Since 1995, Madrona Venture Group has touched — and impacted — a huge part of Seattle’s startup ecosystem. And many of those entrepreneurs and CEOs were out in full force Monday evening as the venerable Seattle venture capital firm celebrated its 20th anniversary.
The Museum of History & Industry was packed with past and present entrepreneurs from Madrona’s lineup of portfolio companies — from former investment banker Jeff Seely (who sold Sharebuilder to ING for $220 million in 2007); to computer scientist Oren Etzioni (who co-founded two Madrona companies, Farecast and Decide.com) to Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman (one of Madrona’s possible IPO candidates).
ExtraHop Networks founder Jesse Rothstein was there, telling GeekWire about how his 8-year-old company had hired 107 employees in the past six months. Placed CEO David Shim shared a similar story about his rapidly growing location analytics company.
Meanwhile, former Isilon executives Sujal Patel and Bill Richter — who sold the clustered storage company to EMC for $2.25 billion in 2010 in one of Madrona’s biggest exits of all time — chatted about a stealthy new venture they’re kicking around.
Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos also made a surprise appearance, talking to a small group of CEOs at Madrona backed companies before the main party started. More on those remarks here.
“I want to thank all of the people here for helping us in so many ways,” said Alberg in remarks to the group of about 250 tech leaders. “If you had told me 20 years ago that Madrona would have $1.3 billion under management, we would have a team of 35 people and that we would have invested in over 100 companies, I probably would have said you are crazy. But, 20 years later, that is what has happened.”
More on Madrona’s history and impact in the region in this story on GeekWire: Q&A: Madrona’s Tom Alberg on the changing winds of venture capital, tech bubbles and bankrolling a young Jeff Bezos
And here are a few more photos from the evening: