Matt Murphy, the venture capitalist who spent 16 years at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, has found a new home: Menlo Ventures.
His new role will be managing director at Menlo, becoming one of its seven investing partners, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.
Murphy told the Journal that his decision to leave Kleiner Perkins wasn’t related to the recent high-profile gender discrimination trial involving the firm — a trial in which Kleiner prevailed. He’s leaving because he wants to focus more on early-stage startups. He’s also good friends with Menlo’s managing partner Mark Siegel, which played into his decision to join the firm.
Menlo Ventures, founded in 1976, recently closed a $US400 million fund. Some of its portfolio companies include Uber, Roku, and Getaround.
Murphy, 48, has been one of the star investors at Kleiner Perkins. He’s led the firm’s $US200 million iFund, which mostly focused on iPhone apps, and has been involved with several billion-dollar startups, such as AppDynamics and Insidesales.com.
But Murphy also made headlines recently for being the man responsible for firing Ellen Pao, the former Kleiner Perkins employee who lost a lawsuit against the firm in April. During the trial, Murphy said he fired Pao, who is currently the CEO of Reddit, because “he thought she didn’t work well with other team members,” according to the WSJ.
Murphy’s departure also comes at an interesting time for Kleiner Perkins. The storied, 43-year old firm has been in search for the next group of leaders to succeed its iconic investor John Doerr for years, and some of the investors we spoke with recently said the firm could face long-term problems if it continues to struggle to make that generational transition.
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