Tony Blair

Tony Blair's Next Act

May 24, 2010: 12:50 PM ET

A silent cement factory on the Northern California coast is not where you would expect to find a former British Prime Minister on a Sunday afternoon. But there was no mistaking a blue-blazered Tony Blair hopping down from a black SUV as it rolled to a stop in a cloud of dust in front of a series of construction trailers. The reason for Blair's visit to this windy stretch of the Pacific just north of Monterey was also immediately recognizable in the next person to be disgorged from the vehicle: Vinod Khosla, arguably venture capital's leading green technology investor.

Blair, the consummate politician, has joined Khosla, the relentless technologist, at his eponymous venture capital firm as a senior advisor. Like Al Gore before him with VC firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Blair will be a rainmaker for Khosla Ventures, making introductions and helping match technologies with geo-politics and policy to fight climate change. Britain's roving diplomat will be compensated, but that is not the main driver, both men are quick to say. So it's not fair to label Blair a venture capitalist – yet. More

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