Investing in High-Impact Scaleups and Supporting Next Generation Entrepreneurial Leaders
Caruso Ventures is my answer to: “Dan, what are you going to do next?”
I’m Dan Caruso. My wife, Cindy and I live in Boulder, Colorado, which is among the most vibrant communities on the face of the earth.
I was an executive at three fiber scaleups, all of which had exits over $10B.
In 1990, I joined the MFS Communications Company just as it began to scale. We built fiber networks across the U.S., Europe, and Asia. We bought UUNET, the baddest internet backbone of its era. In 1997, we sold MFS to Worldcom, where I had a firsthand view into their fraudulent accounting practice. I resigned shortly thereafter.
In 1997, I joined Jim Crowe and other MFS executives in 1997 to launch Level 3 Communications. We started with $2.5B of funding with no business plan. We rode the dot.com boom and the dot.bomb bust, and survived the telecom meltdown. Today, Level 3 is among the biggest fiber networks and internet backbone in the world.
In 2014, I led a take-private of ICG Communications, a fiber provider headed on the verge of its second bankruptcy. We avoided Chapter 7 and, within two years, achieved an exit of 25x return on our $8.7M equity investment.
In 2007, I led the formation of Zayo Group. We went public in 2014 and private again in 2020. Zayo became among the biggest independent owners and operators of fiber networks in the world. Our $1B equity investment turned into a $8.5B equity exit. In October of 2020, my friend Steve Smith took over as the CEO of Zayo and I rode off into the sunset.
This website gives those who are interested an idea of how I stay busy.