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How Venture Capital Changed the Tech World in Silicon Valley

Featured Events | Mar 07, 2023 |

When author Sebastian Mallaby spoke overseas about his book, The Power Law: Venture Capital and the Making of the New Future, European audiences said the Silicon Valley boom could never happen in a place where investors are generally more risk-averse toward startups. However, as Mallaby’s account of the valley’s working-class beginnings to meteoric rise to wealth shows, the culture can change when you least expect it.

In his book, Mallaby, a Paul A. Volcker senior fellow for international economics at the Council on Foreign Relations, recaps the roles of venture capital firms in tech start-ups, including major figures from Sequoia Capital, Kleiner Perkins, Accel, and more. In this webinar sponsored by the Gabelli Center for Global Security Analysis, Museum of American Finance, and CFA Society of New York, he uncovers the truths behind some of the celebrated triumphs—and infamous disasters—in recent Silicon Valley history.

Mallaby noted that the valley’s runaway success inspired other local and national governments to try and recreate their own successful startup hubs. “It’s not a fool’s errand if you go about it the right way, and the right way is if you set the table for entrepreneurship and venture capital to work,” he said. “What the government can do is invest in basic science [and] make sure there is a stable legal and tax regime, and the licensing process needs to be low stress and generous to entrepreneurs.”

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