Vinod grew up dreaming of being an entrepreneur, despite growing up in an Indian Army household with no business or technology connections. Since age 16, when he first heard about Intel starting up, he dreamt of starting his own technology company.

Upon graduating with a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, he failed, at age 20, to start a soy milk company to service the many people in India who did not have refrigerators. He came to the US and got his Masters in Biomedical Engineering at Carnegie-Mellon University. His startup dreams attracted him to Silicon Valley where he got an MBA at Stanford University in 1980.

Upon graduation he was one of the three founders of Daisy Systems, which was the first significant computer aided design system for electrical engineers. The company went on to significant revenue, profits and an IPO, but Khosla, driven by the frustration of having to design the computer hardware on which the Daisy software needed to be built, started the standards based Sun Microsystems in 1982 to build workstations for software developers. At Sun he pioneered “open systems” and RISC processors. Sun was funded by long time friend and board member John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.

In 1986 he switched sides and joined Kleiner Perkins where he was and continues to be a general partner of KPCB funds through KP X. There, through the years, with other partners, he took on Intel’s monopoly with Nexgen/AMD (the only microprocessor to have significant success against Intel, sold to AMD for 28% of AMD), incubated the idea and business plan for Juniper to take on Cisco’s dominance of the router market, to formulate the very early advertising based search strategy for Excite, and to transform the moribund telecommunications business and its archaic SONET implementations with Cerent (sold to Cisco for $7B), and many other ventures. He helped in creating value, having fun, succeeding, failing (remember Dynabook?) and driving impact in partnership with entrepreneur, and the partners at KPCB.

In 2004, Khosla, driven by the need for flexibility to accommodate four teenage children and a desire to be more experimental, to fund sometimes imprudent “science experiments”, and to take on both “for profit” and for “social impact” ventures, formed khoslaventures, funded entirely with family funds. His goals remain the same – work and learn from fun and knowledgeable entrepreneurs, build impactful companies through the leverage of innovation, and spend time as a partnership making a difference. He has a passion for nascent technologies that can have a beneficial effect and economic impact on society.

Vinod’s greatest passion is being a mentor to entrepreneurs, assiting entrepreneurs and helping them build technology based businesses. Vinod assists or serves on the boards of a number of the companies including EASIC (programmable ASIC platform), Infinera (optical communications), Kovio (printed electronics), Skyblue (internet PC), Spatial Photonics (Micromirror displays), Xsigo (datacenter switch), among others.

Khosla is a charter member of TiE, a not-for-profit global network of entrepreneurs and professionals founded in 1992 that now has more than forty chapters in nine countries. He is also a Founding Board member of the Indian School of Business. His current passion is Social Entrepreneurship with a special emphasis on Microfinance as a poverty alleviation tool. He is a supporter of many microfinance organizations in India and Africa. He has been experimenting with global housing. Vinod is also passionate about alternative energy, petroleum independence, and the environment. He is currently Co-chairing a ballot initiative in California to reduce the dependence on petroleum and to help foster clean energy technologies.

33 Responses to “About Vinod”


  1. […] Vinod Khosla has started Blogging recently. If you haven’t seen this already, check out his blog and his views on oil. Its a good perspective on how the oil companies are lobbying to continue to stay in power and how the whole world is centered around oil, and on what the future of oil could look like. […]

  2. varun Says:

    Hey Vinod!
    Great to read about you! We do not live in CA, but in the Chicago area. So the Nov 7 prop would not be effected by us.
    You are an inspiration! Wow!

  3. Bobby Likis Says:

    Vinod, we talked at the “Renewable Energy” conference in St. Louis.
    Your presentation on stage and discussion during our brief interview time together has made a significant impact on my belief in alternative fuels futures. Thank you.

    To that end, I am convinced that reduction of foreign oil is possible – in my lifetime.

    During the mid-seventies, I witnessed the oil companies ruin “Gasohol” in the minds of American car owners and am not willing to stand by for another round of the same.

    However, sites (see attached below) like this may be especially damaging to alternative fuels futures – your message – and the world.

    Although mine is a small broadcast company, I enjoy a terrific connection to American consumers and have started a series designed to educate consumers. After today’s program, I received a message from a Professor who told me that while it was OK for me to “push” alternative fuels, I might also consider promoting increased oil production in the US – he just doesn’t get it?

    What would you tell car owners that would really impact their mindset, help drive them to Biofuels and shift energy paradigm?

    Best regards,
    Bobby Likis

    This site http://nooiltax.com is certainly damaging to your CA proposal.

  4. haydn Says:

    Helo Vinod

    Maybe you’d think about writing for us over at wripe.net. it’d be good to have your views there.

    Best wishes
    haydn

  5. Kendall Faught Says:

    Mr. Khosla, I just recently read about Khosla Ventures. I’m glad to hear of you pushing and promoting alternative energy solutions. Although I don’t know how competitive bio-fuels, wind and photovoltaic technologies are presently, I find it hard to believe that they can’t be done and made competitive. I believe it can and will be done and I believe that these technologies would help spur economic growth in the nations that become leaders in these fields. I hope to see leaders elected in this nation that have the vision and the passion to demand that we start generating electricity using these alternatives. If the government would help by not only funding research, but by also helping the end user cover purchase and installation cost, in a few years I believe the cost of these systems could be affordable to the multitudes. Just think of the benefit to this world if just 25% of all electricity produced in this world were produced cleanly with these technolgies. Good Luck, Maybe someday I will be able to become an investor or heck maybe a career change into one of these fields.

  6. Dhawal Says:

    Dear Vinod,

    I wish to see your venture in bio-fuel a great success, which can set an example for other countries, to start participating actively, if not for social or political cause then for monetary cause. Ultimately, it will serve all these purpose.

    Best Regards,
    Dhawal
    Infosys Australia.


  7. April 23, 2007

    TO: Mr. Vinod Khosla

    FROM: Mohammed Islam, Excutive Director, SABAN 2007

    RE: Requesting to be Distigushed Guest

    This is Mohammed Islam, MBA, from SABAN 2007 (SOUTH ASIAN BIZ AWARD NIGHT) event. The SABAN 2007 is an event to explore the South Asian American Market and to recognize successful business owners and entrepreneurs. The event will be on Thursday, June 28, 2007, 6:30 pm., at the GRAND WILSHIRE Hotel, Los Angeles, CA.

    With the permission from our Event Committee, we would very much like to someone like you to be our Distinguished Guest Speaker of the event. As you may aware, our community takes a pride of you especially the business community and the mainstream business world.

    I, Hope you will accept this offer. FYI please sees the attached doc’s. I like to discuss further with this matter. Please feel free to email or call me at 714/558-0684×229. Hope to hear from you soon.

    Mohammed Islam, MBA 714/558-0684×229

    Secretary & CEO http://www.SouthAsianBizNetwork.org

    Director & Co-Chair http://www.OCPresidentsCouncil.org

  8. Erica Says:

    Dear Vinod,

    You are honestly an inspiration! I am an undergraduate research student researching alternative fuels. I used to only read how bad ethanol was, but, wow, after reading many other articles and reading your interviews…you are my hero.

    Erica Sladky

  9. Ken Rynne Says:

    Dear Vinod,
    I served Sen Howard Metzenbaum and worked with Sen. Gore and others to implement smart energy policy and stop bad policy with mixed results (we traded CAFE for ANWR – demand reduction for supply reduction). In private law practice I have worked on hydro, solar, natural gas, and electricity issues. I have visited and studied energy in Europe, India, Japan, and China.

    I am writing to say. I admire your work.
    Please come to Washington. Your country needs you and I would love to work with you on smart sustainable energy policies.

    Regards,

    Ken Rynne
    202 360 5056

  10. Genihughmum Says:

    Neat web site. Will come back soon!!

  11. Zahir Mulla Says:

    Dear Vinod,

    Good to know that VCs are also looking at Clean tech as an area of business and not just charity or part of social responsibility.

    Regards,
    Zahir

  12. Bonnie  Says:

    Vinod Khosla is among the forerunners of this technological generation. He also stands for what is counted as the gen-next leader – he has a vision beyond belief!! It feels great to stumble on to your blog sir.

  13. Dhruv Gupta Says:

    Hello Sir,

    I don’t know whether you’re the real Vinod Khosla, but I would just like to inform you that you are a source of inspiration to millions of wannabe entrepreneurs back here in India.
    And one of them is me, a 15 year old boy.
    Though I can’t properly understand what you say in your posts, but I guess one day I will. I dream to start a company like you did. I dream to get into IIT and then MIT. And you are the fuel to my hard work.
    Thank You Sir. Thanks a tonne!
    Maybe someday I will brush my shoulders against yours in silicon valley, but at present I’m too young to do that. But one day I will sir. I defnitely will!

    Dying to catch a glimpse of you,
    Dhruv Gupta

  14. car Says:

    c’est interessant , merci pour l’info !

  15. Philip G. Thomas Says:

    Dear Mr Khosla, I read with interest the recent NY Times article about how you have made microfinance and credit to poor people in India a successful commercial venture. I don’t know if anyone has done this except you. Congratulations.
    My question is : Have you thought about health insurance for the individuals who are the reciepients of the loans?
    It may be possible to get excellent insurance coverage for reasonable rates in India. For instance, in the 1990s the Manipal group of educational institutions were getting all their enrolled students insured for a annual price of Rs 200. Not only did this protect their “investment” in the individual they were enrolling, but it provided their hospital with a guaranteed payment in case a student went in sick or injured for treatment.
    As one of the enduring causes of poverty is illness and the expenses that accompany it, health insurance would not only protect the micro-credit lender agaisnt a loan recipient defaulting on the loan because of illness or injury, it would protect the recipient of the loan from a family medical emergency that would wipe out all profits and the ability to repay the loan.
    Looking forward to hearing your opinion,
    Sincerely,
    Philip G. Thomas MD FACS
    Transplant Surgeon, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX


  16. Mr. Khosla–I am pleased to invite you, or your designate, to attend our 33rd annual meeting of the International Cement Microscopy Association’s meeting in San Francisco, April 17-20, at the Omni San Francisco, and give a 30-40 minute presentation about Calera Cement from the point of view of CO2 sequestration. Please reply as I do not really know how to contact you with additional details.

    Donald H. Campbell


  17. i haven’t been on the silicon valley but i would really love to visit that place. i bet that it is a very exciting place to visit -.,

  18. nike free Says:

    Hey Vinod!I don’t know whether you’re the real Vinod Khosla, but I would just like to inform you that you are a source of inspiration to millions of wannabe entrepreneurs back here in India.


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  29. vikas Says:

    Dear sir
    I m vikas from. INDIA.Ihave a NGO.our NGO help a poor people drugs addict. . Our NGO.also help.for postetut girl so plz sir help our NGO vikas 8130259928

  30. shajil kumar Says:

    Dear Sir,

    I am Shajil Kumar from India. I have a project on renewable energy to be set up in south India seeking an investment of $1M. The project has very high potential and high returns. If you are interested, I can send you my executive summary. my contact pesbiofuels@gmail.com

    Regards
    Shajil kumar

  31. dinesh kumar rohin Says:

    I am in big trouble pl. Help me with money i need urgent pl contact me soon i will tell you all about me help me by any way.thanks i need five lakh rs. I am not telling lie i really want money because i am in big problem. Contact me soon i will wait your reply

  32. Satya Ponnala Says:

    Hello Sir,

    I am great fan of you.

    I sent you a message in Linked-in , could you please reply.

    Or kindly send an email to me, and I can reply to you more details.

    Thanks
    Satya.


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