Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz’s $300 million VC fund received no shortage of press attention yesterday, with Google showing 420 articles published online alone (including two here at peHUB).
Given reader appetite for the story, it isn’t surprising that several related articles emerged today. Using the fund as a springboard, the New York Times, for example, published a piece about VCs feeling the need to return to the basics, with Horowitz observing that too many firms base dollar commitments on fund size or number of partners.
Another follow-on piece was published by BusinessWeek. It’s about the perceived role that superstar VCs like John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins and Jim Breyer of Accel played in the ability of Andreessen and Horowitz to close on all that money. To wit, the magazine reports that Doerr, Breyer, and Aneel Bhusri of Greylock Partners made numerous introductions to their own LPs on behalf of Andreessen and Horowitz. It goes on to state that in the long tradition of sponsorship in the venture business, such personal introductions translate into more credibility. “Being sponsored is sort of like being a made man in the mob. You are tapped on the shoulder and invited into an elite club.”
While true that Andreessen and Horowitz raised their fund with enviable ease — they began meeting with investors in early March, soon after Andreessen announced his plans to dive into VC on the “Charlie Rose” show –I strongly question whether the other firms’ sponsorship should be credited.