Mayfield Blog

Start-Up Opportunities in Infrastructure

As we wind down 2014, a wave of innovation is sweeping infrastructure software and providing outsize opportunities for startups. From the introduction of Amazon Web Services in 2006 and the beginning of infrastructure-as-a-service, to the unveiling of Github in 2008 and the continued expansion of open source software, infrastructure technologies have evolved at a frenetic…

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Our View on the Reasons for Optimism During Bubble or Bust

Articles these days are filled with talk of the upcoming winter, caution about start-up spending and tweetstorms advising us to worry. I respect the authors of these points of view, as vanity investing can be a trap in bull markets. It’s also highly valuable to advise entrepreneurs to ask themselves if they are being capital-efficient and if…

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Changing The Rules Of E-Commerce

In late summer, Mayfield and CRV co-hosted a dinner for entrepreneurs at e-commerce 2.0 companies, including Brit& Co, Dolls Kill, Dropship, Indiegogo, Kiwi Crate, LeTote, Massdrop, Pebble, Peek, Poshmark, The Hunt, Tophatter, Touch of Modern, Trendalytics, Udemy and Urban Remedy. These executives discussed the factors making e-commerce cool again for investors and founders, focusing on how evolving…

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Giant data

Five Factors in Building Giants of the Big Data Era

As we enter the second half of 2014, it would be fair to say that big data has gone mainstream, attracting coffee table books, multiple industry landscapes, consumer applications, and large amounts of funding. Having seen many technology cycles during our 45 years in venture capital — including the birth of the PC era, the transition…

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Medical $ - Shutterstock

Start-ups are finally hacking healthcare

New companies are going around the traditional “front door” of FDA approval, insurers and healthcare institutions by launching ‘Healthcare 2.0’ companies that target consumers and self-insured employers, upending the health sector through the use of innovative digital and social technologies. At a recent forum we hosted for founders and leading industry execs playing in Healthcare…

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Tech’s next most powerful role will be dominated by women

No, this is not another pessimistic rant about the lack of women in the tech industry, especially in leadership roles. I am an optimist, and, as a partner to several marketing technology and SaaS companies, I would like to draw attention to an observation staring us all in the face. There are thousands of women…

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A Wearables Startup Playbook

Few sectors have received as much buzz as the wearables market. From fitness bands and anklet baby monitors, to smartwatches and Google Glass, wearables are fun, cool, and cutting-edge. The rise of mobile broadband, commodity sensors, smartphone-based companion apps, virtualized manufacturing and supply chain, crowdfunding, and nimble design have converged to make wearables mainstream. With…

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These three trends will transform how employees use their phones

As an investor in enterprise mobile startups, I meet with hundreds of entrepreneurs every year whose business plans include the “mobile” buzzword. Many of them are app companies that target consumers or ad networks and platforms that help reach them. While these are interesting and will certainly yield some unicorns, I think there are even…

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Our Advice to Start-Up CEOs

When Ursheet Parikh sold his company StorSimple in 2012 to Microsoft, it was one of the largest deals in the cloud infrastructure sector to date. But that wasn’t the only thing unusual about it. It was also a fairly large deal for which he played the banker and negotiated the deal. This is not unheard of,…

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Artisanal Cheese, Cocktails … Now the Artisanal VC?

Most venture investors say they are hands-on, but now some are taking it a step further and calling themselves “artisanal” VCs. What does this term really mean? Is it just a pretentious moniker that fits into today’s world of “handcrafted” $5 coffee and $4 toast? Or is there actually a new movement happening in the…

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