Successful Investing is About Great Entrepreneurs

Each year, Forbes publishes its highly anticipated Midas List, an honor bestowed on the year’s top 100 investors in private technology companies. This year, we’re excited to see two Menlo names on the list, Venky Ganesan and Shawn Carolan. At Menlo, our entrepreneurs are the real heroes. They are the ones who reboot the exchange servers at 3 AM and toil countless hours to make the world a better place.

Founders like Travis Kalanick of Uber are challenging the stagnant transportation industry, making it not only easy to get from point A to point B, but a joyous and magical experience. Gabriel Leydon of Machine Zone is transforming gaming technology with built-language translators that allow people throughout the world to interact in the same online universe. Greg Duffy and Aamir Virani of Dropcam didn’t stop at wifi-connected video surveillance, they gave us the ability to interact with our loved ones with two-way audio and DVR service to capture special moments we might have missed. Siri’s cofounders Dag Kittlaus, Adam Cheyer, and Tom Gruber built an intelligent assistant that understands the nuance of human voice and language (something that is incredibly difficult to do). Guy Goldstein gave us Check, revolutionizing our access to personal finances and bill pay on the go. Sathvik Krishnamurthy led Voltage’s data-centric security software to a home at HP, and Mark Zagorski guided the eXelate platform to Nielsen, powering smart digital marketing.

The list goes on and on, in the Menlo portfolio and in the portfolios of other investors on this year’s Midas List. We know that being a founder is incredibly hard, and we respect the blood, sweat and tears it takes to be successful today. But with smart, dedicated entrepreneurs, we believe it’s just going to get better.