search: results update below


browse funds: selections are stored



recently rated:

Rated by 63
3.6

top rated funds:

Rated by 39
3.3
 

Rated by 15
3.3

Rated by 10
3.3
 

Rated by 10
3.3

Rated by 38
3.3

Rated by 38
3.3

Rated by 23
3.3

Rated by 38
3.3

Rated by 48
3.3

Rated by 39
3.3

Rated by 34
3.3

Rated by 14
3.3

Rated by 47
3.2
 

Rated by 27
3.2
 

Rated by 10
3.2
 

Rated by 31
3.2

Rated by 33
3.2

Rated by 12
3.2

Rated by 15
3.2

Rated by 10
3.2
 

Rated by 50
3.1

Rated by 14
3.1

Rated by 42
3.1

Rated by 26
3.1
 

Rated by 20
3.1

Rated by 37
3.1

Rated by 22
3.1

Rated by 14
3.1

Rated by 12
3.0

Rated by 13
3.0
 

Please take a moment and make a financial contribution to TheFunded. If we have helped you, help us with resources to further grow the both the site and our entrepreneur training program, The Founder Institute.

Peter C. Wendell

Partner Rating:

Rated 1.0 / 5.0 by 1

Partner Information:

Title:     Managing Director

Location:  Menlo Park, US West

Blog:      

Firm Rating:

Rated 2.9 / 5.0 by 26

Firm Information:

Company:   Sierra Ventures

Type:      Large Private VC

URL:       Firm Homepage

PERSONAL SPECIALTY: Software & Services

FIRM DESCRIPTION: Sierra Ventures is a Silicon Valley based private venture capital firm with US $1.5 billion under management with a focus across all areas of Information Technology. Our current investments include companies based in the United States, Canada, China and India. We have a history of working with entrepreneurs and management teams to originate and build new companies into large, profitable businesses. Our most recent fund Sierra IX closed in 2006 at $400M. The Sierra Ventures team has diverse and complementary backgrounds and skills with extensive management, technical, and venture capital investing experience. The team includes individuals with strong operational experience founding and running startup companies that were subsequently purchased by industry leaders (in parenthesis) such as Marimba, (MRBA then BMC Software), Octane (ePiphany), OnLink (Siebel), Scopus (SCOP then Siebel), and Tivoli (TIVS then IBM).

3
Agree
2
Disagree

Be Careful

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by JoeKing on 2012-01-18

PRIVATE: Members Only (460 Characters)

0
Agree
1
Disagree

Solid Partners

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by asah on 2011-06-21

PUBLIC:

Sierra (Dave Schwab, Steve Williams) funded a company of mine many years ago, and they were terrific: pains in the ass when needed, operationally focused, and zero BS. They made introductions, gave actionable operations advice, and were savvy about executive matters and negotiations. They stuck with us for many years, never giving up even when the going got rough.

I have nothing but the highest regard for these guys and would work with them again.

PRIVATE: Members Only (286 Characters)

0
Agree
0
Disagree

Yi Jian Ngo New Principal at Sierra

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Phil Dewey on 2011-03-01

PUBLIC:

Pitched Yi-Jian Ngo at his request via AngelList. As part of our due diligence we do some checking on portfolio companies to see if there is a conflict. One last step is to ask outright if they have a portfolio company that could be a conflict. During our pitch Yi-Jian Ngo assured us they had no conflicting investments.

We gave the pitch and a few days later Yi-Jian Ngo was kind enough to get back to us and say no.

OK, so far, perfectly normal.

PRIVATE: Members Only (376 Characters)

0
Agree
1
Disagree

Pitched but Turned Down

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by daithic on 2009-02-26

PUBLIC:

It turned out my business was not a good sectoral fit but had a good conversation and the response was courteous.

PRIVATE: Members Only (246 Characters)

4
Agree
4
Disagree

Great Partner

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Anonymous on 2008-04-12

PUBLIC:

I have been involved in VC-funded companies for many years, and dealt with all the major funds on my various boards. Sierra is proving to be the most value-add fund that I have dealt with. Tim Guleri is willing to dig in and help find the right high-level contacts for expanding our sales, and works those contacts as adroitly as any CEO I have seen. They are not a passive fund, but on the other hand they don't needlessly get involved either, finding the right balance that adds value. If you can get them to invest in your company, you will find it a great experience.

PRIVATE: Members Only (131 Characters)

1
Agree
2
Disagree

Expertise & Partnership Complement Capital

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by TMichaud on 2008-03-01

PUBLIC:

Our organization recently closed a $7M Series B transaction led by Sierra Ventures of Menlo Park. We were really fortunate to have a number of great VC options to chose from. In the end, we concluded that Sierra Ventures offered us the best overall balance of operating expertise and a hands-on partnering approach to help our business
grow and scale. During our fundraising process, we were particularly impressed with Vispi Daver and Dave Schwab. Both really understood our industry and our challenges as a SaaS business.

Since our deal closed, I have been very impressed with how active and helpful both Vispi and Dave have been in helping our company. They have become true partners to us and dependable allies in helping us tackle challenges.

I strongly recommend Sierra Ventures, and particularly Vispi Daver and Dave Schwab for entrepenuers looking for more than merely investment capital. If you would also benefit from talent, experience and extraordinary contacts, than I encourage you to consider Sierra Ventures. They have a 25 year history of building great companies and we couldn't be happier with our partnership with these guys.

PRIVATE: Members Only

6
Agree
2
Disagree

Sierra, Vispi Daver Solid Folks...

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Jamie Bardin on 2007-10-15

PUBLIC:

We stayed in touch with Sierra and pitched Vispi Daver...

PRIVATE: Members Only (266 Characters)

5
Agree
3
Disagree

Sierra Ventures

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by anon on 2008-04-14

PUBLIC:

Sierra is not afraid to get their hands dirty in helping entrepreneurs succeed. They have helped us hire, introduced us to key distribution partners, helped us close deals with their portfolio companies and have given us a clear strategic direction. Our partner has had a huge impact on our visibility in the SaaS space.

PRIVATE: Members Only (370 Characters)

4
Agree
2
Disagree

Turned US Down, Solid Reasons

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Anonymous on 2007-09-17

PUBLIC:

Sierra wasn't a fit for us. They passed quickly and professionally. Good experience. Tim Guleri - standup guy.

PRIVATE: Members Only (79 Characters)

3
Agree
3
Disagree

Build Value

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by carrillo on 2007-08-24

PUBLIC:

The Sierra team was highly energetic and detail oriented throughout our relationship, from diligence through building the company to exit. I was impressed by the level of commitment - the Sierra partners felt like co-founders: on call all hours, challenging our team and taking on whatever we needed to help. Although this may not be appropriate for every entrepreneur, in our case it was excellent. We had a great technology but needed leadership and market tactics. Sierra brought a level of sophistication that was, in our domain, quite clearly above the other firms with whom we spoke. Would work with them again without hesitation.

PRIVATE: Members Only (662 Characters)

4
Agree
3
Disagree

Value Added Partner

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by sirons65 on 2007-08-24

PUBLIC:

It has been eight months since we closed a Sierra led round. We remain as confident as ever that they are a great fit to help us realize our potential. The partners have strong operational expertise. This made for a very detailed due diligence process. As a clean tech company we were a new type of deal for them. We also had the added complexity of being located in an atypical geography.

However we went with Sierra because it was clear they had done their homework on our space and on our company and they are committed to building companies not just chasing trends. They definitely get involved and if you are looking for a passive investor they may not be a good fit. But if you want an investor that is willing to step in on strategic, exec staffing and other key issues they can add a ton value via their experience and connections. I've worked with over two dozen VC firms and would rate Sierra at the top of the pack. Jeff Loomans and Vimal Patel are the partners assigned to us and both are excellent.

PRIVATE: Members Only (379 Characters)

7
Agree
3
Disagree

Exceptional Venture Partner

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Anonymous on 2007-08-25

PUBLIC:

As a serial entrepreneur, I've dealt with many VCs over the years. I've raised over $800 million in capital and led a start-up to an IPO. Many notable venture firms have invested in my companies. Sierra Ventures is hands down the very best I've worked with - out of 20+ capital sources. Sierra's Partners have all been very successful Tech Entrepreneurs having run their own companies. They add value for strategy and business development as well as providing sound operational advice. Sierra is very responsive and truly supportive - through good times and tough times. I'd strongly recommend Sierra Ventures.

PRIVATE: Members Only (334 Characters)

6
Agree
4
Disagree

Excellent to Work With

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by nordon on 2007-08-16

PUBLIC:

Working with Sierra has been a very positive experience. I've been impressed by their fairness, their efficiency, and a very open and straightforward disposition. They showed a strong bias toward genuinely helping the company get things done, whether it be assistance in recruiting, introductions to contacts who could impact the business, or actively supporting next-round funding. They didn't "over-manage", but were there with very good counsel on both operational and strategic topics as we needed it. This is a partnership I'd strongly recommend working with.

PRIVATE: Members Only

9
Agree
3
Disagree

Working with Jeff Loomans: Disaster

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by jagrmeister721 on 2008-04-18

PUBLIC:

First, let me say that my earlier post- I was coaxed by Sierra to write a positive review for them on this site. I regret doing so, and later realized this was against the site's policy. Now that I have gone through the full process with Sierra, let me share my experience and in particular with a partner by the name of Jeff Loomans.

Our company had a promising consumer Internet product and received two offers for investment for a Series A financing- one from another venture firm that has about $2B under management and one from Sierra. The interested partner of the other firm was the Managing Director, and had two decades of VC experience. In contrast, Jeff was one of two junior Partners at Sierra, while the company has six Managing Directors. In other words, Jeff is low on the totem pole, and a new partner. We made what turned out to be a fatal decision by deciding to go with Loomans- he proved incapable of giving sensible advice, was a constant distraction to our operational plan, was too junior to help us close the second round of financing, and ultimately proved to be fundamentally dishonest and worked against our interests.

My background is that I have been involved with start-ups for over ten years, and have raised money from angels as well as venture capital. Never have I had a worse experience than working with Jeff. Let me explain why.

The most egregious aspect of working with Jeff/Sierra was simply our inability to trust them. Once we took Sierra' financing, I worked with Jeff to draw up a Milestones plan- in it, there are five metrics that had to do with the site's performance and audience. We spent a few weeks drafting this and turned into a formal document from Sierra to our company- that if we were to deliver on these metrics, Sierra would participate in the Series B. For the next year, we operated with these goals in mind, and without a doubt, delivered on every one of them. I would be glad to post this document online- there is no way one could read this and not recognize that we had reached these objectives, they are all measurable. So after a year of recruiting the right team, drawing up plans, delivering on objectives, and spending the Series A capital to get this far and getting Jeff's buy-off on EACH one of these milestones, what was the response"" Loomans' response to this was to manufacture NEW metrics that were not part of the document upon and claim we didn't "measure up" to these fabricated metrics. It was surreal. I have never dealt with such intellectual dishonesty. We could not believe it, but we had been strung out so long, that we didn't have enough in reserve to recover.

Besides giving us a metrics plan, swearing by it, and then disowning it at the last moment, Loomans repeatedly distracted the operational team by making imperious demands at board meetings, and between meetings, often adding "you're not going to get funded" if you don't do such and such. These were always unrelated to our Milestones plan. And it would change 180 degrees every time we spoke. In one case, we built a feature to handle a certain kind of customer request (I don't want to get into details of our solution or our company) in part because Jeff believe it was important that we do so, since it was a common request. Then, between Board Meetings, because Jeff hears some negative word from a single venture capitalist, he demands we completely re-write the feature, in defiance of all common sense and user testing, and even claims that he will write the code himself, supposedly to show off his tech credentials, I don't know.

We had counted on Sierra's second round of financing. We had run the company for the last year based on a mutually agreed upon set of metrics. Loomans waited till the very last moment to pull the rug from under our feet. Additionally, Jeff signed an agreement with me that would have the company issuing a loan to cover a cost related to acquiring common shares. At the last minute, he reneged on this deal. I couldn't believe it; but it seemed, he could care less. We got this sense that he didn't put a lot of stock in honoring his word. Further, as we scrambled to deal with Jeff's reneging on the second round of financing, Loomans actively worked to undercut our efforts to shore up confidence with a bank that we had taken a loan for. Behind our back, he told the bank that he didn't have confidence in our exit plan. Nevermind, he never tried to work with us constructively on such a plan. And this despite the fact that we were trying to salvage the value in the company, both for ourselves and Sierra. He later explained that because we didn't agree to his every demand on how to dispose of the assets, that he felt justified doing so.

The guy is fundamentally callous. We were wary of taking his investment since our first interaction with him; he was on a panel with other VCs and was constantly interrupting them, and otherwise being rude. As we tried to turn things around this spring, he rarely answered our call or responded to our email, except to obstruct any productive efforts we tried to make to salvage the value in the IP of what we had developed. His way of being "helpful" was to not respond to a suggestion we made to sell the technology, and then after we had put two weeks into making the deal happen (and not hearing a word from him), he threatened to legally block the deal.

Dealing with Jeff Loomans, his dishonesty and malicious behavior for a year and a half has been a headache. In some ways, I am glad to part ways because I have never dealt with someone who seemed to relish petty power-plays and lying on a systematic basis as much as he obviously did. I would NEVER do a deal with this individual again; I can't speak for all of Sierra's partners- Mark Fernandes and David Schwab- seem like decent guys, but I can't say since I didn't work with them directly. I take no pleasure in writing this post-mortem. Every entrepreneur has dreams of what they want to accomplish, and all of us make mistakes. Every venture is a learning experience, and some decisions I would make differently. We learned the hard way that choosing the wrong venture partner can be suicide -- its something that you can't put enough time into, reference-checking, and making sure you're getting into the right relationship. Be forewarned.

PRIVATE: Members Only (183 Characters)

4
Agree
1
Disagree

Great Partners

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Anonymous on 2007-08-15

PUBLIC:

We couldn't ask for a better partner. Sierra led our A round and stepped up in every financing since. They add value at the board and bring real practical operating experience. They've been fair and efficient all the way.

PRIVATE: Members Only

4
Agree
0
Disagree

Helped US Hire

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by wedgehead on 2007-08-14

PUBLIC:

When we raised the back half of our A round, these guys really stepped us to help us hire some top talnet. Folks I've been working with now over 5 years.

They've also really been stepping into some interesting deals since 2004 or so, as well.

PRIVATE: Members Only

0
Agree
0
Disagree

Link From From Other Posting, but Relevant to Sierra

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Anonymous on 2007-07-30

PUBLIC:

The other posting was general, not specific to this fund. Posted link in private

PRIVATE: Members Only (140 Characters)

4
Agree
4
Disagree

Unprofessional

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Anonymous on 2007-06-06

PUBLIC:

Unfortunately met with associate first time round, but then he loved it. After the first meeting he talked about moving forward, getting his senior people involved, etc. - then nothing, not even a call back and no response to our emails. Not the way to run a service business.

PRIVATE: Members Only

7
Agree
4
Disagree

Don't Have a Clue

Fund: Sierra Ventures

Posted by Anonymous on 2007-05-29

PUBLIC:

They claim a lot of experience in wireless and consumer. Turns out to be pretty shallow. Sorry to say, but there are lots of better folks on Sand Hill than Sierra.

PRIVATE: Members Only