David Krane has a very big job. He’s the CEO and managing partner of GV, and he oversees the fund’s global activities, investing in tech companies including Uber, Nest, and Blue Bottle Coffee among hundreds of others.
Yet the journalism major and former director of global communications and public affairs for Google maintains a surprisingly low profile. Indeed, you’d be hard pressed to find news about Krane beyond the revelation several years ago that he was succeeding his far more public-facing predecessor, Bill Maris.
Then again, Krane seems to have a penchant for counterprogramming. He joined Google more than 19 years ago, when even its founders couldn’t imagine it would become one of most dominant companies in the world. He also moved over to GV as a general partner in 2010, making what now looks like a smart bet that the company’s venture arm would not get lost in its other machinery.
Another bold bet Krane made was on Uber, convincing his colleagues to pump nearly $260 million into the company six years ago — its largest deal ever at the time — when Uber was breaking away from the ride-hailing pack from very far from becoming the Goliath that it is today.
In fact, when we sat down with Maris at a StrictlyVC event in 2016, he credited Krane almost entirely with the deal, telling us, “David Krane brought in Uber and we pushed all in [financially] when people thought [Uber’s then valuation of $4 billion] was crazy . . . There was no computer that told us that was as good decision.”
Of course, Krane and the 28 investors who work alongside him at GV have funded a wide variety of consumer, enterprise, life sciences and frontier tech startups since — which is partly why we’re thrilled to announce that Krane is joining us at our upcoming Disrupt show, happening October 2nd through October 4th in sunny San Francisco.
We’ll talk for the first time with Krane about the inner workings of GV circa 2019. How does its decision-making process work, under his leadership? How does the team think about new areas of investment? What are Krane’s views on SoftBank and other giant pools of capital to come into the venture world? And how do GV and Alphabet’s growth-equity investment fund, Capital G, work together?
And that’s merely just the beginning. If you’re interested in understanding GV, its thinking, its processes, and where it’s shopping on Krane’s watch, you won’t want to miss this rare stage appearance. We just hope he’ll put up with our many (many) questions.