Sequoia’s Doug Leone on the spot for lunch, money
By Sarah McBride
Nailing down a few minutes of a VC’s time can be tough, but one start-up tried a novel approach at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference: put the guy on the spot.
During the audience Q&A after TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington interviewed legendary venture capitalist Doug Leone from Sequoia, one Danish entrepreneur told Leone that his question was whether he could have a lunch date with Leone– today.
Leone begged off, citing a partner meeting, but promised lunch down the line. “Email me,” he suggested, giving his Sequoia email address.
But then the entrepreneur got demanding, saying that because he was going back to Copenhagen, the lunch would need to be before Thursday. This time Leone cited his travel schedule as a reason for declining, but told the entrepreneur he would meet with him eventually– as long as the follow-up email reminded Leone they’d talked at TechCrunch.
That is of course if Arrington doesn’t get there first with his new venture CrunchFund. He asked the entrepreneur to cc him on the email and said his CrunchFund money was better than Sequoia’s. Earlier on Monday Arrington said that he was leaving TechCrunch, the influential technology blog that AOL bought last year after a fracas involving the launch of CrunchFund — a $20 million venture capital fund.
In the end, the entrepreneur may have to go hungry despite his efforts. During the same event, Leone talked at length about how Sequoia tended not to invest in faraway companies because of the difficulty in providing resources to them. “If you’re in Cleveland, we cannot help you,” he said.