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The Startup Game: Inside the Partnership between Venture Capitalists and Entrepreneurs

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3.71  ·  Rating details ·  393 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
For more than 40 years, venture capitalist Bill Draper has worked with top entrepreneurs in fabled Silicon Valley, where today’s vision is made into tomorrow’s reality. From the VC who saw the value in Skype, Zappos, and many other companies, comes firsthand stories of success. In these pages Draper explores: how to evaluate innovative ideas and the entrepreneurs behind th ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published June 19th 2012 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published January 4th 2011)
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Eugene
Aug 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Eugene by: Tim Draper
great book from one of the first venture capitalist who shared his principles, stories, approaches to working with entrepreneurs and in investing. the author was in the very beginning of venture investments who started the Drapper & Johnson Ventures along with his partner Pitch Johnson and then started Sutter Hill Ventures, one of the oldest venture capital firms.

The book tells the story of becoming a venture investor at earliest days (when Internent companies was not yet a big game) and, mo
...more
Herve
Sep 21, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As I wrote in my previous post on a few Indian tech start-ups, I just read The Startup Game by Bill Draper. In general, that kind of books is of average quality, this one is much above the average, though this is just my personal feeling. I like what is written and here my summary.

Bill Draper is one of the fathers of venture capital and belongs to a interesting genealogy. His father was a grandfather of VC and his son is currenlty an active investor

More in the chapters of my book about venture c
...more
Lucas
Apr 07, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
I like the stories about specific companies, though there wasn't enough on failures- the failure to success rate for each venture is maybe about 5-10 to 1 but the coverage in this book reverses that ratio.

Overly positive and un-self-critical attitude of entire book is wearisome, maybe a book written by a journalist instead of this borderline auto-biography would be more balanced.

The chapters that weren't about venture capital or lacked detail weren't very good. There are probably a million diff
...more
Adam
May 31, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting read, but very light on specifics. From the title and description, I was hoping this book would get into the details around pre-funding work by founders, business plans, funding rounds, term sheets, negotiation points and opposing perspectives, etc., but other than a few passing references to the venture capitalist funding structure, these topics aren't really explored.

I would summarize a large part of the book as follows: "I met these founders through [insert name drop], I decid
...more
Tie Kim
Jan 14, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fabulous insights from one of the most eminent venture capitalists who also is a terrific storyteller. This book is replete with sage advice on characteristics to seek when selecting a business partner, appraising leadership talent, and common mistakes to avoid.

There are some memorable quotes sprinkled throughout the books and some of my favorites are listed below.

* Mark Twain: "Why not go out on a limb? That's where the fruit is."
* Japanese proverb: "Vision without action is a daydream. Action
...more
Travis
Nov 28, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you are looking for how to be an entrepreneur or venture capitalist this isn't the book for you, but if you are looking for intimate details and enriching stories in the lives of some of the greatest entrepreneurs and venture capitalists then this is where to get it. It is very much an autobiographical book which I found interesting, but I can see where some people might be looking for the keys to success and be disappointed.
Alice O'herin
Highly informative for someone without deep industry knowledge about VC. Highly informative to learn about the key traits VCs look for, to understand the relationship between VCs and their fundees, and the startup space. It dwelt more on the biographical and philosophical than I expected, but I enjoyed the heavy emphasis on strong moral fiber and ethics within business. In particular, I was interested in the last chapter on the Draper Richard Foundation.
Stephanie Sun
Read at the risk of finding yourself liking an adorable Republican.

It won't change your life or enable you to instantly found, run, or even find a multimillion dollar business, so approach with realistic expectations. This is a candid, civilized, very personal, introductory take on the life of a Silicon Valley VC from one of the men who invented the job description.
Nadine Brown
3/18/11 finished. Read first 8 chapters; skimmed rest. Gained insight into Draper's character, networking vital in vc/startup environment; traits of good leader other things vc's look for. Better understand funding rounds.
Can not wait to share info in next interview, of course, to impress. :)

Just skimming for networking ideas.
John
Feb 09, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
A neat story from the family that founded venture capital (father), that launched the first international VC fund (writer) and launched the first international VC network (the son) - PLUS interesting journeys into some of the history of the 20th century - such as the Berlin Lift, Marshal Plan. One of the few books in this category that would interest my business colleagues AND my Dad !!
Phyllis
Just finished reading my Uncle Bill's new book and it was quite fun! If you or anyone you know is an entrepreneur, this is a good combo business book/memoir. And if you're interested in great stories of the financial founding of Silicon Valley, he's the one to tell the stories. Enjoy!
Allison
May 22, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The book is like 10% info relevant and important to startups and 90% self-congratulatory autobiography that no one asked for. Gave me some good insight as to how VC culture works, at least -- lots of privileged, self-absorbed white guys at the helm.
Abhineet Kumar
Feb 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book for two reasons:

- Insight into how Silicon Valley works, and its history as well as where it is headed.

- Knowledge about the VC industry, as well as what's in an entrepreneurial DNA.

I think its a quick read with interesting stories.

Richard Bravman
Inspiring and instructive.
Dondi Hananto
Apr 15, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
great first-person view of the world of venture capital financing
Trevor
Feb 02, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The author's tone is so smug and self-congratulatory that the book is unreadable. Would not recommend under any circumstance
Emrecan Dogan
Half autobio, half insights into startups. The part that I liked the most was on social ventures.
David Chabot
I thought this book would be much more detailed and into the specifics of the venture capital industry. It's still an interesting read, no doubt, but it's more a biography than a technical read.
Opengraphtestuser
Fantastic and fun - more of an autobiography than a tutorial but definitely worth reading for anyone living in/interested in Silicon Valley and its history.
Troy Jensen
An excellent overview of Startups and Venture Capital. A lot of the content I found fascinating but may not be of practical use to many readers. Overall it was a great read...
VJ
Apr 14, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gives a good overview of Draper family, VC, deals.
Peter
Jan 29, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A strange combination of memoir and advice. Moderately useful. The author does a little too much name-dropping and is a little too impressed with credentials.
Parker
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João
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