How We Work
Clearstone has a distinct approach to venture investing in technology opportunities. We prefer to be the lead investor in most of our financings and we are proactive, participating in the guidance of our companies through our relationships with the full management team. We are also very receptive to investment opportunities in market leaders with established syndicates. Inside our fund, we have invested in operating expertise to back up our investing professionals. The technology executives in our firm are available to our portfolio companies as well. Clearstone makes an unusually thorough effort to understand the intricacies of an entrepreneur's business before making an investment decision, and that detailed approach to gaining knowledge typifies our guidance of portfolio companies once we've invested.
How Clearstone Invests
Clearstone seeks companies that are creating next-generation infrastructure, and related solutions, that create economic advantage for businesses. We focus on enterprise technologies that propel profitable growth for business and add value for customers, communications (including the wireless, semiconductors and advanced optics that support the sector), and business-model innovations that leverage advances in Internet or communications infrastructures.
We are attracted to innovators, category creators and market leaders who can define and dominate large sectors. We like to see companies mine horizontal markets for long-term scalability, with identifiable near-term revenue opportunities in specific verticals or identifiable customer types. We are also open-minded critical thinkers and are enthusiastic about pioneer companies that launched too early for steady revenue from their markets but are seeing convergence of their idea, solution and market acceptance.
What we look for in entrepreneurs: A cohesive team, with experience.
Clearstone seeks out proven technology and company builders who have a track record of creating products that markets deem valuable. When possible, we like to see a management team comprised in part or wholly of people who have prior experience working together. In the absence of this kind of cohesive management team, we are attracted to powerful technology solution companies with a capable technologist around whom we can build a team of strong executive managers. Regardless of management team assets, we want to see a large market opportunity that can support a scalable company, along with a strategy and product roadmap that converts early risk into a defensible market position.