Focused on emerging technologies in global markets, Draper Investment Company provides venture capital and expert advice for startups, particularly in the telecommunications, software, and information technologies arenas. Founded in 2001 by venture capital icon Bill Draper, the Zurich-based firm has counted Dialcom Networks, Imagini Holdings Ltd., plista GmbH, BharatMatrimony, Skype Limited, and numerous other enterprises as part of its portfolio. Draper Investment Company generally enters the picture in the first round of financing and remains an active participant.
Draper Investment Company’s General Manager, Bill Draper, entered the world of venture capital in 1959, when he joined his father’s business, Draper, Gaither & Anderson, an early venture capital pioneer on the West Coast of the United States. He left to form his own company, Draper & Johnson, in 1962 and founded top venture capital firm Sutter Hill Ventures in 1965, where he remained a Senior Partner for 20 years. For 13 years, he worked in public service on the international level before founding Draper International in 1995, the first such fund focusing on private enterprises operating in India. In the early 2000s, Bill Draper founded Draper Richards LP, which invests in U.S. technology startups, as well as Draper Investment Company.
One recent recipient of Draper Investment Company’s venture funding, C2Call GmbH, develops software for Internet users to embed click-to-call links in e-mails, blog posts, Facebook status updates, Tweets, instant messages, or on websites. The links also open voice connections on the Internet at no cost to users. Additionally, the Draper Investment Company portfolio includes Dialcom Networks, a collaboration software firm with offices in Madrid, Munich, and Singapore; and BharatMatrimony, an online matrimonial portal for residents of India.
In researching funding opportunities, Draper Investment Company seeks a particular entrepreneurial profile that has proven successful in the past. Essential personality traits include a must-win attitude, a strong work ethic, exemplary personal integrity, an ability to focus and to prioritize, and unusual creativity. Draper Investment Company also looks for relevant experience in the entrepreneur and the executive team. The goal remains to provide venture capital to entrepreneurs with the desire, energy, and vision to grow great companies.