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Open source software eats everything.

OSS Capital invests exclusively in commercial OSS startup companies. If a given company heavily relies on and/or builds upon an OSS project(s) as the fundamental building block justifying its core product/service existence, it is definitionally a commercial OSS company.

4 Strategic 15-Year OSSC Goalsshape 3

  • 1B people writing software.

    By exclusively backing + supporting the next-generation of commercial OSS founders and companies, help drive the future of commercial OSS as a major lever and enabler to creating the next 970 million software engineers, towards 1 billion software engineers on earth by 2033: OSS will be the fundamental enabler for ultimately reaching 1B software engineers.

  • Dramatically efficient commercial OSS company creation.

    Reduce the average capital required to reach $100M in revenue for top quartile commercial OSS companies by 50%+: It should be ~$100M in total (across potentially several rounds) which is what Elastic, Inc. raised. Maybe even only $50M depending on business model and necessity of acquisitions/inorganic growth.

  • Highly differentiated, mass knowledge-transfer from previous generation of worlds most successful commercial OSS founders.

    Transfer the aggregate wisdom from the last decades (~2008-2018) 30+ largest commercial OSS company founders to the next decade’s generation of leading commercial OSS company founders. OSS Capital is backed and supported by commercial OSS founders who have collectively unlocked $14B+ in annual revenue, driven $37B+ in exits, generated $125B+ in value, created 44K+ jobs and raised $8B+ in VC.

  • "Commercial OSS license" best practices.

    Dramatically reduce $100s of millions of dollars of inefficiencies in commercial OSS companies effort in creating and negotiating fully custom license terms. Aim to bring similar industry agreement / consensus effect to commercial OSS licensing ala Apache 2.0: A "creative commons" for commercial OSS”. Major project across two key constituencies: 1) enterprise procurement / ITAM & 2) commercial OSS companies. The more standard the commercial licenses are, the easier they are to get customers to accept as is, which radically reduces legal costs, reduces legal risks and also significantly accelerates the speed of closing new business and enterprise deals overall.

shape 2Founding OSS Capital Team

  • Joseph Jacks

    Founder and General Partner

    Joseph Jacks

    Joseph Jacks is the Founder and General Partner of OSS Capital. He is based in San Francisco and leads the US investing arm as well as global investment strategies.

    Joseph is also the Co-Founder of Aljabr. Previously, Joseph was an EIR at Quantum Corporation in support of the Rook project which was subsequently donated to the CNCF (its first storage project) where he has also been involved (at the board level, in various committees and as an advisor) since inception. Joseph also founded KubeCon (now also run by the Linux Foundation's CNCF) while also building Kismatic, the first enterprise-focused commercial Kubernetes company (acquired by Apprenda). Over the preceding several years, Joseph worked at Mesosphere, Enstratius (acquired by Dell Software), TIBCO Software and Talend.

  • Heather Meeker

    Founding Portfolio Partner: Legal

    Heather Meeker

    Heather Meeker is OSS Capital's founding core portfolio partner for portfolio-wide commercial OSS licensing and legal best practices, special projects and key strategic initiatives. As an internationally-known expert in software licensing, for over 20 years Heather has been a thought leader and trusted advisor on the use of open source software in business, and has helped scores of emerging companies structure licensing and business models.

    As a lawyer in private practice, Heather has been recognized with many awards for her work in law and technology, and advised clients from startups to global enterprises on software licenses and software copyright. She is a prolific writer and speaker on software licensing, and is the author of Open Source for Business, a go-to handbook for open source licensing in commerce.

    Before her law career, Heather was a programmer of business applications and systems and a professional musician.

  • Nick White

    Founding Portfolio Partner: Finance

    Nick White

    Nick White is a veteran of open source software finance and the founding OSS Capital portfolio partner for all things finance strategy and execution. He has been a key player in building SpringSource from Series A to $420M VMware sale, steering Talend through its “teenage” years between startup and $1B~ public company and was one of the key players in taking Elastic from pre-financed idea to a company with over 1,000 employees in 35 countries.

    In those roles, Nick has been the foundation of the back-office and while retiring as Elastic’s CFO in 2017, was at various times during its growth also responsible for accounting, tax, legal, HR, IT, and Real Estate.

    Before his involvement in open source, Nick qualified as a Chartered Accountant in England & Wales, a California CPA and was the Controller at Steve Jobs' NeXT as it transitioned from hardware to software.

  • Jim Walker

    Portfolio Partner: Product Marketing

    Jim Walker

    Jim Walker is a Portfolio Partner focused on evaluation and creation of go-to-market and messaging strategies for OSSC portfolio companies.

    Jim’s career has been focused on advancing and building major markets for three of the most successful commercial open source companies: Talend, Hortonworks, CoreOS. He is currently the VP Product Marketing at Cockroach Labs.

  • Kevin Wang

    Strategic Advisor

    Kevin Wang

    Kevin Wang is a Strategic Advisor at OSS Capital where he helps founders of open source projects commercialize and scale. Kevin currently serves as the CEO of FOSSA, an open source license and vulnerability management platform adopted by the world’s largest enterprises and most popular open source projects. Kevin is a member of the 2018 Forbes “30 Under 30” list and was a 2013 Thiel Fellow.

    FOSSA was named by Network World as “Top 5 Open Source Companies to Watch” in 2017 and is backed by Bain Capital, Marc Benioff, Steve Chen, Jaan Tallinn and Justin Mateen.