William H. Draper, III (Draper Richards, L.P.), HBS 1954, started his career in venture capital with Draper Gaither & Anderson, the first venture capital firm west of the Mississippi, working there with his father from its creation in 1958 until he left to cofound Draper & Johnson Investment Co. in 1962. Three years later, Draper & Johnson merged with Sutter Hill Ventures to great success. From 1981-1986, Bill served as President and Chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the US, continuing on to become the Administrator and CEO of the United Nations Development Program, serving until 1995. Upon returning to Palo Alto and to venture capital, Bill founded Draper International, later Draper Investment Company, to focus on global investment opportunities in Europe and Asia; a year later, he co-founded Draper Richards L.P. to bring attention to domestic technology companies. He is also a co-founder of Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, a venture philanthropy group focused on early-stage, high impact organizations. He is active on many corporate boards and councils, and in 2005 was inducted into the Dow Jones Venture Capital Hall of Fame. In 2006, he received the Silicon Valley Fast 50 Lifetime Achievement Award and also holds a 1982 alumni achievement award from Harvard Business School. In his book, The Startup Game: Inside the Partnership Between Venture Capitalists and Entrepreneurs, Bill provides first-hand stories of success. Bill described his over 40 years of experience with venture capital in an interview at HBS in December 2010.
Timothy C. Draper, (Draper Fisher Jurvetson) HBS 1984, started his career with a brief stint with Alex, Brown & Sons, the first investment bank in the U.S. In 1985, he co-founded Draper and Associates, later renamed Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ). DFJ maintains a loosely affiliated network of semi-independent venture capital firms in the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Latin America. The firm has funded notable technology companies including Baidu, Hotmail, and Skype, among others. His original suggestion to use "viral marketing" in web-based e-mail to virally spread an Internet product to its market was instrumental to the successes of Hotmail, and has been adopted as a standard marketing technique by hundreds of businesses. Tim credits the idea to his case study education at HBS. Tim described his experiences in venture capital in an interview at HBS in December 2010.