LA Venture: Crosscut's Rick Smith on How He Came to Venture Capital

Minnie Ingersoll
Minnie Ingersoll is a partner at TenOneTen and host of the LA Venture podcast. Prior to TenOneTen, Minnie was the COO and co-founder of $100M+ Shift.com, an online marketplace for used cars. Minnie started her career as an early product manager at Google. Minnie studied Computer Science at Stanford and has an MBA from HBS. She recently moved back to L.A. after 20+ years in the Bay Area and is excited to be a part of the growing tech ecosystem of Southern California. In her space time, Minnie surfs baby waves and raises baby people.
Rick Smith and Minnie Ingersoll

Rick Smith is a pillar in the L.A. tech community. He is the co-founder of Crosscut Ventures and a founding member of the PledgeLA program in Los Angeles.

Most recently, he joined the LA Venture podcast to share some of his early experiences as a venture capitalist and what's next for him and Crosscut.


Smith grew up in Decatur, Illinois, and went on to attend Harvard Law School where he earned his law degree. As an attorney, Smith ended up working with another major figure in Los Angeles: Eli Broad, the philanthropist whose name is well cemented in L.A. history. Smith was responsible for bringing Broad's company SunAmerica into venture investing.

"I was not on the investing side. And I wrote this memo and so if we do one, we should do 10. It's gonna be risky, all this stuff. And I was basically just reading Wired Magazine. I mean, I did not know anything about tech. I didn't know anything about venture capital." Smith said.

Later, Smith joined Palomar Ventures where he met Brian Garrett, who then became the co-founder of Crosscut Ventures. The two raised a $5 million fund for their venture just before the 2008 stock market crash.

In the rest of this episode, Smith talks further about investing out of Crosscut Fund V, building out the fund's scout program where scouts each get $200,000 to invest, and his own personal growth.

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How Women’s Purchasing Power Is Creating a New Wave of Economic Opportunities In Sports

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

How Women’s Purchasing Power Is Creating a New Wave of Economic Opportunities In Sports
Samson Amore

According to a Forbes report last April, both the viewership and dollars behind women’s sports at a collegiate and professional level are growing.

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https://twitter.com/samsonamore
samsonamore@dot.la
LA Tech Week Day 5: Social Highlights
Evan Xie

L.A. Tech Week has brought venture capitalists, founders and entrepreneurs from around the world to the California coast. With so many tech nerds in one place, it's easy to laugh, joke and reminisce about the future of tech in SoCal.

Here's what people are saying about the fifth day of L.A. Tech Week on social:

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LA Tech Week: Six LA-Based Greentech Startups to Know

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

LA Tech Week: Six LA-Based Greentech Startups to Know
Samson Amore

At Lowercarbon Capital’s LA Tech Week event Thursday, the synergy between the region’s aerospace industry and greentech startups was clear.

The event sponsored by Lowercarbon, Climate Draft (and the defunct Silicon Valley Bank’s Climate Technology & Sustainability team) brought together a handful of local startups in Hawthorne not far from LAX, and many of the companies shared DNA with arguably the region’s most famous tech resident: SpaceX.

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https://twitter.com/samsonamore
samsonamore@dot.la
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