Artifact Details

Title

Bonsal, Frank oral history

Catalog Number

102738555

Type

Moving image

Date

2017-09-26

Participants

Bosnla, Frank, Interviewee
Hancock, Marguerite Gong, Interviewer

Publisher

Computer History Museum

Place of Publication

Reisterstown, MD

Format

MOV

Description

Frank Bonsal was born, raised and lived his life in the Reisterstown, MD area. His father was a horse trader, so they lived on a horse farm. Although Frank didn’t follow in his father’s footsteps in terms of a vocation, like his father he did become a master of foxhounds, and continues fox hunting to this day.
Bonsal did have a fascination for the world of business and how it works. After graduating from Princeton in 1955, and doing a stint in the Army, he went to work for a brokerage firm, Robert Garrett and Sons. While there, he focused on investing clients’ funds in small to medium sized public companies. As time progressed, he got to know the venture capital community who had invested in these companies.
Frank later moved to Alex Brown where he helped take small companies public. As part of that business, he met Chuck Newhall, who was working at T. Rowe Price. The two of them, along with a third partner, Dick Kramlich, eventually decided to form their own venture firm, New Enterprise Associates (NEA), in 1978. He and his partners grew NEA to be the largest venture firm in the business. Bonsal stayed with the firm through 2003, after NEA raised it’s 10th fund. His only significant regret is that he felt the firm became too large. If he were to do it over again, he would push for keeping it to no more than six general partners.
In his retirement, he continues to pursue personal interests and offers investment advice to Red Abbey Capital Partners, a local firm, as well as his son, who is an educator and involved in education-oriented investments.

Category

Oral history

Credit

Computer History Museum

Lot Number

X8332.2018
 

Related Records

102738554 Bonsal, Frank oral history