The Medtech industry appears, at times, to have a lot stacked against it.
Therefore, it’s helpful to have professionals like Kirk Nielsen who have successfully defied the odds in the past.
Nielsen parlayed a successful college hockey career at Harvard into a short career in professional hockey, including some time spent in the NHL.
A native of Grand Rapids, MN, Nielsen then followed a love of healthcare into the Medtech industry, taking the advice of one of the sector’s icons, the late Glen Nelson.
His interests then carried him west to Menlo Park when he accepted a junior position at Versant Ventures. The position didn’t include an inside track to partner, but Nielsen forged his own way.
Now, Nielsen is a managing director, leading the firm’s Medtech efforts as part of the second-generation management team heading up the venerable venture firm that formed in the late 1990s.
In this podcast, Nielsen discusses his origins, the advice he received, and the parameters he’ll be using to measure Medtech investments for Versant’s new $400 million fund.