Above the Crowd

Benchmark’s New General Partner: Scott Belsky

February 8, 2016:

The partners at Benchmark are delighted to announce that Scott Belsky has joined the firm as our newest general partner. It is rare for us to encounter a partner candidate who has so much experience as an operator, investor, and advisor at such a young age. We have confidence that Scott can be one of the best investors of his generation, and we are excited by the opportunity to have him as a member of our team.

Scott came to our attention through his work as an early-stage investor and active advisor to important companies like Uber, Warby Parker, Pinterest and most recently Periscope. Being in front of such big, transformative ideas at an early stage shows tremendous investment judgment.

His work with the Periscope team exemplifies his character as an investor. We learned from Periscope’s founder, Kayvon Beykpour, about Scott’s role as a trusted advisor and confidant in the company’s earliest stages, culminating in Periscope’s acquisition by Twitter and subsequent integration. Scott’s relationships with founders like Kayvon embody Benchmark’s approach of working shoulder-to-shoulder in support of the entrepreneurs we back. Scott never sought credit, fame, or anything that would put him in front of his clear purpose to help the entrepreneur.

Scott is also known as the founder and CEO of Behance, an online design community that became the essential showcase for design work around the world. He bootstrapped the company in New York for five years before raising venture capital from high-quality investors like Jeff Bezos and Union Square Ventures, then managed the business to a successful sale to Adobe in 2012. Scott remained at Adobe, managing the deep integration of Behance into the Adobe Creative Cloud and leading Adobe’s innovative mobile product efforts.

Scott is incredibly passionate about the craft and theory of design, and has helped drive the central role of design in modern digital products. In 2007 he founded 99U, an annual conference attended by thousands of design leaders and creative professionals. He is also a prolific writer on the subject of product design and managing creativity, both online and in his book, Making Ideas Happen. At Benchmark we have witnessed the increasing influence of design in startups, and we see Scott’s pivotal role in the design community as a key competitive advantage for our current and future portfolio companies.

Adding a new partner is a significant event for Benchmark. Our equal partnership structure, which is the foundation of our firm, means Scott enters with the same platform to work with entrepreneurs as the current partners. We are convinced that Scott’s character, dynamic curiosity, and passion for entrepreneurship will take Benchmark to a higher level of success.

– Bill Gurley, Eric Vishria, Matt Cohler, Mitch Lasky & Peter Fenton

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