London Calling

…and now for something completely different


As you may have heard, I’m off to London. The assignment, which I chose to accept, is to help get Google Ventures Europe off the ground. I could not be more excited about the opportunity and the team we’re putting in place.

For the past six-plus years, I’ve lived in San Francisco. It’s the longest I’ve lived in any city since I moved away from my childhood home many years ago. And you won’t hear me bad-mouthing the city on my way out the door.

I love San Francisco. I think it’s the most unique city in the United States. And it’s certainly the most exciting right now. It’s the city at the epicenter of so many things transforming our world on a daily basis. Yes, there have been and will continue to be growing pains — change is hard, rapid change is even harder. But I’d bet on San Francisco to be the center of gravity for a long time to come.

It’s the only city that has truly felt like home to me. And one day it will undoubtedly be my home again.

But I’ve also never lived outside the United States. One of my biggest regrets in college was not participating in a study abroad program. I’ve never met anyone who studied abroad who didn’t cite it as one of the best and most rewarding times of their lives. This is clearly not a coincidence.

While I may not be back in school in the traditional sense, I suspect I’ll learn a lot during my time in Europe; both about myself and what it is that I do. It’s often said that as great as San Francisco is, it’s also a bubble (lowercase “b” not to be confused with the far-worse “Bubble” — which is also cited every few weeks). There’s definitely some truth to this. It’s a place so unique that it’s hard to step back and gain perspective. I look forward to gaining a new perspective.

Not to worry though, I’ll be back a lot. I remain a general partner in our U.S. fund, helping our startups over here in any way I can. And I’m still looking for new, interesting U.S. startups that Google Ventures can help with money, time, or ideally, both. Even on the other side of the pond, I remain a Hangout away.

And hopefully I’ll be able to write more than I have the past year. I certainly won’t have more time on my hands, but hopefully a new perspective on things will force my hands to type in a way they haven’t recently.

Also, the weather may keep us indoors more.