Home Venture Capital Venture Capital veteran Keith Rabois rejoins Khosla Ventures

Venture Capital veteran Keith Rabois rejoins Khosla Ventures

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SAN JOSE (Diya TV) — Founders Fund general partner Keith Rabois is set to rejoin Khosla Ventures after departing five years ago. Rabois, known for his involvement in successful startups like Affirm, DoorDash, and Opendoor, will take on the role of managing director at Khosla Ventures, its most senior position. This decision follows a dinner meeting with Vinod Khosla, the founder of Khosla Ventures and an early supporter of OpenAI, resulting in an agreement that Rabois will officially join the firm this month. This move marks Rabois’s departure from his current post at Founders Fund, where he led notable deals in companies like Ramp and Faire.

Rabois, a two-time Forbes Midas list investor, reunites with Vinod Khosla, the 68-year-old billionaire and founder of Khosla Ventures, wrapping up a nearly five-year stint at Founders Fund, a venture capital firm founded by PayPal billionaire Peter Thiel. In an interview with Forbes, Rabois expressed the influence of both Khosla and Thiel on his career, stating, “I learned more about how to build a startup from Peter than anyone, and that is still true. Whereas Vinod is probably more of my model as an investor.”

Discussions for Rabois’s return to Khosla Ventures began last month, according to managing director Samir Kaul, emphasizing the enthusiasm of the trio to work together again. Rabois will be one of five managing directors overseeing the recently closed $3.1 billion in new capital across three funds at Khosla Ventures.

During his tenure at Founders Fund, Rabois made significant investments in companies such as Ramp, Traba, and Found. He also co-founded OpenStore, an online merchant acquirer that raised over $100 million in funding. Known for his vocal support of the tech scene in Miami, where he moved in 2020, Rabois plans to establish a Khosla Ventures office in the city, while also maintaining a presence at the firm’s Bay Area headquarters.

Reflecting on his career moves, Rabois mentioned that if Khosla Ventures had been more flexible about remote work, he might not have left initially. The venture capitalist expressed a commitment to providing tactical advice and operational support to portfolio companies. Rabois will continue to represent Founders Fund on several boards after his move, including Ramp, Found, and Trade Republic.

In response to the dynamics of the venture capital industry, Rabois pointed out the differences in the firms’ approaches. While acknowledging the success of both Khosla Ventures and Founders Fund, Rabois emphasized the hands-on, venture assistant approach at Khosla Ventures, contrasting it with the more passive, finance-focused management style of some other firms.

Despite Rabois’s return, Vinod Khosla expressed confidence in the firm’s outlook, stating that Khosla Ventures remains optimistic about technology-based disruption opportunities in 2024, even without Rabois’s re-addition. The firm recently raised an “above-target” war chest for investments and plans to continue staffing up while others contract in the industry.

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