Welcome to the Boisfonblog! Allow me to introduce myself — my name is Carter Boisfontaine and I’m building a career in Venture Capital. Welcome to ground zero of the mission.
A little background on me: I’ve just recently graduated from USC’s business school. USC is where I fell in love with startups. You’d be hardpressed to find a collection of people as crazy, hungry, and brilliant as entrepreneurs — it’s infectious. I mean, innovation, at its core, is rocket fuel to any economy. New successful products are to startups as new successful startups are to a country’s economy; startups make a new thing to sell to the world to make it happier and more efficient. Failure to innovate is a failure to stay profitable, and the analogy goes on. Entrepreneurs are not afraid of challenges, they are excited by them — they feed off of adversity.
You get it. I’m fascinated by startup culture. So I think I’m in the right field. I got my first VC job at Canyon Creek Capital in Los Angeles, where the managing partner, Buck Jordan, opened my eyes to the world of frontier technology (a fancy term VCs use for new tech like robotics, AR/VR, artificial intelligence, etc.). Since then, I’ve been doing everything I can to break into the space.
I’m sure many of you have heard of those running apps that say something like “Couch to 5k.” Well, that’s kind of what this is — call it Couch to VC. So here’s the plan: as often as possible, I’m going to use this blog as an avenue to collect my thoughts, ideas, and experiences down this path — and hopefully share some valuable knowledge along the way. If this blog ends up being nothing but a glorified notepad for me, great! If it amasses a huge following and develops a community of learners, thinkers, and sharers, double great!
This blog is for anyone looking to start or build a career in venture capital, or really anyone looking to learn about VC at all.
So, what am I up to now and why do I feel like I know a thing or two? Great question, glad you asked. I’m currently an investor at Venture University, a fund/program in San Francisco that ironically aims to disrupt the business of disrupting. I’ll get more into what VU is later, but, for the purposes of this introduction post, I’ll share the highlights. Also, here’s a nice piece by the Harvard Crimson in the meantime.
Effectively, VU is an 11-week program I’m taking this summer where individuals aspiring to build a career in VC can learn from some of the best and do everything a VC does from deal sourcing to deployment. That’s right, we’re all investing real money into real startups. Over the course of the summer well be meeting with and get lectured by some of Silicon Valley’s most famous VCs, entrepreneurs, and startup influencers.
The program is lead by two phenomenal guys that are VC war veterans, Skyler Fernandes and Andrew Zalasin. Skyler is the founder of two funds; his most recent fund is Clevland Avenue, a $150M fund co-founded with Don Thompson, the ex-CEO of McDonald’s. Andrew has worked in VC for over 25 years and has proven himself as one of the highest performing VCs out there. He’s been early on companies as reputable as Facebook and Twitter and has realized some of the best returns on the market. However, all you’ll really find out about him on the internet is that he loves cars. I think it’s by design; he likes to keep a low profile.
The two have a very “yin and yang” type of dynamic — their difference in style has yielded a fantastic learning experience.
All in all, the program is going to be one heck of an experience, so I’m sure I’ll have some worthwhile experiences and wisdom to share!
So, what’s next you ask? Will I join another fund? Work at a startup and get some operational experience? Who knows! This blog is about learning anyways, isn’t it?
Down the rabbit hole we go!