I ran into my old friend Dave McClure down in Hawaii recently, when we both attended the [re]Think Hawaii conference. Dave and I go way back – all the way to Gnomedex 2 in Iowa! Back then, he was working for PayPal in the Marketing department. These days, he has money that he’s just waiting to give to you! He’s a Venture Capitalist in the Silicon Valley.
Dave started doing angel investing a little when he left PayPal. He was working with some small companies, but started last year doing nothing more than investing money for others into companies and startups. This is what he does full time now, for places like Founder’s Fund.
When looking for someone to invest in, Dave says that he doesn’t invest much in ideas. There’s so many people who have already built websites. You don’t need to look at an idea… you can see what they’re already doing. He looks for people with good marketing and design skills – people who have a vision. He also looks for people who are doing something that are on the straight-and-narrow, such as productivity and home things. He likes to know that his investments are going to be things that are going to sell.
Dave chose to visit [re]Think Hawaii for the same reason the rest of us did – the food! Seriously, though, Dave wanted to be able to hang out and get ideas from people who hail from all walks of life. This conference merges people from every aspect of social media and technology that you can think of, and it’s an amazing way to get new perspectives on things.
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