Blog

  • Cleo, a support system for working parents; linchpin of the femtech ecosystem

    One of the things that has excited me the most in the two and a half years since becoming a venture capitalist is the rise of femtech. Femtech is the fast-growing category of products and services designed to improve women's health and wellbeing, from fertility and reproductive health, to smart breast pumps and breast milk delivery, to mental health and general wellness and everything in between. The term femtech was coined by Ida Tin, founder and CEO of period tracking app Clue, right around…

  • Our investment in BlackBird, the world’s first flights marketplace

    Today I am excited to announce that NEA has led the $10M Series A funding in BlackBird. I’ve known the company and its founder, Rudd Davis, since I first made an angel investment in the startup in 2017, and have been blown away by the team’s ability to create a flights marketplace. Here is what got me so excited about BlackBird. Entrepreneurs are remaking every part of transportation ecosystem, and NEA has invested in many of them, but innovation has come on either the short or long end of…

  • When and How to Make Your First Product Hire

    I get one question from founders all the time: When is it time to make my first product hire? Normally a startup founder is a visionary who is deeply involved in the product experience. She is the person closest to the problem the startup is trying to solve and intimately familiar with what needs to be built. But eventually, that’s too much for one person to manage alone. I joined Airbnb as the first product manager (PM) when the company was 35 employees. The eighth engineer joined the same…

  • Tiburio: Investing in Traditional Drug Development in the Era of Big Science Platforms

    For the past ten years I have been a biopharma investor at NEA, and in that time I have witnessed the drug industry truly enter the genomic age. With technologies such as gene and mRNA therapy, gene editing, CAR-T and other cell therapies, we are living in a time of unprecedented potential (and peril, as demonstrated by Chinese researcher He Jiankui’s rogue experimentation with gene editing on two human embryos). The public markets (and in some cases, strategic acquirors) have valued these…

  • How Hiring Entrepreneurs Enabled Airbnb’s Success (and Launched a New Generation of Founders)

    When I left Airbnb last year, I was delighted to join a group as dynamic as the company itself: the Airbnb alumni. And I’ve been intrigued, though not surprised, to learn how many of those bright and creative professionals are developing their own startup concepts. After all, our time at the company trained us to do just that. Employees of one great company seeding the next generation of startups is the circle of life in Silicon Valley. It started with Fairchild Semiconductor in the 1960s,…