Thursday, May 17, 2012
Angel No More: Why One of Silicon Valley’s Savviest Investors Has Shut His Wallet
Kevin Hartz is sitting this one out.
Sure, Hartz is busy with his day-job as CEO of online ticketing startup Eventbrite, but it’s not a time management thing that keeps him from his usual angel-investing habit. It’s more a money management thing. Hartz doesn’t like to invest his when there is so much sloshing around Silicon Valley.
The last new investment Hartz made was more than a year ago. At the time it was a little company no one had heard of called Pinterest. You’ve probably heard of it now. Hartz also made early bets on Airbnb, Flixster, Palantir, Trulia and Yammer among others. He’s mobbed up with the PayPal mafia, not as a former colleague, but again, because he was an early backer. Hartz is making follow-on investments in his current roster of startups, but he’s not looking to do anything new — it’s just too expensive.
“We don’t know where we are in this cycle,” Hartz says from Eventbrite’s San Francisco headquarters. “We can’t know how much longer this abundance of capital will last, but I don’t want to be a part of it. When I see a massive number of new investors and carpetbaggers coming in, it’s time to get out.”