Trinity GP Vabakos Leaves Firm

Paul Vabakos has left his general partner post with Trinity Ventures, in yet another example of downsized funds leading to downsized investment teams.

Vabakos joined Trinity in the summer of 2001 to help make new investments in the early-stage communications infrastructure market. The Menlo Park, Calif.-based firm had closed on $540 million for its eighth fund and felt it needed at least one new general partner to help invest the windfall.

Fast-forward two years, however, and the need for Vabakos is far less pressing. Trinity has enacted a pair of fund cuts that left its eighth vehicle with just $300 million, which is comparable to the $288 million it raised in 1999 for Trinity Ventures VII.

“We simply had too many partners going forward,” says Larry Orr, a general partner at Trinity since 1989. “This was an amicable decision made earlier this year when we cut the fund again, and he officially left in October.”

Vabakos is the second general partner to leave Trinity so far this year. The first was Tod Francis, who quietly departed in June after the firm decided that his e-commerce and consumer software interests were at odds with Trinity’s investment strategy. Neither Vabakos nor Francis has announced any future plans, although Orr says that Vabakos does have a job lined up.

Prior to joining Trinity, Vabakos served in short stints as a general partner with ComVentures and as an associate with Norwest Venture Partners.

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