Venture capitalists, tech executives and journalists gathered last week in Aspen, Colo. for a dinner hosted by Battery Ventures alongside the annual Fortune Brainstorm Tech conference.
The 30-person dinner—held at the Hotel Jerome—came on the second night of the conference, which featured a wide-ranging agenda covering everything from the fate of startup “unicorns” to “smart gun” technology to a new content venture involving professional athletes like the Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green. Both Green and teammate Andre Iguodala attended the conference, to the delight of the heavily Bay Area-based crowd.
Battery General Partner Roger Lee also participated in a panel discussion called “What Comes After Unicorns?” Lee predicted that a “day of reckoning” is coming for many unicorns (startups valued at $1 billion or more), some of which are “too expensive to be bought but not mature enough to go public.” He also posited that many of today’s new tech incumbents—Web superstars like Amazon, Facebook and Google—are so powerful that some investors are shifting their focus into new markets to back companies that don’t directly compete with those giants.
The panelists also discussed the resurgence of heavily science-based startups; the IPO market; and the need for more women to be hired or promoted into the partnership ranks of VC firms.
Battery portfolio companies attending the Brainstorm dinner included representatives from Coupa*, Earnest*, HotelTonight* and Platfora*. Journalists represented organizations including Fortune, Reuters, TechCrunch, BusinessInsider and the Boston Globe.
*Denotes a current or former Battery portfolio company. For a full list of all Battery investments and exits, please click here.