If change is the only constant, then it’s the unique qualities of each entrepreneur that keeps Steve Krausz passionate about working with startups. “I get excited about creation in technology,” says Steve, who joined USVP in 1985. “It’s thrilling to see new generations of entrepreneurs who bring leadership to their organizations. Entrepreneurs are people who can paint a picture of success that makes others want to join them, who can liberate others to be their best.”
With over 30 years of venture capital experience, Steve has led or co-led the firm’s investments in Trusteer (acquired by IBM), Guidewire Software (IPO), Xylan (IPO), Epic Design (IPO), Check Point Software (IPO), Imperva (IPO), New Focus (IPO), Savings.com (acquired by Cox Target Media), Vontu (acquired by Symantec), Sierra Monolithics (acquired by Semtech), Verity (IPO), Occam Networks (acquired by Calix), CipherTrust (acquired by Secure Computing), Accelerated Networks (IPO), Parametric Technology (Rasna), NetDynamics (acquired by SUN), Stratacom (IPO), Harmonic Lightwaves (IPO), Elantec (IPO), CenterView Software (acquired by Sybase), Applied Digital Access (IPO) and Micro Linear (IPO). Steve currently serves on the boards of Active-Semi, Appthority, Box (NYSE: BOX), Cato Networks, Electric Cloud, Inside Sales (observer), Kaiam, Megapath, Prevoty, Quantifind, Smartling, and ZEFR.
Change means innovation—it also means disruption of status quo. Steve is drawn to areas of disequilibrium, where the possibility exists of technology solving an old problem in a new way, or redefining the way people work and live. “We shouldn’t ever think we know what’s next. The only thing we can anticipate is the unexpected.”
Steve enjoys the role of coach and mentor to CEOs and finds it rewarding when he can help them consider new solutions or gain a broadened perspective on the market environment.
“Markets define themselves on the basis of business or consumers that have a need, and are most often evolutionary, not revolutionary,” he notes. “The consumerization and globalization of technology are especially interesting now. The evolution from an enterprise model to one that is consumer facing, is big.”
The father of two, Steve is the former executive board member and Treasurer of the National Venture Capital Association. Steve also serves on the boards of the WAVC, the World Affairs Council, the Stanford Bay Area Venture Capital Group and DAPER Investment Fund. An avid skier, Steve enjoys travel with his family. When time permits, his reading interests include world history, especially the Middle East and Asia. He holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from Stanford Business School, where he was an Arjay Miller Scholar.