Tom Loverro joined IVP in April 2015. He focuses on investing in later-stage, high-growth consumer and enterprise companies. Tom was recognized by Forbes Magazine as one of venture capital’s up-and-comers by his inclusion in the 2019 Midas Brink List and by GrowthCap as one of the Top 40 Under 40 Growth Investors in 2019, which highlights exceptional private capital investors in the growth segment.
Sam Lambert is the Chief Product Officer at PlanetScale.
Nikhil Sachdev joined Insight in 2020 and focuses on high-growth software companies. Nikhil helps lead new venture and growth stage investments, and also has experience with leveraged buyouts.
Sangeen Zab joined Founders Circle in 2019. At FCC he has invested in Algolia, Attentive, Cohesity, Confluent, Robinhood, Segment and UiPath.
Wide ranging discussion with investors (IVP, Insight, FCC) and operator (PlanetScale CPO) on COSS funding, late-stage dynamics and more!
Round of panelist introductions - 0:00
JJ: What are your standpoints on how open-source is viewed from the perspective of founding a company, investing, and looking at open-source as a driver of product innovation over the last 10-15 years? What are some of the more recent developments? - 1:25
JJ: What do you all think about KPIs? A lot of people talk about measuring adoption and getting a proxy for awareness, popularity, and “interestingness.” It could be stars, or contributors - what are the KPIs that jump out to you in looking at open-source projects that could be an exciting basis for a COSS company, as compared to the traditional SaaS KPI? - 7:20
Sam: What do you think are the most compelling monetization strategies for open-source products and projects? - 13:42
Tom: If you had a company that was 95% net dollar retention vs one that 140% net dollar retention, assuming everything else is the same, how wide of a multiple difference do you think there’s going to be? - 19:15
There’s a huge conversation around whether cloud providers will kill or compete or collaborate with open source. There are wide ranging views around this dynamic, and almost everyone has a different way of looking at it. JJ: How do you all think about the cloud provider dynamic? - 20:25
Sam: How do you folks feel about the cloud provider dynamic? Does it worry you when Amazon implements something you’ve invested in? Would it be something that would turn you away from investment? - 23:38
What are the big observations at scale in larger COSS companies that are very clear on their metrics, and are large enough to be considered almost like large SaaS companies? What are some of the properties that the later-stage companies (e.g. Confluent, HashiCorp, JFrog) that jump out that are interesting? - 29:57
JJ: Share an open-source project that eventually formed a company, which you looked at, had an opportunity to invest in, but didn’t. - 36:50
Tom: Sam, were there any things from your perspective in GitHub that you didn’t think would work, but actually did work? - 40:29
Share your questions and comments below!