Silicon Valley venture capitalist Sudip Chakrabarti joins Madrona, will invest in Seattle cloud startups

Sudip Chakrabarti is bullish about Seattle’s future as a startup city — particularly given his experience in Silicon Valley.

The longtime Bay Area early-stage investor is moving north to join Madrona Venture Group as its newest partner.

Chakrabarti was previously a partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners, and before that at Andreessen Horowitz.

At Madrona he’ll focus on making investments in enterprise and cloud-based infrastructure companies.

Chakrabarti noted the quality of tech workers at places like Microsoft and Amazon, in addition to Silicon Valley companies like Facebook and Google that are growing their already-large engineering offices in Seattle.

“You look at all the talent and cannot help but wonder that this particular city and location should create a lot more companies than we have today,”  said Chakrabarti, a two-time startup founder.

As GeekWire reported earlier this month, the large tech giants could be sucking up entrepreneurial talent in the Seattle region. Many also say that the ecosystem needs more investors — perhaps Chakrabarti can help fill that void.

“The next five-to-10 years should be pretty exciting, given the talent that is already present here,” he said.

Chakrabarti called Seattle the cloud capital of the world, which bodes well for his interest in cloud and infrastructure startups. He said founders of these companies typically have spent years learning about cloud-related technologies, working on industry-leading platforms like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

“As they understand where the gaps and problems are, they can come out and build startups to fill in those gaps,” Chakrabarti said. “You have to have that learning from big companies. With cloud in particular, I don’t see a better place than Seattle where you can get all that.”

This is Madrona’s first partner hire from a Silicon Valley investment firm. Chakrabarti got to know Madrona better after he and the firm made a co-investment in Seattle startup Heptio.

“Sudip has a great passion for cloud and infrastructure technologies as well as solutions leveraging machine learning which are strengths in our region and also part of the core of our investment thesis,” Madrona Managing Director Matt McIlwain said in a statement.

Madrona, the most active VC in Seattle, is set for a big office expansion later this year. Madrona Venture Labs, the firm’s “startup studio,” is launching a 3-month startup accelerator this summer.

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