Lee Hower

I’m an investor, entrepreneur, and helper of technology startups. I’m currently a General Partner of NextView Ventures, which focuses on seed stage internet-enabled businesses. I co-founded NextView in 2010 with my partners Rob Go and David Beisel. I started in the VC business as a Principal at Point Judith Capital, an early-stage firm. I joined PJC in 2005 and served as a Principal at the firm through early 2010. During this time I co-led investments in FanIQ, Sittercity, and Multiply and sourced investments in Music Nation and NABsys. Prior to becoming a VC, I was a startup guy myself. I was part of the founding team of LinkedIn, and served as Director of Corporate Development from the company’s inception through our early growth phases. Before that I was an early employee at PayPal, and worked in product management and corporate development roles through the company’s IPO in 2002 and subsequent sale to eBay later that year. I went to college at UPenn and received degrees from both the School of Engineering and Wharton School of Business.

  • Blog

    Putting Twitter’s IPO in Perspective

    As many of you know, in the past I’ve done a series of posts deconstructing the S-1s of VC-backed internet startups going public. A few years ago this was sort of a novelty… not that many startups were going public and not that many bloggers or mainstream journalists took the time or had familiarity with […]


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    The Imperceptible, But Very Real Boom

    I believe we’re going to look back in 2-5 years and realize that we’ve been in a once a decade boom for internet & software startups. It doesn’t feel much like a boom actually.  The macroeconomy has been stuck in a tepid recovery in the US, a period of decelerating growth in emerging markets, and […]


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    Microsoft, Near Death, & Enterprise Cloud

    We all woke up to the news that Microsoft is buying Nokia for ~$7B (ok, not the carrier infrastructure biz but the main part of Nokia that anybody cares about).  This isn’t totally out of left field since they’ve had a close partnership for a year, but I tweeted my reaction:  “Microsoft buying Nokia core […]


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    There Is No Subprime Model for VC

    I was having breakfast this morning from someone I know from the LP world.  We were talking about what’s “working” in the broader VC ecosystem and this person expressed their enthusiasm that today there are a range of different models that are producing attractive returns for LPs. Historically there was just one model… VCs had […]


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    The Future of Internet & Cars

    I’ve been doing some thinking about the future of cars and the impact of the internet.  A large part of this is just some idle thoughts, a small part is driven by my love of cars, and a small part is thinking about what potential opportunities for innovation & investment might stem from this.  I […]


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    First Mover Fallacy

    When we meet with entrepreneurs and ask about their competitive advantage or special sauce, one of the common responses is first mover advantage.  “We’re the first company to do X in an rapidly growing market” or similar. I’ve always felt being the first mover is a comparatively weak advantage and have been thinking about this […]


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    Great Companies and the Teams IN FRONT of Them

    It occurred to me that we usually refer to entrepreneurs associated with a startup as being “behind” the company or phenomenon.  As in Mark Zuckerberg, the Harvard drop-out behind Facebook or so-and-so, the folks behind startup X.  Upon further reflection it seems like this phraseology has things backwards… we ought to be talking about the […]


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    Should Apple Buy Hungary?

    Yesterday was Apple’s shareholder meeting and as many of you know, there’s obviously been healthy debate about what they should do with the ~$137 billion in cash they’re sitting on.  I had read somewhere that Apple’s cash pile was equivalent to Hungary’s GDP so I tweeted out the suggestion that perhaps an activist shareholder should […]


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    Small Tablets Are Further Atomizing Ubiquitous Computing

    I’ve been enjoying my iPad Mini for a couple months month now.  I thought seriously about getting a Nexus 7 (in fact gave one to my sister as a gift recently), but because I’m frequently on the go with intermittent WiFi I got the Mini which is still one of the few LTE-enabled 7 inch […]


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    The Unbundled Mobile Software Stack

    I’ve been using Google’s Chrome browser on my iPad Mini for about a month now.  There are several things I prefer over Apple’s Safari, including the bookmark and search history sync with my other Chrome usage (on laptop) and some small UI touches.  But for now there’s no way to make an OS-level switch to […]