SAN FRANCISCO — A prominent Silicon Valley venture capital firm said it is severing ties with founding partner Steve Jurvetson after it had conducted an investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct.
The firm, called DFJ, made no mention of inappropriate behavior in its statement announcing Jurvetson's departure.
"As of today and by mutual agreement, Steve Jurvetson will be leaving DFJ. DFJ’s culture has been, and will continue to be, built on the values of respect and integrity in all of our interactions. We are focused on the success of our portfolio companies, as well as the long-term vision for the firm and will continue to operate with the highest professional standards," the firm said. It declined to comment beyond the statement.
The Information first reported last month that DFJ -- an acronym that stands for Draper Fisher Jurvetson -- had been investigating Jurvetson for sexual misconduct since the summer. A person familiar with the matter, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the investigation on Monday to The Post.
Jurvetson, 50, who for nearly two decades has been one of Silicon Valley's top investors and sits on the boards of Elon Musk's SpaceX and Tesla, said in a statement on Twitter that that he was leaving DFJ "to focus on personal matters, including taking legal action against those who have defamed me."
A Tesla spokesperson said in an email: "Steve Jurvetson is on a leave of absence from the SpaceX and Tesla boards pending resolution of these allegations."
In October, Keri Kukral, a Los Angeles entreprenuer, raised alarms when she put a Facebook post warning women to be careful of DFJ. She did not identify anyone by name in her post.
“Threshold reached after long contemplation,” she wrote. “Women approached by a founding partner of Draper Fisher Jurvetson should be careful. Predatory behavior is rampant.”
Kukral's post prompted a response from DFJ partner Heidi Roizen, who wrote on her personal blog that the firm had never received an official complaint of harassment or misconduct.
“I value my own personal reputation and integrity above any firm, and simply put, I would not work for DFJ if I felt the culture was not one of high integrity and opportunity for all — including women. Including me," Roizen wrote.
Jurvetson is an associate of Elon Musk and an early backer of Musk's companies. Jurvetson is also on the board of several science-focused startups and was a seminal investor in Hotmail and Skype. (Jurvetson’s biggest miss is a major investment in Theranos, the failed blood-testing startup).
Jurvetson is considered so much part of the Silicon Valley culture that a crew from the HBO television show Silicon Valley showed up at his office to tour his “space museum,” his private collection of space objects, which includes memorabilia from the Apollo 16 moon launch. In 2016, President Obama named Jurvetson a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship.