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Richard Dale - Big Data Boston Ventures. Boston, MA, US

Richard Dale

Managing Director | Big Data Boston Ventures


Experienced entrepreneur turned venture capitalist, specializing in understanding the dynamics in very early stage ventures.





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Richard Dale, Principal Sigma Partners




Richard Dale is Managing Director of Big Data Boston Ventures, a new VC fund that invests in early stage big data companies. Richard’s proven leadership abilities combined with deep technical and operational expertise provide a platform to advise entrepreneurs in building solid technology companies. Richard is a well-regarded mentor to founders of early stage startups in the Big Data Boston and Sigma portfolios, as well as other startups including many from TechStars Boston, MassChallenge, and HealthBox Boston.

Previously Richard was a Principal at Sigma Partners where he was a member of the deal team and also worked on special projects for the benefit of the entire portfolio. Richard came to the VC world after a long period as an entrepreneur and startup executive. He co-founded and had various leadership roles at Phase Forward, a provider of software services for pharmaceutical clinical trials which went public and later was sold to Oracle. Prior to that, Richard was VP Operations for Vermeer Technologies, creators of FrontPage which was acquired by Microsoft in 1996. Prior to Vermeer, Richard held roles in professional services management, senior product management and IS management at some of industry’s best technology companies including SQL Solutions, Sybase, Epoch Systems (acquired by EMC) and MicroTouch Systems. Richard also provided early stage advice and consulting to FirstSense, OnDisplay, Vignette and Richard’s career began as a software engineer and database expert, and he has maintained a strong interest in data and application technologies.

Richard blogs at

Industry Expertise (4)

VC and Private Equity

Information Technology and Services


Computer Software

Areas of Expertise (8)


Business Models



Big Data

Business Model Canvas

Venture Capital


Accomplishments (1)

Co-founder Phase Forward (professional)


I co-founded Phase Forward, a leading provider of clinical trial software for the pharma industry. The company went on to go public and was eventually acquired by Oracle Corp

Education (1)

Durham University (UK): BSc, Mathematics 1985

Affiliations (3)

  • Big Data Boston Ventures
  • Sigma Partners
  • Phase Forward

Event Appearances (6)

Startup Panel Moderator

Xconomy "Future of Big Data" Conference  Boston MA


Big Data Seminar: What Does All This Data Mean?

MassTLC Big Data Seminar  IBM Innovation Center, Waltham, MA


Painting Your Business Model

Painting Your Business Model - talk/workshop  MassChallenge, Boston MA


All the Bad Things VCs want to do to You

All the Bad Things VCs want to do to You  MassChallenge, Boston MA


All the Bad Things VCs want to do to You

All the Bad Things VCs want to do to You  MassChallenge, Boston MA


Annual VC Panel: “Looking Back & Looking Forward”

Annual VC Panel: “Looking Back & Looking Forward”  Vilna Shul, Boston MA


Sample Talks (4)

All the bad things VCs want to do to you.

A journey into why Venture Capital comes with onerous looking terms, throwing light on which really are onerous and which are note. Helping make sense of when and why to take VC funding.

A complete business model in one hour

An hour? too long! Let's do a complete business model in 30 minutes. Using the latest best practices to create, critique and refine a business model and help you throw away the 50 page plan.

Budgets are strategic weapons

Arm yourself with the right understanding of the strategic nature of budgets.

How to get the most from (with) your mentor

Mentorship is a growing phenomenon in all walks of professional life. Get a handle on what can go wrong with mentoring relationships and how to get the best from these opportunities.



  • Keynote
  • Moderator
  • Panelist
  • Workshop Leader
  • Host/MC


1500 to 5500 *Will consider certain engagements for no fee