Accel’s Harry Nelis on KAYAK, IPO strategy, and the right founder-VC relationship

Accel partner Harry Nelis knows what it’s like to be in the founder seat. After graduating with a PhD in Electrical Engineering, Harry moved to Silicon Valley to work as an Engineer at Hewlett Packard before founding his own venture-backed software company.

His experience as a founder showed him just how difficult it is to build a long-lasting company and develop a sticky customer base. It has also informed his founder-first approach to venture capital investing at Accel, one of the world’s most successful funds, having invested in Slack, Etsy, and Qualtrics to name a few. A strong believer in founders leading their own companies, Harry thinks of himself as a coach and advisor to world-class companies.

In this episode of This Much I Know, Carlos sits down with Harry to dive into some of the biggest topics in VC. They discuss some of Harry’s most memorable investments, the evolution of the European VC landscape, and the changing attitudes towards IPOs among founders and investors.

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