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Sequoia's $ 21 Million Conflict of Interest Unpacked – TechCrunch


TechCrunch broke yesterday the news that Sequoia, one of the best-known venture capital firms on the market today, had "broken with (Finix) an alleged conflict of interest and, what was more shocking , had returned its seat on the board of directors, its rights to information, its actions and its total investment. "

Sequoia led the $ 35 million round in the payment infrastructure industry, as I covered for TechCrunch just over a month ago, and that's it. is the source of the conflict.

Sequoia is also an investor in Bandaged, a worthwhile business $ 35 billion. The company was running his series A in 2012, according to Crunchbase; therefore, Sequoia is not only a long-time partner of Stripe, but also a major shareholder.

You can see why, if Finix and Stripe are competing, Sequoia made a mistake. Before the Vision Fund era, it was considered not only stupid to finance competing companies (why pay for your own competition?), But, to some extent, unethical. Investors and founders love to talk about their long-term partnerships. The reverse of such a relationship is paying someone else to beat your other holding company.

And it turns out that we can learn more about the dynamics of this relationship through our interview with Finix CEO Richie Serna. In the midst of our discussion of Finix's business model, how the company sees itself and who its products are best for, Serna also talked about Stripe (he had nice things to say) and how whose approach to payments is distinct from that of Stripe.

With this interview in hand, let's find out if there is enough space between the two startups to absolve Sequoia of his faux pas.

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