Peter Wendell is the founder and a Managing Director of Sierra Ventures. In 1982 having spent ten years in sales and marketing at East Coast-based IBM, Peter followed his entrepreneurial instincts and headed to the West Coast and the budding Silicon Valley. He decided it would be "much more fun to start a venture capital firm than join an existing one." He founded Sierra Ventures, which has grown from a single California-based partner and a fledging fund of $16 million to over a dozen investing professionals, nine funds, and $1.5 billion in committed capital.
Peter co-teaches Stanford University's Graduate School of Business, "Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital" with Google CEO, Eric Schmidt. Peter has held this faculty appointment at Stanford since 1991 and has now taught "Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital" to more than 1,300 Stanford MBAs because "it's a great way to stay connected to and help nurture the next wave of innovative companies."
He has also been instrumental in applying his 30 years of U.S. VC experience to Sierra Ventures' entry into the new frontiers of India and China.
Education & Background
Peter holds a BA from Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard. In addition to his venture capital activities at Sierra Ventures, Peter serves on the board of directors of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK), as one of the three officers of Princeton University's 40-member board of trustees, and recently completed an extended term as a member of the board of the Princeton University Investment Company (PRINCO), including six years as chairman during which time PRINCO's professional managers grew the University's endowment from $8 billion to over $16 billion. In recognition of his work at Stanford and Princeton, Peter was awarded the National Venture Capital Association's American Spirit Award in front of 500 fellow venture capitalists "for applying his business skills in a manner that has created outstanding contributions to our broader society."