Android co-founder in Google Ventures?

March 20, 2009

Is Android co-founder Rich Miner Google’s new in-house venture capitalist?

To judge by one intriguing clue, it appears so.

Miner’s name was recently spotted on a nametag at a Silicon Valley event for start-up firms to present their ideas and pitch VCs for funding. The tag identified Miner as belonging to Google Ventures.

Of course, there is no such thing as Google Ventures, at least not yet. A company spokesperson told Reuters on Thursday that Google Ventures is “a project we’re working on. But we’re not able to discuss details right now.”

Miner would be an interesting choice for a Google in-house venture fund, which has been rumoured for months.

According to his profile on LinkedIn, Miner has spent the last two decades at start-ups and wireless firms. When one of his companies was acquired by French telecommunications company Orange, he became Orange’s head of technology. He also served as a consulting partner at Orange Ventures, according to the profile.

Miner came to Google through the search giant’s 2005 acquisition of Android, the company Miner co-founded with Andy Rubin, and which now forms the basis of Google’s smartphone efforts.

With Miner involved in Google’s investment initiatives, it’s not hard to guess what kind of technologies will be on his radar.

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