Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

The Naked VC: Tim Draper Unveils His Investing Secrets for Astia

Last night, I was the master of ceremonies, as I have been for several years, at the laudable annual Astia Awards Dinner, which celebrated venture capital firms that support women-led companies.

And VC Tim Draper really went above and beyond in showing–quite literally–his support for his female entrepreneurs.

The San Francisco-based nonprofit does work to accelerate funding and growth of early-stage women-led businesses in life sciences, high technology and clean technology, with chapters in Silicon Valley, London and New York.

The NVCA member firms honored at the show, which is sponsored by Deloitte and Fenwick & West, by Astia for making the most investments in companies with a woman CEO were Draper Fisher Jurvetson, InterWest Partners, Prolog Ventures and Redpoint Ventures.

In addition, Allan Will, founding managing director of Split Rock Partners, received the Deloitte Leadership in Mentoring Award for encouraging female CEOs in technology-based fields.

Other award winners this year included: Anu Acharya, founder and CEO of Ocimum Biosolutions, who got the Life Science Innovator Award; Diane Greene, founder of VMware, who was awarded the Technology Innovator Award; and Pam Marrone, founder and CEO of Marrone Organic Innovations, who received the Clean Tech Innovator Award.

But it was Draper who stole the show, held at the de Young Museum in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park.

He could not attend, but made his presence known by doing a video in which Draper sings very badly, but with incredible enthusiasm.

But before he starts crooning, Draper takes off an article of clothing for every woman-led company he funded.

Let’s just say, while he should be proud of his investments in women CEOs, it would have gotten very dicey if DFJ had done just one more.

But see for yourself–or, more correctly, see a lot of Tim Draper, in this video:

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald