Blog

  • Unicorn Fever and the Billion-Dollar Business Boom

    Judging by the volume of recent news coverage, one might think you can’t walk around Silicon Valley anymore without tripping over a unicorn. Loosely defined as a company with a valuation greater than $1B (and the VCs who invest in them), the term invaded the tech/startup community lexicon late last year, when TechCrunch published, “Welcome to the Unicorn Club,” a guest post from Aileen Lee identifying 39 technology companies founded since 2003 with public or private market…

  • VCs and angels take aim, entrepreneurs caught in crosshairs

    It's time for VCs and angels to set aside their differences, in part because they are largely cosmetic. Note: this post was originally published as a guest column on Fortune Term Sheet on December 4, 2013 No topic fuels more discussion and debate within the early-stage investment community than the dynamics between VC and angel investors. Are they natural enemies or complementary players in an increasingly diverse funding ecosystem? Or both? AngelList's introduction of…

  • Bullish on Boston: Why Biotech (and More) is Booming

    I spend a lot of time in Boston these days. So do many of my partners. In fact, half of our partnership serves on boards in Boston, and we have about two dozen Boston companies in our active portfolio. This is not a new phenomenon—NEA has always been among the most active VCs in Boston—but today we’re spending more time here than ever before. Why? Because we’re seeing more opportunity here than ever before. This might sound counterintuitive at a time when many in our…

  • Why NGINX is the New Foundation for Modern Web Applications

    A striking consequence of today’s cloud-enabled, SaaS-based world has been the development of highly demanding websites. Modern consumer and enterprise applications must serve richer media, to more users, and at faster speeds than was imaginable just a few years ago. It’s no surprise that existing web infrastructure software (much of which was developed in the 1990s) is struggling to meet modern needs. Scalability is a central concern for developers, who are on the front lines…

  • MongoDB and the rise of developer driven enterprise IT

    At NEA, we have been involved in enterprise technology companies since our founding 35 years ago. Traditionally, the formula for enterprise technology involved a top-down selling process. That is, startups would have to build out technology, create sophisticated pitch decks, and then reach out to the CTOs and CIOs of large corporations. The sales cycle was often eight to ten months long and involved pilots, alphas, betas, and generally a massive amount of sales and marketing spend to land an…