What Happens When Google Wants To Buy A Google Ventures Portfolio Company?


Yesterday’s Nest acquisition was unique in the respect that one of Nest’s four board members, Bill Maris, was a partner at the corporate VC arm of the acquirer, Google Ventures.

The other investor board member, Randy Komisar, was a partner at a KPCB, the Silicon Valley venture firm helmed by John Doerr, who was on the board of the acquirer, Google. The last two board spots were filled by the Nest co-founders, Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers.

Holy conflict of interest Batman! What a completely awkward situation for both Maris and Doerr. As an investor you want to maximize returns, but as a part of Google, wouldn’t you want to keep the price down for your parent company?

Google has been the acquirer of a Google Ventures funded company four times since the VC firm launched in 2009: Makani Power, Milk and Bufferbox. Nest will be the…

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