Published April 16, 2009 at 10:14 AM
"We're looking for entrepreneurs that are taking on these very ambitious projects and that have passion about what they're doing and are really trying to do something very big," says Spark Capital general partner Bijan Sabet in Part 2 of The Deal's Behind the Money video interview. Spark recently launched a new seed-stage program to nurture entrepreneurs in New York and Boston, where Spark is based.
"It's not like we're sitting around at Spark, saying, 'We'd love to find a company that's building a widget for Facebook'. We're looking for something really different."
As an example of a startup with a big idea, Sabet points to Spark portfolio company Boxee, which develops media center software and which raised $4 million in December from Spark and its frequent New York co-investor, Union Square Ventures.
Sabet, who is 40, points out that entrepreneurs in their 20s and early 30s have a competitive advantage: They have never known a world without the Internet.
About Spark portfolio company founders David Karp (Tumblr Inc.), Charles Forman (OMGPOP, previously known as Iminlikewithyou) and Evan Williams (Twitter Inc.), Sabet says, "They grew up on the Internet. They're Net natives. When they think about things, they have an instinct that is unique compared with entrepreneurs who are 10, 15, 20 years older."
Incidentally, in the video Sabet mentions having worked at Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) in the past. Sabet jointed the company as part of the team that created WebTV Networks, which Microsoft bought for $425 million in August of 1997.
Click here to see Part 1 of our chat with Sabet, in which he talks about co-investing with Union Square and others. Click here to see our video with Tumblr's David Karp, here for our video with OMGPOP's Charles Forman and here for our video with Boxee's Avner Ronen.Watch the video interview below or download it at iTunes.
Follow me on Twitter @MKFlynn. -- Mary Kathleen Flynn