VC returns in yogurt, video stores, and train tracks (seriously)
CIVC had a number of highly successful non-technology investments made in the late 1970’s timeframe, such as:
LB Foster: Repurposed old train tracks
JD Robinson Jewelers: The original “diamond man” (Tom Shane’s inspiration)
National Demographics: Mailing Lists
American Home Video: Video Stores
Michigan Cottage Cheese: Yoplait Yogurt
The Aviation Group: Expedited small package delivery
JMB Realty: Real Estate Management company
None of these companies fit Mr. Neumann’s definition of the era’s venture deals and each generated returns we would welcome today.
via Brad Feld’s A Venture Capital History Perspective From Jack Tankersley, a response to Jerry Neumann’s popular post “VC Heat Death”, which covers the VC industry in the 80’s.