The First Venture Capitalist: Georges Doriot on Leadership, Capital, and Business Organization

This remarkable book chronicles the ideas of a great teacher, George Doriot, whose decades long career at the Harvard Business School inspired a generation of venture capitalists and Wall Street titans of a bygone era.

George Doriot was a remarkable individual who achieved success as a teacher, a businessman, and a general in the US Army. Some of his students at the Harvard Business School kept their notes from his course in their desk drawer throughout their business careers. Even if they did not go that far, they never forgot the man or his teachings; nor did the employees of the many companies which he launched as the president of American Research & Development Corporation.

This is the first book about George Doriot, and it is a perfect first book: it is in the form of a source book, drawing from the many facets of Doriot’s career as seen by many different people, and sometimes in Doriot’s own words. All the texts are interesting and highly readable.

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10,000+

high-growth startups—across all 50 states and DC—raised venture funding in 2019 to build and grow their businesses.

42%

of all U.S. IPOs from 1974 to 2015 were venture-backed companies, representing 63% of the market capitalization and 85% of R&D.

2.9 million

is the average net jobs created annually between 1980 and 2010 by high-growth startups, which account for ~50% of gross jobs created in the U.S.

1,300+

U.S. venture firms are active today, managing an aggregate of $444 billion in assets.