The top 25: Cameron Teitelman, chairman of the board and head of admissions, Stanford-StartX Fund
As chairman of the board and head of admissions of the Stanford-StartX Fund since March last year, Cameron Teitelman might feel pleased at the past decade’s success, but he remains grounded in the requirement to do the work others would shirk if they could and retains the title of “chair-stacker” in a nod to the many hats he has worn as founder of StartX, the first startup accelerator affiliated with Stanford University.
He said in his LinkedIn profile: “As a founder you do everything – strategy, day-to-day operations, recruiting, enterprise sales, product development, fundraising, management, leadership team development, community development, founder selection, and so on.”
StartX provides student and alumni entrepreneurs with support to increase their chances of succeeding. And it seems to have worked. To date, StartX companies have raised more than $3.5bn, with an average funding of $6.6m per company.
StartX accepts about 120 teams a year – usually with three people per team – for programs such as Students in Residence, Professors in Residence, Pre-seed, Series A, Post Series B, First time Founders, Serial Founders and StartX Med across a wide spectrum of industries, including consumer internet, enterprise software biotechnology, cleantech, medical devices, physical products and retail.
Launched in 2013, the Stanford-StartX Fund has made about 400 investments with $150m deployed by the start of this year in a model where it funds only those companies where the entrepreneurs are looking to fill the final 10% of a round. Given StartX has helped create more than 500 companies from the 1,200 entrepreneurs that have entered its programs, it seems most of them have appreciated having the fund’s support.
While much of the budget for StartX comes from Stanford and its affiliated medical centre, this might change as part of its expansion under Teitelman’s replacement as CEO, Joseph Huang, according to university insiders. Stanford University and Stanford Hospital are also the limited partners in the Stanford-StartX Fund.
Thanks to Stanford University’s historic decision to provide “unlimited” support from its balance sheet for a university venturing fund, Stanford-StartX won the Global University Venturing 2013 Fundraising of the Year award.
Huang was previously a staff member of StartX. He graduated with a degree in computer science from Stanford University in 2011 and sold his first startup to technology company Apple.
Huang plans to launch several new initiatives to strengthen StartX’s ties with the community, while Teitelman has also set up Founder.Center, which helps people apply to positions at all StartX companies through a single form.
Jonathan Golden, now a partner at venture capital firm NEA and who worked with Teitelman in 2013, said: “I have seen Cameron spearhead StartX from the start. He has built the organisation into the most compelling startup environment for Stanford students. Cameron has recruited top talent, forged deep business relationships and managed a team of over 30 while helping others achieve their dreams.”