IVCA Feature: New Member Profile of Alsop Louie Partners

IVCA Feature: New Member Profile of Alsop Louie Partners

April 25, 2018

This has been a big year so far for new membership in the Illinois Venture Capital Association, with the advantage to the whole association in the opportunity to expand networks, offer support and exchange new ideas for venture capital, private equity and support industry issues. The latest new member is Alsop Louie Partners, a Venture Capital firm based in San Francisco, with experience in new media, gaming, SaaS, cloud infrastructure, security, and mobile.
 
The following is a Q&A profile with Alsop Louie Partners, which explores the firm’s background and their expectations for interacting with the IVCA.
 
New Member: Alsop Louie Partners
Representative: Mark G. Fields, Partner
 
IVCA: What is a brief history and background of the Alsop Louie Partners?
 
Alsop Louie Partners: Alsop Louie Partners was founded in December of 2006 by industry veterans Stewart Alsop and Gilman Louie. The background of the firm is found in the backgrounds of the individual partners, the track record of value creation for our LPs, and the unconventional thinking that is a hallmark of our shop.    
 
IVCA: Why did the film decide to join the Illinois Venture Capital Association?
 
Alsop Louie Partners: One of our partners makes his home in Illinois, another in Virginia and yet another in Arizona.  It is clear to us that entrepreneurial activity across the country is picking up. Networking through IVCA events will strengthen relationships that produce deal flow in a region that holds much promise. We are also a member of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), which covers national issues relevant to VC firms.  
 
IVCA: The opening statement on your website, ‘Disruptive technologies are created by those who are willing to pursue what others dismiss as foolish,’ is also married with the ability to recognize as valuable what others dismiss. What criteria does your firm use to recognize value?
 
Alsop Louie Partners: Above all else, we are focused on identifying the most promising entrepreneurs. Having a vision about something that hasn’t been done before can put an entrepreneur in a lonely place. Value is to be found by putting capital and experience behind those ideas, and our firm is willing to partner with entrepreneurs that challenge the conventional wisdom.
 
IVCA: You also recognize that funding can be fun. Where do you believe the investment community has lost the ‘fun’ in funding, and how do you emphasize it in your approach to funding?
 
Alsop Louie Partners: Raising capital is a necessary part of being a good entrepreneur.  Often, it is referred to as the ‘necessary evil’ of entrepreneurship, but it doesn’t have to be.  If you take a partnering approach – in the sense of ‘let’s see if we can put 2+2 and make 5’ – it can be exciting and fun.  
 
IVCA: Your commitment to youth entrepreneurship, even in undergraduates, is also an underlying system philosophy in the firm. How do you reconcile the inexperience of youth in business relationships with the workable ideas of youth in the implementation of valuable ideas?
 
Alsop Louie Partners: Many of the great companies of today were started by ‘young people,’ with ideas about how they could create something that never existed before. They didn’t do it alone. We pair our practical experience with youthful exuberance.  
 
IVCA: Besides what you mentioned above, what does Alsop Louie Partners hope to achieve in their interaction with the VC/PC community within the IVCA?
 
Alsop Louie Partners: The Venture Capital and Private Equity business is relationship driven.  ALP hopes to be a contributor to the development of the IVCA community as well as a beneficiary. Membership in the IVCA allows us to build awareness of what’s happening regionally... it brings us one step closer to another cluster of good ideas looking for smart capital.  
 
For more information on the Alsop Louie Partners, go to www.Alsop-Louie.com