The Not-Marc-and-Ben GP–aka John O'Farrell–at Andreessen Horowitz Speaks!
He’s not Andreessen and he’s not Horowitz, the pair of brand names of the high-profile Silicon Valley venture firm that just announced a new $650 million fund to add to their $300 million already at work.
But as quiet as John O’Farrell has been, he is the third general partner–and there are only three for now–of what seems to have turned into the hottest VC outfit of late.
Launched in mid-2009 by Netscape Founder Marc Andreessen and his longtime business partner Ben Horowitz, both have since made a series of splashy investments, written splashier blog posts and served on the splashiest–well, controversial–of boards.
O’Farrell just arrived to the party in late June.
But he had worked closely with Andreessen and Horowitz at Opsware executive, through some decidedly rocky times until they pulled off a remarkable recovery for the software company and sold it in 2007 to Hewlett-Packard for $1.6 billion.
The Irish-born O’Farrell–who has an interesting background in the cable business too–moved onto Silver Spring Networks, a smart grid start-up. He assumed he would remain an operating exec.
But when he got the call from Andreessen and Horowitz, he said he could not resist the offer.
Here is O’Farrell talking about the firm in a video interview BoomTown did earlier this week.
In it, note at the end how he is deftly answering–but not–a question I had about an investment it might make in Twitter: