Lightning in a Bottle: The Evolution of Micro-VC
Judith Elsea

The adjustments to the changed environment you’ve highlights are the trends and behaviors that eventually lead the funds to become more ‘institutionalized’. Part of the benefit of the micro-vcs is the enhanced liquidity they bring to earlier stages of the ecosystem. Investing more $’s in fewer deals lessens the liquidity. Diversification across many deals manages the company specific risks as well — something well documented and practices in the public markets (index investing). The problem is the perverse incentive system and the lack of a long-term, portfolio manager approach to venture investing. Right Side Capital is blazing a trail here, acting more as portfolio managers than stock pickers…and their funds are doing extremely well. A report came out in Austin studying the funding ‘networks’ in the various entrepreneurial ecosystems. Austin showed up VERY low in the report, as there are not enough funding organizations — ‘nodes’ in the parlance of Metcalf’s Law. More organizations funding deals, vs more money in fewer hands, improves the liquidity of the ecosystem. And under any circumstance, more liquidity is good for all.

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