Between writing posts, working on startups, and being a full-time student, I love to read book on entrepreneurship. Most recently I had the pleasure of reading The Startup Game, by Bill Draper. Bill Draper is a prominent venture capitalist who founded Draper & Johnson Investment Company, Sutter Hill Ventures, Draper Richards, and Draper Investment Company. Along with being a founder in many venture partnership, Draper was the President and Chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the United States and the head of the United Nations Development Programme. Draper combines his knowledge of venture capital and public service to create a unique perspective on the relationship between businesses and investors.
Draper begins the book by discussing the origins of the venture capital industry. Bill Draper has first hand knowledge of its roots since his father, William Draper Jr., was a founder in the first venture capital firm, Draper, Gaither & Anderson. In the second chapter, called “Three Generations,” Draper discuss his family’s involvement in the venture capital industry, since his son, Tim, is a cofounder at the venture capital juggernaut Draper Fisher Jurvetson. After discussing the history of the venture capital industry, Draper then dives into his views on the relationship between entrepreneur and venture capitalist. Draper discusses the traits that are essential in both parties, by adding personal anecdotes to support his ideas. Draper also includes insights from his work in the public sector and the influence of his venture work. Draper concludes by trying to make sense of the vast body of knowledge that is presented in his book. Overall, Ifound the structure of the book both engaging and easy to follow.
The Startup Game is the ideal read for anyone who wishes to be a venture capitalist. Draper’s knowledge is unmatched due to his family ties and work in the public sector. In conclusion, if you wish to be a venture capitalist, The Startup Game is a must read!