), M5 Networks, Inc. (acquired by ShoreTel, Inc.), Halfpenny, Kindling, Stray Boots, Cloudnexa
Boards: Fashion Institute of Technology (State University of New York), Medidata Solutions, Inc., SkillSurvey Inc.
Expertise Areas: Private equity, venture capital, IT, e-Commerce, mass customization
Blogs, Twitter, and Websites:
On raising a company from early-stage to an IPO: “It’s a lot of fun building a company. That’s why angels like to do it. There are great emotional and psychic rewards.”