Ron Conway

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Ron Conway
Ron Conway 1.jpg
Residence San Francisco, United States
Occupation Angel investor
Spouse(s) Gayle Conway
Children Three sons

Ron Conway is an American angel investor, often described as one of the "super angels".[1] Conway is recognized as a strong networker[2] and is based in Silicon Valley.

Early career[edit]

A former salesman who had made a fortune in the computer business, Conway knew little about technology on his first entry to the business.[3] Ron Conway graduated from San Jose State University[4] with a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science.

Conway previously worked with National Semiconductor Corporation in marketing positions (1973–1979), Altos Computer Systems, as a co-founder, President and CEO, (1979–1990) and Personal Training Systems (PTS) as CEO (1991–1995). PTS was acquired by SmartForce/SkillSoft.[5]

Investing[edit]

As founder and Managing Partner of the Angel Investors LP funds, he was an early stage investor in Google, Ask Jeeves and PayPal. He began investing independently in 2005, and by 2006 had already achieved sixth place in the Forbes Magazine Midas list of top "dealmakers".

Dot Com era[edit]

Conway's first fund, Angel Investors I, raised and invested in 1998, generated a 7 times return, and his second, raised and invested during 1999, saw a 1.5 times return. Ron invests with SV Angel, his investment firm.[6]

Some Valley observers, notably VentureBeat, have been critical of Ron Conway for his investments during the Internet boom, believing them to be "symbolic of the era’s hubris."[7] Conway developed a reputation for throwing lavish cocktail parties and raising cash from a diverse group of celebrities, sportspeople, and political figures such as Henry Kissinger, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tiger Woods, and Shaquille O'Neal, which he then ploughed into start-ups.

Conway was embroiled in a conflict with other angel investors in the Angelgate scandal of 2010, and, in 2011, another controversy erupted around rumors of conflicts he had with entrepreneurs.[8]

List of investments[edit]

Conway secured funds for, among ventures, a web site to supply veterinary medical supplies, a weight-loss site, a maternity site and an e-commerce company featuring a search engine that aimed to predict the buyer's mood.

Among Conway's 650[9] or more investments are:

Philanthropy[edit]

Conway is active in community and philanthropic activities, serving as Vice Chairman of UCSF Medical Foundation in San Francisco and also as co-chair of the “Fight for Mike” Homer and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). He is on the development committees of UCLA, St. Francis High School, Sacred Heart Schools, The UCSF Medical Center in San Francisco, Packard Children's Hospital, Legacy Ventures, and Ronald McDonald House at Stanford.

He is also on the Benefit Committee of the Tiger Woods Foundation.[20]

In January 2012, Conway helped establish a new tech organization initiative with Mayor Ed Lee and the City of San Francisco called sf.citi to promote tech jobs in the community.[21]

Politics[edit]

Conway was the single largest campaign contributor to Edwin M. Lee in his successful campaign for Mayor of San Francisco in November 2011; Conway raised $600,000 for Lee through independent expenditure committees. Since then questions have been raised about whether Lee has taken actions to benefit companies in which Conway has investments.[22]

In April 2013, a lobbying group called FWD.us (aimed at lobbying for immigration reform and improvements to education) was launched, with Ron Conway listed as one of the supporters.[23]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ricadela, Aaron (April 2, 2007). "VCs Aim to Out-Angel the Angels". Business Week. 
  2. ^ Hodge, Patrick (Feb 26, 2010). "Ron Conway raising $10M to invest". San Francisco Business Times (American City Business Journals). Retrieved 2011-09-30. "Conway is a former computer company chief executive and uber-Silicon Valley networker..." 
  3. ^ Gary Rivlin on the 'Godfather of Silicon Valley'
  4. ^ Ron Conway stays invested
  5. ^ Belsener, Elin. "San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee And Ron Conway Are Ready To Rock Out At Disrupt SF". TechCrunch. 
  6. ^ SV Angel on CrunchBases
  7. ^ VentureBeat on Conway, December, 2006
  8. ^ Yarow, Jay (Apr 22, 2011). "Ron Conway Threatened To Ruin Ex-Twitter Employees' Careers if They Didn't Sell Him Stock". Business Insider. 
  9. ^ "Ron Conway Stanford Startup School 2012 Part 1 of 3". 
  10. ^ "Crunchbase". crunchbase.com/company/140-proof. Retrieved 31 January 2013. 
  11. ^ Attributor scans web for copyright violations
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Ron Conway Investments
  13. ^ Blippy Shows Its Own Funding On Blippy. And Now Everyone Can See.
  14. ^ Friday, October 28th, 2011 (2011-10-28). "Dublin’s Datahug Raises $1.5 Million From Ron Conway, VC Firm". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2013-07-08. 
  15. ^ Fashism Raises $1 Million From Ashton Kutcher, Ron Conway & Others
  16. ^ Fluther Raises $600k From Top Valley Investors For Crowd-Sourced Answers
  17. ^ Fraudwall, an anti-click fraud company, raises millions
  18. ^ Alyson Shontell (2012-03-23). "Ron Conway Saved OMGPOP's Life Over And Over Again - Business Insider". Articles.businessinsider.com. Retrieved 2013-07-08. 
  19. ^ "Wireless Best: Biggies Verizon and AT&T". The Seattle Times. 6 June 2013. Retrieved 6 November 2013. 
  20. ^ O'Reilly Conferences on Ron Conway
  21. ^ Friday, January 13th, 2012 (2012-01-13). "Ron Conway, Mayor Lee And Heather Harde Launch sfCITI, Want To Keep SF At The Forefront Of Tech". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2013-07-08. 
  22. ^ Smith, Matt (March 31, 2012). "As Mayor Cultivates New Business, Treatment of Backer Is Questioned". The New York Times / Bay Citizen. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  23. ^ "Our supporters". FWD.us. Retrieved 2013-04-17. 

External links[edit]