DiscoverInvest Like the Best with Patrick O'ShaughnessyBessemer Venture Partners - Building a VC Firm that Lasts Centuries - [Invest Like the Best, EP.327]
Bessemer Venture Partners - Building a VC Firm that Lasts Centuries - [Invest Like the Best, EP.327]

Bessemer Venture Partners - Building a VC Firm that Lasts Centuries - [Invest Like the Best, EP.327]

Update: 2023-05-021


My guests this week are Jeremy Levine, Kent Bennett, and Brian Feinstein. They are partners at one of the oldest and most storied venture firms in the world, Bessemer Venture Partners. Our conversation is split into two parts. First, we explore Bessemer itself. It’s over 100 years old and has a unique operating model with lessons for every investment firm in the market. We then discuss Jeremy, Kent, and Brian’s investing styles and outlook. What they look for in businesses, their thoughts on various sectors like vertical market software, and we close with a discussion about AI and defensibility. Please enjoy this great conversation. 

Listen to Founders Podcast

Founders Episode 136 - Estee Lauder

Founders Episode 288 - Ralph Lauren

For the full show notes, transcript, and links to mentioned content, check out the episode page here.


This episode is brought to you by Tegus, the modern research platform for leading investors. Tired of running your own expert calls to get up to speed on a company? Tegus lets you ramp faster and find answers to critical questions more efficiently than any alternative method. The gold standard for research, the Tegus platform delivers unmatched access to timely, qualitative insights through the largest and most differentiated expert call transcript database. With over 55,000 transcripts spanning 22,000 public and private companies, investors can accelerate their fundamental research process by discovering highly-differentiated and reliable insights that can’t be found anywhere else in the market. As a listener, drive your next investment thesis forward with Tegus for free at


Invest Like the Best is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Invest Like the Best, visit

Past guests include Tobi Lutke, Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger, John Collison, Kat Cole, Marc Andreessen, Matthew Ball, Bill Gurley, Anu Hariharan, Ben Thompson, and many more.

Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

Follow us on Twitter: @patrick_oshag | @JoinColossus

Show Notes

(00:03:14 ) - (First question) - The unique history of Bessemer and how the firm stays current

(00:08:55 ) - The role of heritage and cooperative partnership in Bessemer’s model

(00:14:36 ) - How giving each partner autonomy and commissions can lead to better personal and company outcomes

(00:17:18 ) - The extent of freedom a partner has in terms of the style of investments made

(00:20:38 ) - Retro-analyzing the effectiveness of their investment roadmaps and core insights

(00:25:10 ) - What conflict typically looks like in partners’ conversations and how they resolve it

(00:27:06 ) - How they enable their junior staff using apprenticeship and open dialogue

(00:31:31 ) - Their different taste in investment targets 

(00:35:11 ) - How they each evaluate companies based on their unique interests

(00:42:32 ) - Their thoughts on valuations and how they have dealt with with run-ups in the tech market

(00:45:46 ) - What they anticipate in the future of early-stage investing

(00:49:43 ) - The significance of Centaur companies that have hit $100-million in revenue

(00:52:38 ) - The success of Bessemer’s writing and online content

(00:55:13 ) - Where the vertical market software industry is in its life cycle

(00:59:12 ) - How the next wave of innovation may revolutionize software or even depart from it

(01:02:33 ) - Advice they give to companies looking to prepare for future shifts in tech and AI

(01:04:46 ) - What excites them and what scares them within the development of LLMs

(01:08:18 ) - Defensibility of an LLM-based company, given the high level of competition 

(01:10:39 ) - How their firm deals with terminating partners if and when they aren’t a good fit

(01:14:53 ) - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for each of them

In Channel
Download from Google Play
Download from App Store








Sleep Timer


End of Episode

5 Minutes

10 Minutes

15 Minutes

30 Minutes

45 Minutes

60 Minutes

120 Minutes

Bessemer Venture Partners - Building a VC Firm that Lasts Centuries - [Invest Like the Best, EP.327]

Bessemer Venture Partners - Building a VC Firm that Lasts Centuries - [Invest Like the Best, EP.327]

Colossus | Investing & Business Podcasts