If you weren’t at the Hiller Air Museum on Thursday night for Draper Fisher Jurvetson’s Schmoozefest 2006, you missed out on the 16-piece orchestra, a crooning Tim Draper, Sky High blue cocktails and Steve Jurvetson’s effervescent description of his soon-to-be-made Tesla roadster (see slideshow on jump page).
The last DFJ Schmoozefest was held during the height of the dotcom bubble at NASA AMES and featured Tim Draper dressed in a flight suit. On Thursday, draper was dressed in his trademark red tie and sang “The Risk Master,” a song he wrote the lyrics to, in front of front of entrepreneurs, VCs and a group of screaming girls. VCJ subscribers will learn the name of the undisclosed artist who wrote the music in their December issue of the magazine (it’s a closely guarded secret).
You wouldn’t know it from the party, but DFJ is having a tough year. The affiliate program it pioneered is starting to show cracks as Draper Atlantic Ventures and DFJ New England split off to form their own firm, opting to drop the Draper/DFJ prefix (see PE Week: Two DFJ funds go solo). Earlier this year DFJ ePlanet Ventures, the fund responsible for wins such as Skype, Baidu and Focus Media, split off to pursue its own path: a $550 million fund with no ties to DFJ (see PE Week: ePlanet out for $550M).
Add that to the firm’s snail’s pace fundraising for its $250 million growth fund and one has to wonder if LPs are reacting to DFJ spreading itself too thin (see PE Week: DFJ growth fund slow to take off).
But the firm has had a good year for exits, selling seven of its portfolio companies so far this year according to Thomson Financial, publisher of PE Hub. Read the Venture Capital Journal’s in-depth profile of Tim Draper here.