As an entrepreneur and venture capitalist, Sid Krommenhoek is driven by a desire to advocate for entrepreneurs and build companies that matter. His passion for the field he works in and his career outlook were shaped during his time as an entrepreneurship student at the BYU Marriott School of Business.
Krommenhoek’s love of entrepreneurship was first inspired within the walls of the Tanner Building. “I was originally planning to be a doctor, but decided to major in business so that I’d have the chops to run my practice one day,” he says. “Classes such as the entrepreneurship lecture series gave me a window into the lives of people building cool businesses, which opened my eyes to startups. My career now is far from what I expected as an undergrad. But I think that’s part of what I’ve learned—not to hold too tightly to how I think things should go.”
After deciding to pursue entrepreneurship, Krommenhoek started a variety of startups, including some while he was a student. “My time at BYU Marriott was beneficial because I was learning new things at school that I was able to immediately put into practice in my startups,” he adds. Krommenhoek’s most successful company was Zinch, which he started after completing his undergraduate in business management in 2005. Zinch was created to help students in the college admission process and, after expanding internationally, was acquired by Chegg in 2011.
Krommenhoek credits his success in venture capital to an early Zinch investor, Mike Levinthal, who took the time to personally mentor him. “The impact Mike had, not only on my startup but also my life, inspired my path into venture capital,” Krommenhoek explains. “I strive to be someone who doesn’t just invest in a founder’s company. I try to be someone who founders can trust and lean on, not just when times are good but especially when times are hard.” With that goal in mind, Krommenhoek, along with fellow BYU alums John Mayfield and Diogo Myrrha, started Album VC, a venture capital firm dedicated to supporting new software companies around the world, with an emphasis on startups in Utah.
In his work at Album VC, Krommenhoek is driven by commitment—to both his partners and the companies he invests in. “I’ve learned that to stand the test of time in venture capital, you must have strong partnerships and high accountability,” he says. Album VC’s investments include companies such as Degreed, Divvy, MX, Owlet, Podium, Route, Taxbit, and Weave, among others.
Krommenhoek also focuses on his family and enjoys that his work allows him to spend time with them. He involves his four kids on business trips and tries to see the world through their eyes. “The greatest joys for my wife and I are found in our kids and extended family,” he says. “We feel the time we spend with them is the most rewarding thing we can ever do.”
The close bonds Krommenhoek has established with his partners and family are magnified by entrepreneurial experiences. His passion for the people side of business harkens back to his first startup experiences and his time at BYU Marriott. “The creation stage of a company is special and gritty, despite the ups and downs,” Krommenhoek says. “You grow closer to people during that time. Some of my deepest and continuing friendships stem from the early stage of startup. BYU Marriott introduced me to everything in my career beginnings, from cofounders and team members to mentors, professors, and alumni who gave me their time.”
As a student learning entrepreneurship 20 years ago, Krommenhoek never imagined his career would result in numerous successful companies and venture capital efforts. He is thankful for the impact his companies have, both on his life and the lives of others. “I pinch myself with how lucky I am to do what I do in backing audacious founders who build cool products that don’t yet exist in the world,” he adds. “I am especially grateful that I work with partners who are also some of my best friends.”
Writer: Mike Miller