Excerpt from article by TechCrunch:
"VCs have long thrown events for portfolio startups to share knowledge, and learn from each other and from previous successful entrepreneurs.
But we’re starting to see a new trend: VC firms are starting to hold curated, topic-based events that include a broader swath of the entrepreneurial community, including non-portfolio companies and founders.
With the launch of its new content site Grove, Sequoia Capital announced its new event series “drinkups,” which features a discussion between a Sequoia partner and portfolio founder.
The events themselves are open to non-portfolio startups and founders, but like the Kleiner, Greylock and GV events, these drinkups are a curated, handpicked group of potential and current entrepreneurs.
In some cases, VCs are curating these open events around specific business sectors.
So why are VCs ramping up events? Deal flow is an obvious benefit. The good VCs understand that they can no longer sit on Sand Hill Road, and wait for deals to come to them. Hosting well-curated events is a smart way to meet lots of potential investments at once.
But they key benefit to events isn’t building out a new portfolio, but strengthening the existing portfolio of companies (which, in turn, leads to better deal flow). Founders are constantly searching for information and therapy from their peers, and a nicely designed event can be an efficient way to quench both needs at scale. Rather than relying on a VC partner to cross-pollinate the portfolio (“oh, you should totally meet the team at…”), a good event gets the right people in a room, with the right context, and lets the dots connect themselves.
All of the events mentioned above have a common thread — they are all curated. These events aren’t open to anyone, and it’s unlikely that the firms will make these events free for all. The theory is that the value of an event is inversely proportional to the size of the audience.
The key to making good wine is selecting the right grapes. The quality of these events will ultimately be judged by the people that attend..."
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