Rick Lewis sees it as a great privilege to work with incredibly bright and driven entrepreneurs. “I believe it is not for venture capitalists to predict what the next big thing will be. Venture capitalists provide value to the entrepreneurs they work with, and to the investors whose capital they manage, by identifying, attracting, partnering with, and supporting entrepreneurs who have the knowledge and imagination to envision disruptive new businesses, as well as the talent and determination to bring those businesses to fruition.” While at USVP, Rick has had the pleasure of working closely with successful founder/CEOs like Geoff Cook of myYearbook (now MeetMe, NYSE:MEET), David Lazovsky of Intermolecular (NASDAQ:IMI), and David Sacks of Yammer (acquired by Microsoft).
Rick is a two-time software entrepreneur with a deep technical background. “While in my twenties, I was co-founder of two software companies; one failed, and one went on to be successful. Via those experiences I developed an abiding respect for entrepreneurs and an understanding of the inevitable sacrifices and challenges associated with entrepreneurship. It makes a big difference to be able to tell an entrepreneur, `I know what you’re going through’.”
Rick joined USVP in 2004 and is a General Partner in the firm. At USVP, Rick focuses on software (enterprise SaaS and security) and consumer services (social, mobile, and e-commerce). In software, Rick currently serves on the Board of Directors at Act-On Software, ThreatMetrix, and Victrio. In consumer services, Rick currently serves on the Board of Directors at Hooked Media Group, HotelTonight, ScoreBig, Trunk Club, and Wayin. Previously, Rick helped lead USVP's investing activities in energy-efficiency technology, including Intermolecular, Redwood Systems, and Xicato.
Prior to joining USVP, Rick spent six years in software engineering leadership roles at CAD market leader Autodesk, as a consultant to Walt Disney Imagineering, and as a co-founder of software companies Design Variations and Common Point Technologies. Rick also held positions at Sun Microsystems, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and McKinsey & Company. Rick has been published for his research in computer graphics at UC Berkeley, and is a member of the Tau Beta Pi engineering honor society. Rick holds a B.S. in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of California at Davis (summa cum laude), an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of California at Berkeley, and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, where he graduated with Distinction.
Rick is involved actively with the San Francisco nonprofit Real Options for City Kids (www.rocksf.org), which provides services such as after-school tutoring and sports clinics to underprivileged children in San Francisco's Visitation Valley neighborhood. Rick, his wife (a successful entrepreneur), and daughter live on the San Francisco peninsula.