Financial ServicesLos Gatos, CA
PEARonline provides a secure web-based service designed specifically for the venture capital and private equity industry’s fund raising and fund reporting.
Our clients are the managers of venture capital and private equity funds. Our clients span the globe from San Francisco to Singapore and we have potential clients in every country in the world. Everywhere that people are managing these fields, we have potential clients.
Unlike our competitors, our pricing is straightforward and reasonable. We have fixed annual price per fund per year, subject to generous fair-use limits that none of our current GPs have yet approached. Prices are fixed for the life of a fund. Once your data is on PEARonline, you will pay the same annual price for the remainder of the fund.
When I started in the business I looked at a lot of other businesses doing similar web-based document sharing and they all had very aggressive and masculine imagery on their website. I thought that we’re all too stressed too much of the time anyway so I wanted to go for a logo that was softer and calmer.
I’ve worked in private equity for over 28 years now. It’s a great industry filled with some interesting people who have done some pretty cool things. Doing something that keeps me involved in the industry is great and I love being able to work in the US and Europe. I travel back to Europe every eight weeks or so, which I really enjoy.
Recently I’ve been using Daylite more for project management, particularly on projects that involve us and our developers. We started in 2006 using Daylite as a contact management system to track who our potential customers were. Whether they were using a competing product or not, and tracking communication between them.
One of the great things about starting a company is that we were able to switch to being all Mac based. When I worked for fund managers helping raise capital they were all PC based. I tried all PC based contact management systems and I found that they were either too simple or too complex. Daylite was recommended very early after switching to a Mac and it’s a wonderful combination of something usable and simple.
In the beginning I was a single user for contact management. Over time as the business grew we’ve become multi-users. I started using Daylite for project management. For example, we do a lot of software development where we work with an external developer. Over the last year we’ve used Daylite to contact this developer and oversee the projects so we know who within the company has to do something. We can see if the ball is in our court or the developers.
I speak at a lot of conferences around the world. I put together panels so I will need to organize a panel of four or five people who may be from the US, Europe, or Africa. I use Daylite to track everyone to make sure everyone has the right notes, all the documentation is done, and make sure all the bits are in place. When we get requests from our user, if someone needs something that can’t be answered in e-mail we can use Daylite to track support requests. Another thing I like about Daylite is the ability to link anything to anyone. With other systems, if a person worked for a company that was the limit of the relationship. With Daylite you can know who someone is working for and track who they have worked for in the past. You can even track if they’re a member of an association, if you met them at a conference, or if I know someone that they know. I can record all of that in Daylite. With Daylite you have the ability to capture all of your interaction as well as other people’s interaction. If you meet someone at a cocktail party and you discover they know another person very well you can capture that information very quickly and effectively. And the ability to surf through your database is fabulous!
Now that Daylite 4 licenses include Daylite for the iPhone and iPad it’s great! When I’m at a conference listening to a speaker I can make notes on what they’ve said or if they have a particular pension fund that they’re invested in, I can capture that right away which is very helpful. If I’m at a conference and there’s someone there that I want to meet, if they’re in Daylite I will include a photograph which makes it much more easy to find them.
I keep discovering new things that Daylite can do. As we expand the business I think, “it would be useful to do…” and then discover that it can. Over the last year we’ve used Daylite more as a multi-user system and we’ve brought in a consultant, Eric O’connell from Mozaic has helped us to see what it can do. Eric has been fabulous because he knows the system inside and out. The support from Marketcircle’s website is great, but you need to know what you’re looking for to find it. Working with Eric is great bcause we can talk to him about our process and what we want to achieve, and he shows us how to use Daylite to do so.
We are in the process of looking to hire someone in London. I started the business in London and moved to California in 2008 and have been travelling to Europe ever since so we’re looking to take on someone in London. Obviously Daylite will help with this and being able to use Daylite same as we are in real time is brilliant. As soon as you have someone working in a remote office miles away and eight hours difference, it’s harder to make sure everyone knows what everyone is doing. Daylite will give us a lot of help with that. For example, when our support team is working with a client in Europe the whole company here has access so we can take over when they finish in their time. This will give us 16 hours of support. The plan two to three years down the road is to hire someone in Asia which will give us 24 hours.