Next week kicks off the biggest healthcare investor meeting of the year in San Francisco. It’s a giant circus of activity revolving around the Westin St Francis in Union Square, with more than 10,000 people gathered from biotech, pharma, startups, public equity funds, VCs, banks, law firms, search firms, and anyone else affiliated with healthcare. It’s the biggest annual festival on the healthcare investment calendar.
So in the spirit of kicking things off in 2014 with an ill-advised attempt at humor, here’s a Top 10 list focused on the little white lies that VCs are likely to tell eachother, VCs will tell Pharma/Biotech, or vice versa.
10. “We should really do a deal together this year.” Translation: Come find me when you have a great deal you want to syndicate and have done all the heavy lifting already. Or we’ll just have this dialogue again next year, like last year.
9. “We only have one or two more bullets in our current fund.” Translation: We have no more bullets in the current fund. But we think we are good at faking it.
8. “Our latest fund is top quartile.” Translation: Our fund is on the shores of Lake Wobegon, right next door to most other VCs.
7. “We add more than just capital.” Translation: We are thinking of “rolling our sleeves up” and replacing you. Translation #2: We definitely will add more chaos to Board meetings.
6. “We’ve got a ton of Pharma interest in this deal.” Translation: Our next meeting is actually with a Pharma company. Translation #2: You should have seen me work the room at the Pharma Reception last night.
5. “We’re talking to bankers.” Translation: you have a pulse. Everyone talks to bankers these days. And bankers talk to everyone.
4. “We are really keen to find ways of working with you in 2014.” Translation (when VC to Pharma): which of our portfolio companies would you like to buy in 2014?
3. “That was a great discussion of your portfolio/company; thanks – we’ll be in touch.” Translation: We won’t likely be in touch, at least until scheduling the 2015 JPM meeting. But thanks for chatting with us.
2. “You guys don’t seem like other VCs.” Translation: You just might be an even bigger #@!$ than the other VCs we’ve met.
1. “I hate JPM.” Translation: Hate to admit it, I love this meeting – especially having a “business” reason to stay up until 2am drinking at the Red Room.
See you at #JPM14.