Stephen T. Jurvetson
March 1, 1967
|Alma mater||Stanford University|
|Occupation(s)||Founder and Managing Director, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Co-founder Future Ventures|
Stephen T. Jurvetson (born March 1, 1967) is an American businessman and venture capitalist. Formerly a partner of the firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ), he was an early investor in Hotmail, Memphis Meats, Mythic and Nervana Systems. He is currently a board member of SpaceX and served on Tesla's board from 2006–2020, among others. He later co-founded the firm Future Ventures with Maryanna Saenko, who worked with him at DFJ.
Early life and education
Jurvetson's father Tõnu Jürvetson fled Estonia through Germany just before Soviet re-occupation in 1944. Tõnu was married to another Estonian immigrant, Tiiu Tia Jürvetson. Even though within the family, the Estonian language was used, Steve never learned it and his parents used it as a secret language between themselves. Steve Jurvetson was the first US-born Estonian to become an e-resident of Estonia.
Jurvetson grew up in Dallas, where he graduated from St. Mark's School of Texas in 1985. At Stanford University, Jurvetson finished his degree in electrical engineering in 2.5 years and graduated No. 1 in his class. He then earned an M.S. in electrical engineering and an M.B.A., also from Stanford. His first job out of Stanford was working as an R&D engineer at Hewlett-Packard (HP). After two years at HP, he moved on as a product marketer at Apple and then NeXT Software.
As a consultant with Bain & Company, Jurvetson developed marketing, sales, engineering and business strategies for a wide range of companies in the software, networking, and semiconductor industries. He first joined DFJ after his second year of business school, and became a partner after proving his talent on several investments.
At DFJ, Jurvetson was involved in lucrative investments with Hotmail, Interwoven, Kana, Tradex, and Cyras. Cyras in particular was acquired for 8 billion USD. Less favorably, DFJ and Jurvetson were an early financial backer of Elizabeth Holmes and her disgraced blood-testing firm Theranos.
Jurvetson was named to Forbes' "Midas List" of Tech's Top Investors in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2016. He was a board member of Synthetic Genomics, Planet Labs, Nervana Systems (acquired by Intel), Flux, D-Wave, SpaceX, and Tesla.
Also in 2016, President Barack Obama appointed Jurvetson as a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship.
On November 13, 2017, Jurvetson stepped down from his role at DFJ Venture Capital in addition to taking leave from the boards of SpaceX and Tesla following an internal DFJ investigation into allegations of sexual harassment. While there were allegations of inappropriate behavior, DFJ did not receive an official complaint of harassment or misconduct. While the findings of the investigation were not made public, anonymous sources alleged that the investigation "uncovered behaviors by Jurvetson that were unacceptable related to a negative tone toward women entrepreneurs." Jurvetson stated that stepping down from his role was unrelated to the allegations, writing "I am leaving DFJ to focus on personal matters" in a statement posted to Twitter. Recode reported that Jurvetson was placed on a leave of absence and then later voted out of the company. A source familiar with the situation told Recode that the dismissal was triggered by DFJ learning that Jurvetson lied about what it considered "serious allegations."
Jurvetson cofounded a new venture fund, Future Ventures, in April 2018. The inaugural $200M venture capital fund focuses on environmentally sustainable transportation, food technology and high power computer systems.
Jurvetson was a member of the Tesla board of directors from 2006 to December 2020.
Venture capital investments
- Boxbe (2005)
- Winkler, Rolfe. "Investor Steve Jurvetson Works to Move On With New Fund". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 20 February 2019.
- "Future Ventures Launches $200 Million Venture Capital Fund to Back the Entrepreneurs Who Forge the Future". Business Wire. 15 February 2019. Retrieved 28 April 2019.
- Kokalitcheva, Kia (19 April 2019). "Steve Jurvetson among Tesla board members to step down". Axios. Retrieved 28 April 2019.
- Bort, Julie (2012-09-14). "Here's Why Investor Steve Jurvetson Saved Elon Musk's Space Dreams". Business Insider.
- Fehrenbacher, Katie. "Tesla investor Steve Jurvetson drives off in the first Model S". Gigaom.
- "Jürvetson-seenior pöördus Eestisse pärast 60 aastat - Arhiiv - Postimees: Värsked uudised Eestist ja välismaalt". 22 July 2004.
- "Steve Jurvetson, business partner become first non-Europeans to receive Estonian e-residency card". 11 December 2014.
- Salkevera, Alex. "A pitch meeting with Steve Jurvetson reveals how legendary VC operates". AOL. Retrieved 28 April 2019.
- Bill_Robinson (2012-08-29). "TechScape: Steve Jurvetson ... Not Your Garden Variety Venture Capitalist". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2017-04-20.
- "Seat Of Power: Tesla And SpaceX Investor Steve Jurvetson". Forbes. 23 March 2016.
- "1999 TR35 Winners: Steve Jurvetson, 32". MIT Tech Review. 1999.
- Robinson, Bill (29 August 2012). "TechScape: Steve Jurvetson … Not Your Garden Variety Venture Capitalist". Huffington Post.
- Snider, David; Chris Howard (2010). Money Makers: Inside the New World of Finance and Business. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. p. 214. ISBN 978-0230614017.
- Takahashi, Dean (December 18, 2008). "Steve Jurvetson on focusing on cleantech during the economic storm". VentureBeat. Retrieved September 12, 2020.
- Chen, Caroline (19 October 2015). "Early Theranos Investor Stands by Blood Testing Startup". Bloomberg.com.
- "#69 Steve Jurvetson". Forbes.
- "The Midas List: Tech's Top Investors 2013". Forbes. 5 May 2013.
- "Stephen Jurvetson on Forbes Lists #59 The Midas List (2014)". Forbes. 29 March 2015.
- "Stephen Jurvetson on Forbes Lists #97 The Midas List (2016)". Forbes. 11 March 2016.
- "Intel acquires deep learning startup Nervana for more than $350 million". August 9, 2016.
- DraperTV (28 January 2015). "SpaceX and Why they are Daring to Think Big - Investor Steve Jurvetson". Archived from the original on 2021-12-12 – via YouTube.
- Lindsey, Clark (2012-09-11). "Steve Jurvetson visits the SpaceX Grasshopper". NewSpace Watch. Retrieved 2012-09-11.
- "Remarks by the President at Global Entrepreneurship Summit and Conversation with Mark Zuckerberg and Entrepreneurs". The White House Office of the Press Secretary. 25 June 2016. Retrieved 20 February 2019.
- Schleifer, Theodore. "Storied venture firm DFJ is investigating founder Steve Jurvetson for sexual harassment". Recode. Retrieved 20 February 2019.
- Dwoskin, Elizabeth; Paquette, Danielle. "Silicon Valley firm severs ties with co-founder Steve Jurvetson over allegations of sexual misconduct". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2021-04-09.
- Miller, Claire Cain; Benner, Katie; Kantor, Jodi (2017-11-13). "Steve Jurvetson Quits Venture Capital Firm Amid Investigation". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-04-09.
- Schleifer, Theodore (2017-11-13). "Steve Jurvetson is out at his own venture capital firm after allegations of sexual harassment". CNBC. Retrieved 2019-05-13.
- "Tesla, SpaceX Director Steve Jurvetson Leaves VC Firm Amid Sex Harassment Allegations". Fortune. Retrieved 2019-01-25.
- Schleifer, Theodore (2017-11-18). "Steve Jurvetson was pushed out of his firm as the lines between personal and professional crossed". Vox. Retrieved 2021-04-08.
- Schubarth, Cromwell. "The Funded: Steve Jurvetson raises $200M for new venture fund". Silicon Valley Business Journal. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
- "Confirmed: Six months after leaving DFJ, Steve Jurvetson is starting new venture firm". 6 April 2018.
- Tesla Investor Relations; not listed on Board Members as of February 2021.