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  • Road to Growth Podcast

Mike Smerklo - Co-Founder and Managing Director of Next Coast Ventures


Alex Montoya - Motivational Speaker on the Road to Growth Podcast








Show Notes


Mike was recruited by legendary entrepreneurs Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz as one of the first employees of their new startup, Loudcloud. Here, he learned from the very best about what it takes to grow a company from an idea through an initial public offering. Mike began his own entrepreneurship journey in 2003, purchasing ServiceSource, a 30-person technology services startup in San Francisco. As CEO over the next 12 years, he grew the business into a successful 3,000-person publicly traded company with close to $300M in revenue.

In Mr. Monkey and Me, Mike draws on his broad range of experiences and mistakes as an entrepreneur and venture capitalist. Using lessons he learned from renowned entrepreneurs, he developed the SHAPE formula -- Self, Help, Authenticity, Persistence and Expectations -- which gives readers an actionable approach to mental toughness that will help any entrepreneur start, grow and run a successful business. An anti-memoir, Mr. Monkey and Me features practical tools and the “other stuff” you don’t normally learn in classrooms or business books, such as the mental hurdles you have to overcome, the risks you have to take and the sacrifices and mistakes you’ll make to become a successful entrepreneur.


He has developed a new perspective on entrepreneurship at the helm of the Austin-based firm Next Coast Ventures, which has backed more than 40 companies across two funds to help startup founders achieve their goals. Mike and his wife spend the bulk of their free time chasing their four children.


Learn more and connect with Mike Smerklo by visiting him



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