Harvard graduate Ed Sim has been a prominent force in the venture capital business for over 17 years. With a degree in economics and designation as a CFA, Sim’s success as an investor is no surprise. His professional career began in 1996 at Prospect Street Ventures, where he focused on software and technology investments. Just two years later, Sim cofounded his own business, Dawntreader Ventures, which primarily invested in seed and early stage software, Internet and digital media companies. In 2010, Sim founded BOLDstart Ventures and is currently the managing partner of the firm. His specific fields of interest include SaaS, cloud computing and digital media. Sim is also extremely well-connected, making an investment partnership with him especially desirable.
Sim has headed a number of important and profitable investments, including Greenplum, GoToMyPC, 24/7 Media, Rapportive, Blaze.io, GoInstant, Gizmo5, Moreover Technologies, Flashbase, and Fotolog. All of these enterprises were eventually acquired by larger companies, including Google (Gizmo5) and LinkedIn (Rapportive). Sim is currently an investor in Preact.io, Plain Vanilla Productions, RJMetrics, GoInstant, Blaze.io, LocalResponse, doodledeals, Enterproid, IndieGoGo.com, StatusNet, Yipit, Rapportive and PlayHaven.
Sim also writes a widely read blog called BeyondVC. Here, he details his own experiences as well as tips and tricks for others involved in venture capital, entrepreneurship and the business of technology.
Areas of Expertise:
Venture capital, digital media, cloud computing, social media, corporate development, strategic partnerships, sales operations, product marketing, product management, SaaS
Advice for startups on getting acquired. “Focus on building your business, developing awesome product based on market and customer guidance, selling to customers, developing relationships with potential strategic partners and good things will happen. Don’t focus on the exit, but enjoy the journey to building an insanely great product or service.”
Reflecting on passed investments. “No one is perfect, and looking back every quarter gives me an opportunity to better hone my investing acumen and further refine my understanding of what separates a potential winner from a loser.”
On user relations. “As a VC who invests in seed and first rounds, I love revenue just as much as the next guy. However, the focus on revenue should play second fiddle to a user/customer first experience.”