In an exclusive interview with Privcap, Alan Patricof, managing director and founder of Graycroft, describes why he is so enthusiastic about early stage investment opportunity among digital media startups. As an early backer of companies like Apple Computer, AOL and Cellular Communications, Patricof knows disruption when he sees it, and he is especially impressed with the way small companies with limited financial backing can make such outsized market impacts. As an original founder of Apax Partners, what is today one of the largest private equity firms in the world, Patricof knows his way around mega-deals, but he far prefers the startup scene. In the interview, Patricof discusses his decision to restrict the size of Graycroft’s funds and deals, why he doesn’t demand board seats from his portfolio companies, the ascendance of New York and Los Angeles as venture capital hubs, why investment failures still hurt, and the positive impact of the recently passed JOBS Act on American business.
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Managing Director, Founder
Alan Patricof is the managing director and founder of Greycroft, LLC, a venture capital firm focused on the digital media sector. The firm recently initiated Greycroft Fund II with committed capital of $130 million. Prior to founding Greycroft in 2006, he was the founder and chairman of Apax Partners, Inc. (formerly Patricof & Co. Ventures, Inc.), the U.S. arm of Apax Partners, Worldwide, LP, now one of the world’s leading private equity firms with $40 billion under management or advice. During the past 40 years, he has participated in the financing and development of a large number of public and private companies. Companies that he has been involved with at the initial stages are Apple Computer, America Online, Cadence Systems, Office Depot, FORE Systems, Cellular Communications, Inc. and Audible, Inc.
Patricof is a board member of TechnoServe, Trickle Up Program, National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), the Global Advisory Board of Endeavor, and the Initiative for Global Development (IGD) Leadership Council; he is also an advisor to International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank. In June 2007, he was appointed to the board of the Millennium Challenge Corporation by the President of the United States. From 1993 to 1995, he served as Chairman of the White House Conference on Small Business Commission.
Patricof holds a BS in Finance from Ohio State University and an MBA from Columbia University Graduate School of Business.
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